Control : Aka LSD for your LCD
Plays like a Novel Feels.
Playing the game feels more like experiencing a novel than any other game I have played, with the exception of the movie-like “A Plague Tale: Innocence” (our favourite title from 2019 so far), 2019 has not yet given us a better narrative experience than Control, with a story that keeps you wanting to play just a few minutes longer, where every scrap of paper, discarded floppy disc or recording could hold just one more clue to help in solving the mystery around “The Oldest House”, the mysterious and at times cursed location in which Control’s twisting narrative plays out.
Max Payne meets The Force Unleashed.
The Max Payne trilogy are some of the finest works of gaming fiction we have been given in the last 30 years, the entire trilogy while dated graphically in 2019 is worth a play by any true enthusiast of third person single player games, once again Remedy (Max Payne and Max Payne 2) have captured the magic of Max Payne, and this time we have been treated with the insane physic abilities of a game more akin to The Force unleashed, while these powers are out of this world, and the dangers faced are otherworldly, the game maintains a level of gritty realism that remains true to the heritage of Max Payne.
An actual woman for a change.
Jesse Faden mystical abilities aside is an everyday woman, the type you can see anyplace anywhere, she doesn’t walk around in lingerie with DD’s and stripper booty, she looks normal, dresses appropriately for her task (who fights the supernatural in your underwear or less?), and acts capable, sadly too often female protagonists are little more than sex symbols with guns, Jesse Faden looks and acts like she has everything under Control (pun intend) and the fact she is a female is just part of her character, a all to common pitfall avoided by the developers.
A protagonists gender shouldn’t matter.
Characters written to fill a sex/race quota or focused on sex/race that fulfils no narrative purpose often come over as flat or forced, you could replace Jesse Faden with any race/age/gender combination and she would still be a solid character.
I would love to see more games offer female protagonists of this calibre in the years to come.
Worth a play?
I am personally loving the game for its narrative value, the game-play mechanics and graphical excellence only add to that narrative.
I gladly paid full price for the game and would gladly do so again, I play games like this for the story, which lasts between 12-16 hours depending on your play speed/exploration rate.
Control offers little in the way of replay value beyond collectables/lore, and while i find the lore in and of itself worth finding, for some it maybe wiser to hold off for a sale if the full retail price is a substantial part of your gaming budget.
Control is one of the most unique and polished games of 2019 and will hold a special place in the hearts of those who play it for years to come, personally I intend to play through many times in the years to come, as its both haunting and beautiful, a rare balance that few games capture this perfectly.
Available on PC (Epic Game Store Now/Steam 2020), PS4 and Xbox One
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