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Tuesday, July 03, 2012

[TSW] My Money's on Norma

Don't mess with me. I have a homemade sword :D

It has been a long time coming, but finally we have a post about another MMO. You'll see any subsequent posts marked with [TSW] so if you want to skip them, you'll know what they are.

As I was away at the weekend I missed the official launch of The Secret World, but this morning I finally got to play for a couple of hours. I have to say, I'm rather taken by what I've seen. I'd already decided I would take the path of a Templar (you have three 'race' choices on entry, including the Illuminati and the Dragons) and I'd played a little of the beta to know how your character is introduced. The starting sequence is, I must admit, not the greatest of preludes into the world you will find yourself immersed in but it is not long before it abundantly apparent this isn't normal MMO territory any more. No fantasy worlds, no elves, but a distinct reality break. I find myself in London to begin my training but its a capitol that has a bloody great big Templar facility within it, that does not look out of place but feels strange.

In fact, that's a good metaphor to describe all of my early playtime: I know this is a game, but the foundation in reality, and its quite deliberate nature keeps me off balance. My character has been transformed by an insect, and now I wield power that I need to learn to understand, and then harness. The initial training mission does that rather well, and the end of the first sequence sent the hairs on the back of my neck up (whilst simultaneously reminding me of the Caverns of Time ^^) I have entered a world where my normal rules still apply, but in which I am now at a distinct advantage. The interface introduces everything at a measured and easily graspable pace (with videos to explain my skill choices) and I feel I have far more understanding of my first characters abilities and possibilities than I ever did when I rolled my first hunter in Azeroth.

I have finally escaped the gravity of training and, via the wonders of the World Tree (and some wonderfully-looking Steampunk-themed giant robots) have what passes for a hearthstone. Next stop: New England and Zombies. LOTS of zombies, and an introduction to the 'quest' system (they're missions) If I wasn't aware of what I've set myself up I can access a web browser INSIDE the game and I can automatically configure Facebook to report my progress. Yup, Toto, this most definitely isn't Azeroth any more...

I realise I've only made it as far as Elwynn, so really can't comment in too much detail on the mechanics of the game. However, I can say the following:

  • I have not been frustrated once
  • I can understand what I have to do without referring to a guide
  • The crafting system looks interesting (and owes more than a nod to Minecraft)
  • I haven't died yet (\o/)
  • I am really looking forward to seeing how all this pans out
  • I want to learn more about the world I am in


As yet I won't be dropping everything just to play TSW, but it doesn't mean that the potential isn't there because I think it is. I'm not a seasoned pro gamer, this is my 'training wheels' period after all, but I like what I see. There is distinct potential,  and I for one am glad I'm on the side of the good guys... or am I?

There is a lot to find out. I'm rather looking forward to the journey :D

1 comment:

CATS said...

So far I like the game a lot, all those options in the skill system <B
And puzzle quests are great too, so not everything is kill x, collect y.
It also helps that it feels distinctive enough from WoW to have it´s own place, which was what SWToR lacked imho. (TSW reminds me a bit of SWToR sometimes ironically, but that´s mostly the ability cooldown animation)

I am already thinking about a lifetime subscription, let´s see...