Our latest glimpse at the reworked universe of Secret World Legends came yesterday courtesy of an hour-long livestream on Twitch. For those of us on the outside of the NDA-slathered beta, it’s pretty much the only glimpse we have into what’s going on as testing continues.
A post on Reddit contains a helpful summary of talking points from the stream. Funcom confirmed that it is still aiming for a spring launch, saying that the testing pool will be widened with more invites and that Egypt is coming soon to the beta. The team discussed the fluid nature of testing changes, including reticules (which can be adjusted), quality-of-life improvements, hints of a “clothing closet,” dungeon lockout timers, and the elimination of the least-used combat skills. Rewards for subscribers (patrons) are still being figured out, so no official word on that yet.
You can watch the stream after the break!
I’ve mentioned many a time that I like Funcom quite a bit. I want to like Funcom quite a bit. Heck, I want to be excited about Secret World Legends, but every day or so I get reminded that such a course of action will be very difficult at the least. Because quite frankly, Secret World Legends seems to want me not to be excited about it, as evidenced by… oh, every single thing that Funcom is doing around it.
Which is odd, because Funcom literally has access to a playbook for a large-scale reboot.
Secret World Legends is coming off of The Secret World, which was a cult MMORPG classic with a mighty fan following. Final Fantasy XIV was coming off of… well, its initial version, which had a fan following full of people who admitted that it was halfway to Stockholm Syndrome. And yet that game managed to get people excited and earn fans, while Funcom seems dead-set on alienating people or making them just plain nervous.
This week’s Massively Overthinking comes to us from Xijit — and I think you’ll agree it’s quite timely.
“In light of The Secret World getting reworked into more of a single-player or online-but-not-actually-an-MMO title, what other MMOs would you like to see downgraded from the full MMO format and turned into a single-player-focused or limited multiplayer title?”
I’d like to say I can speak for everyone and say NONE ZERO NEVER STOPPIT. But I bet our staff — and you — can probably think of a few MMOs that might be better suited for a different format. Let’s dive in to this pool full of poop jello and fight it out.
It’s definitely a day for racing. Massively OP’s MJ is running out of time to complete The Unseen achievement in The Secret World before the focus pretty much flips over to Secret World Legends. This is one achievement she really wants to complete before the new game starts, so it’s a race against time complete the sabotage missions. Tune in live at 9:00 p.m. to see how successfully she can sneak tonight.
What: The Secret World
Who: MJ Guthrie
When: 9:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday, April 13th, 2017
Since it takes a superheroic effort to put on a podcast every week — so many words! so many Star Wars Galaxies references! — Bree and Justin consider themselves in equal company with this week’s superhero news and discussion. From Ship of Heroes to Marvel Heroes to City of Heroes, it’s 300% of your RDA of spandex in one hour!
It’s the Massively OP Podcast, an action-packed hour of news, tales, opinions, and gamer emails! And remember, if you’d like to send in your own letter to the show, use the “Tips” button in the top-right corner of the site to do so.
Listen to the show right now:
If you were hoping that Secret World Legends was essentially just The Secret World, well, you were wrong. You were told that you were wrong when it was announced, but the first round of leaks have been coming out of the beta, and they paint a very different picture of the game. Of course, it’s still early enough in testing that fans are cautioned not to see anything therein as final, so… take all of that with a grain of salt, naturally.
And yes, there is other beta news! That’s not a secret. It’s a known fact.
- Crowfall is offering players the option to customize skill loadouts. That’s new and it’s a real thing, unlike the development team’s recent round of answers for things which do not currently exist.
- The Morrowind expansion for The Elder Scrolls Online has a closed beta on the game’s test servers. Essentially, you can only be invited to test the expansion content, but everyone gets to test the patch itself. It’s a bit odd.
- If you want some drops in Albion Online, you’re going to need to make them yourself. Yes, there are plans for a system to ensure that even drops are made by players. Also a bit odd, but sort of cool.
- There are two factions in Escape from Tarkov, but there’s also a third… well, not a faction, per se, but scavengers can run around and screw things up for everyone regardless of affiliation.
- The latest update for Worlds Adrift doesn’t just make the game flow better, it makes it taste better. Metaphorically, anyhow. If you lick the part of your hard drive where the game is stored, you… actually, just don’t do that. Don’t even think about that.
- Last but not least, Edengrad has launched into Early Access. That’s not odd at all! Just straightforward.
You know what comes next: I mention that there’s a list of games in testing below, I implore you to let us know if something jumped test phases, I sit and cry with four pounds of crispy bacon. I don’t actually eat the bacon, I just cry next to it. Also, I’m hoping by this point you’ve stopped reading. The best secrets are out in plain sight.
With Secret World Legends in closed beta, many fans are unable to get in and see what is going on with the changes. For those without access, devs hosted a livestream today to show off a few features, such as a revamped character customization, a peek at the new tutorial, and some combat. There was also mention of the possibility of cross-faction cabals, but it isn’tt for sure.
Character customization has added new faces, new hairstyles, and even added facial tattoos as well as beefing up the starter clothing selection. The tutorial, which is actually interwoven with the beginning cutscenes that veteran players will be familiar with, puts players in a graveyard and tosses them into combat and option much sooner than The Secret World did. Devs then demonstrated combat, showing some leeway in where they target reticle is as well as the overheating feature of elementalism. Game Director Romain Amiel emphasized that weapons have different levels of difficulty now (for example, the shotgun is more complicated than elementalism). See the combat for yourself and listen for other tidbits in the full video below.
I think I can speak for most of our staff in saying that in November when Funcom first promised a “major upgrade to both retention and acquisition mechanics and content of the game to counter the declining revenues” in The Secret World, no one expected this.
Ditto in February, when Funcom said it was going “relaunch to broaden the appeal of the game through [a] redesigned new player experience, major improvements to gameplay including combat, [the] introduction of new retention systems such as daily rewards, [and] adjustments to the business model, including allowing access to the story content for free” — people murmured “NGE,” but no one even considered that the studio would dump MMO players overboard in pursuit of ARPG fans.
But in retrospect, the cagey language and lack of actual updates in the game were right there all along, as was the casual maintenance-moding of Anarchy Online and Age of Conan.
For this week’s Overthinking, I’ve asked our staff to consider Funcom’s plans here — not the rumors and leaks but the set-in-stone plans — and reflect on what they say about the studio, the game, and the genre on the whole. What do you think about Secret World Legends?
Funcom’s been a busy little bee this week, so pry your eyes away from Secret World Legends for a minute for a peek at Conan Exiles, which today has launched a new dungeon as part of its weekly patch. It’s called… The Dregs. Yeah, it’s pretty much a sewer. Try not to drown in fetid poop water!
“A massive and ancient aqueduct leads water from the mountains down to the Unnamed city. A vast sewer system was built to carry the city’s refuge and waste into the southern river system. Ages ago, dark and dangerous sorcerous experiments were performed in the Unnamed city, and their remnants and leftovers were also flushed down into the tunnels beneath the city.”
Along with the dungeon, new recipes and resources are live, as are glowsticks, crocodile and komodo armor, bolts and arrows, and a new system for crafting medium armor.
Funcom has issued a statement about the leaks; we’ve included it in its entirety at the end of this post.
For those assuming that Secret World Legends will be only slightly different from the existing MMO, it may be best to rip off that band-aid early to get used to the truth. While the game is currently under NDA in closed beta, that doesn’t stop information from leaking out that appears to show a vastly changed title in the making.
On the new Secret Worlds Legends subreddit, a beta tester has unloaded a ton of information and screenshots that mostly center on the action-RPG’s combat system. With the understanding that this is beta and all may be changed, the tester claims to shows how the different combat weapons have been streamlined and modified (for example, shotguns now have different types of shells that perform various tasks and assault rifles have grenades). The tester notes that most classes should self-heal now as in most other MMOs. Players will use a reticle system for combat and will need to worry about overheating at least some of their weapons.
If you don’t like tricks and jokes, just stop reading right now, turn the lights off, and go climb back into bed. Nothing on the internet is going to bring you joy today, so just sit this one out. Trust us.
For everyone else, there’s April Fools’ Day! Follow along as we rattle off all the great MMORPG pranks and events we’ve found so far this morning.
I quite like the setting behind The Secret World, and the game had some very neat ideas about progression and character builds. For my money, that didn’t make up for atrocious combat and somewhat lopsided balance issues, but it meant that I was quite excited to hear about Secret World Legends back when it was just “the relaunch for The Secret World.”
Now, though? I don’t know. The announcement seems like it lacks a lot of substantive statements like what the future is for The Secret World or what precisely differentiates the two; is Secret World Legends built more like a single-player game where you can invite friends? How much is shared online by default? Is content only coming to this version from now on? Yes, I’ve read the press releases and interviews multiple times, but there’s still a lot of vagueness and implications that don’t really deliver much in the way of firm answers.
I’m still cautiously optimistic, of course, because the idea of the base game with better combat is appealing, but there’s a lot that is unfortunately unclear and offers space to worry and be confused. What about you, readers? Are you excited about Secret World Legends?
You wanted answers, we’ve got answers! As soon as Funcom
sent us the press release and the FAQ about the launch
of Secret World Legends
and its effect on The Secret World
, we fired off some questions to get more details and some clarification. Game Director Romain Amiel
has now expounded on different aspects of both games for us, including the use of the Ability Wheel, changes to progression, Grandmaster status in both games, future development, and more. Here’s what he had to say.
(Bad news spoiler: Your hopes of having continued content in The Secret World or a new graphics engine have the same lifespan as an Orochi agent.)