The Secret World Beta Weekend

Posted by on Jun 18, 2012 in Blog, Featured, Guides, The Secret World | 0 comments

I went into this beta weekend for “The Secret World” expecting to collect some material about the mechanics of the game. Last time I played I hadn’t touched tradeskills and didn’t pay to much attention to combat and or skills in general, either. Guess what? I didn’t get around to gather more facts. Instead I solved puzzles, listened to voice overs and pushed dialog buttons to take in more and more of the great story this game is telling their players.
Savage Coast

Competing secret societies are meddling in the world’s affairs, fighting each other and common enemies. Powerful mega corporations and powerless and corrupt political organisations are players as well. It’s never really clear if you fight paranormal activities or you are looking at failed experiments of the other involved parties. It isn’t clear if the experiments have failed, either. Chaos is introduced, just to learn how the system reacts. Every conspiracy theory is true, the water supply has been messed with, and they are ready to attach a tracking device to your spine anytime.

That’s what differentiates this game from all other MMO’s. The setting is unique and the story is unique. Do not approach it as a hack and slash game, don’t ask about the endgame. Sit back and enjoy the show, push that dialogue button again a few more times and pay attention. Take copious notes. You may need that information, or it hides yet another conspiracy.

There are more differences to other MMORPG’s. The game doesn’t have any classes nor levels. Only skills and abilities. These will improve over time and more abilities can be added. Your class is determined by the abilities you choose. Of interest is the fact that you are allowed to put only 7 active and 7 passive abilities into your hotbars. Skill levels replace classic levels, but with much more granularity, since those levels exist for almost ever type of equipment, weapons, talismans, belts and rings.

Other reviewers have complained about the quality of combat. I didn’t pay much attention, I just played. There is PVP, but I haven’t checked it myself. I’m just not interested in it. I still need to explore tradeskills. The basic mechanics are there, but what you can do with the items you collect isn’t fully clear, yet.

There will be another beta weekend starting this Friday, lets find out if I’ll collect more facts about the game or get lost in the content.


© Disclaimer: The Secret World
"The Secret World" is a registered trademark of Funcom GmbH. All logos, images and names are intellectual properties of Funcom GmBH unless otherwise noted. This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with Funcom GmbH.


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Something Wicked [Spoiler]

Posted by on Jun 17, 2012 in Guides, The Secret World | 3 comments

Something WickedI just finished one of the more difficult investigation missions in “The Secret World”. It made me pause a couple of times and lead to a good deal of head scratching. And using the game’s secret sauce “Google”. The Secret World has a built in browser and they expect you to use it, even to look up their puzzles directly, or just to research some of the riddles.

Norma Creed has seen plenty of strange things these days as well as in the past. And she’s dealt with it well. She recalls a series of murders in Kingsmouth a few years back in 2002. It looked like ravens were involved in it. Five steps will solve the mystery:

Tier 1.
Find more information about the murder, perhaps in a newspaper.

Hint

There’s an archive at City Hall.
Tier 2.
The sheriff’s office held back more information on the case.

Hint

Check the computer at the sheriff’s station.
Tier 3.
The suspect killed himself in his cell. Find a way to get inside the cell and examine it.

Hint

No key, no keypad, no saw or cutting torch. Go kill yourself. Find the message on the wall.
Tier 4.
There’s a message inside the cell, find out its meaning.

Hint 1

Follow the white raven while still in anima form. It will lead to a group of ravens reciting a nursery rime. Release four of them in the order given by the message in the cell.

Hint 2

Golden Girls, Sorrows Secret (6317)
Watch out when trying to do the final step in sequence. You share the quest area with others. If other players click things in different places, your sequence gets messed up. Coordinate with other players in the area.
Tier 5.
Find Jack.

Hint

But don’t kill him

And this sets the atmosphere of the secret world. Somebody mentioned in chat: “There are no puzzles in MMO’s”. Not until now, not in this form and not that many of them. I know Dungeons & Dragons Online has some and you might even call the platform jumping in SWTOR a puzzle. By myself, I’m not the greatest puzzle solver, but I just like the whole ambiance of the game. I could have left the Kingsmouth area for the next zone a good while ago, but those investigations will keep me here.


© Disclaimer: The Secret World
"The Secret World" is a registered trademark of Funcom GmbH. All logos, images and names are intellectual properties of Funcom GmBH unless otherwise noted. This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with Funcom GmbH.


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Off to Kingsmouth

Posted by on May 27, 2012 in Blog, The Secret World | 0 comments

I am on the road in New England this week, where they all talk like the people on Solomon Island. My internet connection will be spotty and I will be busy with other things. Chances are, I won’t be doing much blogging this week.

In case you can’t find Kingsmouth or the Solomon Island on the map, check “The Secret World”.


© Disclaimer: The Secret World
"The Secret World" is a registered trademark of Funcom GmbH. All logos, images and names are intellectual properties of Funcom GmBH unless otherwise noted. This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with Funcom GmbH.


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Welcome to Kingsmouth

Posted by on May 13, 2012 in Featured, The Secret World | 0 comments

Welcome to Kingsmouth, Solomon Island.
Where SUMMER RECREATION is written in all capital letters. Come and join me for a quick tour through town.
Welcome Sign, Kingsmouth, The Secret World

 

Lets go down to the harbor, busy for fishermen and tourists alike.

Kingsmouth Harbor, Solomon Island, The Secret World

 

Learn of our local mining history at the museum.
Kingsmouth Mining Museum, The Secret World

 

Lets stop for a meal or for a quick coffee at Susie’s Diner.
Susie's Diner, Kingsmouth, Harbor, The Secret World

 

Visit the historical residence of the Priest family.

Historical Priest Home, Kingsmouth, The Secret World

 

Main Street invites for arts & crafts shopping.

Main Street Shopping, Kingsmouth, The Secret World

 

Visit the local Sheriff’s station for advice how to deal with the zombie population.

Sheriff's Station, Kingsmouth, The Secret World
I had fun playing this weekend’s “The Secret World” open beta. I didn’t really follow the game until recently some fellow blogger mentioned it. Also, my Twitter feed was full of beta anticipation since at least Wednesday. Here are just a few impressions from playing the game for a few hours.

The game did surprise me with its looks, with great background music and a beautiful user interface. Strangely enough I was impressed by the splash screens, which start out black and white and slowly add color. A simple effect, easy to implement, but a nice impact for me.

It also helps that one of the first voice actors I meet in the game is Catherine Taber, well known as Vette from SWTOR. Which makes me wonder, how much value and recognition voice actors will add to MMO’s in the future. The first set of quests led me to Kingsmouth, on an island off the New England coast. As you can see in my picture tour, it’s wonderfully set, recreating the Eastern seaboard feeling.

The game mechanics promise to be interesting, since the game doesn’t have player levels, only skills. The consequences of this aren’t fully visible, since the beta players didn’t get to far into the game.  There are plenty of quests, classified as story line missions, action missions, investigation missions and some more. During the quests you will discover various puzzles, finding a path through a maze of lightning fields, finding hidden switches, etc, etc.

One other thing is worth mentioning. The area doesn’t seem crowded, despite the claim of 1 million beta signups. There wasn’t any server selection during character creation and there wasn’t any visible division of zones into multiple instances. I’ll see if I can find out more about it next beta.

Of course, this being beta, there were bugs, we’ll have to see how agile (there’s a pun somewhere) the development team is in fixing them. But in general I was surprised finding such a nice game. However, I am not really a fan of horror settings or events in the present. But this game might convince me.


© Disclaimer: The Secret World
"The Secret World" is a registered trademark of Funcom GmbH. All logos, images and names are intellectual properties of Funcom GmBH unless otherwise noted. This site is not endorsed by or affiliated with Funcom GmbH.


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