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Posted by HatKing

@Rox360 said:

@VargasPrime said:

@Sunjammer said:

No thanks. The combat looks dumb, the premise that this stuff is "secret" when its happening right in everybody's face is dumb, and in general the thing just seems pretentious.

Look, I agree that on the surface it seems to be pretty same-y. But what, exactly, is striking you as "pretentious?"

I swear, that word needs to be stricken from people's vocabulary, especially as pertains to video games.

It seems to have become one of those words that wannabe critics use just because they've heard it from other people who seemed to know what they were talking about, regardless of its actual meaning. Sort of like how some people refer to all electronic music as "dubstep" all of a sudden.

I don't know what this word means, but from the way other people use it, I think it fits here, so I'm gonna go with it!

Who cares? You're coming off like the jerk because you completely ignore the point in favor of arguing semantics - and you're really not even doing an effective job of it.

"Attempting to impress by affecting greater importance, talent, culture, etc., than is actually possessed."

You're telling me a game needlessly using Morse code for it's puzzles (by Jeff's statements), having a search engine built into its mechanics (because its puzzles are so edgy and out-there you have to research them!), and using every conspiracy trope in pop culture, can't even be considered pretentious?

I don't necessarily agree with the guy, but I don't think he's a "wannabe critic" using the word just because he heard somebody else use it.

Online
Posted by Oginam

Kind of interested in this. Giving me a real Arkham Horror vibe.

Edited by Sravingmad

One note: you can go to Blue Mountain if you want at any time, you just have to run through the Savage Coast to get there. The tunnel Jeff couldn't go down is a shortcut that unlocks after you get to Blue Mountain the normal way. The game should be a little more explicit about that.

I suspect one of the things behind "pausing" main quests is that a lot of them have certain triggers for being in a particular area and/or clicking things and they don't want you to set those off for one quest while on another and not notice it and end up bugging the quest out. They've had some troubles with quests bugging due to multiple player interaction as it is. Hopefully once they iron those bugs out a bit (they've already fixed a handful of the current quest bugs) they can come up with a slightly more elegant system than the current pausing. At least you can have a handful of the blue side quests running at the same time as your main quest, just not concurrent main quests.

Very fair review of it here. I like this game, but it's definitely not for everyone. Just nice to have an MMO that does something different.

Posted by Assirra

@Deathpooky said:

@Assirra said:

@Deathpooky said:

Hmm... same thing I thought when I looked at The Old Republic (and pretty much any MMO with an interesting setting, story, or mechanics these days). I wish they made it a focused single player game and chopped out the fluff and grind.

That is exactly what they tried with the old republic and the result was you got nothing to do and no reason to log on again. An mmo simply needs busywork and the threadmill system otherwise people will give it up after a month cause they seen everything. However you can camouflage and adjust it so it looks more interesting. Another huge aspect in mmo's is the community. You come for the game and stay for the people. So having it more focused on single player would once again just not make it an mmo anymore.

What you are looking for is not an mmo but a single player game.

Also i am really curious at how Giantbomb will recive guild wars 2.

Oh, that's exactly what I'm saying. I wish they made an actual single player game instead of chasing the MMO gold and building in the annoying MMO trappings. An action-RPGish game with this setting sounds awesome and I'd pay $60 for it. An MMO, not so much.

ah sorry i read that is "focused more on single player" in the sense of being an mmo but not focusing on an MMO. My mistake, sorry.

Posted by Vegetable_Side_Dish

20 seconds in with a loose vagina joke, top notch. 

Posted by The_Ruiner

It's a shame so many ideas that could make pretty fun single player rpg's are being forced into the MMO template and diluted over hours and hours of bland fetch questing. This might have been a really cool action RPG.

Posted by rudyarr

I wanna grow some fist trees in my backyard

Posted by AxleBro

"i gotta warn you i got loose lips" "gross" WE'RE OFF TO A GREAT START GUYS!

Edited by Sunjammer

Concretely, I think it's pretentious because it tries to appear smarter than it really is. As a game design it is ancient, and its best trick is to try and convince you it is a cerebral experience and sprinkle its world with gimmicks.

I don't like the name, I don't like the world they've made, I don't like the writing (though Ragnar is one of the best writers in the biz, the stuff here falls apart because the game it is in doesn't hold water), I definitely don't like the look. Maybe Jeff's character looks particularly ridiculous, but everything I've seen is a pretension towards realism, mired in some of the most bog standard MMO unrealism in town. It's just so fucking uninspired as a game, trying to coast on its one asset; a good writer.

It's a pure genre piece that wears the mask of something special, while its game design simply isn't. It's a school play that thinks it's Hollywood. It's Dean Koontz thinking he's Stephen King. It just doesn't deserve the praise it thinks it does.

Posted by MasterVerhoffin

I'm really liking this game so far so I thought I might talk about some of Jeff's questions:

You absolutely can go to Blue Mountain right from the beginning if you want. The tunnel is a shortcut that opens after you've been there; same thing with Agartha portals. The actual entrance is on the other corner of Savage Coast.

You're not really meant to play the story missions nonstop. If you skip every other mission, you'll quickly run into tiers of the main quest that are Hard or Very Hard. I was crazy and did every single quest in Kingsmouth before I moved on to Savage Coast, and every quest there before Blue Mountain.

I think the game judges difficulty based on your total amount of ability points; it assume certain things about the effectiveness of your character build and not gear.

There ARE quests that take you around the capital cities (New York, London, Seoul) but they're mostly faction quests that you get for ranking up, not just pick up in the world.

Finally, you absolutely can buy clothing with in-game currency. It was the Pangea store Jeff ran by in London.

Posted by Draxyle

Is it possible to make an MMO where it doesn't look like you're floating instead of walking? I'm not sure what it is, but movement always seems.. odd and disconnected in these sorts of games; like there's no momentum or connection to the ground. Maybe I'm just imagining it.

And I have to agree, having a monthly fee + micro-transactions is a little scummy. If they're going to get hundreds of dollars out of you for playing for long periods of time, they owe it to you to give you every piece of the game.

Posted by Peanut

PFFT!

HP Lovecraft New England > Stephen King New England

Posted by altairre

There are quite a few MMOs that are based on some pretty neat ideas but I just hate the MMO part of it. The randomly placed mobs that just stand all over the world, the repeatable quests (I want something to be done when I did it once), the boring, clunky combat and the "kill 10 random mobs" tasks.

Posted by VargasPrime

@Sunjammer said:

Concretely, I think it's pretentious because it tries to appear smarter than it really is. As a game design it is ancient, and its best trick is to try and convince you it is a cerebral experience and sprinkle its world with gimmicks.

I don't like the name, I don't like the world they've made, I don't like the writing (though Ragnar is one of the best writers in the biz, the stuff here falls apart because the game it is in doesn't hold water), I definitely don't like the look. Maybe Jeff's character looks particularly ridiculous, but everything I've seen is a pretension towards realism, mired in some of the most bog standard MMO unrealism in town. It's just so fucking uninspired as a game, trying to coast on its one asset; a good writer.

It's a pure genre piece that wears the mask of something special, while its game design simply isn't. It's a school play that thinks it's Hollywood. It's Dean Koontz thinking he's Stephen King. It just doesn't deserve the praise it thinks it does.

First off, you not liking the game is fine, but "pretension towards realism" is a completely different use of the word than your separate claim of "pretentiousness."

My point is, when people don't like a game, sometimes they seem to automatically assume that the creators are looking down their nose at us, expecting their audience to be awestruck with their brilliance. I see here a game with some interesting elements, but what looks overwhelmingly like a pretty standard MMO, I don't see a game that is trying to pitch itself as the greatest game to ever grace the stage, or the MMO that's going to change the way we look at the genre. I don't see anything pretentious about these people developing a game for years and attempting to get people to play it. That's kind of the point.

Posted by admanb

Yo dawg, I heard you like GiantBomb so I put GiantBomb in your GiantBomb so you can GiantBomb while you GiantBomb.

Posted by Scarabus

Two characters waling at each other and numbers flying out. Yup. This is an mmo.

Posted by mrpandaman

@VargasPrime said:

@Sunjammer said:

Concretely, I think it's pretentious because it tries to appear smarter than it really is. As a game design it is ancient, and its best trick is to try and convince you it is a cerebral experience and sprinkle its world with gimmicks.

I don't like the name, I don't like the world they've made, I don't like the writing (though Ragnar is one of the best writers in the biz, the stuff here falls apart because the game it is in doesn't hold water), I definitely don't like the look. Maybe Jeff's character looks particularly ridiculous, but everything I've seen is a pretension towards realism, mired in some of the most bog standard MMO unrealism in town. It's just so fucking uninspired as a game, trying to coast on its one asset; a good writer.

It's a pure genre piece that wears the mask of something special, while its game design simply isn't. It's a school play that thinks it's Hollywood. It's Dean Koontz thinking he's Stephen King. It just doesn't deserve the praise it thinks it does.

First off, you not liking the game is fine, but "pretension towards realism" is a completely different use of the word than your separate claim of "pretentiousness."

My point is, when people don't like a game, sometimes they seem to automatically assume that the creators are looking down their nose at us, expecting their audience to be awestruck with their brilliance. I see here a game with some interesting elements, but what looks overwhelmingly like a pretty standard MMO, I don't see a game that is trying to pitch itself as the greatest game to ever grace the stage, or the MMO that's going to change the way we look at the genre. I don't see anything pretentious about these people developing a game for years and attempting to get people to play it. That's kind of the point.

Exactly, to add onto

Many games do this, they "wear the mask of something special," to entice people. A gimmick people can latch onto and makes the game fun. The story, the atmosphere is what the Secret World and even the The Old Republic put their name on. A game like Uncharted puts its name on being like a playable Indiana Jones movie and Call of Duty a Michael Bay film. So the Secret World isn't trying to be the end-all be-all of MMORPGs, it's trying to create a realistic and believable world combined with solid MMORPG game play.

So where's the pretentiousness behind that?

Posted by Curious_George

@simkas said:

I played the beta, loved the world and some of the quests, absolutely hated the combat. Doesn't seem like they did anything with the combat so it's really not worth the monthly fee for me. I'll wait until it goes F2P, which I have a feeling will be fairly soon.

I felt the same way (and apparently so does Jeff). While I liked a lot of the stuff going on in the game, from investigation missions to the unique setting, the minute-to-minute gameplay did not grab me at all. It didn't help that during the time I was in TSW closed beta I also got into a Guild Wars 2 beta weekend, which basically ruined TSW for me from that point on.

Posted by ma77y1c3

I don't understand, where is the conspiracy content? Where is the "myths, legends, and conspiracies"? Looks like all you do is go to various points-of-interest around the world and kill zombies and monsters. I guess they are using the in-game browser to create the "modern day setting". Yikes.

Posted by VargasPrime

@mrpandaman said:

@VargasPrime said:

@Sunjammer said:

Concretely, I think it's pretentious because it tries to appear smarter than it really is. As a game design it is ancient, and its best trick is to try and convince you it is a cerebral experience and sprinkle its world with gimmicks.

I don't like the name, I don't like the world they've made, I don't like the writing (though Ragnar is one of the best writers in the biz, the stuff here falls apart because the game it is in doesn't hold water), I definitely don't like the look. Maybe Jeff's character looks particularly ridiculous, but everything I've seen is a pretension towards realism, mired in some of the most bog standard MMO unrealism in town. It's just so fucking uninspired as a game, trying to coast on its one asset; a good writer.

It's a pure genre piece that wears the mask of something special, while its game design simply isn't. It's a school play that thinks it's Hollywood. It's Dean Koontz thinking he's Stephen King. It just doesn't deserve the praise it thinks it does.

First off, you not liking the game is fine, but "pretension towards realism" is a completely different use of the word than your separate claim of "pretentiousness."

My point is, when people don't like a game, sometimes they seem to automatically assume that the creators are looking down their nose at us, expecting their audience to be awestruck with their brilliance. I see here a game with some interesting elements, but what looks overwhelmingly like a pretty standard MMO, I don't see a game that is trying to pitch itself as the greatest game to ever grace the stage, or the MMO that's going to change the way we look at the genre. I don't see anything pretentious about these people developing a game for years and attempting to get people to play it. That's kind of the point.

Exactly, to add onto

Many games do this, they "wear the mask of something special," to entice people. A gimmick people can latch onto and makes the game fun. The story, the atmosphere is what the Secret World and even the The Old Republic put their name on. A game like Uncharted puts its name on being like a playable Indiana Jones movie and Call of Duty a Michael Bay film. So the Secret World isn't trying to be the end-all be-all of MMORPGs, it's trying to create a realistic and believable world combined with solid MMORPG game play.

So where's the pretentiousness behind that?

If anything, I think game developers in general tend to be some of the most humble creators in modern media. Sure, once in a while some publisher or producer will spout off about how great their newest game is, but in most behind-the-scenes videos and developer diaries I've seen, the devs usually have a great respect for the work that they are doing and for the audience that they are trying to reach.

Any actual pretentiousness that I find usually comes from fans or journalists who rain high praise on specific games that they particularly care about.

Posted by Mathey

I like the trappings, shallow as they may be. Its just a relief to see a setting in this vein within this particular genre (subgenre?) of video game. Nothing revolutionary, I know - there's been tabletop and single player RPGs steeped in conspiracies, occult horror, and what not for decades - but in the field of MMOs, it does manage to stand out.

Kind of curious to see Jeff's reaction to the White Wolf "World of Darkness" MMO, should that ever actually happen. It leans harder on gothy-ness, I imagine, but theoretically it can have a similar postmodern weirdness pastiche thingy.

Posted by NYCTriggerHappy

@ma77y1c3: The conspiracy stuff is part of the setting, and touched on in earlier cinematics.

Posted by DukesT3

so dinosaurs.

Edited by project343

Love love love this game.

To answer two questions:

Quest limit - exists to remove the 'efficient leveling' checklist mentality that is sort of the standard for MMO quest design. Instead you focus on one lengthy adventure at a time and don't worry about efficiently moving about the zone in the least time-consuming way. The only system greatly detracts from the narrative effect, IMO.

Repeatable quests (all non-investigatory and sabotage missions) - the freedom of character progression system can lead you into a position where you fuck yourself up by spreading things too thin. The repeatable quests not only transforms regular questing into typical MMO "dailies," but it also gives you the option to repeat past content to get yourself out of a rut (which really helps with the rather difficult content later on).

Posted by George_Hukas

If you condone this, you're a bad person.

Its great to see perfectly competent games getting ripped apart when the shooting doesn't feel right or it has loose controls, but as long its labelled MMO people ignore the terrible MMO gameplay.

Posted by Sunjammer

fair enough, but then we are arguing semantics. I don't think of games as a service performed for an audience, I see them as works of art.

Posted by zaldar

The structure of the quests, and how they limit the number of different types you can take on is not to "slow you down". Each quest is in effect 3-6 typical MMO quests if you break them down. The quest structure is one of the things I love about the game, it vectors you around the world in an interesting way, notice how each major quest brings you to a new major quest giver and passes you by a series of smaller side quests. This setup also forces you to pay attention to the story of each quest. It quest is given it's own unique narrative arc and provides the player a sense of adventure. Where as loading up on all the quests in a hub then running out and chipping away at them in bulk is more of a bland and mindless approach. This game puts story telling well above things like "forced player grind".

quoted for truth

Posted by Rox360

@HatKing said:

You're telling me a game needlessly using Morse code for it's puzzles (by Jeff's statements), having a search engine built into its mechanics (because its puzzles are so edgy and out-there you have to research them!), and using every conspiracy trope in pop culture, can't even be considered pretentious?

Yes. That makes it about as pretentious as National Treasure (starring Nicolas Cage, in theaters now).

Posted by VargasPrime

@Sunjammer said:

fair enough, but then we are arguing semantics. I don't think of games as a service performed for an audience, I see them as works of art.

I see games as an art form as well. I just don't see anything pretentious about most games that people attribute that word to. For it to be truly pretentious, I think there would have to be some kind of overt indication that the developers thought their game was somehow inherently better than other games. Nothing about this game seems to say anything like that.

I just see a bunch of systems and a setting that you may not like. Just because you don't find the game world to be interesting or fun, it doesn't mean that the developers are automatically trying to be self-important.

I don't even think what I've seen of the game is particularly interesting! I'm not even defending it from that standpoint. I'm just bothered when people label a game or a developer as "pretentious" just because they don't like the game, or because they don't find it as new and innovative as other people.

Posted by zaldar

sigh....no no it isn't about as others have said that it is about slowing you down but making you actually LOOK at the story. Because the story is incredible...and how you can not like the investigation missions I do no know. On the other issues, yes there is a friends list and you will need them soon as the difficulty ramps up quickly. Very quickly. If you read you know some instruction manual stuff it would tell you this....

Great story and setting and new setting, combat that isn't simply plug and chug (especially in dungeons and pvp and higher level areas but even as you showed here now), and wonderful investigation and sabatoge missions that make you think (you should have showed one of those) how anyone can not love this game I don't understand...

Posted by BearSpark

One that I'll happily give a miss. $15 a month would equate to about £10. There are far, far better things to spend £10 a month on.

Posted by MrBubbles

roflmao ronald "murderjunkie" spears.

Posted by FreedomTown

@Sunjammer said:

Concretely, I think it's pretentious because it tries to appear smarter than it really is. As a game design it is ancient, and its best trick is to try and convince you it is a cerebral experience and sprinkle its world with gimmicks.

I don't like the name, I don't like the world they've made, I don't like the writing (though Ragnar is one of the best writers in the biz, the stuff here falls apart because the game it is in doesn't hold water), I definitely don't like the look. Maybe Jeff's character looks particularly ridiculous, but everything I've seen is a pretension towards realism, mired in some of the most bog standard MMO unrealism in town. It's just so fucking uninspired as a game, trying to coast on its one asset; a good writer.

It's a pure genre piece that wears the mask of something special, while its game design simply isn't. It's a school play that thinks it's Hollywood. It's Dean Koontz thinking he's Stephen King. It just doesn't deserve the praise it thinks it does.

You're a moron.

Oh, I guess I should probably go into specifics why. The word you keep using...I don't think you understand what it means. You also just spout off a bunch of opinion and incorrect analogies. Maybe if you gave actual specifics your opinions might hold some weight.

Hey, Dean Koontz and Stephen King are completely different writers, with completely different styles. Makes sense...

Posted by Ulong

I played the beta and I pretty much agree with Jeff's perception of the game. 
A lot of the stuff they tried to do is really cool, and it's good that this game was made, but it is not fun to play.

Posted by Sunjammer

I guess I feel there is a mismatch in ambition between game design and world building. It's like they made all these real world inspired locations and tied together all these "real world elements" and populated them with characters that are believably written, and then stuck them in a super gamey game that seems to have no interest in actually making good use of those elements.

I realize now the word "pretentious" gets a lot of panties in a bunch but it is not a complex black magic term that requires laser precision in its use. I know what it means and I apply it where I feel it belongs. You can apply the word subjectively; It's a matter of perception. To me a dumb game brandishing a Mensa card is pretentious, and of course you can disagree. But I reserve the right to use the words that I want :-P

Posted by Lightdud

@JamesJeux007: I think his point is, he doesn't think it's WORTH a monthly fee. Not in this day, at least.

Posted by PenguinDust

Either it's boring or watching Jeff play is boring, but I was pretty bored by this QL. I had very high hopes for this game because I love the subject matter and I like the idea of playing an RPG in a modern setting. I really have a hard time getting excited for long with the endless fantasy set RPGs. I love Skyrim and have been having some fun in Amalar, but I would still love to play some RPGs centered in a more familiar world.

Edited by DexterKid

The reason they limit the quests you can pick up, it's so you don't follow the same path through the zone as everyone else. The game is filled with quest triggers that will guide you around the zone and make sure you always have something to do and you don't have to memorise where the quest starters are.

Or at least that's the idea.

Posted by jleack

I didn't enjoy this game at all. When a game tries to be unique it better get the foundation right. The Secret World has a poor UI and boring combat that damage all of the great things the game does.

Edited by Crelio

I know it's an MMO, but man that fog is really visually distracting. May just be Jeff's setting?

Edit: well guess that's intentional

Edited by thebigJ_A

Yes, Maine is part of New England. It's where those of us from the civilized bits (Boston etc.) go when we want to see trees, lakes, and rednecks.

There's no Southern border, though, Brad, unless you call the ocean a border. The border's in the West. If it's East of New York state, it's NE. Though Connecticut is debatable.

Also, it's not really Stephen King horror, it's (supposed to be) Lovecraft. Some of Lovecraft's work was set in New England, that's where they're getting it. Any King stuff is coincidental.

Posted by lordofultima

I like this game quite a bit. Seems perfectly competent to me.

Posted by MyNiceIceLife

when this becomes f2p, i'll give it a try as i do like the concepts and setting this game has, but until then i'll pass cause no money means no risking trying a pay to play mmo.

Edited by Addfwyn

I really really enjoy this. The setting and quest design are top-notch. Admittedly, the combat is nothing to write home about, but that's about par for the course for the genre (outside of TERA).

Plus I'm just eager to play an MMO that isn't Fantasy Game 5320. Shame he seemed oblivious to the fact that London was the Templar hub for so long though.

EDIT: Crap, this QL made me want to play more TSW. Time to reboot

Posted by paulunga

Wow, the presentation on this game is great. Really love their UI work and font choices, the music seems very atmospheric. It's just... the combat still looks like MMO combat.

Edited by SatelliteOfLove

Brad's right about sub MMOs, but within reason. That's a lost art, though, sadly.

Posted by pipedreams

Two minutes in and this is still already better than Brad being in charge of the Tera QL. ;)

Posted by HerbieBug

why does MMO combat have to always be so shitty?

Posted by ShadowKnight508

Looks great so far (from what I can tell). Looking forward to playing this tomorrow when my Amazon order of it arrives.

Edited by Eddie_and_the_Fist_Monkeys

@mbr2: Probably Brad's time spent playing Alan Wake who is a character undoubtedly inspired by Stephen King. Stephen King was himself a fan of and inspired by Lovecraft, so naturally both would fit the bill really. I've been following the progress of the game for a while and I must admit it was the New England vibe that drew me in the most, that and a film that came out recently...

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