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CONTROL - my review [PS4]

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  • CONTROL - my review [PS4]

    Last month, the latest production of Remedy studio - Control - hit the store shelves. Let's see if it's worth getting interested in this title.

    I do not hide that I was waiting for Control. Previous Remedy games were always incredibly enjoyable productions for me. I'm not able to count how many hours I spent with Max Payne and Alan Wake. Theoretically, the gameplay (at least in assumptions) was never outstanding in the works of the said producer, but the atmosphere has always been so catchy that time was passing incredibly quickly. And guess what? If you enjoyed previous Finnish accomplishments, you will love Control.

    In the latest title we play as Jesse Faden. We're meeting her when she's visiting a mysterious organization known as the FBC - Federal Bureau of Control in search of her brother. It is unknown to the end what it does, but there is one thing – if FBC enters the action, we have to deal with paranormal phenomena. I will not write more about history, because the halo of mystery is one of the strongest sides of the Finnish production. The storyline is explained slowly and there is no shortage of twists. I was very pleased to keep track of it and from the very first moments I spent in Control, I loved the presented world. There are hundreds of secret documents waiting to be found. I don't remember another game which was so keen on searching for the collectibles. Not because of the trophies, but just because of my interest in the contents of the note. As proof of how much the described production drew me, let me testify to the fact that during my review playthrough I managed to get a platinum, which was associated with the execution of even optional tasks. I couldn't tear myself away from Control. The world is built very skillfully and momentarily impressed by being its actual part. Bravo, Remedy! You have managed to create an abstract, yet coherent world.

    Control is a third-person action game in the full sense of this phrase. We see our character from the back and the gameplay focuses on two main elements - moving and eliminating opponents. These are former employees of FBC possessed by a mysterious Hiss. The variety of opponents is as sufficient as possible – we have flying ones, heavy and armored guards, ordinary laborers, spheres that renew the health of opponents, or even crab-spider-like creatures that explode after death. There are a lot of ways to deal with them. If we find the right object of power (more on which later) and interact with it, we unlock, for example, the shield from debris. It is worth expanding – if we do this, after depleting, the shield will be able to push into opponents, dealing damage to them at the same time. In addition, Jesse will learn levitation at some point, taking control over the mind of weakened enemies, or pushing objects (and bodies) at a distance. In addition to that all of this there are also different modes of the Service Weapon. It looks like a pistol – at least in the basic form. It must be pointed out that the Service Weapon can be transformed into another mode by pressing the square on the pad. Among the available forms of this "pistol" we find a shotgun, a machine gun or a double-shot powerful emitter of a strong stream. Undoubtedly, everyone will find a suitable variant.

    We can further modify the weapon. By assigning to a specific mod, we can increase its rate of fire, accuracy, armor damage, or increased damage when firing headshots, aiming or our low level of health. In addition, you can strengthen our character – increasing its maximum health level, the rate of regeneration of the special capacity bar, or even unlocking the regeneration of health after picking up the appropriate, left by the opponent, crystals.

    Very often, when playing Control , we come across checkpoints. A large part of the zones visited by Faden is corrupted by Hiss. If we get rid of opponents in a particular sector, we can sometimes cleanse the control point. We do this by approaching it and holding the square. Then a number of things will happen. Firstly, the room will change the layout slightly, unlocking new places. Secondly, we will get the opportunity to use a quick trip to other checkpoints. In one of them, we can also change the outfit that Jesse is wearing. At each control point we can also spend gained experience points to develop our abilities. For example, a levitation on a basic level allows it to float above the ground, but if we develop a bit of this ability, we will be able to hit opponents with a strong shock wave after our landing. Of course, I will not describe all the possibilities of developing special powers, but there is definitely plenty of upgrades to spend experience points on.

    While we're at the checkpoints, I must mention the serious problem I have experienced. During the 7th mission, after reaching a certain place, the opponents should fall and attack me. After the end of the clash I would approach the checkpoint and clean it to proceed further. However, the opponents still were hanging in the air and I couldn't activate this point. This is precisely the reason why the review appears on the site now. It turned out that not only I have encountered this error – in the game forum, on Reddit and Discord many people complained about this problem. We tried different ways – loading the previous save, shooting to suspended opponents before the clash, redownloading the game, restarting the whole mission 7 – nothing helped. I finally chose Mission 6 in the main menu, which deleted my progress since the mission was played and I reached Mission 7. I managed to finish it! So I was able to finish the game and Control can be completed even despite the bugs. They are, however, able to invate blood so that I had to mention them. There's still no new patch on the day you publish this review, so keep this in mind.

    Control includes 10 main missions and a whole bunch of side quests. Just completing the main story takes about 8 – 10 hours. There's also the addition in a form of a lot of optional missions. These are divided into two types. The first one focuses on reaching a certain point on the map and getting rid of the specified danger in the form of opponents or their objects of power. You need to know that our death when trying to accomplish this task means automatic failure. These missions are available periodically and there is no fear that a fiasco in one will automatically stop us from gaining a platinum trophy or to stop our chances of gaining an appreciable amount of currency (necessary, as well as materials found in crates and Enemies killed, to buy weapon mods).

    A lot more interesting is the second type of quests-side missions in the full sense of these words. In contrast to the aforementioned, these have a story background. It was not uncommon for me to be interested in and to encourage them to look for these tasks. If you wished to have seen these tasks suddenly appear in the Mission menu, verify your hopes. Side missions are sometimes contracted to us after a conversation with a character, but we will be much more likely to encounter them, collecting records and logs left in the game world. There is no big question mark calling: "Here is an optional mission!". It's a huge plus Control and has a very beneficial effect on immersions.

    Very often we will be able to cleanse the so-called Objects of Power. These are seemingly usually items – a lamp, a refrigerator, or, for example, a mirror – which, however, have shown paranormal properties so severe that they are able to change the environment. For example, the refrigerator must be constantly watched, because looking the other way strongly hurts the viewer, and the mirror reflects not what it should (so our task is to bring about the correct reflection of reality). Almost every Object of Power binds to a puzzle to solve. They are simple enough not to make a problem and so demanding that you do not get bored of them. They diversione the gameplay and its pace are perfectly balanced. In Control there is a perfect balance of action and exploration of The Oldest House.

    As for the visual side of the game, I don't have anything to complain about. Control looks beautiful, and the whole positive impression completes the refined expression of character. Highlights present at explosions blur the screen and there is plenty of environments pieces flying around – all the effects look really good and only encourage you to spend with Control all the time you have. I love the attachment to the details – moving around the Federal Bureau of Control and The Oldest House, we notice the mass of seemingly useless details. The boards in the offices are filled with posters and observations to the employees, and the live environment responds to our actions-breaking the glass and removing fragments of walls, and then throwing them through the lobby. It never get boring. It is only a pity that Remedy failed to maintain a stable number of frames per second. FPS drops are very common – the environment is often destroyed, which is why we see a lot of falling elements. Unfortunately, the game engine does not cope with good memory management in this case.

    I've mentioned before the cohesion of the world. Control is a noticeable part of the universe in which Alan Wake's action happens. By reviewing the documents, we will come across information about Bright Falls and the events experienced by the writer. There is also a band we know from MP2 and Alan Wake - Poets of The fall – and it's in two ways. As a regular PotF and known from the previous Remedy games Old Gods of Asgard. I really liked this appeal to the long-known Finnish manufacturer's games – it's subtle enough that maybe not everyone will notice it, but who knows what's going on, is sure to be smiling. There is also a reference to the program Bright Falls and one of the old Old Gods of Asgard track– Balance slays the Demon. The overall quality of audio production is very good. The voices of the characters are chosen appropriately and the environment sounds are great. They give the impression of a truly existing place. Hideo Kojima also has his appearance but I will not reveal where we hear this person. There is also no shortage of references to Quantum Break and Max Payne series. Fans of Remedy Games will have something to look for.

    Control is is a very successful production. It was very close of getting the maximum note in my review. However, these technical flaws were present and they do have an impact. Control is still one of the best games I have ever played. In no other game I wanted so much to gather all the documents and read the contents of the notes I've found. I used to dream of Alan Wake 2. After playing Control , my dream is Control 2 – a continuation of a fantastic single-player production. If technical shortcomings are repaired, the new title by Remedy can surely aspire to win the prize for the Game of the Year. I haven't played a Remedy game in a long time. Fortunately, the studio is still great at what it does and there is nothing to suggest a change in it. Control is a game that does not let you forget about it and the temptation to finish one more mission is as strong as in The Witcher III: The Wild Hunt. Games of course represent different genres, but as in my opinion The Witcher III is unmatched in the world of RPG games, and so Control tower over all TPP action games.

    SCORE: 9/10

    previous Remedy games refereces
    The Oldest House
    perfect gameplay balance

    FPS drops
    Technical bugs

    PS: You can find my original review (in Polish) at

  • #2
    Nice work