'Control' Imagines 'The X-Files' as an Eerily Thrilling Action-Horror Game

Control is less a horror game than it is a game of unsettling strangeness. Horror in its world has become familiar and mundane, something to be managed and quantified and filed away in official reports, but still dangerous even if familiarity has bred contempt. That also makes it a bureaucratic comedy, with midcentury modern aesthetics paying homage to the likes of Dr. Strangelove or Noah Hawley’s surreal Legion. It’s a world of complacent and foolhardy managers who fight budgetary and turf wars with more ferocity than they battle the monsters that they are supposed to contain, while a handful of working stiffs try to keep the dam from breaking. It’s also a super-powered shooter where your character essentially arrives in this world of overmatched middle-managers with the power and force of a demigod and the can-do spirit of someone who is just grateful they finally have a decent job.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/ne8njd/control-review

God, this just sounds like my jam in all the right ways. SCP comes to mind as well.

If anything, I’m super hype to read all the side documentation that you pick up more than the physics gunplay.

I love redacted creepy government files.

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I think was Rob was right on the money when he said that this game feels like playing the concept art.

That and the dust(?) effects when enemies die is just incredibly cool looking.

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Listening to Rob & Patrick talk about the game on the podcast, it kept reminding me of Warehouse 13, a show about a warehouse that stored all kinds of weird artefacts and the team assigned to it who had to go out into the field to retrieve artefacts that are causing chaos in the world. The titular warehouse was just as much a character in the series, much like how The Oldest House feels like in Control. I was already greatly interested in this because it was from Remedy (I did enjoy Quantum Break a fair bit as well) but the aesthetic of Control sounds right up my alley.

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I’m four or five hours in, and this is one of the most interesting concepts I’ve seen for a game in quite awhile. Gameplay is quite fun, too. One fairly significant problem, though, at least on PS4: Using the telekinesis power in combat results in some gnarly framerate drops. Anyone with the game notice this? I’m hoping a patch is incoming.

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Me: this game is creepy but I can handle it

After watching the first episode of Boundry Kids:
image

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Alex & Ben from Giant Bomb mentioned that the game kinda runs like garbage on the base PS4, especially when using that ability. I’ve seen similar reports from a few other sources since, including Digital Foundry, so yeah hopefully a patch is coming. Sounds like the Pro is better but still has some hitches. I’ve been happy with the PC version so far, aside from a weird bug I had tonight where I was stuck in a menu and had to force close it because it wouldn’t accept any input aside from opening the map.

@Terranova Yeah that Threshold Kids show is definitely the most unsettling thing I’ve seen in the game so far, it’s kinda impressive.

Also there are so many funny / clever / heartbreaking collectible memos I’ve found that I want to share, the writing in this game is phenomenal.

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Yeah I did a little research after writing that post and saw the DF article, etc. I’m thinking of putting the game down until a patch is released - it’s so good I don’t want the fps stuff to mar the experience.

I’m replaying Alan Wake, and I can’t WAIT to watch TV in Control.

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I want Emily Pope to explain everything to me.

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I just finished Control yesterday and I logged in today to try and do some of the extra stuff and the update is already live! Has been all day! The upgrade screen has been redone and you can see the new abilities in it. I went and collected some of the hidden location ability points and unlocked one of them! I went around to the npcs too but none of them did anything different. Although I didn’t check the foundation. The map is also definitely more legible now which is nice.

Edit: clarification that only the free update is live. The dlc stuff doesn’t appear to be there and it’s not available in the epic store either.

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The DLC is now live as of this post.

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Oh yes whoops. I forgot to post again. I’ve been playing it most of the day. I’m digging it so far!

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