AUG 17 2017
Hey! Just heard from a friend that they announced a couple of days ago that Johnny Depp's company is going to be making a television series out of The Secret World. That's... cautiously cool! I think TSW would make an excellent background for a dramatic series, especially if they have strong leads for each of the factions. Love to see Sonnac on screen. Kristen Geary too. Shit. Kristen would be amazing. Maybe they should try and get Michelle Pfeiffer.
Anyways, small blurb about it: Johnny Depp’s Infinitum Nihil To Produce The Secret World TV Series
As for me, currently sidetracked by Wurm Online again so been treading water in Secret World for the moment since you can only do so many video games in your downtime hours. Stay tuned?
JUL 20 2017
Yup, still slow as molasses on updates. Deal with it (or not, I am not your deal-with-it police).
You know, as long as you stay away from any "official" channels on this game, you'll probably have a really good time with this incarnation of the game. Secret World is, again, its own weird thing and if it appeals to you in the first half hour of playing, then it really doesn't have that many down sides until you get to "end game raids" when some of gear/crafting systems do start to fall down on their faces. Up until that point though, the game itself just has a ton to offer for the discerning player. The story and voice acting are just freaking outstanding. I love the storylines, the freaked out ambiance, the strange and bizarre characters you run into (glitchy DX9 shadow problems aside), the fact that investigation missions are clever logic puzzles at worst and downright mind twisting intuitive leaps into the unknown at best. I learned organ music for one mission and translated arabic into hebrew for another; I even know how many talents of gold the Queen of Sheba paid to King Solomon, for pity's sake. So yes, there's no game really like it, for all that Secret World has the veneer and mechanics of lots of other games in its systems.
Up front, I am of the firm belief that the game deserves the $12 Patron fee that is available to ease your route through the world, but it's on the individual player as to how (or when) to spend their real life dollars. I've absolutely gotten my money's worth out of it but please note that so far I've played every day. I've been able to milk all the extra goodies such as faster XP gain, faster point gain, free teleports and even the RNG box key that has so far rewarded me with a snazzy costume, a cute pet and a whole bunch of stuff that I've used to level my gear. Since I don't do dungeon, lairs (fancy hard instances) or scenarios (other fancy instances of undetermined difficulty since I've never done one), the keys to use for that content go moldy in my game wallet and I probably wouldn't notice if they were gone. For those that do like to run that stuff all day, every day, to the exclusion of all other content... well, the keys are time restricted, you only get so many free a day and anything past that you have to purchase so... sorry raid guys.
I would prefer that my Patron status also got me some small amount of the real life currency (aurum) so that I could buy cosmetics in the shop but the lack of it so far hasn't turned me off. I further expect that at some point down the road, either Patron will come with some nominal amount of aurum or more items in the shop will be purchasable using the in-game currency. Either way, it's early days yet and it's not a pain point for me as of this moment.
In more specific news:
I'm maybe a little over halfway through the fourth zone now, Scorched Desert (Egypt). I dinged level 50 awhile back in a very anticlimactic way because honestly, your "level" is such a nonsensical addition in this game. The first game didn't have it and it feels very tacked on to this one and I'm honestly not sure why they bothered slapping a number on your character at all. I am a zone/story completionist sort so by the time I was through everything in Blue Mountain, I was level 47 or 48 already before I even hit the sands at all. I whacked a cultist upside the head with a hammer, earned level fity and now I'm just continuing to earn ability and skill points to keep unlocking weapon skills (for weapons I don't have yet) and passive points.
Which is fine. But it does feels weird to realize I'm technically max level but I'm like, only just over halfway through the game itself. Still need to complete this zone, then City of the Sun God, then the three zones in Transylvania and by the time I've done THAT, they'll have opened up Tokyo and good gravy, when will it end?!
But it will end, sadly (sandly?) as SWL is a story based game more than it is anything else and eventually I will run out of content. So I'm taking it super slow, plunking away at this, that, and the other thing as I feel like it. I am not the type of player that gets off on running dungeons as the only thing to do - which is what is going to happen because all there is to do, once you've done all the story, is to bang out dungeons ad naseum, gearing up to get better gear to gear some more.
Still enjoying myself, still logging in every day to do my (much maligned according to Reddit) dailies and chipping away at actual story missions. I have not been as freaked out in Scorched Desert as I was in the previous zones (the first time through Blue Ridge Mine nearly gave me nightmares) probably because the sun shines at a lot and so far I haven't been locked in a masoleum. I did, however, have to fend off four legions of dead-and-still-angry Romans in the middle of the night which was pretty great.
I've met my first sassy mummy in the form of Saīd, who is possibly one of my favorite NPC characters so far, and I can't wait to see what else the undead pimp daddy wants me to do in the name of "cooperation". I've also had the pleasure of meeting Nassir who is just hands down funny as hell. Right now, I just got finished helping an immortal desert hermit who made me translate arabic to hebrew so I could, I guess, learn something from the experience. I have no idea what people did before Google Translate, quite frankly.
In even more prosaic stuff, trying to level pistols and my chaos focus up to something approaching snuff so I can use those for a bit, get away from hammer/elementalism for awhile, try something different. I have messed up my glyphing too so I'm going to have to girl up at some point and spend a lot of Marks of Favor to remove them from the talismans and do it properly.
Pictures to follow when I can.
JUL 04 2017
I am very slow at updating this website, what can I say.
I've been playing this game since headstart, about... a week and a half ago? Something like that. Lots of fumbling at the beginning, three characters, two rerolls and I think I'm good to go now - and go I have been.
Don't get me wrong, not speeding up the end game or anything, but I have been playing multiple hours a day as I work my way through the missions. Full disclosure - I have played The Secret World before and Secret World Legends is basically just a re-tool and re-launch of that game. I had a leg up on a brand new player in that I've already played through the first two zones in the game and I knew somewhat of what to do and even surprisingly remembered a bunch of the answers to the Investigation missions which saved me some time.
So what this isn't, is a new game. This is an old game with some nifty new overlays, a revamped combat system and a proper hub in the form of Agartha, the World Tree. The crafting and upgrading system is much simplified along with the combat and the combat mechanics. Possibly too simplified to be honest but I really shouldn't complain since I am now farther into the game in this week and a half than I was with all the time playing before. I am perhaps a third of the way through the Blue Mountain (third) zone and I'm doing content that is new to me, a pleasant and occasionally nervewracking surprise so at least you can say that Funcom has achieved their goal of making this game accessible to the casual mofo like me.
I love this game. I loved this game before but the constant struggle for gear upgrades in order to creep your way through these zones wore me out and I drifted away. Now I'm not completely on kitten easy mode (I still die with painful frequency) but its never that I feel that I can't progress, its just that I got overwhelmed with a few too many additional aggro points - ie, four more ak-ab guardians spring to the defence as I'm trying to maneuver my way around the first two. Stupid ak-ab and your stupid knockdowns. Anyways.
I do feel that it's perhaps too simple now in the main world but beggars can't be choosers. The opportunity to finally play my way through the Secret World in its (possible) entirety has me by the attention-balls - I'll reiterate again that I'm enjoying myself immensely. I've done the first dungeon (The Polaris) which I did in the first game but never completed (the last boss was a pain in the freaking ASS) but was able to duo it this with a buddy of mine this time around in the newly introduced "Story Mode" which is just what it sounds like. The two of us also did the next dungeon, Hell Raised, which was brand new to me and therefore a source of much excitement. We won that one too even though I died a couple of times on mechanics I wasn't expecting. I feel like I'm actually getting somewhere with this!
Over the course of the next few months, there are a number of thing that will be re-introduced to the game that existed in the original iteration and a few things that need to be adjusted in the new systems. Weapon skins, easier weapon unlocks, hopefully a better dressing room, faction quests should be coming back, more zones as they get retooled to the new systems, gear manager, and so on and so forth.
Dungeon runs seem to the what's on the menu for end-game progression with the next game patch bringing back "elite" dungeon levels to make a total of 11 as I understand these things. You can run The Polaris, for example, on Story Mode for us new kids who just want to see the thing and maybe earn a shot at some choice loot, or you can run it difficulty 1 through 10 which will be what I remember from the first game - ie, fucking hard and then harder and harder again. Gear up so you can get gear so you can gear up again to do things to get more gear. Ya dig?
Maybe later for me, but maybe not. I love dungeon runs (FFXIV had my button there, no question) but you got to get yourself into a static or close-to-static if you can to make the pressure bearable. Nothing like being up against a mountain wall of Elder Godlet and having some random yammerhead beaking at you in the background, distracting you from the prize.
As a "veteran" player of the original game, I have all the weapon pages unlocked in the new game and all (hah! "all") of my vanity gear transferred over. I settled on the Magus deck (starting class) at the beginning which consisted of Elementalism (fire/ice) as a primary weapon and Chaos as the second. By the end of the second zone I'd unlocked all of Elementalism's primary attacks and it's Capstone so I switched Ele to my second hand and picked up Hammer as my primary which is how I've been working through the third zone, Blue Mountain. Ele is a ranged weapon and Hammer is a melee weapon so it's been an adjustment but I'm enjoying it. Just unlocked the skill that launches me into melee range and I'm working on unlocking its passive which makes it do more damage when I land. I also picked up a random trinket drop somewhere that does the same thing (15 meter teleport, tiny damage on landing) so now I have two mobility options which is awesome for me. Elementalism had that option as well in the skill called "Flicker" which landed with an electrified field that persisted for a few seconds and it's passive gives it a stun so I was using that but now that I have Hammer's version, I'm giving it a shot to see how it stacks up.
Since Hammer is melee and its skills generate hate (tanker weapon), I need to work on getting and upgrading talismans that buff health and heal so I can stand in the middle of things and not worry too much about the death thing. I had gone for mostly Attack Rating for Ele, considering that a dead enemy does no damage but that's not working so great with Hammer as it just doesn't do the massive single damage output that Ele can. I need to be able to outlast, not necessarily outgun.
So yeah. Straight up? I pretty much got nothing but excellent things to say about Secret World Legends. I patron'd on my second or third day and I am not looking back. Love, love, love this game and the new changes are four thumbs up on this side.