If you’ve payed any attention to my Twitter activity this weekend, you know that I am now setup on both Twitch and Mixer. I’m going to play around back and forth on both platforms over the next few weeks to see which one is best for me, but you also should have noticed that I’ve been playing a lot of Control, my #4 game on my #WeeklyRanked series of titles still to come in 2019. Well, the top question while on stream has been: how are you liking it? worth a buy? So here I am giving a brief review of a game that I haven’t finished yet.
I’ll be honest, I expected more. Let’s start with the pros: when you’re put in combat scenarios, the gameplay is a ton of fun. I love being able to float in the air and launch people across the room at each other. And visually, the game is pretty compelling. The distortions in the air while you use your powers are cool, as is the overall red aesthetic of the Hiss. But after that, things start to get really messy. First, let me state that I am playing on the original Xbox One; not an S or an X (even though I plan on upgrading to an Xbox One X very shortly). So maybe my hardware is just not setup properly for this title, but there are a ton of laggy and glitchy moments in the game. Any time I turn 90+ degrees, the entire environment blurs. That is either extremely lazy or is an issue with my console. Also, the rendering of the environment and the wall videos are very spotty, with moments where the video of a professor explaining a trail freezes on a certain frame for like 8 seconds before it catches up. I don’t fully understand the cause of this, but I really think its not just my console causing these issues.
All of that comes secondary to my top two issues with this game though: pacing and the story. I cannot tell you how many times I screamed at my TV saying “I DON’T KNOW WHERE I’M SUPPOSED TO GO”. I spent like 30 minutes wandering around some wing of the map looking for my objective and I still don’t know how I found it. That alone has caused me to put the game down at least 6 times this weekend. I have zero desire to play a title where I spend 75% of my time wandering around looking for where I’m supposed to be going. Just give me a light path like in Fable and get me on my way. Next, the story. I have no idea what the hell is going on 100% of the time. You play as this girl who, god knows why, is immediately accepted into this super secret organization tasked with keeping a world altering threat contained. You don’t really get an explanation as to what The Hiss is, how it came about, and how it was first contained. Then, you realize this girl has a voice in her head and that the FBC took her brother away but it’s somehow your fault I guess and idk that’s about where I am right now. It make no sense at all and I have no idea if it ever will, which is insane to me considering how good the stories from Quantum Break and Alan Wake were. Speaking of Quantum Break, where the fuck did the facial animations go?? Look at this clip from Quantum Break:
Ok, now look at a cutscene from Control:
Tell me: which one looks more like Mass Effect Andromeda? This is garbage work from a studio that has clearly done so much better in this department. And I cannot believe this got a 80+ on Metacritic. I for one wouldn’t give it anything higher than a 73. There’s just too many missed opportunities. You want to know how to fix this game? Eliminate every other character other than Jessie and her brother. Make the area tell you the story. I can’t tell you how many stupid fucking case files I’ve picked up that haven’t told me jack. shit. about this game.
So, to answer your question: no, don’t buy this game. It’s gonna make its way to the Game Pass probably before the end of the year if you’re really interested. But for me, this is a pass, and that’s fucking disappointing.