Chaos Theory: Secret World is getting new story content, but it’s not in Secret World Legends

    
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That feeling when something is so close yet misses the mark — in a painful, how-on-earth-can-you-miss-that-giant-glowing-target way. The good news is that a Secret World-themed Halloween spinoff game is happening this year! I have missed those, and they are a highlight in my favorite season. Yay! The bad news is that so far, there is still no new story content on the horizon for Secret World Legends. None. Not a word. And yeah, that seriously sucks.

It is possible to be happy to see the Secret World IP expand with new adventures and still frustrated that the main game is ignored. (To be precise, I should say second main game as TSW is beyond forgotten, it is shoved in a closet and doomed to be forever purposefully ignored.) As excited as I am for the newly announced spinoff Moons of Madness, I am equally disappointed that my favorite game is still languishing with no end of the story drought in sight. Is SWL joining its older sibling?

Come on, Funcom. At this point you just need to officially change it to Frustratingcom. You know you can make both content for the game and other games in the IP, right? And that you’d have a happy fanbase? It would be the best of both worlds if you just put a little forethought into these things, things like not rubbing the lack of SWL development in the faces of your remaining players.

Over the Moon(s of Madness)

Have you ever wondered what goes through an Orochi’s mind — you know, before it gets blasted, smashed, or otherwise turned to pulp? Assuming it isn’t removed or ingested, that is. What is life like, and what are they thinking — especially those moments when it all starts to go to pot? Heck, even in SWL we are mostly exposed to the aftermath of events. And boy, oh boy, we’ve seen plenty of Orochi aftermath (has anyone actually counted the dead bodies strewn through Secret World Legends?), but not much of the actual Orochi. And those live office zombies in Kaidan’s tower don’t count! Moons Over Madness, bless its interstellar heart, is going to give us a nice slice of Orochi life as we play through technician Shane Newehart’s life on a Mars outpost.

Yes, this excites me. What I am most eager for is that this story is something that will be tantalizingly familiar yet is still completely unknown! I have the chance to experience something completely fresh and for the first time; that’s not a luxury I have with anything else in The Secret World world anymore. Not that I wouldn’t loooove to have that opportunity there again in SWL, but chances for that are getting slimmer and slimmer. Even I, the eternal optimist, have trouble keeping any hope alive now.

Show me some post-South Africa scenery

The whole reason I was able to get on board with the big revamp and rebrand of my beloved The Secret World to Secret World Legends is that it was the only way the story could continue. OK, fine. I want the story so much I will restart; I will re-experience the old (which sadly never has an impact like when new) in order to be able to finally continue the story. I’d even be patient and wait. And apparently wait. And wait some more.

Patience gets you only so far.

Although I was not initially so worried about having story (Remember, this is story we’ve already been told existed on more than one occasion – story that was already mapped out for many years to come? Also, popular writer Joshua Alan Doetsch was back writing for the game.) I should have been more worried about ultimately getting that story! Maybe I should have been less hopeful and more harp-ful/harping? It looks like those nagging concerns that the loss of Romain Amiel as creative director would further derail plans was more spot on than I’d ever wanted. He’s gone, and so appears to be hope of getting more story content as well.

Here we are almost two years into this reboot and we have received exactly one small addition to the story. And we aren’t even counting the long story drought that was in TSW itself here; that adds two more years. (Let’s not even delve into the absence of many still-missing elements from the original game.) South Africa didn’t hit the scene until April 2018, almost a full year after the reboot launched. And to make matters worse, we haven’t even received the whole of it yet! Yes, the main story mission line is complete (inasmuch as a cliffhanger can be), but those additional missions and story flavor elements from the other NPCs around the compound we were promised have still not materialized. Things, mind you, Amiel told us were already well into development. So, where are these? Where is the rest of South Africa? And where is what comes after South Africa?

Perhaps we will see more this spring, yet another year after our last story content. (Not that I am holding my breath at all.) If this industry-familiar yearly expansion cadence is what Funcom is trying to go with… it first actually needs an expansion! The studio sure as Hades can’t expect that piddly amount of content we received to represent an actual expansion. I mean, it was all right, but it was much better when it was presented as just the beginning of the content drop. Season 2 can barely qualify as a full episode so far let alone a season.

Funcom: Make some amends before it’s too late

I can’t blame SWL players feeling shafted. Because they really are: A new title promising content they’ve been waiting so very long for is coming out separately instead of in their game. That’s a pretty blatant slap in the face. Feel devalued and unappreciated? You have reason to. I certainly can’t blame if some players are throwing in the towel now. A poor decision on Funcom’s part is going to have lasting consequences within its community. I hope Funcom at least still cares about that, about its community, because this doesn’t lend to that feeling at all.

You know what would have been worlds better? Funcom should have had a story content announcement for Secret World Legends before Moons of Madness was announced. The studio should have shown its customers that the live game is getting some development attention. How many of us wonder if it is getting any at all now?

At the very, very least, Funcom should have announced an expected content tie-in to SWL, even if it wasn’t coming until Halloween time when Moons of Madness does. This would have headed off the internal wars of anger and disappointment on one hand and (guilty?) anticipation on the other.

Secret World Legends needs a story content announcement and it needs it stat. Then it needs that content delivered. I have said it before and I will say it again: We can be satisfied (appeased? placated? Less likely to riot with pitchforks?) with smaller story content drops if they are quicker and more regular. However, a year+ between them is definitely not quick, and hardly regular either! Please, for the love of all that is holy and unholy, Lovecraftian and Filth-infested, please, please deliver more story in Secret World Legends.

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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Bruno Brito

Wait…i really thought it was something about TSW,and it’s a fucking halloween spin off?

Holy jesus. What a shipwreck.

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zoward

If it’s about money: we’d be glad to pay for an expansion!

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Shadex De'Marr

Or, they could forget this nonsense and go back to supporting TSW.

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Briar Grey

^^ This please. I can’t play SWL with the angle of the screen – it makes me ill. And it’s such a stripped down, horrible game anyway that despite my love for the IP, I couldn’t play it. Call this a bad experiment. Throw your money back behind TSW. As a lifetime member, I will go back to paying a sub for a good game because I got my initial $200 investment’s worth and I want them to be successful.

They won’t, but I can dream. If I suddenly won some mega gagillion lotto, I’d ask the other half about possibly trying to buy the IP and the developers that are good and get this game on track, lol.

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Hikari Kenzaki

Okay, so I totally agree, I would much prefer to be able to log in every month or two and play a new mission or two with some story and advancement beyond New Dawn. But I also logically resigned myself that this wasn’t going to happen several years ago and emotionally about a year ago.

If we get more traditional story content in the future, I’ll be pleased but it won’t change my world. I’ll gladly play Moons of Madness and probably enjoy it because of who is involved in the project.

As for Secret World Legends, you are making an argument against a culture shift in Secret World as if it happened 6 months ago or 2 years ago. But this happened 4-5 years ago in The Secret World. You talk about Romain leaving as if it was the harbinger of things to come.

Point blank, Tilty taking over as Lead Designer was the worst thing to ever happen to Secret World.

In interviews that took place when Joel left and for many months after, Tilty repeatedly said that he was a hardcore gamer and that that portion of the population had been neglected for too long. What did we get for it?

1) Story content locked behind two max level, max gear dungeons with some of the most toxic people playing them.
2) A handful of side story updates in TSW (paid story packs) that were always a buggy mess.
3) The expansion of gear beyond 10.4.4 and more grinding.
4) Reworks of high-level content to be more appealing to grinders.
5) Two full years of complete silence.

That was all before SWL.

Secret World Legends was designed, from the ground up, to be the endgame focused game it is now. They implemented Item Power as the core mechanic of the game. And what we got in SWL was a chopped up version of TSW. This is coming from someone who actually enjoys playing SWL, it’s just not anything we hoped it was going to be.

Dark Agartha has a ton of story, but you can’t just log in, do a mission and be done with it. Most of it is hidden in the Lore/Legends. A good chunk of SWL’s content is more ARG styled. You have to go look for it. Something Josh mentioned a few times is that a lot of his new work was in the Lore.

The Bestiary is all story, mostly written by Josh, but again, it’s all in the Legends.

The Envoys of Avalon, quite a bit of story, but again, mostly told via Legends.

The April 1st patch had all sorts of PvP stuff and a mission that is designed to be the hardest mission in the game after you’ve 100% finished all the current regions.

We have got content recently, it’s just not the type of content you (or I) want. It’s the type of content designed for the people who the game changed to fit 5 years ago.

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Tanek

If the intent was and is to turn SWL into a hardcore, endgame, raider, PvP game with all the story safely tucked into the “legends”…
…well, I guess I ignored all that and hoped for more of what the game had been. Or, at least as much as it had been.

In which case, I apologize to the developers for my misunderstanding. That kind of game just is not what I want to play at all.

Again, I will likely get Moons of Madness and will continue to support the Secret World IP here and there if it comes up in more games, but I might be done with SWL.

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Hikari Kenzaki

Oh, I won’t go so far to say that they didn’t misrepresent to us that there would be more story. They totally did.

What they gave us in New Dawn was fun… but it was an unfinished pile of crud. And not what they led us to believe was coming. There should have been more. There should BE more. I don’t know that I believe there ever will be more.

For now, I just try to appreciate what they do put out and go play other games in the meantime. (I may have written an entire article about this once. :) )

arimer
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arimer

This is exactly my feelings on this. They sold us the same game twice just to never do anything more with it. It’s my favorite mmo out there yet Funcom either doesn’t care or isn’t’ able to keep it going.

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Hikari Kenzaki

I wouldn’t say they don’t care, but some perspective has to be taken. Secret World is the game that nearly destroyed the company financially. Twice. It’s really hard for them to justify dipping into that well again.

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Koshelkin

I’m pretty sure Funcom’s NA studio is working mainly on the new project dubbed as “Heroic signatures coop multiplayer shooter” in the financial report. I don’t have much hope left for SWL by now. I doubt it will see much dev-time in the future.

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Jeffery Witman

There were some concerns when the 12 month patron bundle went on sale. It seems that kind of big offering is Funcom’s way of letting players know that there’s trouble in your game and they’re trying to squeeze the last few drops of cash from you.

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luxundae

Pouring another one out for Secret World ‘verse.

Dark demons cried gaia, and they won.

Still, if anyone reading this has $100 million lying around and wants to fund a do-over with a modern engine, I wouldn’t say no…

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Paragon Lost

SWL players can now join we TSW players who were left behind. Welcome to the SS Unhappy Players Ship. I said that they were gonna screw everyone and were doing the very minimum to sell you all on SWL and that’s what it feels like they did in my opinion. They re used assets from TSW and slapped some new paint on it and sold it to everyone.

I’ll never purchase another Funcom product, they burned us with AoC, they burned us with TSW and it looks like they’re burning you SWL players too. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Funcom designs some of the most immersive, interesting game worlds and yet can’t follow through with building upon it. They’re just huge teases who pull the rug out from under their players repeatedly.

It’s Lucy, Charlie Brown and the football repeatedly. No thank you. Also, you know it’s bad when the ever postive MJ is finally voicing multi paragraphed criticisms. Hugs to MJ for sticking it out as long as she has, she’s always a great voice/cheer leader for any mmo that she’s interested in.

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styopa

I find this as bullshit as day 1 DLC.
“Hey, we have some content for you people that really love this game…sorry you have to buy ANOTHER thing to play it…and no, it’s not actually connected to the game you love. Cheers!”

Almost as cheesy as taking, say, Conan IP and content (I don’t know if they did this with the content, I find it hard to believe they’d stick with that engine now) and building a survival game on the wreckage of another MMO that was pretty damned cool until you completely f’ing abandoned it, eh?

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xpsync

Ahh yes day one dlc, nothing like flaunting your pathetic greed and acknowledgment of what you truly think of gamers, that we’ll believe anything and buy everything. wait wut…