Exclusive Interview: Funcom’s Romain Amiel on Secret World Legends’ combat revamp and more

It is no secret that I am deeply vested The Secret World. It is my favorite game, and I am fortunate enough to get to write about and stream it as well as play it regularly. So I care about its future. And now, that future includes Secret World Legends. There is so much about this whole reboot/rebrand thing that we don’t know, and things we just can’t quite conceptualize yet. That’s why I was so glad Game Director Romain Amiel asked me if I wanted to sit down and chat about the game, tossing him all my questions. Boy, did I have questions! (He might have come to regret that last bit, but he did answer my huge list!) Obviously with only a couple of hours I couldn’t learn everything there is to know, but here’s the run down of everything I did. Also, there are a few more items that players will be happy to learn as soon as they are officially announced!

I will say, that although there are some things I personally don’t think I will like (though I think many will), I am much more optimistic and even excited about the whole situation. Secret World Legends is how we get to continue the story we’ve all be dying to experience. And devs seem committed to giving TSW players bonuses and perks in the new game, such as free weapon unlocks.

Why?

We all know something had to happen. We loved The Secret World, but in order to keep getting more TSW story goodness, it needed to bring in the funds. So change was necessary. As Amiel said, the reboot is the way to continue telling the story, and the team really want to tell this story! They wanted to continue making the game. And trust us, we want them to continue telling the story as well.

Some might wonder, though, why such a drastic move? Amiel summed that up by saying: “It’s the opportunity to fix so many things we wanted to do since before launch.” He said that the original build tried to innovate too much all at the same time, and the game suffered for it. He went on to say that once the game was live, it was all about moving forward and getting more story out, especially as the story is the selling point of the game. However, that didn’t afford the chance to stop and fix things like they wanted. And a system like combat has to be fixed from the ground up. This gave them the opportunity to fix, and Amiel is excited for how it all turned out.

Beta bits

A quick note about beta: We already know that closed beta invites have already started and that invites will be coming out in batches. Testers who jump in will have beta forums to communicate with devs (Amiel noted that devs will be very active there), and feedback will be essential and is encouraged. Other than that, however, mum’s the word; players will be under a strict NDA. Basically, if you see me stop speculating, it means I am in! At the end of closed beta there will be a total wipe, then beta will open up to everyone. At that point no other wipes are anticipated.

Combat changes: Ability wheel

One of the biggest questions on people’s minds is how does combat change. Since this was one of the biggest turn offs for many, it’s going to be a make-or-break point for a number of folks. If you like action combat, you will probably be pretty pleased. I will honestly say that after hearing everything, I am saddened because this is the type of combat I hate to play. But, I’ve always preached that the game was worth it for its stellar storytelling and atmosphere even if there is an aspect or two you aren’t in love with, and so it is still totally worth it to me to play even if I’m finally in the group that doesn’t like the combat.

So let’s define what is different and what is staying the same. Let me start by saying that the ability wheel itself is gone: The physical manifestation of the wheel no longer exists. However, the ability to choose whatever abilities you want in whatever weapons you want is still there. Amiel said it was crucial that players could still make their own deck how they wanted. The difference is that now the interface is a page instead of a wheel. As attached to the wheel as I am, I have to say after seeing this weapon page I believe I shall be a fan of it. Amiel discussed how one of the biggest turn offs to new folks was how overwhelming the wheel was, so making things simpler and less confusing was the team’s goal. And these weapon pages are less cluttered, easier to see everything at a glance, and allow you to track progress better.

Basically, every weapon has a page accessed via tabs on the left, and each weapon page will have a tab for active abilities and one for passive abilities. (Auxiliary weapons also have a tab there, but we aren’t discussing those yet.) There are fewer abilities, but Amiel emphasized that the ones that were pruned were filler abilities that no one used — players just bought them on the way to the abilities they wanted. He explained that the abilities are sorted into three progression paths: damage, uniqueness (like healing), and group build. However, choosing one path does not prohibit you from choosing another; you still earn the AP to unlock whatever you want (that is next in line) on whatever weapon you want that you’ve unlocked. Your level will have no bearing on which abilities you can select, just how much AP you have and which weapons you have unlocked will.

Now, about passives. These abilities are split into two categories. One is the passives that are locked to the specific weapon and can only be used (and benefit) that weapon. The other category is global passives. These are passives which become permanent, always-active buffs on your character regardless of what weapons you use. If you wondered what reason people might have to unlock other weapons than the ones they prefer, this is it.

Another quick note about the weapon pages: There is also an expertise level associated with each weapon, and using that weapon will increase your expertise. Having a higher expertise then translates to being able to use the weapon better, which means you get higher bonuses the more you use that weapon.

To start out, players will choose a deck to play, sort of a class. I hesitate to use the word class because players are not locked into that at all. The starter deck/profession/class will grant the player access to the two weapons for free as well as the clothing deck reward. (To earn all other deck outfits players will have to complete those weapon pages.) Although all TSW players who link their accounts will have every weapon unlocked for free, everyone else will need to actually purchase each additional weapon unlock. Fortunately, since currencies are tradeable, folks can also purchase the necessary currency to buy unlocks from other players using currency they have gained through playing.

Combat changes: The fight

So here’s the part I personally hate: Combat is now action combat with a forced reticle. Your primary weapon attack will be the left mouse button and your secondary weapon will be the right mouse button. Dodging will be via an action button instead of double-clicking a movement key. Potions and food will also have a place on the hotbar, and even mounts will have an easy access spot in the new UI.

Amiel said that the focus was on making combat more interesting and engaging. As such, each weapon has its own identity, a gimmick you could say to make playing it feel unique compared to the others. It wasn’t about just making different animations, but making it feel different. He also emphasized that the main ability is stronger than before.

The actual fighting will be using the mouse buttons as well as special abilities you add to the number keys. Movement is by WASD, and the mouse will turn your view. Players will have the ability to rebind to a configuration they prefer.

On the subject of fighting, there’s also some cool news incoming about dungeons, so we’ll have to keep an eye out for that announcement to be made.

Possibly the best part of the fight is the conclusion when you receive your reward loot, right? Amiel described how the loot mechanic was changing. All players who participate in a kill (grouped or not, there is no mob locking) will receive their own individual reward. Players can compare their loot and trade, or they can keep anything they want to use in the new gear mechanic.

Gear changes

That brings us to another change: gear. Amiel explained that gear upgrades are done differently now. Basically you can find a green item in Kingsmouth that you love and you can just feed it other gear to level it. In time, your favorite items can become blue, purple, and even legendary. So the gear you begin with can grow with you throughout the game.

Thankfully, gear items and appearance clothing remain completely separate systems. In fact, Amiel said that the dressing room interface has been revamped. He said it is improved dramatically, making it much easier to use; it’s easier to see what you own and even how to get what you don’t own yet.

As for the Aegis system, Amiel stated, “It’s been improved and made a lot more fun, but more information about it will come with the release of Tokyo.”

Let there be levels

Another concern folks have is the change to levels. Amiel said that the game always had levels, they were just invisible. Zombies in Kingsmouth were decidedly easier to kill (lower level) than vampires in The Shadowy Forest. The difference now is that those levels will actually be noted on mobs and characters; folks will see in a glance if they are of an appropriate power range to take on any certain encounter.

One reason for this change was because of an inherent flaw that came with the completely open choose-whatever-I-want system. Amiel explained that there were many instances where, in choosing to spend their ability and skill points in certain ways, some players actually seriously hampered their ability to play. Basically, they messed themselves up by not giving themselves the tools they needed to move on. This would cause great frustration and the game lost players. With this level system, players will get boosts in HP and such as they level, making sure they have the minimal tools available to continue their journey. If this can help people from slamming full force into the Blue Mountain wall and quitting the game, it will be a good change. Players can still help friends of any level, and being over-leveled should not hinder the lower level as loot is personal.

As a side note, I also learned that there will be the requisite “you leveled!” ding and animation. Amiel told me it is an anima burst and an announcement. I can only pray it is very muted, because that kind of fanfare would totally and completely detract from the setting for me. I do not want a light show heralding my new power! I can understand others like that though, so perhaps an option to turn that completely off could be a part of it.

PvP changes

PvP may not be a focal point of TSW, but it is a part of it. So how will PvP be handled in SWL? Amiel said that to start, likely only Shambala will be available. He said the movement is away from faction PvP. The team will be taking feedback as to how to fix and implement the other battlegrounds, so be sure to add your feedback on the beta forums when you get in!

But wait, there’s more!

This may seem like quite a bit, but we all know it isn’t enough! Don’t miss out on learning many other tidbits in our second half of the interview coming tomorrow.

SECRET WORLD LEGENDS SAGA
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112 Comments on "Exclusive Interview: Funcom’s Romain Amiel on Secret World Legends’ combat revamp and more"

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Azazel Zel

I may try this game again, was brilliant to start with, but that nasty extra layer of totally unnecessary tedious Aegis system, just killed it for me.

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Scott

Don’t like “dodge” being a key, hopefully we can remap to double-tap of WASD :-/

I originally fell into the “…there were many instances where, in choosing to spend their ability and skill points in certain ways, some players actually seriously hampered their ability to play. Basically, they messed themselves up by not giving themselves the tools they needed to move on. This would cause great frustration and the game lost players. ” category. I died too often and the fun was deflated for me.

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Arngrim

“If this can help people from slamming full force into the Blue Mountain wall” Ironicly that’s where my current highest character is located. And i noticed a rather high rise in difficulty. Hopefully Legends will fix this as it claims.

I feel like both “camps” of players is winning, if you dont want the actiony combat, there is still TSW, and if you want TSW but another style of combat then you got Legends.

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Bruno Sidarta

I just want to know if the remade the combat animations, because that SW animations sucks. Put something more martial and fluid, like Black Desert or Blade and Soul.

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dm_jim80

Was the second half of the interview still going up today?

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Ludovic Darkstar

I enjoyed the last 2 months of TSW, I was all set to subscribe for a further year, once my free membership expired… sadly today I clicked uninstall.

Good luck to those remaining.

Reader

Hrm. I’m interested but the news of keeping the horrible Aegis system from Tokyo is a bit disheartening. Makes me wonder if they really learned their lesson, or this is a case of them just stubbornly picking their direction.

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Sorenthaz

TSW felt like it should’ve been action combat from the beginning, honestly. That’s the only way its combat would ever really make sense or feel good. It really did feel like an awkward hybrid much like GW2, except GW2 did a better job at making it not feel as much of a clunky ordeal.

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John Mclain

Generally liking what I’m hearing so far. But then it was physically impossible to make the combat worse, so it could only improve.

shazanti
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shazanti

I’m with you on the ‘I dislike action combat’ boat. I’ll definitely try Legends, because I loves me some TSW story, and I REALLY want TSW to not only succeed, but to thrive, however…ugh. Reticle/action combat. I detest that kind of thing. Ergo… ugh. :(

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Martinez

TSW the MMO is dead..maintenance mode is Not a “GOOD” thing its better then shutting down but with the prospect of no new content ever? you will get Zero growth in population and in a MMO that’s the kiss of death. TSW Legends is interesting enough for me to want to try it out I found I played TSW like SWTOR as a single player experience .
Long live TSW Legends?

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Warat Wiseswong

Guys, it’s a new game that will run alongside the old one. Stop saying “Revamp” when it’s actually a new thing for a new game. This is not a reboot or rebrand when it’s actually a new game and the old one is still there. You are confusing people.

Do you call each Final Fantasy a “Reboot” or “Combat Revamp”?

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Ysayle was right

The old version isn’t getting any further updates. It’s being maintained for the sake of posterity. That’s all. It’s being pushed into irrelevancy, just in a gentle way.

Meanwhile, I could play FFX-2 on my still fully operational PS2 right now in its original form. Or I could play it on Steam with HD graphics, a reworked soundtrack and a bunch of extra content. Having the original doesn’t mean the Steam version isn’t anything more than a remake.

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Roger Melly

From what I understand it offers the same quests , areas and storylines as the mmo . If that is true then it is a “revamp” by the very definition of the word .

Just as FF14 Realm reborn is a revamp . As for each of the single player games they are sequels they don’t offer the same exact quest lines as its prior installments in the franchise . I believe they did remake FF7 with updated graphics and gameplay so in that case it was a revamp .

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Nathan Aldana

ARR is a revamp right down to taking away the old stories and old zones and entirely throwing out the old systems for everything, though. And without changing genre of play, and with a solid plan for further story.

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Ysayle was right

A Realm Reborn had new quests and storylines distinct from FFXIV 1.0, and the areas were overhauled to the point of being nearly unrecognisable. It’s still a revamp, but it’s also a sequel. Your criteria suck and you’re making a bad faith argument that doesn’t address the OP’s intent.

I mean, the point you’re arguing for is correct, but your argument only serves to drag it down. Do better.

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J. J. Sándor

So if they closed the original game, it would be a rebrand?

Having both versions available is a courtesy to us veteran players, nothing else. TSW is no longer a product, it’s being phased out and replaced with Legends. Likely the only reason why they don’t shut it down altogether is because we paid money for it and they don’t want to make us unnecessarily angry.

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Jokerchyld

Hmmm this may bring me back to TSW. Combat was one of the main reasons I left, and now that I am playing ESO I can see how mouse look combat can work. Like others said, It CANNOT be spammy as that is not fun nor something I would want to do over a length of time as I level. Dodging by a key instead of double-tap movement key doesn’t sound natural.

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Ekphrasis

Cautiously optimistic. I don’t mind action combat when it’s done well. (e.g. Blade and Soul)

Still, I wonder how much will be a complete re-tooling vs. something that feels like an ‘iteration’ on existing mechanics and features. Do they have a release timeline/plan as I don’t think I’ve seen dates mentioned yet?

Although Aegis is still going to exist? Bleh.
I know I shouldn’t be knocking anything until I see more info but I’ve never been a fan of lumping more convoluted combat systems/mechanics on top of existing systems. If they’re reworking combat, I’d prefer they simplify it – but i’ll reserve judgement until I see/hear more.

I’ve always been a huge fan of CoH’s enhancement system and I hope I see something like that come back one day because it was a system that made ability enhancement intuitive and accessible. (I’m not sure if the CoH successors were adopting this or not)

As an aside, someone at Funcom might want to check-in with steam. TSW page has been ‘replaced’ with SWL (including all reviews etc.) and there’s no download/release/purchase information on either the existing game or the future one.
http://store.steampowered.com/app/215280/
http://store.steampowered.com/app/359380/

(Also, thanks MJ , always love your coverage on TSW)

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Frank White

It sounds like the combat will basically be like ESO’s. I didn’t like it in ESO at first, but you do get used to it. So don’t despair, MJ!

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kgptzac

I hope the new combat system is not spammy in a sense that instead of spamming the “1” button I’ll be spamming the LMB. Hopefully the new combat will be engaging enough.

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Brown Jenkin

Combat change – Sounds vaguely better but we’ll see, there’s a ton of space in what folks define as “action combat”
PvP change – shifting away from faction PvP sounds poopy
Leveling change – I’m wary of this, we’ll see how it works out but levels and vertical grind 4tl in my opinion
Loot change – a la GW2, ie the right way to do gaming.

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Sixcess

I’m mostly not too fond of ‘action combat’ as I always feel it lacks the precision of a really well honed tab target/action bar system like WoW or City of Heroes. That said, combat in TSW has always been something to tolerate rather than enjoy in its own right, so I think I can live with these changes.

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Witches

One of my pet peeves is upgrading to something i dislike visually, so good going on the new weapon system.

If i’m reading this right the new combat system will be like BDO, i guess i prefer it to the current one, but i didn’t actually hate the current one, to me the problem with combat isn’t the combat itself but the animations, this applies to character movement in general not just combat.

While i have no problems with the changes to the ability wheel, i think it’s only a matter of time until we are in the same place, as long as you keep adding features to the game (which is the main reason why i prefer MMOs to SPG) you will eventually get to a point where the newcomer has a big mountain to climb, it’s inevitable.

Levels are just an hassle, eventually you have to add more levels, because that’s the expectation if you have levels, top level mobs have to be changed since they are now “only” level 50, this is a step backwards, and everyone who makes it to beta should make sure they add a toggle to the level up fanfare.

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NeoWolf

Action Combat.. meh so not really changes to the ass poor system of before, merely tweaks for making it more console friendly. :( pity

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ogged451

“it’s easier to see what you own and even how to get what you don’t own yet.”

Is it also easy to see what you used to own and no longer do ?

But I digress, this whole interview (the one on twitch linked below) left me with a bad taste. No new writer. Still not working on season 2. Again the “we have plans” bullshit they fed us since launch.
Slightly positive : as combat in ESO or DCUO makes me dizzy after a while, I probably won’t have to deal with their new “gouge the customer for systems instead of content” paradigm anyway.

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Connor

Well this relaunch can’t go much worse than the first one, hopefully nobody will end up prosecuted for it this time around. If the rebrand works as hoped, and with the extra dosh from Conan Exiles, hopefully Funcom no longer operating on the budget of a well-off homeless person will boost further content development.

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Nathan Aldana

So basically sounds like Tera combatwise.. yeah, I’ll pass.

That kinda combat system has never really grabbed me.

luxundae
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luxundae

Thanks for the interview! Looking forward to hearing more…

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Koshelkin

That sounds alot more enticing than I thought.

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Paragon Lost

Just more that damns this game for me.

Cyclone Jack
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Cyclone Jack

Good info. Thanks, MJ! Looking forward to the Dungeon news, as I’m very curious to see what changes they made there.

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flamethekid .

might actually play this

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angrakhan

Sounds like they completely re-designed the game. I may have to finally check it out. Sounds pretty cool what they have planned. Previously it sounded over-complex and esoteric, such that if you hadn’t been playing for years you can pretty much count on building a completely broken character out of the gate until you put in your dues, read a bunch of guides that would finally make sense after putting in said dues, and then started over. That’s what kept me away.

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Tobasco da Gama

The description of their action combat implementation reminds me a lot of ESO. Actually, the weapon pages sound a fair bit like ESO’s skill system, but hopefully with more choices than just what order to unlock things in and what morphs to use.

I remain cautiously optimistic, this relaunch sounds like it’s heading in the right direction.

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John Mynard

Sounded like Warframe to me.

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Bannex

Isn’t this type of combat already in the game?

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Tobasco da Gama

Yes, but it looks like they’re really redesigning the combat around it, rather than just having it as an option.

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Jeff

i never used it but i think there was an optional reticle mode.

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Jeffery Witman

I played in reticle mode because I like to steer with my Trackball and move with the keys. It was mostly fine how it worked, except that most of the time I had to change to mouse mode in order to usefully interact with anything like a door or mission object, and especially to click all the confirmation boxes that popped up every time you travel. I was hoping for a more user friendly reticle mode, but I was also hoping it would be in TSW, not this new thing they’ve made from its corpse.

Speaking of which, this whole relaunch has me feeling a lot like the first time I stumbled into the butcher shop in Transylvania where they make the ghoul sausage.

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Nick Smith

Tastes like chicken!

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Slaasher

Yes there was. The ‘Q’ button I think but its been so long since ive played

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ogged451

It’s “t” by default unless you mapped that to something useful as the current targeting mode is rather dreadful.

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TomTurtle

Good interview so far. I look forward to part 2.

I knew the action combat would be contentious. I’ve only experienced that reticle combat style in Tera for an MMO. It was kind of annoying when I wanted to access UI elements, though I didn’t play it enough to acclimate myself.

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Oleg Chebeneev

> will honestly say that after hearing everything, I am saddened because this is the type of combat I hate to play

After reading how they changed combat, Im confused what exactly you hate about it? RMB and LMB for 2 primary attacks, digit buttons for abilities, WSAD for movement. Sounds perfect to me.

Anyway thanks for interview, there are some interesting bits. Most changes I definetly approve. Btw, Funcom, if you read me, pls make primary quests and sidequests one time only. I hate that every quest in game is repeatable. I want to know and feel that I completed tasks.

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Paragon Lost

It’s exactly what I and my wife strongly dislike about Elder Scrolls Online. There are obviously two camps here on controls. To me what you like is what I feel is restrictive and clunky.

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Tanek

I think it is more having the camera locked to the mouse that some people don’t like. Which I understand. I started out thinking that way, but eventually it became my preferred mode for combat rather than needing to hold the right mouse down constantly.

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rafael12104

Yup. yup. yup! If they pull it off and TSWL is TSW story meets BnS combat, I’m in!

Proof is in the pudding though. So, let’s see some chocolate please..

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Koshelkin

I doubt it will be BnS combat.

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Jeff

With the combat changes I am going to want to switch to using a controller.

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Tobasco da Gama

There’s a thread on the forums summarising a dev stream, and apparently controller support is something they want to add. The current game actually plays really well on a Steam Controller as it is, so real XInput support in SWL would be awesome.

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Oleg Chebeneev

Link on thread pls

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Tobasco da Gama
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Rheem Octuris

Damn, I had action combat. When I heard Action RPG, I assumed we were getting something Diablo like. :/ I hate mouselocked games.

styopa
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styopa

First impression? It sounds like TSWBlade&Soul-y.
I don’t play B&S, but there were elements that I liked very much about how they implemented combat and abilities (particularly cascading abilities, which aren’t really even implied here) but I left B&S because despite a lot of clever ideas, the story/world felt soulless…not an issue for TSW. So…cautious optimism…EXCEPT: I’m not convinced Funcom can execute a non-laggy, responsive UI. I’m just not. From AoC, to TSW, to a number of their games, the two hallmarks I immediately associate with funcom are: oddly pendulous breasts on women, and a mediocre-at-best UI responsiveness.
“You leveled” ding and animation: I KNOW THIS SOUNDS TRIVIAL but it *better* be mutable/optional. Seriously, that was one of the things in Wildstar that from the very-first-minutes made me say “my god I hate this shit”, which (I fear) colored my opinion forever after.

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Nick Smith

Oh damn! you just leveled up cupcake!

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Denice J. Cook

Wow, it actually sounds fantastic! Thanks, MJ! Keep up the great work.

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strangesands

Thanks MJ! (Edited at poster request!)

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Tanek

Congrats on getting in! Just be careful. some NDAs don’t even like you telling people you are part of it. ;)

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Greaterdivinity

He said that the original build tried to innovate too much all at the same time, and the game suffered for it.

Honestly, I don’t think this is the case. I think they tried to innovate/change some things, but also rested far too much on MMO tropes and norms like raiding and the trinity. It’s a weird position where they were like 60% of the way to a truly different experience across the board but hedged their bets at the same time. So the result was a game that feels like it’s stuck in the middle, it didn’t innovate enough to really be “different” in a super major way, but it innovated enough that those who were looking for the standard MMO experience were put off. It’s a damn fine line to walk.

Amiel discussed how one of the biggest turn offs to new folks was how overwhelming the wheel was, so making things simpler and less confusing was the team’s goal. And these weapon pages are less cluttered, easier to see everything at a glance, and allow you to track progress better.

I’ve kinda come to like the wheel in a sense, but agreed that it looked extremely daunting, especially when you factored in the two other wheels added since launch. If they take a more streamlined approach that only presents you relevant skills for your equipped weapons at any given time I think that’s a pretty solid move.

There are fewer abilities, but Amiel emphasized that the ones that were pruned were filler abilities that no one used — players just bought them on the way to the abilities they wanted.

YYYYYAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSSSSSS. There were definitely a lot of actives/passives that either felt so situational that they weren’t worth it, or completely pointless altogether. I’m pretty alright with them pruning unused/little used abilities.

Your level will have no bearing on which abilities you can select, just how much AP you have and which weapons you have unlocked will.

This is making levels sound more cosmetic than progressive, which pleases me. Hope that’s the actual case!

These are passives which become permanent, always-active buffs on your character regardless of what weapons you use. If you wondered what reason people might have to unlock other weapons than the ones they prefer, this is it.

Quick question – do you need to still put these in a passive slot? Because this sounds like you don’t given how it’s written, but just want to clarify.

There is also an expertise level associated with each weapon, and using that weapon will increase your expertise. Having a higher expertise then translates to being able to use the weapon better, which means you get higher bonuses the more you use that weapon.

I’m kinda mixed on this…On the one hand, I dig progression systems like this that are based off of use.

But at the same time, I’m worried that it’s going to discourage experimentation and frequent weapon switching out in the field. Curious to see how they balance the time it takes to improve your expertise and the benefits of said expertise. I really hope it doesn’t end up “pigeon holing” folks into not experimenting a lot…I say as I’ve used chaos/AR since I started playing, with barely any other weapon types tried -_-

Fortunately, since currencies are tradeable, folks can also purchase the necessary currency to buy unlocks from other players using currency they have gained through playing.

So, no way to unlock with in-game currency? Or are you referencing in-game currency? Because this is the first I’m reading of a potential tradeable cash shop currency, and it’s relevant to my interests.

All players who participate in a kill (grouped or not, there is no mob locking) will receive their own individual reward.

Yyyyaaasssss! About the rest of the combat system…I kinda wish they hadn’t gone to action combat since I always felt like a more static-combat system fit the game better, but hopefully it will turn out well. Please be a REAL action combat system and not fake action combat a la ESO. ANIMATION LOCKS, PLEASE!

Basically you can find a green item in Kingsmouth that you love and you can just feed it other gear to level it. In time, your favorite items can become blue, purple, and even legendary.

This pleases me to no end. I approve of systems like this, especially since I’m usually a lazy git and just feeding loot into a piece of gear that already has stats I like (rather than farming for a specific upgrade) is very appealing.

In fact, Amiel said that the dressing room interface has been revamped.

Yay! Was hoping they’d keep the outfit system. Glad it’s getting some love, it could definitely use it.

As for the Aegis system, Amiel stated, “It’s been improved and made a lot more fun, but more information about it will come with the release of Tokyo.”

Eager to hear more. As someone who barely dipped their toes into it already, it’s a system that seemed like an awful, unfun grind. It could easily be interesting, so hopefully the changes are for the better.

Amiel said that the game always had levels, they were just invisible.

I mean, he’s right. The game has always had levels in a sense, largely expressed through your QL level. It’s sounding like levels will largely be cosmetic only in nature, giving an easy way to figure out your power vs. mob power.

If this can help people from slamming full force into the Blue Mountain wall and quitting the game, it will be a good change.

Honestly…IMO they already took care of that with the mob-nerf long ago. I was one of those who hit the wall at Blue Mountain and kinda lost interest in playing at that point. But after that update things got MUCH more enjoyable (less time to kill enemies, less downtime between fights) and I sped right along through the zones from there.

I can only pray it is very muted

Agreed, but I fear it won’t be. The audio/visual feedback upon leveling is a huge thing in most games, and I doubt it will be any different with TSW. Maybe we can get an option to disable it for us salty vets (and super casual vets!) who want nothing to do with it : D

Don’t miss out on learning many other tidbits in our second half of the interview coming tomorrow.

Second half!? Damn. Thanks for the writeup MJ, this is a ton of great info to dig through. It’s definitely getting me on the hype train in a big way, as most of what I’m hearing is very much a positive from my perspective.

pepperzine
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pepperzine

“Basically you can find a green item in Kingsmouth that you love and you can just feed it other gear to level it. In time, your favorite items can become blue, purple, and even legendary. So the gear you begin with can grow with you throughout the game.”

I wonder what the mechanics involved with this are. If it’s an rng upgrade/enchantment system then I wouldn’t be surprised if “convenience” items are sold in the cash shop to improve the rng. If so, that’s a slippery slope I want nothing to do with. Can you please ask for more details on this in the next interview?

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Tobasco da Gama

Hopefully, it’s more LOTRO imbued LIs than Neverwinter artifact weapons.

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wratts

Would love to get insight into what cosmetics will move over for existing TSW players. Also, please please please take any opportunity to reinforce to RA that AEGIS switching is cancer and needs to go

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BalsBigBrother

Some good info but as always not going to say I like or hate this or that until I get my grubby hands on the game to try it all for myself.

The ball is in your court Funcom so impress me :-)

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dm_jim80

So…wait, we have essentially only two active weapon abilities (left button right button) and space for ‘other stuff,’ or those buttons are your weapons ‘auto attacks’ and other abilities are on the bar? I think maybe I’m just having some reading comprehension issues here.

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Armsbend

I didn’t think I’d ever get tummy butterfly excited about TSW again: but it is happening.

Twin Peaks tie-in please. Make it happen.

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Greaterdivinity

OH GOD IF THEY DID A TWIN PEAKS TIE-IN THAT WOULD BE LITERALLY ONE OF THE BEST THINGS EVER

Seriously, it would fit super-well too. Quirky characters, a mystery, supernatural forces, I NEED THIS IN MY LIFE RIGHT NOW.

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Armsbend

I started TSW when I was going through [another] Twin Peaks phase. It was the closest MMO I could find. I happily got addicted to the game for a long time.

With the new season under two months away we NEED a game for it. TSWL would be a perfect fit.

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Katriana

Ugh about the combat changes. I’m with MJ in really disliking that sort of combat. All the clickyness is not so great for hands and wrists that are already flirting with carpal tunnel. Most of the rest sounds not too bad though. Am tentatively more optimistic.

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kidwithknife

Sounds promising. I’m still disappointed about sticking with the Dreamworld engine, but if FC can manage to add content at a reasonable pace with Dreamworld then I can handle that. The combat does sound more like my cup of tea, though I didn’t particularly mind it before either.

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Melissa McDonald

My impression reading over this is that it wasn’t just the gamers that invalidated the skill systems in TSW, it was the devs too.
I learned very early that grouping/dungeons were extremely reluctant to add anyone who wasn’t pure tank/dps/heal. If you tried to, you know, actually enjoy the skill system, learn a bit of this, a bit of that, you’d be happy with your character, but nobody else would be. And I got an earful about it too that my character was “lame” for not being a pure tank/dps/heal deck from the rotten gamers on my server. And so it seems that this design, which should have pleased people and given them individuality, actually enabled one to “mess up” your character and keep you from succeeding. That’s bad game design, I have no other conclusion I can make there. You give people something they want, and then you make it so that it’s ineffective. OK this is probably the first time in my gaming history I will utter a whine about “balancing”.

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Nick Smith

Wot? Tomorrow for more info will take too long! :)

Loving the info thank you MJ. I know you don’t like the combat change, but I for one will love this i’m sure! Currently, my favorite combat games are Trove and ESO, so I’m pretty sure I’m going to love SWL. Funcom please release this soon, I want to throw monies at it!!! Honestly, I haven’t been this hyped about a game in a long while. I hope all the costumes we’ve already purchased/unlocked from TSW carry over to SWL.

“At the end of closed beta there will be a total wipe, then beta will open up to everyone. At that point no other wipes are anticipated.”

Closed beta will be before it’s on steam… open beta will be on steam? Is this accurate?

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Cosmic Cleric

MJ, typo in article, deck instead of desk …

“Amiel said it was crucial that players could still make their own desk how they wanted. ”

Tried using the contact page to notify, instead of posting here, but validation of homo sapienness would not work, and I tried it literally ten times.

Feel free to delete this post after viewing.

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squidgod2000

Thanks for writing this up as an article instead of just posting the question/answer.

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