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[Column] The Secret World: Spying On The Secret World

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Comments

  • JudgeUKJudgeUK Posts: 847Member Uncommon

    It was repeatedly stated at initial launch, and all subsequent initial reviews, that this game was not for everyone. Well that could be said for any mmo.

    However, "not for everyone" turned out in fact to be "only for a few". What followed was well publicized.

    To some it's the best mmo out there bar none - and for the sake of those players I hope the game continues for years to come and thrives.

    To others, it's just not their taste.

    Myself - I'm having another determined go with it, but the melee combat............

  • SomeHumanSomeHuman Austin, TXPosts: 350Member Uncommon
    Maybe I'll give TSw another go, while I'm waiting for....  I've been looking for something to do when I'm not on the battlefield, and GW2 just doesn't do it for me right now.

    Gaming since 1985; Online gaming since 1995; No End in Sight! My YouTube Channel:

  • mCalvertmCalvert Tallahassee, FLPosts: 1,283Member
    I deleted the game. Kept logging in, mash some buttons, kill a few rats, and just couldn't stand it anymore. Combat ruins the game.
  • OrtwigOrtwig Cambridge, MAPosts: 1,159Member Uncommon
    Really one of the better written articles on the game -- thank you, Chris.  TSW is not for everyone, but it's definitely nice to see some new ideas in an MMORPG.  The scenarios in Issue 8 are challenging and a lot of fun; it will be interesting to see how they expand on these going forward.  Tokyo is next!  :)
  • Segun777Segun777 Jade Dynasty Correspondent Lemont, PAPosts: 97Member
    Small Corrections: SWTOR had dropped 6 or 7 months before TSW and Guild Wars 2 dropped the next month. It was the rock and the hard place scenario. Combat wise TSW and Guild Wars 2 are similar and storytelling wise it had already been done before by SWTOR, so alot of people ignored it wholesale. Then ofcourse there were people complaining because it was made by Funcom. I love the game but it needs some serious cost-of-living updates, but its a shame so many people passed on The Secret World.
  • LonkleyLonkley Reno, NVPosts: 2Member

    There's just lots of things that are jarring for people.  TSW to me is hands down the best MMO ever.   It's mood and atmosphere is just shy of perfect.  

     

    The thing about combat, is that you really have to understand it.   You have to adjust your skill load out based on what you are doing.   Some of your combat skills would actually buff some mobs and for people who are used to getting a piece of gear and then farming for weeks for the next, that doesn't fit.  Things you cant kill literally could become a piece of cake just by swapping skills.  

     

    The beauty of it though is you were less beholden to the holy trinity.  It was still there, but you can shift your character to whatever was needed.  You just had to buy the skills and equip for the role of the moment.  Which if need be, could be mid-instance. 

     

    But the key was always about whether you love the setting or not.  This isnt a game where you grab 20 quests and bang them out.   It's a game where you take the time, learn the lore, listen to the extra dialogue. You pick up one quest at a time (more or less) and you follow it through to the end, where the designers conveniently leave new quests nearby to start another one.

     

    With no sub, It's worth the $30 to try it.  

     

     
  • udonudon Durham, NCPosts: 1,767Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Lonkley

    There's just lots of things that are jarring for people.  TSW to me is hands down the best MMO ever.   It's mood and atmosphere is just shy of perfect.  

     

    The thing about combat, is that you really have to understand it.   You have to adjust your skill load out based on what you are doing.   Some of your combat skills would actually buff some mobs and for people who are used to getting a piece of gear and then farming for weeks for the next, that doesn't fit.  Things you cant kill literally could become a piece of cake just by swapping skills.  

     

    The beauty of it though is you were less beholden to the holy trinity.  It was still there, but you can shift your character to whatever was needed.  You just had to buy the skills and equip for the role of the moment.  Which if need be, could be mid-instance. 

     

    But the key was always about whether you love the setting or not.  This isnt a game where you grab 20 quests and bang them out.   It's a game where you take the time, learn the lore, listen to the extra dialogue. You pick up one quest at a time (more or less) and you follow it through to the end, where the designers conveniently leave new quests nearby to start another one.

     

    With no sub, It's worth the $30 to try it.  

    Your confusing the act of preparing for combat with the actual mechanics of combat itself.  I'll agree that TSW has probably the best system out there for building a customized set of skills to put on your action bar.  The way they have setup skill synergy is deep and complicated and the fact that there isn't a one flavor of the month build (although they do get flavor skills of the month) is a testament to just how rich this system is.

    However having said that the problems TSW has is that as soon as you hit that first attack button that deep rich system really just falls flat on it's face.  It doesn't really make combat any more exciting that you setup a build that synergies affliction debuffs other than you might kill things a bit faster or be more durable in the process.  The actual act of combat itself is still mostly builder,builder,builder,consumer rinse/repeat until mob is dead with the occasional reaction or long cool down skill thrown in.  It's not a horrible system and I don't think the people who rail against it as the worst system around are justified but it is the weakest part of the entire game which is a shame given that it's the activity you spend the most time doing.

    However I agree that given it's very player friendly cash shop, no sub fee and cheap box cost it's worth picking up if for nothing else than the experience of the great lore and atmosphere. 

  • eapenstereapenster tvmPosts: 5Member

    I have to say that ilove tsw and the combat system. but the animation of the combat in the first few skill sets was not something I enjoyed when I  first started playing.

    now that I know the system and how fun it is to make strategies and modify ur character .

    its an amazing experience. the randomness of issue 8 scenarios make it more necessary for you to adapt to changing situatuions and not just run pres this and that and press this and that . Now its all out strategy and team management  I  cant wait for Tokyo.

    I also agree that the secret worls is nor realy for everyone  Nothing is ..

    Secret world has a  target crowd who love it. ( me and 3 friends joined secretworld  at  the time it went buy to play. And out of the 4 of us just me and a friend remain the rest left for games like final fantasy or gw2. but I am a lifetime subscriber now and my friend is a recurring subscriber. even though we really don't need to subscribe . )  . if  you like mystery horror and solving puzzles and playing card games this is a game for you. if not its best to wait for elder scrolls online .

  • Another_FanAnother_Fan Fort Lauderdale, FLPosts: 46Member

    Diamond in the rough ?

    I don't know. I like the secret world there is much to enjoy there. The atmospherics are excellent, the story and voice acting are by far the best I have seen in an MMO. It's certainly worth playing through. The problem with this diamond though is it has so many flaws if you attempt to cut it or polish it, it shatters on you.

     

    Lets start with bugs.

    OMGWTFBBQ this game should be named The Secret World of Bugs.

     

    You can start with servers seizing up whenever there is load a little above normal, move on to events being released that the game client literally can't handle and even very high end systems get reduced to less than a frame per second update rates.

     

    Next lets hit the chat/friend/cabal system. I mean wth this is not the hard stuff in game design you think it would be right by now ? Well think again. Problems with communication system are still rampant and unfixed. Best suggestion get your friends on Team Speak or Mumble and don't even bother.

     

    Looking For Group/Matchmaking. There might as well not be any. I had a friend who had been playing for a year who was literally shocked to learn there was a looking for group tool for the game and then laughed his rear end off at what little it did. One of the most popular mods for the game is a lfg tool that connects you to a fan run service. I KID YOU NOT http://ttp://www.curse.com/tsw-mods/tsw/field-agent-locator.

     

    What is this amateur hour ?

     

    That brings us over to the user interface in general. It's another one of those WTF how did this ship moments and why is it still garbage.  The game has parts that are literally unplayable with the default interface. There are both player abilities and enemy status buffs/debuffs that are virtually impossible to track without mods. We are not talking little things here, we are talking fire when a boss has a buff "YOU DIE". The ui has no built in way to flag it, and uses small icons that dance around the enemies status bar several times a second. One of the big challenges in combat for TSW is fighting your UI.

     

    Then there are the parts of the UI that just don't work. The team window is kind of like using a telescope to look at an astronomical object an unknown distance away. What you see is an accurate picture of the recent to distant past. How far in the past is guesswork.  Even if the team/raid display was working as intended using it for simple things like healing is an exercise in masochism. THE TEAM DISPLAY CAN'T BE MOVED, CAN'T BE REORIENTED AND DOESN'T SUPPORT MOUSEOVER MEMBER SELECTION.

     

    Then we come to the combat system. This should have been really the gem of the game. The problem is IT DOESN'T WORK PERIOD FULL STOP.  The article mentions that the game has an old school approach of not revealing how things work. It's not to make people learn how things work, it's to keep the level of anger down over how much isn't working as it should. This ranges from abilities that have random cast times dependent on your current latency, to bugs that allow some to do ridiculous amounts of damage.

     

    Even the most basic tools of the combat system are bollixed. At the heart of TSW is the concept of a build. A build = Selection of gear + selection of abilities. Well the tool for changing and storing deck in the game, called the gear manager more often than not tosses out random combinations of both gear and abilities. It's not uncommon for people to find that their shotgun isn't firing because it's a hammer. That they are dieing, unable to heal, unable to dps because all their passive abilities belong to another build than the one they thought they were using.

     

    The storytelling is good though, really good. Good enough that you can get past the problems, the problem is there just isn't enough of it.

     

    The game had it's first significant update in over three months and it consists of three small minigame maps, and a GARGANTUAN GRINDFEST, for drops on those 3 small minimaps.  They are good maps and lots of fun, but quite literally you will grind yourself to dust trying to make progress on them.

     

    Here's a spreadsheet of the costs for the parts for the new system

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0ApGP2FOREkJydFRlMEVsbG1PZE9LTFR1QWYyeTFuYVE&usp=sharing#gid=0

     

    On average you can expect to get one or two minor components per run/day each run taking half an hour(they are timed).

     

    Upshot you are talking about thousands of hours grinding the same 3 maps to make significant progress on this system. 

     

    The final nail here is that this system is true pay to win in this game (Or pay to torture yourself don't know i would call it winning). The rate a purchaser advances is over 9 times that of a non purchaser. I'd call that a pretty bright line.

     
  • CultOfXtcCultOfXtc nottinghamPosts: 378Member
    Go and but this game, that is all.  :)

    THE SECRET WORLD - PAY ONCE PLAY FOREVER - Give it a go!

    http://www.thesecretworld.com/buy/

    OR PM ME FOR A BUDDY KEY (need your email address).

  • CultOfXtcCultOfXtc nottinghamPosts: 378Member

    I pretty much disagree with everything you (Another_Fan) say.  If I ever meet you in RL we will not get on.  That's a lot of typing for a game you don't like.  Don't listen to a word of it, TSW is awesome.

     

    THE SECRET WORLD - PAY ONCE PLAY FOREVER - Give it a go!

    http://www.thesecretworld.com/buy/

    OR PM ME FOR A BUDDY KEY (need your email address).

  • Another_FanAnother_Fan Fort Lauderdale, FLPosts: 46Member
    Originally posted by CultOfXtc

    I pretty much disagree with everything you (Another_Fan) say.  If I ever meet you in RL we will not get on.  That's a lot of typing for a game you don't like.  Don't listen to a word of it, TSW is awesome.

     

    You disagree with

    "The atmospherics are excellent, the story and voice acting are by far the best I have seen in an MMO. It's certainly worth playing through."

     

    "The storytelling is good though, really good. Good enough that you can get past the problems, the problem is there just isn't enough of it."

     

     

    Ok., because those are the parts that are my opinion.

     

     

    The rest, the bugs, the technical problems with the game, issues with combat system, speed of updates and much more are all documented on the TSW official forums. You can disagree with them all you like, yet they are there.

     
     
     
  • TamanousTamanous Edmonton, ABPosts: 2,126Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Another_Fan

     

    The final nail here is that this system is true pay to win in this game (Or pay to torture yourself don't know i would call it winning). The rate a purchaser advances is over 9 times that of a non purchaser. I'd call that a pretty bright line.

     

    Interesting ... so a sub is now called pay to win.

    You stay sassy!

  • faiyofaiyo |||COL|||1, TNPosts: 123Member
    Originally posted by Another_Fan

    The final nail here is that this system is true pay to win in this game (Or pay to torture yourself don't know i would call it winning). The rate a purchaser advances is over 9 times that of a non purchaser. I'd call that a pretty bright line.

     

    pay to win

    pay to win

    pay to win

     

    I legitimately undeleted my account just to laugh at this. This might be the most embarrassing misuse of pay to win I've seen on the internet so far. You win everything.

  • Another_FanAnother_Fan Fort Lauderdale, FLPosts: 46Member
    Originally posted by faiyo
    Originally posted by Another_Fan

    The final nail here is that this system is true pay to win in this game (Or pay to torture yourself don't know i would call it winning). The rate a purchaser advances is over 9 times that of a non purchaser. I'd call that a pretty bright line.

     

    pay to win

    pay to win

    pay to win

     

    I legitimately undeleted my account just to laugh at this. This might be the most embarrassing misuse of pay to win I've seen on the internet so far. You win everything.

     

    Well hope you don't mind me finding you ridiculous. I just don't know how else to characterize someone who calls a purchased 9-27 times advantage anything but pay to win.

     

    Maybe when you play chess you buy extra pawns ?

     

     

  • I know nothing about tsw. I just wanted to say I love the fact that so many of you are crazy about the game. *salute*
  • mCalvertmCalvert Tallahassee, FLPosts: 1,283Member
    Originally posted by Segun777
    Small Corrections: SWTOR had dropped 6 or 7 months before TSW and Guild Wars 2 dropped the next month. It was the rock and the hard place scenario. Combat wise TSW and Guild Wars 2 are similar and storytelling wise it had already been done before by SWTOR, so alot of people ignored it wholesale. Then ofcourse there were people complaining because it was made by Funcom. I love the game but it needs some serious cost-of-living updates, but its a shame so many people passed on The Secret World.

    GW2 combat is nothing like SW. GW2 combat is much more active. Constant movement, faster fights.

  • TCO_TSWTCO_TSW HiddenPlacesPosts: 49Member
    Originally posted by Po_gg
    Originally posted by Torvaldr
    Originally posted by Po_gg

    edit: the ARG's and the real world web presence are great ways to tear down the borders between the game's world and our real one's

    This is by far one of the coolest things a AAA mmo has ever done. This is one of the most immersive game experiences for me out of all the games I play. I love how the lines of reality are blurred. Of course the bees have chosen. Everyone else is just blind to what's really out there.

    I know, right? Like Tyler's last entry from February, 2010 about the evidence he will reveal "soon":

    http://www.monstersofmaine.blogspot.ca/2010/02/evidence.html

    (ok, I know too that the blog is from 2013 techincally, but let's not ruin the immersion :)  )

    This blog is actually from 2010. It was found during the Dark Places ARG, which was the 9th out of the 14 pre-launch ARG's all of which ran from May 2007 until May 2012.

     

    Post launch there has been 1 ARG as well as the Twitterverse Eperiment which has been running for 25 weeks or so. In the Twitterverse people can talk with other players (IC) and with NPC's such as: Kirsten Geary, Saïd and Nassir (full list here). 

     

    This, along with 19 websites such as: the Kingsmouth website,  the Orochi website and the Morninglight website is how Funcom is expanding the TSW universe outside of the game. Then there are also 24 investigation missions in the game.

  • faiyofaiyo |||COL|||1, TNPosts: 123Member
    Originally posted by Another_Fan
    Originally posted by faiyo
    Originally posted by Another_Fan

    The final nail here is that this system is true pay to win in this game (Or pay to torture yourself don't know i would call it winning). The rate a purchaser advances is over 9 times that of a non purchaser. I'd call that a pretty bright line.

     

    pay to win

    pay to win

    pay to win

     

    I legitimately undeleted my account just to laugh at this. This might be the most embarrassing misuse of pay to win I've seen on the internet so far. You win everything.

     

    Well hope you don't mind me finding you ridiculous. I just don't know how else to characterize someone who calls a purchased 9-27 times advantage anything but pay to win.

     

    Maybe when you play chess you buy extra pawns ?

     

     

    Nah go research the term and come back to me. I'm not even sure what world you live in. 

    Mu duomate is a subber there's nothing that sets apart me from her, as a free player. Py2win would imply that you can't get past a certain point without paying, having an advantage that doesb't even hurt anyone doesn't fit under that definition. 

    You can reach endgame, fill up the wheels and  complete dungeons perfectly fine as a free player.  So really. please do your research. 

  • rwyanrwyan raleigh, NCPosts: 461Member

    While I follow some players logic as it being P2W, this is simply not the case.  Yes, augments provide vertical advancement paths to the game.  They're intended to be long-term.  All players are given access to augments and some basic access to Scenarios for free.

     

    That means, everyone, subscriber or not, lifetimer or not, will be able to advance in the augment system.  While there are significant benefits to the system, the further you invest into augments there more and more min-maxy it gets.  Basically, to get the most bang for your buck out of the system will only require some dedication but not nearly as much investment as it would be to unlock a bulk of the augment wheel.

     

     

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