Chaos Theory: A guide for Secret World Legends’ new agent network

Admit it: Ever since your faction handler in Secret World Legends started sending you off on jobs, you’ve wanted your own underlings to boss around. Am I right? Well thanks to the conspiracy game’s latest feature, now you do get your very own minions to send scurrying off on little assignments. Called the Agent Network, this new system was just deployed this week. And while it’s neither a massive story feature nor a hefty progression feature, it does have a bit of both.

Go ahead, dive on in and start ordering your minions around! With this guide, you’ll have all the info you need to be running your very own agent network.

Agents: A little something for everyone

Wait, what? Agents? I wanted more story!

After waiting so long (and still waiting) for Season 2 and more story content, many fans will be eager for story and therefore be disappointed, even exasperated, when story doesn’t happen yet again. That doesn’t mean adding other features is bad — it’s just that story is wanted so much. I didn’t actually think I would care much about this new feature. Turns out I was wrong: The Agent Network actually incorporates story and progression. There are even a bunch of new related achievements to earn! It’s a little something for everyone.

During the big explanatory dev stream, systems designer Andrew Ryker said, “We wanted something to kind of go along with our next big content update. This is another avenue to progress your character.” Progression is well and good, but I am admittedly much, much more interested in the story, so his other comment really made me perk up. The agent network was intended to be about “having an engaging system where you can experience more of the stories and more of the other stuff that we weren’t particularly going to be doing a big content update about.” Experience more stories? Sign me up!

After spending a few days with the system, I am actually excited about it… and that’s because of the story involved! Yes, progression-wise it offers rewards like anima shards and frequent distillates with no real effort — a pretty sweet deal when you are a low level. And the rewards just get better the higher the agents’ levels get. Leveled agents also provide players with special passive abilities. But the fact that the missions are snippets of story from all around the world is awesome. It’s like being handed shiny lore without having to hunt for it. Not only do you get to learn a little something extra about your agents (which, when you consider you can have Hayden Montag and Carter as agents, how could you not want to learn more?!), but it also expands the story of the Secret World beyond the perimeter of the playfields. As much as I might want to experience the entire world as zones, I know the devs can’t deliver that! Through agent missions, I’ve gotten a taste of happenings in Scotland, upstate New York, and more.

True, the mission stories aren’t super involved. However, there is volume! I don’t know how many missions there are total right now, but there are a number of them already. And due to the nature of the snippets, creating them should be easy enough that we can have a huge replenishing supply that doesn’t end. That means lots of little story tidbits about familiar faces and places as well as new ones. I honestly can’t wait to learn more. I am also so excited for how this could be incorporated into events and holidays.

Be a boss: Getting started

That was some why; now let’s get into the how. In order to be the boss, you need some agents. When you reach faction rank 3 (level 15), the agent network opens up. You get a text from your handler that brings up a spiffy UI window explaining the gist of the feature and puts an agent dossier in your inventory. Click on that item to add the agent to your agent UI (which is accessed by pressing P). This UI has everything you need for the agent system, from storing the agents to displaying stats to offering the missions.

When you are first eligible, you are gifted one faction agent. Other agents can be acquired as a mission reward; every action and sabotage mission from Savage Coast onward has a low chance of granting one. There are also agent booster packs that can randomly award one. These packs are purchased by clicking the green plus sign on the top of the agent UI window. I anticipate that these bags and even agents themselves could be offered as log in rewards during events and such. Note: Agent dossiers, before they are claimed, can be sold or traded with others!

What does that symbol mean?

So you have your agent, and now you are looking at the agent network UI. What does it all mean? Since some of the symbols don’t have tool tips when you mouse over them (I wish all did!), here is a crash coarse in what everything on the page means. The UI is broken into three parts.

On the left: Missions

The missions themselves are on the left side. There are currently two usable slots; one is open to everyone, and the other is open only to patrons (as noted by the bee). The third is locked. Clicking a slot reveals the list of available missions. Each available mission has info at a glance, reading from left to right (with the title at the top):

  • Shape indicates the relevant stat (prowess=triangle, adaptability=square, ingenuity=circle)
  • Countdown timer is how long until that particular mission leaves and another pops up
  • If a bonus is available, the necessary traits are shown
  • The reward for you
  • The reward for the agent (folder=intel, bullets=supplies, globe=assets, and XP)

When you click on the mission, you get the story snippet on top, a larger look at reward possibilities (and bonus rewards) in the middle, and the agent assignment on the bottom. Right above the deploy agent button is the list of mission requirements listing minimum stats and tokens (here’s where the intel, supplies, and assets come in) as well as the mission length in hours and minutes. Note: This timer runs down in real time, not game time or played time, so you can just send your agents off and play or log out and they will still do their task! Select an agent from the center section that best matches the needs and hit deploy. That agent is now dispatched on a mission and unavailable until the timer is up. If desired, you can also pay aurum to speed the process up. One agent can go on one mission per slot.

This section also includes tabs on the top. Each tab has a different set of available missions to choose from. Although you start with just one, there are six in total: five numbered tabs (mostly of increasing difficulty missions) and a special tab (which has a weekly mission).

When a mission is complete, this is where you click to view status report (more story snippets!) and collect your rewards. There are three levels of mission status, each with ascending chance of better rewards. Mission complete means it was done, but not necessarily well. Mission success is the mid-level and offers a better chance at the better rewards. The top tier is mission outstanding results, meaning the job was done very well and you can get an additional reward.

In the center: Agent Roster

In the center is your complete collection of available agents. You can sort by name, level, or the individual stats. The gear icon also allows you to show or hide agents using other filters. Here you get a quick overview of every agent and his or her stats via a portrait. Without tool tips, you may never know what the traits on the right are by their symbols, unless you happened to use the filter feature. Although I may not know what the symbols are supposed to be, here is a cheat sheet by what they look like to me:

  • fist is power
  • shield is resilience
  • heart is charisma
  • fleeing Death Star is dexterity
  • Pac-Man ghost is supernatural
  • eyeball is intelligence

To learn more about each agent, click on the portrait to bring up the full dossier. Now you get the background story snippet, the labeled stats (in case you forget what each shape meant), a gear slot, the agent’s traits (with a tooltip offering a tiny snippet about the agent), and the support abilities the agent offers.

When considering an agent for a mission, a percentage will appear on the portrait. This is the affinity, meaning the combination of your chance to crit (for mission result) and chance to get an item from the mission. The higher the percentage, the better the match. When an agent is on a mission and unavailable, the portrait has a blue overlay of someone running (errands, I presume!).

On the right: Supporting Agents

On the top of this final section is where you slot passive abilities earned by agents. This won’t unlock until any one of your agents hits level 25. The agent inventory is under that in the center. At the bottom is the wallet for your agent, showing how much it has earned in intel, supplies, and assets.

Is it real? In Secret World Legends, rarely is it not. Conspiracies, ancient legends, paranoia, secret societies, chaos — they all swirl together in a cacophony of reality. In Chaos Theory, MJ Guthrie infiltrates this secret world, exposing the truths that lurk beneath the surface. The big question is, can you handle the truth?

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Anthony Clark

This actually got me playing SWL again. I don’t know why.

Grim? Darhk

as pained as I am to say it, I think it’s finally time to let tsw die. This isn’t what any of us wanted funcom.

Kickstarter Donor
Paul Hurtado

I’m always down for some meta-game in my game, but I hope that they add more depth to the system than other games have… which shouldn’t be too hard to do. Agents seem a little hard to get right now, but that might change as time goes on…

Kickstarter Donor
Richard de Leon III

Not looking forward to another facebook style addon. I wish garrison/mission table type addons actually gave you a mission you had to do your self, maybe with those followers assisting you as cooldowns or battle pets.

Oleg Chebeneev

Worth noting that they added TWO downtimes for agent missions. One is default timer. And another is fatigue system. So people who will like agent missions will hit the wall very fast. Ofc generous Funcom is happy to help. Buy aurum for just 9.99$ and you can remove cooldown from missions. Buy more aurum for just 49.99$ and begone fatigue.


The system might be the worst implementation in PC MMOs as of yet.

This guide is actually very useful… because the game does a shit job of explaining…. anything, really.
Not that it’s hard to use, just that you have no clue what the symbols mean, how to get ressources, what is the end goal of it all… and don’t even come with a user friendly UI. Ticking small boxes on top of one another is not my idea of well designed. And it’s not like there’s plenty of other games doing just that without the tedium.

But more importantly, it’s just the most boring “cooldown minigame” that you can think of.
You get maybe two lines of dialogue for a mission, agents are not much better, and all you get for just waiting the bar to fill up?
The same issue prevalent in the game, absolutely the worst progression in the genre. You get some points to upgrade your gear, or some money to… upgrade your gear.

The entirety of TSW is just boring.
Every single thing that exist in the game exist only for one thing: dump more points in a shitty ilvl system. It’s just as bad as a mobile game, you do anything, you get a few more points to a number that does fuck all. Except insuring that you only get maximum toxicity in LFG and have no hope of ever playing with anyone for… anything.
Nice added grind bonus to get new agents too. Replaying six years old content for a small percentage to get one, amazing.

And of course you can throw a big dose of P2W like in the rest of the game.
All those systems, unlocks, timers and shit progression?
Yeah, you can just pay real money and skip all of them.

Jeffery Witman

If it weren’t for the great setting and story, it would be pointless to play. Playing anything other than story mode in SWL is a sign of masochism.


The story is indeed great, I love it.
But once it’s done… there’s pretty much no reason to play. For an MMO and a game as a service, it makes no sense.

I’d love to come back, but… all I have to do is grind the same dungeons ten times in a row after already ground them into the dust in story mode, it’s fucking nuts.

Can’t even join lair groups and such in LFG, I don’t have 1000 ilvl, that’s crazy to even get there… so just randomly made groups in old content, yay.

The agent system is not helping. I got a whooping 31 shards and 200 weapon XP in two missions…

Jeffery Witman

I think I got somewhere between 250 and 300 IP before I just stopped playing all together. The events have been lackluster. The updates haven’t added or fixed anything enticing enough to bring me back in. Like a lot of people, I’m just in a holding pattern for season 2. There’s no real end game or player engagement in this reboot. I remember this time last year in TSW you could easily get groups of all skill levels for lairs, dungeons, anything at all. There were noobmare groups regularly that taught people how to run the nightmare content if they were new to it. There were 3 active PVP modes to keep you busy if you liked it, and 3 active hub cities if you were more the RP type.

The difference from last year to this year is depressing.

Bruno Brito

MJ, thanks for providing such guides, i deeply thank you but…

This is a agent system. You send your agents to do crap, and log off. When you’re back, you have loots for not playing. Can’t be more than that.


Where do we get the gear they can use?

Malcolm Swoboda

You get random Agent equipment from Agent Bags, which are from completion of Agent Missions or from the vendor in Agartha (with Hexcoins… which you get from selling Agent items anyway). Alternatively spend Aurum for Agent Boosters, which may include Agent Bags.

Basically you keep engaging with the Agent System.



Grim? Darhk

TSW meets Warlords of Draenor…..This can only end well.

Malcolm Swoboda

Only if ‘Season 2’ (or rather, the next regional/zone storyline and gameplay, or so) revolves around Agents instead of just including it.

So far its closer to STO and SWTOR crew stuff, etc. Something more worthy of anything from disapproval to enjoyment, but neither the feature everyone wants nor the feature everyone loathes.

It might or might not help providing income through 2018 and its hopefully not too intrusive. *shrug*