When news of Control's next-gen upgrade arrived last year, it was confirmed not to be leveraging Smart Delivery. Instead, players were forced to purchase the game again if they wanted to play on Xbox Series X|S. It was a controversial move, and one publisher 505 Games has now acknowledged it could have handled "in a much better way".
In a recent interview with GamesIndustry.biz (thanks, VGC), company president Neil Ralley spoke about how "certain decisions restricted how [505 Games] could perform Smart Delivery for the next-gen version of Control".
“Every transition from one generation to another creates challenges for both development and publishing. The Smart Delivery option, if I can use that term to generalise, was something we hadn’t faced before as an industry. For Control, we made certain decisions restricted how we could perform Smart Delivery for the next-gen version of Control.
They were the correct decisions at the time, but they created those blockers. We were unable to backtrack and reorganise how we were developing the Ultimate Edition for there to be a sensible and fair way to do Smart Delivery."
Looking back at how Control's upgrade was handled is something 505 Games is said to have "learnt a lot from". Games such as Ghostrunner and Assetto Corsa Competizione will be receiving free next-gen updates over the next few months, with the publisher declaring they're handling those in a "much better way".
“We learnt a lot from that. Did we as a publisher handle it in the best way and communicate it in the best way to the audience? Maybe not. But we did our best to satisfy consumers. Moving forwards, we will be able to do this in a much better way and you’ll see that in the next examples that we’ve got with Ghostrunner at the end of September and Assetto Corsa in early 2022. I’m very confident that we’ll handle that in a much better way.”
It's great to see the publisher has learnt from its past decisions. While we appreciate it was a tough call, consumers undeniably felt ripped off having to buy the game again for a few extra visual upgrades. Fortunately, if you've yet to buy it, Control Ultimate Edition is being sold for an ultra-low price this week as part of 505 Games' 15th Anniversary Sale on Xbox, available for just £13.99 / $15.99. Grab it while you can!
Happy to see 505 Games acknowledge the handling of Control's next-gen upgrade? Let us know in the comments below.