Remedy's popular horror game Alan Wake is being yanked from Steam and Xbox Live tomorrow.
A licensing issue with the game's music is to blame. It's possible that the issue will be resolved at a alter date, but in the interim the game won't be available to download.
The good news is that those wishing to buy before the option has gone can have the title for cheap – on Steam it's down to just 2.29, with the all singing and all dancing pack, which includes expansion American Nightmare, is priced at just 2.99.
American Nightmare, incidentally, will remain available, as the licensing problems don't affect it.
We are looking into relicensing the music for Alan Wake, but have no timeframe for this,” the studio said on its forums. Alan Wake's American Nightmare will remain in stores. Remedy negotiated the music licensing for Alan Wake's American Nightmare, we did not negotiate the licensing for Alan Wake's licensed music.
Remedy and Microsoft cannot control how individual stores want to price the game. Remedy can only control pricing on Steam.”
Responding to fans on Twitter, Remedy pointed out that it's not as simple as just patching out the music, and that the resources it can dedicate to changing a seven year old game are limited.
Music licenses can often be a problem for older titles. The likes of Rockband and Singstar have had a lot of issues trying to migrate from older to newer consoles, while the Steam and mobile versions of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas had over a dozen tracks patched out.
Obviously the changes won't affect anyone who is able to track down a phyusical version of the Xbox 360 release.