Category Archives: The Secret World

TSW – 30 quests in a weekend challenge

I like in-game events, what can I say, I’m a sucker for fluff; those new pets, or a title, or swanky clothes.

This weekend The Secret World is running a weekend long challenge (that coincidentally runs alongside a free weekend for those yet to purchase).  Complete 30 quests over the course of the weekend and get 1200 points for the in-game store (pets!), and a special in-game T-Shirt.  Clever.  Don’t just play free for the weekend, play free and make sure you do 30 quests so that you see a good portion of the game (and are therefore presumably sucked into their scary world) before the weekend is up.

30 quests is a lot, so I’m going to have to track them as I go, I wonder if I can use this post to do that, update it a few times over the course of the weekend and see if I can get to 30 :)

I must say I need the extra ability and skill points … I die a lot in this game.  A lot meaning enough to have nearly given up a couple of times.  I’ve been mostly playing alone (hubby sprinted on ahead) but he’ll be joining me for this challenge and two is always better than one, so things should be infinitely easier :).  This is definitely a game better played with a friend.

My other aim is to reach the third area, Blue Mountains (no, I’m not even that far yet, it’s been a slow month moving house).

TSW Quests – need to get to 30!!!

1.For a fistful of zombies
2.Bullets for Andy (SQ)
3.Elm Street Blues
4.Draugnet
5.Missing perons list (SQ)
6.Supply run
7.Dirty Laundry (SQ)
8.Horror Show
9.The tentacle trail (SQ)
10.Neither Snow nor Rain nor Zombies (SQ)

Added 5 Skill Points and 13 Action Points with first 10 quests – not sure if side quests (marked as SQ) count, but they haven’t said otherwise anywhere.

11.The curious case of Joe Slater (SQ)
12.The Ravan
13.A sacred place
14.Dust to Dust
15.Idol of Nergal (SQ)
16.They never stop coming
17.Tomb Raider (SQ)
18.The slaying of Dixie Bull (SQ)
19.Message in a bottle (SQ)
20.Book of the Bokor (SQ)
21.That’ll leave a mark (SQ)
22.Death, and the instrument thereof
23.Journey’s End (SQ)
24.Appetite for destruction
25.The coming down (SQ)
26.Rolls Downhill
27.The pick-up
28.ATC
29.Trapped (SQ)
30.Full metal golem

Added altogether 15 Skill Points and 44 Action Points.

Checking the store a couple of hours later I have my 1200 bonus points :).  I think I’ll buy a couple of pets with that :).   My newly acquired points will certainly help buy a couple of new abilities too :)

Oh yes, we apparently all get free fireworks too.

TSW is one month old – lets celebrate says Funcom

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The Eternal Butterfly

Whenever I log into The Secret World I have a good time.  So why do I have to stop myself from thinking about logging into LotRO or Aion or something altogether different instead? Why am I craving for GW2?  Is it simply me being my usual butterfly self, or a case of the Better the Devil You Know?  Maybe I’m limiting myself too much and should follow Syp’s Plan and juggle a few MMO’s.  I have trouble focusing on multiple MMO’s however, they’re big games that require a lot of attention and time is precious.

Of course I haven’t had any huge play sessions yet.  I haven’t managed to even finish the first area, Kingsmouth completely yet, unlike MMO Gamer Chick. While I’ve been under the weather I’ve been making use of my DS  and VITA, playing ChronoTrigger, FFIV, some timeless and terrific old RPG’s :D and then logging into Secret World for an hour or two here or there.

Maybe the best way to analyse my thoughts is to write down the tried and tested like / dislike list:

Like:

  • Variety of quests.  I love that they’re tiered and that most of them make you think at least a little.
  • Ambience.  This is one scary scary world.
  • Decks. They are a good guide for beginners as to where to put your Skill Points and Action Points.  I could write a whole post on this, maybe that’s next.
  • Grouping. Even when you separate to do solo instances for quests you remained grouped at the other end.
  • Cross-server grouping.  This is truly great, no more regretting what faction / server you rolled on.
  • Bags.  Wow, bags in TSW are awesome.   You start with 50 slots (pay in-game currency to add more), and these slots can be divided up into player named bags.  You can even have one or more of them allocated to show permanently on the screen.
  • Clothes, wear what looks good, create an entire wardrobe! No more fugly gear while you’re levelling.  There’s even a toolkit for changing how your weapon looks based on another weapon.

The inventory system is very flexible, it’s great!

Dislike:
  • Crafting.  Good and bad.  More tutorials please.  More toolkits dropping please.   For those after a tutorial, TenTonHammer has an excellent one up on their website, but with a crafting system so different to the norm you’d think that Funcom would put more effort into teaching you how it works.
  • No levels.  I know that we have Skill Points, Action Points, Decks etc but I miss my levels.  I guess I’m just so used to levels after ever RPG since time began has had them.  Maybe I’ll feel better about this after more time in-game.
  • Not many friends playing.  This is where GW2 will win win win!
  • Bugs.  This is good and bad.  There are a few horrendous quest bugs, but you can change instances (group with a player on another dimension / shard) and find one that works.
  • Missing features. No AH yet.  This would be good for more toolkits!
  • No ‘follow’.  C’mon, when we’re making each other cups of tea and running to a quest area, ‘follow’ is a nice thing to have.
  • No custom decks.

Hmmm, looks like TSW is worth at least the remaining 2 months until GW2 comes out :)

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Exploring a new world

Been a bad few days on painkillers, so I’ve pretty much slept for the last 2 1/2 days straight (on the mend fast now, so all good :)).   At least today I’ve finally been awake enough to try out The Secret World and know that my character will still be around tomorrow :)

My character, Leeftea “Leelue” Brown  (a Dragon) is so far a hammer wielding force to be reckoned with :P

I’ve only played for a few hours so far, but I’m looking forward to playing more.   Crafting will take a while to get used to, but I think it will be fun down the track.  Crafting basically works by crafting different items with the same materials simply based on the shape that the components make.  It would be nice to have a crafting book to refer to with recipes you’ve already learnt, but I guess after time you’ll know the shapes of the recipes that you use on a regular basis.

So far I’m not finding the lack of levels a bad thing like I thought I might.  You become so engrossed in the quests that the hours disappear and before you know it, you have a few AP (Ability Points) and SP (Skill Points) to allocate.  I already have 7 active and 7 passive skills which means from now I’ll be having to choose which skills to put on my hotbars.  That part of the game reminds me of the original Guild Wars, but with more freedom given that you’re not limited to skills of a particular class (of course, you still have to learn all of the weapons and skills that you can choose from).  Switching your skills in and out of the hotbar or passive bar is very simple and fast.

The quests are great, and the puzzle ones really get you thinking.  My husband and I were worried that all the answers to the puzzle quests would be available in general chat, but for the most part people playing are very reluctant to give out anything except vague clues.  Hopefully that’s a sign of a generally more mature audience.  I’m glad we have 2 heads to think things through though, some of the quests are seriously tricky!

More thoughts when I get to play some more after work this week :)

Don’t hold back on the gore

150 years into Crusader Kings, and with Secret World out now, it might be a ‘while’ before I finish the epic 400 years journey :P

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Games to play before The Secret World

Early start for The Secret World is next Friday (or Saturday for us Aussies).  I don’t want to play any MMO’s between now and then.  It will be nice to take a very short break from them and increase the fun and anticipation of starting something new.

There are two games that I do want to play this coming week however.  The first is Gravity Rush, a new purchase for my VITA.  I downloaded the demo and played that through.  By the end I was wishing there was more, so that’s always a good sign. There are some really interesting ideas in there so hopefully I’ll be coordinated enough to get through it.  I do tend to get motion sickness playing some games (mainly first person, started with Wolfenstein way back when), so hopefully I won’t be affected on a small screen.  I was fine with the demo, so here’s crossing fingers.

My copy of Paradox’s Crusader Kings 2 has been collecting virtual dust, even though it’s been tempting me for a while. My second aim for the week therefore is to get through a full game (which could be fast if I do something silly like die without an heir).  In preparation I’ve started watching some excellent tutorial / Let’s Play videos courtesy of SeeKayEm99.  They’re humorous, informative and don’t take things too fast.  There’s a lot to this game and I want to try get my head around it all.  I love the depth of Crusader Kings 2 (or at least the concept of that much depth).  I guess the best way to learn will be to just jump in and see how I go, if it ends early at least I’ll know what not to do! I have a friend who has now reached well over 300 hours in Civilization 5, so I guess these games can get kind of addictive if your brain’s wired that way.

I shall rule the world (and then my sons, and their sons et al)!

I may even dip my toes in the 4th beta weekend for TSW, not sure yet.  I could always try PvP which is something I very much doubt I’ll look at much after the game is officially released. I could also try out some of the weapons that I didn’t get to last weekend.

Lots to do, lucky it’s the weekend!

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TSW here we come!

After reading tonnes and tonnes of forum posts last night I decided to bite the bullet and buy The Secret World.  The variety of different types of quests (puzzle ones in particular), the in-game ambiance, the combat, and other features make it a compelling game in my eyes.  As far as a sense of progression is concerned, we’ll have to wait and see…

I’m actually considerably more excited about The Secret World than I am about Guild Wars 2 now :)

Oh, another one!

And did I mention the collections and achievements?  Yay!

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Have I finished yet?

Oh boy, what a bad butterfly week.  Maybe it’s because I hit 75 in LOTRO, and am now hunting for the next big thing (while still exploring some of the end game content).  I don’t know.

Played a few more hours of The Secret World over the weekend.  The probability of my purchasing this game has sunk a bit.  Not because of combat, or quests, or immersion or anything like that.  It’s because I’m really not sure how the sense of progression is going to work.  The character screen on an MMO would traditionally show all your characters lined side by side, listing their classes and of course, their levels.  The Secret World has neither of these.  That in itself certainly limits rolling many alts.  My 3 standard character slots would most likely be held by me and then one for each son.

In a more traditional levelling MMO, you know when you hit end game content.  I know this goal only too well, it’s been my measure for ‘finishing’.  So how will this work in The Secret World, do you just do quests and group content until the cows come home?  How will other people know how strong you are?  Are they going to be able to see your skill tree for example?  There are probably good answers for each of these questions, but I don’t have them.  One of my complaints when I tried SWTOR was that it was like playing a 200 hour RPG.  If I’m going to play that sort of content I’d rather play a more condensed story based version such as Dragon Age or Mass Effect or Skyrim or many of the other AAA choices out there.  I suspect The Secret World may feel the same as SWTOR in that respect.

How will I know when I’ve reached the end?

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Dark Days are Coming – The Secret World – First Impressions

I’m glad this isn’t the real world!

I can already say with 95% certainty that I’ll be purchasing this game and I’ve only been playing for a couple of hours so far!

The game introduces you to it’s mechanics and story line with lots of cut-scenes, a couple of tutorials and opportunities to try out different weapons and test combat.  The world is great, fresh and modern.  The fact that it’s molded from our own little planet adds an extra layer of creepiness and I felt swiftly immersed in this land of zombies and other foul creatures.

The interface is clean and simple and the skills, crafting and questing are different enough from the standard to feel like there’s a lot to discover, and this is a good thing!

There are a tonne of quests and they’re often presented to you by the simple act of finding something lying around rather than the standard exclamation mark on the head of an NPC.  I love the fact that you can only have 5 quests at a time too.  All of the quests have multiple tiers (or stages) and feel like they’re aimed at taking you on an adventure to explore the world rather than simply being there to provide you with xp.

NPC’s can look a bit like plastic, and there are a few rough edges, but so far I’m really enjoying myself.

Travelling between various cities is an adventure in itself

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Time for some single player fun

Sometimes it’s nice to put your favourite MMO to the side and play a single player game.  I have many to choose from (understatement), including a new purchase, Warlock: Master of the Arcane.  I love Paradox games, or at least the thought of Paradox games.  I have Crusader Kings II and have played around with it a bit, but I have yet to complete a game.  I have pre-purchased Elemental: Fallen Enchantress and again played around with the beta a bit but have yet to complete a game.  I also have (non Paradox) Tropico 4 to play, I loved Tropico 3 so I’m excited about 4.

This is my problem, I always want to play more than one game, start one, switch to another and never get anywhere in any of them.

So for now I’m going to play Warlock and see how I go.   If I manage to complete a couple of games I’ll be happy.  Warlock is a 4x game, similar to Civ 5, but simplified in some ways and more focused on battles.  It’s also supposed to be nice and challenging.

Aint’ it pretty :)

Das24680 (an aussie :D), has a great Let’s Play of the game on YouTube, and his enthusiasm for it is contagious.

As an aside (and back to MMO territory) I held back from purchasing The Secret World, but managed to get a Beta key for the weekend.  I’m really looking forward to playing it for a few hours.  Unlike Guild Wars 2 that I already own and therefore don’t want to play too much before launch, I’ll be playing quite a bit of TSW on the weekend with a view to deciding whether or not I should purchase it.

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