The first story expansion for Control
, IGN’s 2019 Game of the Year, is set to be released on March 26 and we have the exclusive first trailer and details for the upcoming DLC. The Foundation expansion will take Federal Bureau of Control chief Jesse Faden deep underground to the bedrock of the Oldest House.You can watch the first full trailer for The Foundation expansion below.Keeping in line with Control’s mysterious atmosphere, the developers at Remedy refrained from divulging too much about the expansion’s plot. We do know the expansion will take place after the events of the main game, when Jesse gets a call from the board alerting her of a disturbance that’s causing the Oldest House’s subterranean level, the Foundation, to go haywire. The bureau’s Head of Operations Helen Marshall will also figure prominently into the expansion after she mysteriously went off on her own during the main storyline.
Control game director Mikael Kasurinen described the expansion as “an opportunity for [Remedy] to take the open-ended nature of the environments even further. The new area that you get to access is filled with mystery, discovery and player-driven exploration. As is the way of Control, it is embedded with symbolism. Exploring the foundation of the Oldest House is also about exploring the very foundation of Jesse herself. Who is she as the director and where does she need to from here?… Jesse will be tested unlike ever before.”
Aside from the new storyline, there is a brand new skill in the expansion called “Shape” which is split into two forms: “Create” and “Fracture.” This new ability is integral to the expansion not only because it’s a new combat ability, but you’ll need to use it to solve puzzles called “Rituals.”
“One of the main pillars of Control is the ability to experiment and use the environment to your advantage in combat,” Remedy senior game designer Sergey Mohov told IGN in an interview. “[Shape] is another aspect of that. It is one of the supernatural abilities you get in the game and in a way it’s a more direct way of affecting the environment because you actually make things grow out of the wall or a floor, and use them to either pierce through enemies or make a platform for yourself.”
Control – The Foundation Exclusive Screenshots
One of Control’s highlights is the supernatural power fantasy Jesse’s abilities afford the players, and Remedy says it wants to intensify that feeling in the expansion. The environment in The Foundation is more open in a way that allows players to explore Jesse’s full powers. “Having these high ceilings and big arenas to unleash your power is a big part of the power fantasy in Control. When you’re contained in a room with a small ceiling you’re not really encouraged to levitate that much. Whereas if you’re in an open arena you will more of that. We wanted to encourage more of that aggressive gameplay style in the expansion,” Mohov said.
Remedy communications director Thomas Puha added that it was “important to try and make the environment feel different enough from the main game… Expansions are things where you can go even more left-field, embrace the weirdness even more.”
Another important design decision for the new expansion was to make things more open-ended and nonlinear, which allows players to explore freely and discover some secrets. “That’s the thing I’m most excited about in the expansion,” Mohov said. “It’s been really fun seeing how the community responded to our level design choices and how people reacted to having these big side missions in the main game where you have optional boss fights that people didn’t expect to find… So we wanted to integrate it more into our level design and make it really matter whether you go left or right.”
Control E3 2019 Screenshots
We asked whether this meant there would be secrets in the expansion and against Puha’s caution, Mohov told IGN, “Absolutely. Some crazy ones.” There are a few secrets the Remedy developers have bets on to see how long it will take players to find. “There’s some alcohol at stake,” Mohov joked.
Courtney Hope, who voices Jesse Faden, told IGN that she “can’t wait to see the response from everyone as we dive deeper into the Oldest House and all of its secrets! Fleshing out Jesse’s abilities, even more, is beyond exciting and how they’re used to help strengthen her role as Director.”
The Foundation expansion will be available to Control season pass holders and can only be accessed after completing the main game. But anyone who owns Control will receive a free update with a bevy of quality-of-life improvements that Remedy says should address some of the feedback players have had with the main game. The main map has been improved, and the skill tree has been expanded upon, and there’s been some tinkering with underused abilities. Players will also be able to reallocate ability points using Essence.
Matt Kim is a reporter for IGN. You can reach him on Twitter.