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Why is Alan Wake 2 digital only? No physical release angers fans

Callum Smith

The highly-anticipated Alan Wake 2 was shown off again at yesterday’s PlayStation Showcase event, and some fans are now angry thanks to learning that it will be digital only with no plans for a physical release.

Sony’s PlayStation Showcase for 2023 was fairly good. There was the long-awaited reveal of the Metal Gear Solid 3 Remake, Dragon’s Dogma 2 was a huge surprise, and we got a very extensive look at Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 starring Peter Parker in the symbiote suit.

While there were plenty of decent trailers and gameplay glimpses during the event, one of the best was undoubtedly Alan Wake 2.

Why is there no physical release for Alan Wake 2?

The Alan Wake 2 FAQ says that it is digital only with no plans for a physical release because it allows Remedy to keep the price at £49.99/$59.99 on console and £39.99/$49.99 on PC.

In addition, they note that ‘a large number have shifted to digital only’ with PS5 and Xbox consoles without a disc drive both available. Lastly, they did not want to ship a disc product that requires a download for the game.

The lack of a physical release is surprising as Control and Alan Wake Remastered are both available in physical copies. It’s not surprising for PC as everything is digital on computers anyway, but it is somewhat bemusing for PlayStation and Xbox.

Not to mention some fans are already aggrieved that Alan Wake 2 is not coming to Steam. However, this exclusivity is understandable as the title was funded by Epic Games.

Digital only release angers fans

Some fans are angry that Alan Wake 2 is getting a digital only release on consoles.

Under a Twitter thread from Wario64, few people especially have a problem with the excuse that Remedy didn’t want to release a disc version that requires a download. Instead of not releasing physical copies, disgruntled fans argue that a polished final product that doesn’t require a day one patch should be released instead.

Some have also claimed they are not buying the game or will wait until it goes on sale. Truth be told, this likely won’t hurt sales much at all as physical media is a dying commodity with digital sales outperforming by far in every medium.

Still, it’s understandable why some fans are miffed. There’s still plenty of people out in the world who enjoy collecting box copies because they look nice and provide a real sense of ownership.

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