XBA Review: Control: The Foundation

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Control’s the Oldest House is probably this generation’s most interesting setting. From the outside it’s generic and unassuming – it’s dullness personified – but on the inside, it’s complicated, it’s constantly evolving and ever-changing. It’s confusing as hell! (There’s a joke in there somewhere about it being a perfect metaphor for me.) Jokes aside, Remedy’s first piece of proper DLC for Control, The Foundation, does exactly what it says on the tin – offering the opportunity to explore the foundations of the aforementioned Oldest House; what lies beneath and all that, which means getting a revelatory glimpse at the origins of video game’s weirdest – and most wonderful – brutalist building.

The Foundation is exactly what you'd expect from Remedy and Control, taking the weird, wonderful and trippy foundations it laid in the base game, and doubling down on them, to create a mind-bending, far weirder affair, if that's even possible. In what is a relatively short piece of downloadable content (around the 4-hour mark), The Foundation serves as a rather solid follow-up to the excellent base game – one that unfortunately had its issues. Like its predecessor, The Foundation’s story proves engaging, its lore continues to be fascinating and the gameplay remains utterly sublime – with new abilities adding some fresh exploration options along the way.

The DLC does, unfortunately, fall victim to the same issues that blighted the main game. Whether it’s the frame-rate dipping, menus lagging, or the general tech issues and crashes, it’s a shame that The Foundation expansion does nothing to stabilise Control’s foundations. And while the base game took advantage of the Oldest House as a compelling location, one that would warp and shape-shift its way through your mind, in The Foundation you spend far too long traversing boring caves beneath the Oldest House. These caves fail to capture the imagination in the same way that the house itself did, making it one of the most fascinating environments we’ve seen in quite some time. Sure, the Oldest House does bleed into proceedings on the odd occasion, but not nearly enough in our eyes.

All you really need to know about Control’s The Foundation expansion is this: it’s a great addition to what is an already excellent game, one that is unfortunately marred by technical issues that are sadly also rampant in this DLC. Aside from the various issues and relatively boring procession of caves, though, The Foundation is a really cool piece of DLC, expanding Control's twisted lore while peering further behind the curtain into the fascinating world that Remedy has created.


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Game Info
505 Games


US August 27, 2019

Price: $59.99USD
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