Control (PC/PS4/Xbox One)

  • Will try it when I get home

  • Pretty glad that I don't buy games on release year anymore. (With a few exceptions, of course)
    Hopefully by the time I do play this game all the problems will be ironed out. I'll be playing on PS4 Pro, but after watching Aris stream the game I kinda want to wait until I can upgrade my PC. The RTX stuff and insanely destructable environments look so NEAT.

  • Lengthy post incoming, but I am looking for some convo so I'd appreciate the read or response...

    I believe I am roughly 25-30% through the game now. Far enough to have an informed opinion. I believe Control is a solid video game worth playing, but I believe Control it doesn't contribute much to the pool of innovative action-adventure 3D Metroid-like games (Batman Arkham Asylum, Bioshock, Deus Ex Human Revolution, Alien Isolation, Riddick).

    Control takes a lot from other games to create a super solid game of its own. It takes the mind-f*** esoteric storytelling of The Evil Within series, but also throws in some of those intimate FX heavy, play-and-watch sequences that you'd see in Batman (i.e. walking through a corridor with projections of the former director talking to you). It pulls you in with its attempt at creating a unified tone through visuals and audio that is consistent throughout.

    With that said, Control feels less intimate than Batman Arkham and alike 3D Metroid games because it leans more into the shooter side of things than the world itself. I think the inFamous-like shooter gameplay is at the core, where Control thrives, but in terms of bringing you into this world - I don't think it fully succeeds.

    In Batman Arkham, you start in an close corridor prison, then it slowly opens up with bigger rooms, until eventually, you get free reign to explore the Asylum. When unique locations occur, you feel like you're somewhere completely new and exciting. Think about the Batcave or fighting Killer Croc in the sewers. Whereas The Oldest House nails its utilitarian architecture and aesthetic, you never feel too excited or pulled into the new areas. For example, the Executive Branch doesn't look or play very differently from Central Research. Both spaces are big, open, white reflective looking areas for you to run around in, but you don't feel like you're doing anything significant or specific in the new area.

    I suppose Alien Isolation has an extremely unified aesthetic as well, but I believe the first person immersion helps each new area feel diverse and tense. The scenes in Alien that are thin corridors feel completely different than the open rooms and they play significantly different as well. I think that is what Control is missing. The Oldest House is cool in theory, but SO FAR, its missing the gameplay AND artistic balance to truly bring me in.

    Last thoughts, but the PS4 Pro version of this game is extremely rough around the edges. I need to just see past it at this point but I don't think the game should have been released in this state. Not that Bloodborne has anything to do with Control, but Bloodborne (pre-patch) was heavily criticized for 45-50 second load times. This is one of the best games ever made but not even BB was able to avoid this criticism. Control is nowhere close to being one of the best games ever made, but I've had 2 crashes, every time I finish a mission the game freezes for 15-25 seconds, every load screen is 20-60sec, and the game is constantly just chugging along. I have a black ring around Jessie's head which is clearly a distracting obvious glitch. Glitches aside, the graphics are not great either. There is some good tech stuff here like the environment falling apart constantly, but the resolutions are often low, and everything looks white and washed out on my 4K HDR TV. Everything feels flat. Control is not fleshed out on consoles and should not have been released in this state.

    I'd like to reiterate: CONTROL IS A SUPER SOLID GAME. It nails its aesthetic, the shooting mechanics are good, there is a lot of visual cues in the world which a lot of games are lacking nowadays, there is a lot of good side-missions and incentive to explore. CONTROL IS SOLID.


    • Control isn't as good as its contemporaries in the action-adventure 3D Metroid genre: Batman, Alien Isolation, Bioshock
    • The Oldest House doesn't immerse you like, say, Arkham Asylum does
    • The technical issues are borderline unforgivable, and the colours look VERY flat on my TV
    • Combat is extremely solid and fun to play
    • Visual cues in the world are awesome, making side missions and exploring worthwhile
    • Story and aesthetic go hand-in-hand and they nail it with a coherent unity, but I think the immersion is lacking, possibly due to a combat-priority gameplay design
    • Overall solid, takes a lot from other games, but doesn't stand out a lot on its own

  • @dipset I'm like somewhere around 45% in the game right now, so I don't really want to say too much yet. Here's 2 quick thoughts:

    • I agree with what you said about new places in the game not offering new gameplay options and such, but I feel like it is balanced a lot by the collectibles and little lore bits you find along the way. I find the lore of the Oldest House and all the paranormal stuff to be supremely intriguing, more so than in any other game I played in a while, it's more than enough for me to be excited to explore a new area. I've never been this excited to scrounge through each area to find them. It also helps that it seems like each collectible is being placed with care and thought, you won't find them too close or too far apart from each other, it feels like the game is steadily giving them bit by bit. I also really like that they never overexplained things, which gives a lot of room to the imagination.
    • I really want to forgive them for the framerate issues and glitches and stuff because I feel like this game really takes it up a notch with the physics. I wouldn't have nearly as much fun with the combat if the physics and effects weren't as good as they're now. Flying sheets of papers, scattered wood fragments from the tables I blew up, etc. Still, it's definitely a big issue that I imagine would be enough to disturb everyone playing the game.

  • Roadmap for Control has been revealed, along with a new mode and photo mode we have our first hint at the two big DLC.
    But man AWE sure does look familiar

  • I just beat Control, and I actually liked the ending quite a bit. It was cryptic as all hell, but it wouldn't be from the mind of Sam Lake if it wasn't. I think it wrapped everything up quite nicely while also having room for more to be told.

    I really enjoyed this game. I think it was the perfect blend of weird and creepy (looking at you Threshold Kids) while also having a few light-hearted moments to lift the whole thing up. The combat is enjoyable, though occasionally there is too much happening on the screen to properly utilize it. I also love the FMV parts, with the Darling presentations being a particular highlight.

    My one big complaint is that on multiple occasions, the game took you to a place only for you to realize what you're looking for isn't there, making that whole segment kinda useless. It's cool being able to explore the world, but I wish the game had some better excuses to have you do that.


    What's next for Control?

    • New game mode : Expeditions. End game content. Free for all players.
      "Jesse must help Security Chief Arish explore the mysterious Formation and its strange surroundings"
    • Photo mode (heck yeah!)
    • The Foundation. The first paid expansion for the game. Coming in 2020.
      "The Foundation will delve into the history of the Oldest House. At the request of the ever-mysterious Board, Jesse must explore what lies beneath the Bureau as she returns order to the Foundation and the Oldest House itself."
    • AWE. The second paid expansion for the game. Coming in 2020.
      "...will take Jesse into a new part of the Oldest House, the Investigations Sector, where the Bureau closely examines Altered World Events."

    Looks like I might double dip next year and get another copy of this game, since I don't have one that is the same to my account's region. The Region 3 copy's taking a while to show up though...

    Also, since there's an in-game document mentioning stuff from Alan Wake (haven't seen it for myself, saw someone mention it), the AWE expansion is most definitely Alan Wake related.

  • @bam541 Also, the image they have for AWE is partially the box-art for Alan Wake.

  • @bam541
    There's multiple documents mentioning stuff from Alan Wake (6 that I've found) plus a certain band being used during the ashtray maze
    Speaking of that song is on Amazon music (and I assume other streaming services)

  • Two things I saw mentioned in the comments of the EZA's Spoiler Mode video that I then had to go and take a look myself:

    One: What does the NSC stand for? That was pretty jaw-dropping, especially if you'd found a document describing the chamber's contents earlier. Now in post-game (or maybe earlier as well? I hadn't stumbled upon this particular spot before) Jesse comments what she sees written on the thing.

    Two: Concerning Alan Wake there was still the biggest surprise left in the game. Or I think Brad actually mentioned this during the spoiler discussion.

    In Panopticon's lvl 5 you can levitate to a more secluded part of the level and find a page there which will actually trigger a vision of Alan Wake himself speaking to himself and writing, like actual audio and visuals. O_o

  • @sentinel-beach
    And now I'm going to search for that vision

  • @bam541

    I definitely appreciate that they balance the collectibles out into categories: Correspondence, AWE, and one more I can't remember. It makes it easier to digest and follow the plot along. I don't think these were super maliciously placed though. They'll have a bunch about the same AWE all scattered in one area for the sake of finding more things when one maybe two collectibles would have been fine. I don't need to find "AWE- Ordinary 4.b" - read it - walk a few steps and find - "AWE - Ordinary 1.B" - read it - walk a few steps and find - "AWE - Ordinary 1.A" - rinse and repeat 5 times. It really makes the game feel so stop n start at a bad time near the end.

    With that said, I loved finding this collectible in AWE - Ordinary "Closed Files" location

    Spoiler The Alan Wake AWE. I haven't even played Alan Wake but its super cool that they not only throw this in, but it seems possible we might go back and play it in DLC?! I'm going to have to play Alan Wake now.

    An update on the performance - the patch helps a lot but it still chugs and crashes A LOT. I've had two main menu crashes and one gameplay crash since the patch. But at least the loading screens and general performance is a lot better. Still not great but waaaaaaaaay better than 1.0.