Remedy wants to avoid “busywork and meaningless fetch quests” with Control’s side missions.
For all the new information we’ve received, Remedy’s Control is still pretty mysterious. Chalk that up to the developer’s reputation for creating stylish but incredibly opaque action titles with interesting stories behind them. One thing is for sure though – if you’re playing Control to toss things around like a telekinetic beast, the game will go as far as possible to provide that experience.
In a recent interview with GamesTM magazine in issue 205, game director Mikael Kasurinen talked about how the idea of telekinesis led to the environments being developed carefully. Long story short though, every object in the environment – from chairs and fire extinguishers to tables – can be used as a weapon.
“The first point I made was that this is a game about control; it’s about controlling the environment and controlling elements,” said Kasurinen. “That’s the main thing of the game. Telekinesis felt like a really natural first step towards that, establishing that as a key gameplay pillar. Jesse is essentially a telekinetic master and is able to use it to control the environment, use it to defend herself and to attack enemies and even able to use it to fly.
“It opened up a lot of interesting possibilities, but still with an elegant core idea, and of course that led to us thinking very carefully about how we built the environments, and also embracing new workflows – we have a more modular structure to the world, which allows us to add that layer of complexity and detail in the destruction of every single piece in the environment.
“All of the chairs, tables, everything in the environment can be used as a weapon. And of course we have elements that are more complicated – take a fire extinguisher and throw it and it will blow and so on; we are now getting up to the point where you will be able to pick up enemies as well and throw them against each other. We are going as far as we possibly can with this kind of power fantasy of being this telekinetic master. The environments are a huge part of that.”
Kasurinen cited properties like Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy and Star Wars as being “missed opportunities” when it comes to delivering the telekinetic power fantasy.
“To me, personally, it has been one of these missed opportunities,” he said. “There has been Psi-Ops a while back and there is the Star Wars game, where there is this sense of telekinesis, and they were great games, but to me it feels like a bit of a missed opportunity. We wanted to say, ‘No, you can pick up anything’. It’s part of how the world works, and it’s there as a foundation that we have built into the game.”
Control does have a Metroidvania-like structure to it, and while there will be side missions to take up, Kasurinen and his team are doing their best avoid any typical “fetch quests”.
“There is the main campaign, which is all about Jesse assuming the role of director of The Federal Bureau of Control – of her earning that role and dealing with the Hiss, the strange force that has taken over The Oldest House. But as she tries to figure that out and follow the main campaign she will be presented with a lot of different options that she can tackle if she wants.
“We wanted each one to feel relevant or to at least be an interesting thing for you to do. We want to avoid busywork and meaningless fetch quests in Control, which side quests can so easily become.”
Control is currently slated to release in 2019 for Xbox One, PS4 and PC.