The Elderwood Work Crew were a trio of national park workers in the Alan Wake novel.
The Elderwood Work Crew is a general term used to refer to a county work crew of three which were assigned to keep the trails clear in Elderwood National Park. The three men were working night-shifts, clearing away fallen trees and debris from tourist spots. As the Dark Presence was reasserting itself in the week before Deerfest, these laborers probably had their work cut out for them.
Six nights before Deerfest, this team of workers were at work near Lover's Peak, which was where Alan Wake had arranged to meet the supposed kidnapper of his wife, Ben Mott. As the Dark Presence engulfed the park and began tracking the writer, the Elderwood work crew was inevitably engulfed by the darkness and turned into Taken. They roamed around the area with other Taken, mainly hunters, who were sent by the Darkness to stop Wake. Now mindless killers, work tools were transformed into deadly weapons. Two of the workers carried hand-sickles and one of them brandished a machete.
On his way to Lover's Peak via a cable car, Alan was attacked by a number of possessed ravens, forced to fend them off with his flashlight. The cable car veered out of control and crashed, suggesting it was down for renovations and was not actually intended for real use. When Wake looked up, he could see the two of the Taken Elderwood Work Crew approaching at a steady pace, holding their weapons at their side. When Wake reached for his flashlight to defend himself, the third possessed worker stomped down on it, before raising his sickle over Wake's head to kill him.
As Alan braced himself for the blow, it never came. A flare, hurled by Ben Mott, landed in the midst of the three muttering Taken, burning away their protective shrouds of shadow. Mott then shot them three times in succession with his automatic pistol, destroying them.
- Two of the Elderwood Work Crew seem to use the Flanking skin for the Taken characters, while one of them seems to use the Assault skin.
- Ben Mott must have been an excellent shot to have killed all three Taken with only three bullets.
- The Elderwood Work Crew's backstory can be found in the Alan Wake Novel. Wake describes the most he saw of the Taken, really only an image of a shadowy boot clomping over his flashlight. According to Alan, the worker's boot was worn, mud-crusted and hobnailed, with untied laces. Still groggy from the cable car crash, Wake briefly (and humorously) contemplated telling the Taken he should tie his boots, since he wouldn't want to trip.
- In the novel, Alan also notes the hand-sickles carried by the possessed work crew appeared shiny in the moonlight, contrasting with the darkness shrouding the actual Taken, and they looked sharp enough to shave with.
- If one listens very closely, the lead Taken worker is murmuring something under his breath as he prepares to kill Wake. The phrase is unintelligible, as it drowned out by the sound of Mott's flare. Other Taken have been known to utter words while possessed; these are usually senseless babbling which are nerve reactions from the person before he became a Taken, now considered absent.