Control developers Remedy Games have announced a map of upcoming features and expansions for the game, and it is probably the most excited I have ever been about a downloadable content announcement.
Spoilers for what I think is so exciting about the announcement.
Control presented us with a weird, huge corporate building that was being attacked by a strange force, and the main plot of the game marched us through defeating that takeover. I loved every minute of it, but what really sold the game to me conceptually was how it evoked little glimmers of other interesting parts of the world outside of the Bureau of Control that you were exploring.
The two upcoming features are doubling down on that feeling of exploration. Photo Mode will arrive sometime this fall, and I assume it’s going to do what photo modes in games do. Expeditions will release in December 2019, and they appear to be something like a combat challenge mode that are attached to a Security Chief storyline that already started in the main game. Great. Those sound good.
But what really has me excited are the two expansions coming in 2020.
The first is called The Foundation, and it will take place at the bottom of The Oldest House, the building where the Bureau of Control is housed. The main game has already given us several lessons in the House being a strange and mythical place that has a mind of its own and can connect to different places, spaces, and maybe even times. The promo picture for The Foundation shows a location that we entered into briefly at the behest of the janitor Ahti when he was going “on holiday,” so it already seems like there’s weird shit going on down there.
The second is what I’m vibrating about, though. Alan Wake is Remedy’s 2010 game about a writer who fights enemies with a flashlight and a handgun while also ruminating about the art of writing and listening to Eurorock. I am the true Alan Wake fan. I live and breathe that Stephen King-ass, overwritten, purple prose Twin Peak-y B-movie video game. There is truly nothing like it out there, and Control went from “great” to “excellent” for me when I started finding all of the documents that show all the ways that Alan Wake intersects with the Bureau for Control.
And you know who appears to be in the graphic for the second expansion titled “AWE”? It’s Alan Wake and his doofy flashlight. Last I saw in Control, Alan had pushed a message beneath a door at the Oceanview Motel, a kind of transdimensional portal connection point that the Bureau of Control has used to transport people from one place to the next. Wake’s note was in the hallway in front of a door with a giant spiral on it, and as other notes on Control explain, the Bureau can really only access one door. Alan Wake is out there somewhere that no one else has been able to go, writing himself into reality, desperately trying to get out. And hopefully this DLC lets him write the end to his story.
It’s worth noting that Alan Wake released on May 10, 2010. If the second expansion for Control released on that day, then they could mark the ten-year anniversary in a pretty cool way. I’m not calling a shot here but, well, I’m trying to call a shot.
Control is one of the most mysterious and excellent games I’ve played in a long time. I’ve recently said that it’s my game of the decade, and I’m serious about that. I’m so glad that we’re getting more of it, and that it is both on the horizon yet not too soon. I’d gladly accept delays to make sure that the developers get to work at a pace that is comfortable and that they get to be happy with the product they deliver. There’s no reason to rush it, and I’ll be the first in line based on what I’ve already experienced.