TSW – No Sparks


You meet somebody very attractive, you go on a date…or two, get to know them a little…and then realise, they’re nice. But that’s it. There’s no spark. That’s me and TSW.

With GW2 ‘parked’, I found my gaming time was missing a ‘major player’, come mid-July, so I took the plunge and purchased ‘The Secret World’. I’d read many good things about TSW, and several of my kin also play, so I was hopeful that I might find a title that would catch my imagination. And it did…sort of…

I started off by rolling a Templar, but I admit to finding the character creation process somewhat underwhelming; the visual options just aren’t in the same league as the likes of GW2 and, whichever way you cut it, your starting toon is not going to stand out in any crowd. The cosmetic system works just fine, but the starting outfit options are not my cuppa; the body/skin/hair options not much better. All in all, uninspiring, I felt.

TSW - Armed and dangerous?

TSW – Armed and dangerous?

Anyhow, off to Solomon Island I hopped, soon ending up in the starter zone that is Kingsmouth Town. My initial impression here was all very ‘Walking Dead’, with a  touch of ‘Men in Black’ thrown in. The questing is smooth and progression (without ‘levels’, per se) equally so. I love the  ability wheel/points system for skill progression and its unique way of implanting the tank/healer/DPS trinity. A toon can be as specialised as they choose to be once, of course, the necessary skill points have first been earned. Ability points  are more restrictive, but overall I like the whole system. Every player has more than enough rope to hang themselves with and, equally, more than enough to be relatively unique in their own approach to any role they wish to fill.

The crafting is just bizarre, although not in a complicated way, but rather in just a plain ‘odd’, way. The story? Well, very Cuthulu, but, for me, just not in any way immersive. After playing GW2, I also find that having a toon that doesn’t talk (i.e. no voice acting for player characters in TSW) is also odd. That said, toons in LoTRO don’t have their own ‘voice’ either, but in games that are ‘new’ to me, I think I now expect and prefer to hear a voice. But maybe that’s just my imagination being lazy.

After playing for about a month or so on a fairly ad hoc basis, I have to say TSW is an MMO with oodles of character. I’ve played completely through Kingsmouth Town and now find myself resting about half way through the Savage Coast (part 2 of Solomon Island). I’ve even run a couple dungeons. However, when all’s said and done, the game just hasn’t grabbed me. I think I’ll continue to play on an occasional basis, but TSW is not going to be a ‘major player’ for me. That said, it’s still installed and maybe, just  maybe, there’s a streak of enthusiasm for it that’s awaiting my discovery.

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4 Responses to “TSW – No Sparks”

  1. Crafting in TSW is definitely bizarre, and after playing a bunch of MMOs with SOME kind of progression attached to crafting, it’s weird TSW really has no skill system for it.

    What about the game isn’t immersive for you? I’ve found it to be the most fully realized world I’ve ever seen in an MMO. Beautiful zones and smart layouts, incredibly strong character design and worldbuilding, unmatched audio…

    • As I said in the post Seth, it’s a game with oodles of character. I can’t argue with any point you make – only that it just hasn’t grabbed me. It’s got polish and atmosphere in abundance. Maybe I’m just not cut out for a zombie apocalypse type of MMO? Or maybe I haven’t given it enough of a chance? I’ll be making an effort to pop in now and again and maybe get Solomon Island done, and then see where I’m at 🙂

  2. Fair enough! Now that I think about it, the first time I picked it up I made it about halfway through Savage Coast before dropping it for a few months. I think that might just be a tough part to get through (though I LOVE Innsmouth Academy).

    If you play beyond Solomon Island you’ll definitely find a lot of mythological flavor beyond zombie apocalypse. I hope you do!

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