User Score
8.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1261 Ratings

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  1. Oct 1, 2012
    10
    Try 3 days for free at secretworld.com, don't just take my word that this is the most under-rated MMO by critics on Metacritic. Currently tied with GW2 as the #1 MMO on Metacritic by user reviews (8.3) with good reason (TSW is way better IMO). Ignore the min system specs, my laptop is below min requirements but the game runs fine on it (AMD E-350 1.6GHz Dual Core 64, AMD Radeon HD 6310M, Win 7 Home Premium, 6GB RAM), the free trial will let you see how it runs on your PC so you'll know for sure. This is the first MMO I've tried and liked better than WoW classic/BC. If you are sick of WoW clones and/or childish MMOs give this one a try:
    +2 has a free trial to see if I like the game before buying it
    +2 free form questing, do quests in any order, ignore any non-story quests you don't like without penalty
    +2 no classes, you can use any weapon and ability with the potential to learn all 525 abilities, you can weild 2 weapons at a time, and choose 7 active and 7 passive skills from either weapon from many options. Abilities and weapons you choose will spec you tank/healer/dps on the fly.
    +1 for quasi-leveless game play, you learn more abilities and strengthen them to progress, but there is no traditional character level
    +1 is a different world (present day horror theme) from a typical MMO for those bored with Elves, etc.
    +1 for bringing a FPS feel to an MMO (at least for me with the assault rifle equipped)
    +2 for memorable characters and very well voiced-acted cut-scenes for every quest you accept. -0.5 for your character being mute in them which is kind of weird.
    +1 for good story telling, quests start by finding items, your cell phone ringing, or you talking to an NPC and seeing a great cut-scene. Turn in quests by reporting them done on your cell phone.
    +1 for very few kill 10x quests, only found 2 in first 30 hours of game-play
    +1 for special sabotage quests where you need to avoid motion sensors, trip-wire and lasers, etc.
    +1 for special mission quests where you need to look for clues in the real world searching Google, Wikipedia, real online web sites for companies in the game, etc.
    -1 for making the special mission and sabotage quests so damn hard lol (btw find other MMOs too easy? these are for you)
    +1 rated M 17+ targeting adult audience, NPCs swear a lot (especially New Yorkers) and sexual themes are common.
    +1 for great selection of character face and clothes (better than my RL wardrobe lol!), so far I've accidentally created look-alikes for Jonathan Frakes, Kurt Cobain and my RL friend from Laos lol)
    +1 you can team up with your friends no matter which realm they are on (except for WvWvW)+1 for daily patches for bugs. I've seen way more bugs playing MOP for 5 hours than TSW for 30 hours (No bugs I have found in TSW were game-breaking.)
    +1 for content released once per month on average (give or take 2 weeks), much better than WoW, etc.
    +1 death works just like WoW, but no annoying rez sickness if you res at GY (+1) (and no annoying downed state lol)
    +1 global looking for group channels allow you to see groups forming while questing (no more running back and forth in SW bored while waiting for something exciting to happen lol)
    +1 GUI is customizable, move windows where you want, size your bags how you want (although how to do it is not obvious)
    +1 optionally use Facebook (instead of some walled custom method) to find if my friends play and if they are online.
    +1 cash shop has only cosmetic items (except for server transfers which cost real money)
    +1 for video tutorial to explain skill/ability system (which is very different than other MMOs)
    +1 new in launcher lets you know about latest bugs, content updates, scheduled maintenance, etc. (no more looking on Reddit to find out lol)
    -2 has monthly subscription (perfer hybrid or just paying for expansions myself)
    +0 play on normal, RP, French & English dimensions(realms)
    -1 no normal world PVP
    +1 no forced grind of daily quests, you can repeat once a day if you want, but no better rewards than doing new quests
    -1 for telling me to upgrade my computer everytime I log on although the game runs fine on it
    -0.5 for too many logo screens everytime I log on (press space to skip, but is annoying)
    +0 has no end-game yet (but plans to add it in the future). Personally, I'm burnt out on end game right now anyway.
    +1 for having the server tied to a character (ie: not your account like GW2)
    So 22/10 ha ha, if I could rate it 11/10 I would but 10/10 will have to do.
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  2. May 26, 2013
    7
    Quick Review: Probably the only mmorpg I have played after leaving WoW that does not feel like a game that copied or aspired to be something like WoW. It is just its own game.
    Pros: Excellent world, story, art and theme.
    Cons: Lame, though intuitive, combat system.
    Loses points for having a box price. Any mmo like this should be F2P, especially when there is a micro transaction store in-game.
  3. Aug 19, 2012
    9
    The Secret World is not a game for everyone. Its a thinking person's game. Personally I find the setting, the art work, the cut scenes and voice overs to be FANTASTIC. This is a game that will challenge you and will challenge most gamer's perspective - because it is not a simple game. It is not like the thousands of Ever Quest/Ultima Online spawn that has been on the market for over a decade. Its unique with some HUGE changes to the genre.

    If you like adventure games, brain teasers, really tough boss fights, a literate community - then TSW may be your game. If you like to sign on, have your hand held and given loot easily, you will find TSW an unappealing game.

    If you like The Longest Journey or Dreamfall, Ragnar Tornquist's games or Deus Ex or Deus Ex: Human Revolution, then you would like this game. If you like games by Blizzard or Arena Net (NC Soft) then this game may not be appealing.

    To me, this is the best MMORPG on the market and I am very happy with my Lifetime Subscription.
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  4. Mar 3, 2013
    6
    I played during the beta but decided to wait a bit before buying into the game. I purchased the game in early January so I now have 2 months plus the beta time under my belt and I'm still torn on how I feel about the game. I believe Funcom should be commended for trying to think outside of the MMORPG box in regards to their skills and abilities system. Far too many MMOs follow a simplistic model where the player makes one initial "spec" choice and everything in the future is confined to this choice. By removing the idea of numerical "levels", Funcom was able to dispense with this paradigm entirely, allowing players to earn an infinite amount of Ability and Skill Points that can be allocated in any skill. These skills are then used like a customizable card game, where the player determines which skills they prefer and must discover how various skills and passive abilities complement each other. The system can be overwhelming at first but once a new player gets the hang of it, it can be very rewarding. However, because it's still an MMO at heart, players have discovered which weapons or skills are the "best" and have already started sharing "cookie cutter" builds (called "decks") to min-max potential. The act of exploring different playstyles is negated by guilds (called "cabals") who want people to build certain decks for hard mode content and raids. Gameplay is traditional MMO fare: find a rotation and stick to it. Certain skills build points while other spend the points you build and this can be managed between both equipped weapons. In many MMOs, like Warcraft, the playerbase tends to look down on classes where you only click one or two buttons and call it a day but, thanks to the design of only allowing 7 abilities, TSW makes a 2-4 button "rotation" typical for everyone regardless of weapons chosen or deck design. Within only a few hours, the monotony of the combat system sets in. While players get beefier spells as they progress, the monotony of the design never changes. An elemental magic user, for example, might graduate from "Shock" to "Arc Flash" as a primary nuke but the rotation remains the same. Graphically the game is decent but not great. It suffers from many graphical glitches. DX11 integration is lacking and often causes performance drops even on high end systems. Character models are stiff, bland, and uninteresting while combat models and particle effects are merely passable. The world environments are amazing but suffer from texture pop in and shadow issues on both DX9 and DX11 modes. The story of The Secret World tries to pass off a dark, Lovecraftian, post-apocalyptic world full of warring secret societies but falls flat. The secret societies don't feel fleshed out enough to feel as though they're really mortal enemies, and the world doesn't feel as dark as it looks. The in game store is an unmitigated disaster, often having trouble dealing with transactions and bugging out while delivering items that are bought. In addition, the cost of these items are ridiculously high ($7 for a black trenchcoat for ONE character, for example) and is often the only way to get decent cosmetic items as the game's vendors have simple, bland, goods. All told, it can be an enjoyable game but it still retains many of the bugs that were present back in the beta, nickles and dimes players as bad as free-to-play MMOs, and doesn't do anything particularly groundbreaking. The ability and skill system is refreshing for a while but marred by the repetition of the combat and the blandness of the story and character interaction. At $29.99, it is worth playing for the casual player. For the hardcore MMO player, TSW leaves much to be desired. Expand
  5. Jul 7, 2012
    7
    Offers a different spin on the formula that does just enough to excite this mmo old hand into writing a review. The story is both terrific and terrible in pieces some quests and environments will have you on the edge of your seat to see what's next others will have you cringing (The secret world must be a secret to a hermet living in a cave with fingers in his ears singing loudly because everyone else in game is well aware of it's existence) The combat is the standard combo point affair we all associate with rogues. Where the game really shines is it's deck system which allows you to make your own class out of a dizzying selection of weapon classes. In short if you like the trinity game play of healer, tank, dps with dungeons, pvp and end game content you'll probably love this as it does enough different to hold your interest. If you were hoping for a re-invented wheel then I'd wait until someone combines swtor's story telling teras combat and guild wars. Until then this is an excellent way to spend your time. Expand
  6. Oct 16, 2013
    9
    The game hasn’t released without some bugs.

    I have seen some reviewers bash on the fact only three or four main areas have been described. However, this leaves plenty of room for expansion. Maine (traditional home of Cthuhlu mythos), Egypt, and Transylvania are detailed in multiple zones each. This leaves so many other places available.

    Another person has reviewed the game and said
    the 3-3-3 tiered system of melee, ranged, and magic looks limited. This, though, is another area of expansion potential. Martial arts and weapons, ranged weapons like submachine guns, and other arenas of magic can all be added down the line, expanding the game. Expand
  7. Jul 16, 2013
    7
    Ugh, this site has a 5000 character limit. So, to summarize: 1) The game never should have been an MMO. 2) The game's atmosphere is spot on. 3) The game's fully voice-acted NPCs help to make you care about the world and what you're doing; you are seldom just doing quests for the sake of quests, you're also doing it for the sake of the people who are around you. 4) Your "mission control" sends you emails and gives you phone calls periodically which help further reinforce the feel of the world, as well as giving you things to look forward to.
    5) The game has some wonderful dark humor in it.
    6) The investigation quests and smattering of other quests where you are solving mysteries are wonderfully immersive, require you to think outside of the box, actually require you to access real world information (and fake set-up websites), and are actually done in-character you have a smart phone and internet access in the game world, so it makes sense that you can actually look up websites to translate morse code and the like. They also require you to think about the information you have been given and make use of it, and very often require outside of the box thinking.
    7) The classless system works incredibly well. Because everyone can do literally anything, just not at the same time, you only ever have to make one character, and switch weapons between them to give them the powers you need to support your teammates or overcome challenges. The weapons are fairly diverse and interesting, though some of them (particularly the Assault Rifle for DPS) are rather centralizing, in that you're going to rely on them far more than others, while a few (Blood, namely) are underpowered and not particularly useful. However, even if you pick some bad skills, its alright you don't need to start over or rebuild your character, you can just pick up good skills, and eventually you get every skill in the game, so it doesn't really matter.
    8) Because characters only have 8 powers each, they matter more and it is easier to understand what everyone in your party is doing. Likewise, because you have access to every power in the game (eventually), you can actually know what all your allies are doing because you can do it too, and as such become familiar with everything.
    9) The game doesn't overstay its welcome. There isn't tons of pointless grinding anywhere in the game; when you are moving around in the world, you have some purpose beyond gathering xp.
    10) Some of the dungeon bosses have interesting mechanics to them which really reward teamwork and make for a fun experience.

    So what's wrong with this game?

    1) It never should have been a MMO. It really gains nothing from it. There are only a small number of things which require you to work in teams, there are a lot of things which require you to NOT work in teams (which is very bad for an MMO you're trying to play with your friends!), the mysteries are better solved on your own... really, the only team content which is really meaningful is the dungeons, and they feel a bit disconnected from the rest of the game, particularly the ones later in the game.
    2) PVP is a mess, not because it doesn't work, but because it isn't particularly interesting. It feels very pointless, which sticks out in a world where everything you do while going around the PvE areas is purposeful.
    3) It has no endgame. This would be a non-problem if it wasn't an MMO, but as an MMO, this is a fatal flaw. You complete every quest in the game and then you're essentially done with it. Sure, there are the elite and nightmare dungeons, which give you better equipment, whose only purpose is... to beat said dungeons more quickly and get even better equipment? While the dungeons are actually reasonably enjoyable to play through multiple times, the truth is that it is all utterly pointless, as there is no more "meat" to the game after you've beaten transylvania.
    4) Combat is not good. It is bog standard MMO combat. Some will complain about it being bad, but ultimately I don't think it is any worse than any other MMO combat I have played, and is actually better than many as unlike some other games, you can actually understand what is going on in combat at any given time. But as most MMOs have terrible combat, this isn't actually a good thing.
    5) Many of the boss monsters fail to really live up to their potential. Puzzle bosses and "stay off the bad" bosses are the only types of bosses that MMOs can have which are actually interesting, but many of the bosses are just "stun them at the right time" and sometimes, in the lower difficulties, not even that.

    All in all, the game should have focused on being a single player experience, and I think it would have been less disappointing to Funcom and worked out better in the end.
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  8. Jul 6, 2012
    3
    Ah, the secret world. How I longed for this game at its very first secret-ish reveal with the website that had the coded numbers, counting down until it's release, which turned out to be bogus thanks for that, Funcom. No. But the real sh!tsinker here is that they chose Electronics Arts as their publisher later on which was the biggest kick in the balls for me, knowing that one of the most acclaimed "creative" studios are to be mutilated completely by budget-cuts and "quality assurance" departments while having the release be full to the brink with glitches and short-cuts in the design at release and boy was I right. There is next to no facial expression or movement in the cutscenes in where they have glorified so much in the trailers, leaving any chance to an in-game atmosphere in the hands of the voice actors. Who in all fairness, does a good job in bringing out personality from the polyphonic excuses of characters and the grinding. Oh the grinding they promised us the game didn't have. You will be pressing one button five times and then another button. If anything, it is a cut-down version of wow's grinding, only including Rogues. Oh and "Active dodging"? Moving to avoid attacks? The only motion of avoiding damage is to slowly back away as an enemy stands still for 15 seconds, charging its AoE and letting you know how much is left by showing an obnoxious expanding circle beneath its feet, which bugs out completely if there is a change of elevation nearby. You could also be "Actively dodging" in any way, direction or timing but it will not reduce or remove ANY kind of damage, be it ranged, magic, melee or AoE and this is AFTER they "Reformed" it fit for release. Developers that are serious in having "Active dodging" should honestly go and try out Gunz: The Duel before smearing down the word "skill" but then again, Funcom is just like Electronic Arts, in which it comes to no surprise they have partner-shipped considering their combined illegal business practices and non-existing decent customer support. Yes. I initially asked for a refund after they've had the bright idea of strangling the already underpopulated pvp activity by mutilating the reward-system right before release and I got greeted with "Hi, yeah, we can't give your money back for your GAME ORDER because you've logged into the game". I gave the kind support staff a lesson in customer rights and ethics but he continuously repeated their EULA and ignored me, forcing me to contact the BBB. Five minutes later, I got my refund so a big warning to anyone out there, considering to purchase and/or glorify this game. Yes, It is unique. But at what price? Fanboys, greedy corporates and monthly fees with imbalances at every turn. P.S Big thanks to all the fanboys of the title that will be thumbing down my review, just like they've done with everyone else that rated this game negatively without reading what they've typed. It really just proves my point. :) Expand
  9. Sep 17, 2013
    9
    It's unlike any MMO I've played before. I personally find the combat far superior to GW2 and like the graphic style and locations. It also plays at a nice pace (much more relaxed than most MMO's). I missions (quests) have thought involved and don't rely on the constant 'Hello I need 15 apples from the forest' crap. This alone makes this game stand out. I wanted to grab it at release but with so many other games at the time, I neglected it. With the now buy and play deal (aka no more monthly fees) it seemed like the perfect time to test drive the game. People's views on games varies hugely and TSW is no exception here. I hear that the initial release had many mission breaking bugs and assume that's why the critic reviews score it so low. So far, I'm yet to find any of these and think that if it was re-reviewed in it's current state the critical score would be much higher. I for one will champion TSW as it deserves the praise. I just joined the Firefall beta and was extremely unimpressed with it. People need to look at new ways to entertain the public. TSW does this. Buy and enjoy. Expand
  10. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    This game has had an amazing launch. Gameplay has been very smooth, and most of the bugs have been ironed out. I've played a lot of mmo's, and for me, what sets The Secret World apart is the skill system and the ability wheel. Best. Thing. Ever. One character. Do just about anything. Progression has never been this much fun. A score of 10 is a bit premature (I have no idea what the end game is going to be like), but I just wanted to recognize how much fun I'm having right now. Expand
  11. Oct 3, 2012
    5
    Seriously disappointed in this game. After just a few hours it's still a confusing mess to figure out. The interface is the most unintuitive in existence. The starting zone is the hardest of any MMO. The quest system is clunky and confusing. The game looks quite good, the story is excellent as well. But navigating through the interface and quests logs is more challenging than doing a 25 man raid in your underwear. The learning curve is steep and I'd rather like to be able to learn how to play the game while playing the game instead of having to spend a couple of hours trying to figure the interface. Expand
  12. Mar 8, 2014
    1
    I would like to credit the developers for trying to make a new kind of MMORPG, where levels and classes don't matter. It's a great way to TRY and make a fresh new MMORPG. Yet it fails miserably, not only on the before mentioned. However, even though there are no levels nor classes, there is. You do gain levels and classes are bound by weapons. Each weapon represents a specific class and levels are aquired to gain new skills and wear new armor. So, there are levels and there are classes. If you don't got enough levels or good enough gear, you can't move on. Just like in a regular MMORPG.

    I would like to state that I did enjoy the atmosphere and the graphics, they are some of the best I've seen in a MMORPG. Yet, it's not optimized well enough. My fairly high-end system featuring a GTX 670 and an i5-3570k are struggling too keep up at high/highest settings. At times dipping well under 30 FPS.

    Also, some of the quests were exciting enough to keep me interested for a few hours, yet the quality of the quests drop really fast. They become your typical grind and pick quests way too fast.
    Combat is bland though and your hotbar is way too small in my opinion. Only featuring 5 passives and 5 actives.

    It's clear to me why the game went from monthly fee to 'buy once, play forever'. It's not worth the money that you spend, so stear clear and save yourself some money.
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  13. Jaz
    Feb 23, 2013
    7
    TSW is different than most MMOs thats a fact. Some things are good, some not though. The settings, environment, sound are great, especially at first areas. But Look of characters and animations arent good. Combat is nothing special. Quests can be good or very frustrating. End game below average. PvP is bad. Zones are few and small compared to other MMOs. Overal its saving grace are the 3 first areas, they are amazing and you forget the negative parts. But then the magic slowly fades. Still i d play it just for those beginning areas. Expand
  14. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    Ok, i can take funcom off my hate list. this game is simply stunning. I cannot explain how fun it is to have an MMO set in modern times. Kingsmouth is the single best MMO zone i have every experienced. How funcom pulled this one out of the hat i have no idea. Better voiceover quests that that starwars game, the best writing in any MMO by far. Interesting quests, no more collect x of y and bring to z. HIGHLY recommend this game. This is how all MMO's should be from now on. Expand
  15. Jul 16, 2012
    3
    Okay people check this game out thorughly BEFORE you buy it. Watch videos on youtube about gameplay and character creation. I took a bit of a risk buying this game, it did not pay off.
    First issue for me is the CC. I think modern day mmos should have excellent chartacter creators, the one in SW is poor. The hairstyles for females are a joke, plenty of mohawks, short boy cuts and some very
    messy looking bobs and mid length hair styles (about 3) NO LONG HAIR AT ALL. That stinks. The hair colours are weird and dont match the palette, the make-up otions are awful, two badly done ordinary blush and lip colour selections the rest of the make-up choices are horrendous tattoos and clown faces. The slider selections are limited to face selection, jaw, eye shape (not size) lip shape and nose shape. No sizing for body or face at all. ALL BODIES ARE EXACTLY SAME SIZE AND SHAPE. You get to choose some start off clothes, big thrill (NOT) Only accessory choices are glasses, no hats or any other type of accessory.
    I found the graphics appallingly clunky and chunky, it looks and feels like a game made ten years ago, no details, the clothes are the same, badly drawn and low quality textures. My husband tweaked graphics as much as he could but game is still very poor to look at.
    First taste of fighting was some ridiculous dream sequence, awful fighting mechanics, my character felt heavy and difficult to manage. So far I am nearly hating this game. It feels like a chore and I feel very badly about the money I wasted on it. Am trying to play some more to see if there are any good points. Will come back and add more if I find any.
    PLEASE PLEASE dont believe all the hype you read here, check this game out VERY carefully before you buy.
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  16. Aug 12, 2012
    9
    It's a fun game. Perhaps not suited for people that are used to grinding through an MMO but if you treat it like a game its really good. The plot and setting are refreshing and the skill tree is ok (a bit confusing )

    Try to avoid using walkthroughs or google. It will really suck the fun out of the very fun puzzles. Me and my wife really enjoy solving them together.
  17. BMF
    Jul 3, 2012
    10
    Damn this game has blown me away it was the smoothest MMO launch I have ever seen. The secret world is a beautiful DX11 masterpiece with no lag whatsoever and stunning locations filled with people and monsters to interact with and what I have seen of the crafting system looks deep and interesting. If you are looking for a new MMO to play and have been disappointed with recent releases you owe it to yourself you buy this game!

    PS: I like how the only negative reviews are people who **** up using the slider and still say good things about the game.
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  18. X0R
    Aug 1, 2012
    9
    This is actually a really funMMO. Reminds me of many different games, and yet is totally original. Has some complex elements, definitely not a boring POS like WoW, SWTOR or other MMOs that have released in the last couple years. I won't go into details, since there's a lot of stuff out there you can research yourself before trying it, TSW website being a good start. It has minor issues that I expect a new MMO launch to have, but none ever frustrate me or make me want to quit - I need to take a week off from work to soak it up. Expand
  19. Dec 17, 2012
    10
    A really great alternative to the current blockbuster MMO's. Its a great mechanics and an awesome story.. well worth the new price point - and now subscription free which gives this 'new' TSW a perfect 10.
  20. Jul 14, 2012
    7
    Not quite the best MMO so far. However, this game has an amazing foundation and depth. Funcom really redeemed themselves with this game. The quests are actually well fleshed out for the most part; however, combat needs to be polished a bit more. Though the game had a good launch, it really did not have that much stress put on their servers due to population. TSW is a game that is going to start out small, but grow continuously throughout it's life span. If funcom keeps the game up to date, you're going to be hearing ALOT more about TSW than you have in the past. Expand
  21. Jun 27, 2013
    7
    I wanted to give this game a higher (interim) score, but it is SO BUGGY that it continually frustrates me. Maybe Im not playing it right, or I dont have the right character setup, but either way, (for example) some of the quests are so glitchy that you have to completely drop and restart them in order to "reset" the states of the game. Respawn rates for some monsters mean that you can get stuck in a spot continually fighting the same friggin monsters you only just killed before hacking away at the current one. The interface is so buggy, you have to follow the same approach something not working? Start from scratch.... Even selecting an item in the world can be a PITA. Quitting the game is also a pain... the ESC key works, but you have to press it once for each invisible window or whatever has popped up and seems to need closing before the game will bring up the menu.

    And these are only the bigger bugs I have pointed out. Funcom and EA obviously decided that making money from item sales was more important than making a game that actually works properly.

    Im only part way though the game so I will re-do this review as I go, if I dont get so frustrated I decide its not even worth finishing...

    Graphics: 7/10
    Sound: 8/10
    Interface 5/10
    Gameplay: 6/10
    Repetitiveness: 6/10 (lower is better)
    Bugs: 6/10 (lower is better)
    Value for Money: 7/10
    Urge to Keep Playing: 5/10
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  22. Mar 11, 2014
    8
    The first time I saw this game advertised I thought it could be amazing. But then I heard about the subscription and decided I should stick with WoW, as I already knew what to expect. Then they moved to a pay once model with cosmetic microtransactions, and one of my friends sent me the game as a gift on steam.

    When I first played the game, I wanted to apologize to the developers for not
    giving the game a chance and playing when they had the subscriptions. It was that good. I was convinced that this was the best MMO I had ever played, it was like nothing I had ever played before, with a style that I absolutely loved. I was almost certain that this game would end up taking up more time than WoW ever did for me. But I was wrong.

    There's not much wrong with the game at first, in fact there are so many things right it's almost shocking. Playing through the missions for your first time is a euphoric experience. There are some minor bugs I remember coming across, but nothing that broke the game. So why didn't this end up being the end all be all MMO for me?

    It's all because of the endgame. When you start the game you're presented with a glorious wheel of abilities that you can choose from. Ultimately you can reach a level so high that you will have learned every skill for every weapon in the game, everyone can. The thing about this game is levelling up and doing missions is more fun than the endgame by far. The anticipation of getting another skill to try out in your set, of getting the outfits associated with certain builds, adds a lot to the levelling experience.

    The thing is, I spent nearly 400 hours on this game. A bargain considering it costs 30$. But what I found out was that you are pidgeonholed in your abilities at the end of the game depending on what you want to do. Once you reach the level of gear required to do nightmare mode dungeons, you'll realize that if you're not a ranged dps, you're probably gonna have a **** time trying to find a group. When I first started the game I was excited for the endgame because I figured I could use almost any of the weapons any way I wanted. But the fact is, a melee dps just isn't as viable as a ranged. Even though fist weapon abilities can either be offensive or used for healing, it doesn't mean you can make a dps build for dungeons using claws as your primary weapon. There's no benefit to taking a melee dps over ranged. In a nightmare dungeon you are more likely to be killed being melee, you are also less likely to do as much damage because you're constantly running away from AOE. While ranged people can attack at range, obviously.

    It's not that you can't do a dungeon as a melee dps, I found a few groups willing to put up with me and we successfully did the dungeon. But it's a headache, half the groups won't pick me up and to the ones that do I'm basically completely optional because almost anyone could do my job better, no matter how good I was at staying alive during boss fights, you just don't get the time to dps that ranged characters do. If we ended up having trouble with a boss fight, I was almost always the first one to be kicked, and justifiably so.

    So with that huge rant, this game still deserves an 8/10. 400 hours, 30 dollars, nearly 2 months of playing this game religiously, I didn't even finish every single mission. But I finished the main story mission, and when I did I realized the endgame had nothing that I wanted.

    Worth every penny that my friend spent. The PVP is ok.
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  23. Mar 27, 2013
    9
    I loved this game.. almost all the other MMO's are super boring to me and I literally was about to give up on them all togeather until this game came out. You always have something to work toward in this game with the unique skill system. I love being able to work on a tank set, then go for a melee dps set, or healer and can switch between them whenever I want. The story is awesome and I love the Templar faction. Only real complaint is some of the bugs and the PVP.. I can literally toss some tank gear with some dps and troll people with AOE skills. Other than that, some of the battles for the factories in pvp are legendary. I highly recommend the game. Expand
  24. Jul 12, 2012
    6
    The game has great graphics, story and dialogue is superb, and the open way of doing things is great. SO when you start the game it feels great. But it quickly loses its shine as you realize there is absolutley nothing unique about the game. You have seen all the creatures before, they are from fables when you were a kid. So really the game isn't bad, the quests can range from extremely boring, to very in depth and fun. Overall the game is extremely well put together with few flaws but that just doesn't save it to the fact the game is like a repeat of past mmo's. So i rate it a 6, great game and mechanics, poor originality. OH and that little thing they advertise about "no levels" is such a lie, you do have levels, you progress through the perk tree which makes you insanely stronger to people with lower perk points...so yeah there is leveling they just dont name it that Expand
  25. Jan 10, 2013
    10
    Great constantly growing singeplayer+MMO.
    Just try it if you have somewhat powerful PC. It definitely worth more than its price (B2P now) just for singleplayer content. So just try.
  26. Dec 3, 2012
    8
    The dialogue and story are where this game really shines. I can't say enough about how much I enjoyed the humor in this game.

    The downside is solo play. Even more than most MMOs, this game (like all Funcom games) is really designed for very social gamers. If you prefer to solo TSW can be incredibly grindy and frustrating.
  27. Jul 3, 2012
    9
    Consider it the irony of all ironies. On its surface, there's nothing special about The Secret World. Classic MMO with a change of setting. But the deeper you go, the deeper it feels. The character (ability) customization is second to none. The varied playstyle between the multiple "decks" (classes) is very wide. And Investigation and Sabatoge quests bring incredibly unique elements to the MMO genre. The problem is this: If you don't give TSW a long enough chance to really sink your teeth into it, it's very easy to just pass over and I don't feel like Funcom really gives you a good enough idea of what the game is about until a few hours in. Granted, this isn't FFXIII where you need 40 hours of patience. Just a couple. Try out a few of the investigation (Green) quests and the Sabatoge (Yellow) quest in the starting zone. Look across all the decks of all the classes. You will see just how deep the rabbit hole goes. I didn't plan on playing this game past GW2- but I might end up playing both. I am very pleased with how TSW is turning out. Expand
  28. Oct 3, 2012
    7
    This is a weird game...but it is enjoyable. It really doesn't hold your hand or explain very much. Fortunately, if you have a question there is a huge community that probably already has the answer that can be quickly accessed in the ingame web browser. The graphics are above par for an MMO. A ton of care has been taken into the story telling for each individual quest. The game is awash in missions to complete, and you can even go back and DO THEM AGAIN after they cooldown. The frequency of updates for little tweaks is nice as well, and let's you know the developer is listening to the community. And the atmosphere...absolutely awesome. That being said, I've been playing this game for about a week...and the leveling/skilling, vendor situation is still incomprehensible to me. While the missions are fun, it's just not very clear what the strategy is for acquiring skills. It's not even clear what the skills really do until you purchase them and try them out. Even the XP system is fairly vague. After a lot of grinding to get to upper level AR skills, which had it's own issues telling me I needed the incorrect things to unlock, resulted in me spilling 9 AP (that's alot at an early level) in my first AWESOME upper level skill...to obtain something that is actually worse than a similar skill I gained right off the bat. I'm guessing it has some sort of stacking ability that can be really awesome if someone else has some other skill and buffs me...but how do I know what that skill is? How do I find someone that intentionally went for this buff or even knows that this buff will make an AR guy like me a beast and be looking for me? This is where the game really falls down. The difficulty rises pretty quickly and your skill choices become more and more costly...even though half of them seem like traps that are garbage skills. If not, the game never explained the usage. The interface is at times really cool, and others really clunky. This game is so good and so bad at the same time. I would still give it a 7. Even when I get frustrated with it, I come back to it a little later. They need to clear up the vendor system. Work a little bit harder at explaining the mechanics. Expand
  29. Jul 8, 2012
    2
    I went into the Secret World wanting to like the game. Since the game was announced a few years ago, I have followed it's development, curious to see where the game would be taken. After playing it for the first time during the game's beta, I was excited to see what the game had to offer. I was not impressed. The story was interesting, but the game itself just doesn't hold up to a modern standard. The game's story is somewhat interesting, but the combat mechanics did not hold my attention enough for me to get very far in the beta. At it's release just a few days ago, I tried again. I really did want to like the game, and I was able to excuse some of the previous flaws I had seen based on the fact that I had been playing a beta. But the same weak combat just could not hold my attention. The game was very ambitious, but when it comes down to it, The Secret World doesn't have enough to offer in today's MMO saturated market. Collapse
  30. Jul 11, 2013
    8
    Very cool game could've been done better. I like the sound and gameplay mechanics even thought a bit out dated. Loved the class system seemed balanced and very deep. Equipment could have had more added to it i think. Otherwise very cool story and lore. give it an 8.
  31. Jul 9, 2012
    10
    I've been playing MMOs for over a decade now, and not since the original iteration of SWG has a game stunned me the way Secret World has. This MMO sets itself apart from a field of rather lackluster and dated games in every way. The combat is fantastic, coupled with a skill-based leveling system that lets you create a truly unique build. The world that Funcom has created for this game is mind-blowing, and the attention to detail is nothing short of incredible. Having experienced the dreadful AoC launch, I was incredibly wary that this game would suffer a similar fate, but to my surprise it has had the smoothest launch of any MMO I've ever played. I would highly recommend this game to anyone looking to break away from the typical WoW-like MMOs, you won't be disappointed. Expand
  32. Jul 4, 2012
    0
    Overhyped, and oversold. Funcom has a history of creating mediocre games, and ultimately, as an MMO, that is what The Secret World is.

    As a single player game, TSW would shine like a beacon. The decision to make it a massively multiplayer game--and one that runs off of both subscriptions and a cash shop--should strike any player as a profit-dominated choice, not a design choice. Every
    MMO aspect in this game only worsens it. So let's get down to what "it" is:

    Like Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines, TSW introduces you to a "secret world", and provides a compelling setting and story in which gameplay mechanics come secondary. When it comes to the setting and story, TSW does swell. Not as well as the fanboys may want you to think, but still very nicely. The trouble comes when MMO mechanics and realities are tossed in the mix. Do you like a little "Kill 5 zombies? Great, now kill 5 zombies!"? No? That's right, nobody does. And for all it sells itself as a puzzle game, the puzzles in TSW are far and few between. At their best, the puzzles require a quick Google search (provided in-game) and a click on the very first hit. At their worst, they're completely obvious (cue bad poetry in which each of the puzzle pieces is mentioned explicitly in order: "First, the Skull..."). And then you have "kill 5 zombies" quests disguised as puzzles. Absolutely unfun, and there's a lot of this sort of fluff designed to keep you around long enough to pay $15 a month.

    Trouble is, TSW just doesn't have the content to keep anyone sticking around for a few months. Nobody finds the combat fun, and after the story is consumed, what else is left? A weakly designed crafting system? Repeating WoW-esque quests? Spending in the cash shop?

    Spend your money elsewhere. This game will go F2P fast, and Funcom is just charging you for being impatient. There are plenty of other MMORPGs coming out (most notably Guild Wars 2) which don't charge you for the privilege of wasting your time, and have something beyond a good story and setting to offer you in the long run.
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  33. Sep 30, 2012
    10
    Great MMO, awesome new fresh take to the mmo genre! It has story, adventure, solving mysteries an quests!~ Nothing is just handed to you on a platter you gotta WORK for it like a mmo should be. Missions where you must think not some guide that just tells you how to do it all.
  34. Mar 7, 2013
    8
    The style of character development takes some getting used to and some of the solo missions are a complete pain in the butt; however, it it turns out to be a very enjoyable game with great atmosphere and store lines.

    I wish there was a better mechanism for finding groups, it feels very lonely for being a MMORPG. But if you manage to come with a friend or two of your own it is a lot of
    fun except those solo missions. Expand
  35. Jul 7, 2012
    2
    Far too much focus has been placed on the storytelling aspect of this game, which is, after all is said & done, a standard combat MMO. Once the story has been experienced once, it's no longer important, no? So why all the focus on this in a subscription based game we're supposed to play for years? The biggest problem as a result of this mis-focus is unsatisfying combat. Since the player will spend the majority of his time fighting in a game like this, it's crucial that combat be well thought through. Instead, it appears that no thought whatsoever has been given to this front & centre aspect. As a result, a child could predict that this game will fail. I've given a very low score due to the fact that I know the developers have been aware of the combat issue for a very long time now, but opted for the usual bone-idle denial rather than making corrections that could have easily made the game a success. Such roaring stupidity does not deserve mercy. Expand
  36. Jan 2, 2013
    8
    Its a strange game but very interesting.I don't know what to make of it yet but it's definitely got something.Great settings and exploration so far.Combat is a bit odd though.
  37. Jun 19, 2014
    9
    X-files on crack, modernized and made into an MMORPG. Similar humor. Urban fantasy would be the most apt genre description here.

    Puzzle quests. Like RE puzzles? These go well beyond those in difficulty. Look stuff up on fake web pages designed around the game. Riddles. Codes. Biblical clues. Ciphers. Some are tedious, yes, but once you get the gist you can cheat if you like
    rather than plugging away at the mechanics of the cipher you already figured out. Solve the puzzle, leave the tedious mechanics to someone else, or not, as you like.

    I honestly don't know why reviews weren't better. I think the monthly fee sticker shock may have turned people off. Or the near simultaneous release of GW2 influenced reviewers in a bad way, the big company does have a lot of money to throw around. If you're going to charge, at least bring it down to the Netflix going rate of $8, not $15. Now on a proper buy the game once then play for free, with an opt in to pay what, $10? for each new content installment. Cash shop is mostly clothes over Pay To Win.

    I hate MMORPG questing. It feels like running through a hamster wheel and is boring. Dungeons are where it's at, EXCEPT with this game. The questing here is unique and enjoyable. Bonus, call in your turn-in on a cellphone instead of hiking back to the questgiver. There are solo dungeons interspersed through the storylines, most being difficult, forcing you to figure out how to develop your toon to win in each scenario. This, I think, properly prepares players for endgame dungeons, a much needed aspect in any MMO.

    Lacks in-game voice system. This game was released in 2012, surely the tech is there for such things when a 2006 game like DDO can have a perfectly clear and nicely done in game voice available on auto upon joining any group. Fail.

    Requires passage through a "gatekeeper" scenario. First you have to complete all the starting endgame dungeons, then you have to solo this guy, not easy. Once you "pass" you can then play endgame. Again, much needed to rout out the whiny gimme cuz I want to ask for it instead of earn it crowd infesting MMOs these days.

    Alts not required. Seriously. I think people start one each faction just to check out the storyline diffs, but you only need one. You can learn and have everything on one toon. Much needed death to altism.

    Want more inventory? Just buy it with ingame currency. No lie. Bank or backpack, have at it.

    Want more ingame currency? Quest. You get it in copious amounts, quite easily.

    Want to play with your buddy who rolled up another faction on another server? Do it. Even guild with him if you like. Servers and factions don't offer any real barriers to gameplay at all, except in PvP.

    It's lack of better ratings is mind-boggling.
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  38. Sep 20, 2012
    8
    The game advertises that players can choose to build their character any way they choose. That's all well and great, but the game still follows the standard tank/dps/healer model of gameplay. So obviously some character builds will be superior than others to fill these roles. And of course there will be elitist players ingame who insist that if you're not following the standard cookie cutter build, you're not really serious about group content. Still, I find the game to be enjoyable. The atmosphere is absolutely wonderful. I love the horror theme of the game, something that's new in the MMO genre. I'm having fun and I continue to log in to play which says a lot more for this game than most other MMOs on the market. I think you'll enjoy it too. Expand
  39. Jul 9, 2012
    8
    I purchased this game without knowing much about it. And now i must say : i am a happy customer. The Secret world takes questing to a whole new level by introducing investigation for the first time in a MMo. Forget the typical kill 5 wolves quest. This game will not take you by the hand as it forces you to think. It's a clever game and other developers should learn from this quest system. The ability system is also well though and allows you to customise your play-style to create a unique character. Dungeons look nice and also offer a good challenge with proper rewards. My only complains are the poor character animations and PvP. PvP at this point is not the backbone of this game as it offers nothing new to the table, and is rather unstable at the moment. If you are looking for an MMo to do quests and dungeons, the secret world is the game you're looking for. If PvP is the only thing you are after, don't bother, GW2 is just around the corner and they are other games such as EvE online that offer a much better PvP experience than TSW. Expand
  40. Feb 12, 2013
    3
    This is not a good game by any stretches of the imagination. It has appeal, but it's very limited and very niche. Your average MMO player I don't think will see much in this game at all or get much out of this game. I personally find everything about the game annoying, from the bad combat to the abysmal voice acting. Playing recently again, the first time since beta, it felt like self-flagellation I have to be honest. I enjoyed nothing about the game. To be honest I think there has been somewhat of a campaign on here to bump up the user score after Funcom blamed this site for it's initial poor sales. In general some people may like this game, but it's not a gamers game its a below average third rate MMO. Expand
  41. May 2, 2013
    6
    This is a great game that many would find fun, but it wasn't for me. It looks good, and lets you freely mix and match skills. Unfortunately, aside from the occasional puzzle to shake things up, it pretty much plays like every other MMO. 1, 2, 3, 4, mob dead, next mob. For contrast, something like DDO (DDO.com) lets me, as a mage, use spells that will clear an entire room at once, with one spell. They give me the flexibility to have truly powerful and unique abilities something TSW simply doesn't provide, as far as I've seen. The story is interesting, the class system is interesting, but ultimately the game plays pretty much the same as every other MMO. Sad, really, considering the high hopes I had for the game after my first few hours of play. Expand
  42. May 29, 2013
    10
    It's easy to jump into a MMO, form an impression love it or hate it and state your opinion. I was so very tempted to do that. I had waited for this game for years, I was primed to love it, and as I started playing I found a lot to like. Great visuals, dynamic combat, gripping stories, creepy mood, beautiful ambient sound and sweeping score, fun well designed instances, insanely dificult investigation missions... But will it last... will I want to wait for the proposed 7 years of story updates by the time I have 'finished' the launch content?

    Ok, so here I am a year later. I have finished the story campaign, and all of the side missions and caught up with the 'monthly' Issues that move the story forward and... YES! I still want more.

    I don't love the PvP, but that has never been my thing. I hear it has gotten better since launch and they have some interesting open world PvP in the pipe. I haven't advanced to the end of the instance nightmare instance lair raid progression... but working on that has been fun.

    Sure at this point I plan on scaling my playing back a bit as I wait for new Issues to come out. I'll log on to run instances with my friends or catch a player run show at the Albion or attend guild RP events... and that is great. If I had to play at full bore for 7 years... that would be too much. But given that the game is free to play now it's perfect for my pattern of play!

    This game would be worth many times it's purchase price even if you just play the story line mission and then never log on again... give it a try and my bet is that you will still be playing at the end of the 7 year story arc.
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  43. Jul 13, 2012
    9
    The Game is the same as Star Wars: The old Republic. You play it for the Story, and wenn you finished you have nothing to too ... Funcom must update the Game fast to hold the Player
  44. op8
    Jul 6, 2012
    6
    Ive been playing TSW for over 20 hours now and i can safely say i will not be subbing at the end of the month. It just isnt worth it for a mediocre game when there is better on its way. Combat just feels too cheap and clunky and some of the design decisions (like having to cancel quests and then later backtrack) have left a bad taste. The whole look of the game is dated and the animations just look unpolished. It deserves a 6/10 score because it does have an intriguing setting with interesting npc's and some good (for an mmo) quests. The guys that have been giving the game perfect 10 scores and then going on to explain the faults of the game must be delusional fanboys and must be ignored if you dont want to end up wasting your money on somthing that will dissapoint. At the end of the day are you willing to spend £40 + subscription on a 6/10 game? Expand
  45. Mar 17, 2013
    10
    Very under rated game. It's one of those games you can put endless amount of hours into it. There is so much to do and explore. Quests are fun and they don't feel repetitive. Developer is active and always adding new free content. I would have never tried this game if there was a monthly subscription and I'm glad. My only complaint is some of the riddles are too difficult but you can always cheat. Highly recommend it for anyone looking for a new game to get into, riddle fans or RPG fans. Expand
  46. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    This is the MMORPG we were waiting for. Smooth release. Fantastic world. So fun to play. You can play what ever you want. Tons of spells and weapons to test your builds. Just perfect MMORPG.

    And the story and Voice over are just amazing. You need to experience this game yourselfs.
  47. Jul 28, 2012
    7
    Starts out great, nice world, investigation missions are really interesting, not your, 13 a dozen typical MMO-quests, kill this, fetch that boring kinda stuff. After a while though, it becomes more and more same ole same ole. The skill wheel offers a lot of flexibility, but overall longevity is real concern with a P2P model. Still really good game for at least a while. It will see strong competition next month from a certain Buy To Play game that is, fortunately for TSW, situated in a Fantasy setting.
    So many 10 's are being given by new accounts. The User Rating is probably a bit too high to be close to what it really is, but whatever.
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  48. Jan 12, 2013
    9
    Featuring original content, a rarely seen modern theme and a gaming experience that is both engaging and thought invoking, The Secret World really does bring a lot to the table. This game will push you more than most western MMOs. Messing up a puzzle could mean the difference between life and death and combat even against trash mobs is intense to the point that it really makes it clear that it's a MMO meant to be just that, playing with other players. Not only do I highly recommend this 20 dollar AAA title, I give the game a full 10/10 for its bold decision to not be another clone of a generic grinder. Once again Funcom has created a great MMO experience unlike any other for the time.

    Also, I wanted to note that some 'professional' reviews have been ridiculously PMS over the game while they reviewed it in a limited closed beta test phase with nearly no content. No really, read the review from G4 and it's clear that the reviewer decided that limited closed betas are good enough as full releases and the game does not deserve a proper review... Real professional indeed.
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  49. Jul 8, 2012
    5
    Ok time for review number 2. After playing a bit longer:
    Quests and atmoshpere are nice, but the engine is so unoptimised its hard to enjoy FPS choppiness in this game's multiplayer aspects... PvP is a lagfest beyond timing controll. The particles seems to give my GPU a heart attack there. Maybe its due to 1920x1200 resolution with v-sync on, but hey... why should it not be playable on
    gaming rigs? Plenty of players uses monitors bigger than 720p native nowadays so it should be optimised for them aswell. Son in sum...
    With computer like mine:

    - 1920x1200 res with v-sync ON (to get rid of tearing)
    - gtx 480 video card (better than gtx 570 bear in mind)
    - i5 2500K 3,3Ghz overclocked to higher rates by motherboard when its stressed
    - 8 gigs of fast ram

    you will be able to play smoothly only while questing, only with advanced visuals options set to "1" (right next to "0" out of "5"), and light details totally turned off (so no shadows). Seems game is really made for 720p small resolutions and non-demanding players who are satisfied with mediocre FPS and only some pve in a game.
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  50. Aug 15, 2012
    3
    A lovely concept pretty much spoiled by terrible planning and execution. I gave this game a while, I really did, from beta testing to release and a month after. It's a slap in the face to all of us how many bugs we've reported that have taken so long to fix, how long they've left known issues unannounced, and how little attention they've given the support of supposedly supported graphics cards. Inconsistant design elements, such as a single quest sometimes counting goals for the group and others demanding each individual carry them out, are constant immersion-breakers. The beta of this game was actually quite a lot better than the release version, sadly. The simple beauty of the basic world design is spoiled by so many filters, you'd think they were made of pure cowbell. Turn one way or another in the game world and things could turn green, or blue, or black and white, or distorted. Everything, it seems, can be improved with MOAR FILTERS!!! Hokey fight sounds, grunts and screams, are cringe-worthy in the somber Lovecraftian setting. They also fly in the face of a choice not to voice the main character, supposedly to let the user define their reactions. Finicky, frustrating movement puzzles are made tedious by bugs and terrain design problems, and a mistaken idea that people enjoy attempting the same jumps over and over because a minute reflex deficit or an FPS drop-- far too common in this game-- sent them back to the beginning. Just to make sure it isn't something that might become relaxed and fun, there are timers, yay! Tedium and tension seem to be the goal. The worst choice, however, was the one to make so many puzzles environmentally dependant while failing to properly gate simultaneous action. Many proximity triggers-- which are annoyingly routine in the game-- will fail if two people walk up to them simultaneously, which in an MMO, happens a LOT. No matter how many times we point that out, they don't change. This kind of group-busting activity happens too often in the game, sometimes even splitting groups off into solo instances mid-quest. It's very frustrating for people who use MMOs to spend extra time with friends.

    I want this game to succeed, but I want it to be fixed first. I think adding new content without fixing the problems is a slap in the face to everybody who supports this game and endures the problems. They need to get their act together before I can give them a good score.

    3 points for good writing and some good characters-- when you can actually see the animations smoothly, when their faces move properly, and they aren't bugged by being rendered live rather than being rendered beforehand as proper cutscenes. Very sad that the anatomy and general appearance of the so-called 'cinematic' cutscenes is so grossly off the mark, considering their extensive use of motion capture. All in all, give it a miss until they clean up their act.
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  51. Dec 13, 2012
    10
    Everything you would expect from an MMO in this genre, which is saying A LOT because I'm not aware of another MMO that uses the supernatural/X-files/Grimm genre, dark humor included. The UI is ridiculously well designed and intuitive. The Graphics are top notch, while Funcom's Game Engine is the most advanced, and has been for a long time. The questing system flows so that you are rarely without something to do, either solo or with friends or pick-up group. dungeons are boss only, no trash mobs, or very little. Crafting is intuitive. landscape is incredibly well done, and attention to environment detail is ridiculous. PVP is great for all levels, and you can theoretically do all your leveling and buy all your gear from pvp'ing. Armor is replaced with Talismans, that are fully customizable and upgradable repeatedly, where a new upgrade just pushes out the old one. players are rewarded for being versatile and experimenting with their setup, and punished for being lazy and trying to be a one-trick-pony. you can save dozens of different setups and switch to them on the fly. Weapons can be skinned, modified, upgraded or even built from scratch and then broken down again when you are done with it. playfields are huge in scope, while the compass system and maps are well done and easy to follow. teaming is easy. dimensions are broken into shards, where anyone from any server can team up with anyone from another server, great if you want to farm an area and its already full. transportation in tsw is fast and convenient. there is little penalty for dying, except that you can either run back and find corpse or Resurrect elsewhere at a well of your choice, or when in a dungeon fighting boss. if you die fighting a boss in a dungeon, you are locked to an anima well, but you can click the camera option and get a birds eye view of the fight from any teammate still in the fight, which helps to learn the tactics if you die and are new to that boss. ----- In conclusion; this is the best MMO in history for those that love the genre, and just hate grinding. you will meet some of the most fleshed out characters in this MMO, characters that remind you of real people. All voice acted. You will constantly be rewarded everywhere you go, and experimenting with weird and uncanny builds will only serve to benefit you in the long run. If you haven't bought this game yet, do it. just be warned: you will not be able to stop playing. Expand
  52. Nov 8, 2013
    6
    Pros: -Gorgeous graphics -Storyline is fun and exciting -Dynamic environments to interact with Cons: -The do-it-yourself skill/ability system sounds interesting in theory but you'll be super frustrated if you don't use a pre-designed build by the time you hit mid-game....which defeats the entire purpose and just means you have to do more work. I.e.. You want a tank? Go look up how to build one.
    -Crafting system makes little sense and is incredibly frustrating.
    -Auction House is bare bones (feels like it's still in Beta)
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  53. Jul 7, 2012
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. this is the best mmorpg ever made,no elves or other, be what you want and dont worry about lvl`s
    the quests are great,always good option in quests solve a mystery or shoot your way thru,not the ordenary boring wall of text when you get a newmission...it is really amazing
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  54. Jul 11, 2012
    10
    After dealing with the nightmare that was AoC's launch, I had about written off Funcom altogether.. Still, I kept casually following this game and became more and more interested, yet tried not to get drawn into the hype for fear of being let down again. Having now played dozens of hours, I can safely say that not only is this game not a let down, it's perhaps the best MMO I have played in over a decade (and I have played almost all of the major ones). Funcom hit a home run with this one, and if they keep up with quality content updates then it's certain that TSW will have a very bright future. Expand
  55. Jan 19, 2013
    9
    For being an MMO, the storyline is amazing. It's very deep and well written, and the graphics is probably the best in it's genre. There are a few bugs here and there, but overall it's a great experience. Best part is that the subscription is gone. Pay once and play as much as you want. This game doesn't suffer from what other F2P games does. There's no "Pay to win" in this game at all. All you can purchase are more item and character slots and a few boosts that makes you level up faster, but that's more to help you progress faster and it won't effect your gameplay experience if you choose not to pay for extra stuff. Considering that you can get the game for about $20-30, being completely fee-free and offers the player alot of fun, I highly recommend this game. Expand
  56. Aug 9, 2012
    1
    The... worst... game ive played. Bought it for $90. NOT WORTH IT!!! terrible aiming system. you cant run, move your view and shoot at the same time, unless you have three hands. you click something, and then need to push another button (1,2,3 etc) to attack, so you can't just click and have default attack. I may be wrong here, but I didn't give the game enough time to find out: it didn't deserve it. You're told to find the "secret" illuminati. Who everyone, EVERYONE on the street happens to know and be talking about at that exact time. but even if you couldn't listen to them, or find the woeful "technology trail" there were still icons on the screen pointing to the desired location. On top of that, you have a lot of speech options, with no real reason to use any that aren't directly involved with your quest. Not to mention an over complicated skill set/system. Terrible. Totally... terrible. I'm surprised i even bothered writing a review of it. Expand
  57. Apr 14, 2013
    4
    The combat in this game is quite possibly the worst experience you could have in a game. If you are looking to buy this game for it's combat, buy something else. The environments and detective quests are surprisingly enjoyable, but still I always find myself asking the same question; why couldn't they have put more effort into the combat? In my honest opinion, there are better games to waste your time on. Expand
  58. Jul 27, 2013
    2
    When I first heard about 'The Secret World' I thought I would have loved it, I liked the dark themes it was supposed to be based on and found the idea of exploring a Lovecraft inspired world fascinating. So I drooped my $50 down on steam and got going, it was a disappointment for the word go. Whatever the story's and plots were they made no sense to me, the combat was very plain and unsatisfying and the way the game explained how to play was very vague and didn't compel me to learn more.
    After 7 (long) hours or so I gave up on it. It was basically run from point A to B and press 1 2 or 3 a bunch of times. The tactics I've enjoyed in other MMOs weren't there and the usual thill of getting to the next character just wasn't there either. I wish this world had stayed a secret to me and I would have saved $50.
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  59. Jan 20, 2014
    10
    Very innovative story telling for an MMO. The quests are revolutionary, and actually require you to think. They're more akin to puzzle and adventure games than the typical MMO grindfest of "kill/collect X things." The graphics are very highly polished and the UI is slick and clean. The combat is ok, but you're not going to play TSW for the combat, you're doing it for the experience; that there's no other MMO out there like this one, and in a good way. Expand
  60. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    Wonderful world, interesting story and many, various side quests. Technical issues also very well done. This is MMo what I've been waiting for the long time!
  61. Apr 12, 2013
    10
    The title and boxart made me think this was some crappy Asian import. (Boy was I wrong.)

    This is a game for people that enjoy depth and complexity. The writing is phenomenal. The class(less) system is extremely complex. This game is a hidden gem and there's no monthly fee.
  62. Aug 20, 2012
    5
    I believe the "professional" critics have got this one about right. For all it does differently in the narrative department, The Secret World is still an MMO at its core. The game has all the regular genre staples such as guided progression via solo and group questing, group dungeons, and loot grinding. If you enjoy daily quests and daily quest hubs then consider The Secret World one big hub because virtually every quest is repeatable. The combat is simple enough that anyone willing to learn it can but it may not have the depth that others desire. Overall it's a decent game that's got everything people have come to expect from MMOs, both good and bad, except for the raiding. That's fine with me. Expand
  63. Aug 25, 2012
    10
    I have no clue why this game got so low of scores. It is a solid game with a fresh take on all the mmo worlds You also get tons of fun conspiratorial view points.
  64. Feb 2, 2014
    7
    The story and idea are intriguing. The letdown is in the grinding whether this is pvp or dungeons, or even mission grinding. In other words there is little replayability once you have gone through things the first time. Also I find it hard to believe how the secret world can remain secret for very long the way characters are flinging magical firepower around.
  65. Jul 17, 2013
    7
    First of all if I was going solely by game-play this would easily be a 10/10. TSW allows you to simply choose two weapons, equip your abilities from any of many skill choices for those two weapons, and choose passives labeled under any weapon. Questing is not boring like many MMOs, because you are often solving complex puzzles. You actually have to think about the game, which makes it far more interesting than the standard "go here, kill this, repeat." The atmosphere is also very well designed, and pulls you into the game while leveling. It has six zones you quest through, although it does end up feeling like three zones because of how they designed the environments. (You progress through 3 sets of similar looking areas.) The story line is not only interesting, but unique in that it is modern and has more of a serious mood to it than many games. Leveling itself is unlike any MMO I have seen, because there are no real levels. You also don't need to read the story... lots of voice acting. Huge plus for me. You just keep unlocking abilities, and have the flexibility of investing points into other weapons/skills for it if you want multiple specs. Your level is basically the quality level of gear you are wearing. (Which ranges from 1-10 while leveling then 10-10.5 end game.)

    End game instances are a lot of fun the first few times you do them. They can be very challenging; especially the high end ones. However, that is somewhat ruined by the progression model for end game. Unlike questing, which is a lot of fun, end game gear progression is a slow boring grind. Instances are fun to run every once and awhile, not every day. Unfortunately to get end game gear it is necessary to run as many as you can daily, and even then it takes a long time. Gear does drop from bosses, but that is justr starter gear. The good stuff you just buy with black bullions. (They are tokens that drop off nightmare difficulty bosses.) To have any chance of clearing the high-end instances, which are challenging and fun, you need to grind out that gear first, which is a long and boring process.

    If you enjoy raiding (Instances with 10 or more players involved) then unfortunately TSW will disappoint you in that aspect. The only real raid is a single boss, that honestly is easier than a few of the nightmare mode 5-man instances. A second raid will be coming out, but it is just another 1 boss raid. There are lairs, which are fun every once and awhile. But they are not challenging at all, can be done with 5 players, and really just drop signets that you can sell to other players or use to enhance your gear.

    Finally the glitches. There are many glitches, including frequent game crashes for most video cards. Many bosses have all kinds of glitches, some areas give players massive fps drops, etc. They don't seem to be fixing them either. It gets frustrating when you need to exit and reenter the game every hour and a half to prevent crashing, just to glitch out in once of like 500 different ways. It seems to be the same with EVERY Funcom game I have ever played.

    All in all worth playing for the unique game play and fun questing, but expect frustrating glitches and a sub-par end game.
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  66. Feb 23, 2014
    4
    The secret word(tsw) has some good points-- atmosphere, original setting, story, and an interesting skill system. The story is especially engaging. However, Funcompetence is in place. TSW has bugs that will never be resolved, rough edges, BS un-fun quests, and the need to stop and grind to make progress in the story. Also, the game doesn't have enough new players to make it easy to find groups for new players who don't bring their own friends.

    For me, the non-positives prevent enjoying the positives of the game. TSW is less fun to play than other games that are available.

    If you are looking for a non-fantasy MMO with good story that you don't mind playing solo, then TSW may be for you. If you want a polished game with longevity that doesn't make you grind, then tsw may not be for you.
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  67. Aug 5, 2012
    10
    One of the most unique and ingaging mmorpg's out there that actually thought outside the copy+paste mmo genre..If you like mysteries, myths , and creepy monster designs; you're in for a treat!
  68. Jan 6, 2014
    9
    The reason I gave this game a 9/10 was because of its unique aspect. On the surface The Secret World looks different straightaway. However, after experiencing the lore, the quests, conspiracies and the world itself, it is clear that Funcom has spent a huge amount of time and effort in creating this MMO.

    Brief bullet reasons why you should play; and why it gets a 9/10.

    1. Unique
    modern setting. Featuring: New York, London and Venice,
    2. Highly thought out missions, quests and conspiracies that are inspired by the works of: H.P Lovecraft, Stephen King and our world today.
    3. Pay once; play forever. Expansion packs, or known in The Secret World as Issues, are purchasable)
    4. Classless system. Play and be the character YOU WANT TO BE.
    5. Interesting story.
    6. Also, I believe if you bought the game before January 2013 you get the first 4 'Issues' expansion packs) FREE.
    7. Regular updates.
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  69. Jun 19, 2013
    10
    This is one of the best MMO's Ive played since WoW. Its a very new fresh feeling of a MMO. I'm really digging it atm.

    Steam has it on sale for 50% off so 15 bucks, its also F2P now. Cant lose for 15 bucks.

    have fun!
  70. Feb 15, 2013
    9
    The other best mmrpg out there. The best being Warhammer online, of course. Yeh, perhaps the density of monsters is too high in some areas, but altogether everything else in this game is right and might.
  71. Jul 4, 2012
    10
    When i first heard about this in 2007 it was a web forum with some enigmas on it. It was called Dark Days are Coming. We didn't even know it was TSW back then, all we knew it was a game and it had Ragnar Tornquist working in it. Thing is, Tornquist is amazing and i had high hopes that we were going to receive an amazing adventure game. It kinda annoyed me that in the end it was an MMORPG by Funcom. Well, whatever. 5 years later TSW was launched. I didn't play a single Beta Weekend. In fact i just avoided the game all i could. I was simply bored of MMOGs. After 6 years of WoW, a few months of TOR and a lot of other crappy MMOs: Aion, WAR, AoC, Fallen Earth, Tabula Rasa and so on... I was so tired of the genre. Then TSW came. I bought it in a impulse. Didn't even read about it. And it really impressed me. The graphis aren't really great and character creation could be better but if you are an adult gamer you should not be bothered by it. Gameplay is simply amazing. The combat is fun, the classless system is perfect and the skill system is so amazing i find myself thinking of the many possibilities of different builds. The world is really, really nice. And the setting is amazing. Anyone who really likes conspiracy theories, Lovecraft or some good ol' stories should pick this game. Questing is so much fun, from the average kill those barstards to the innovative investigation and sabotage missions. Once i even had to search the internet for a way to learn morse code to finish a quest. It was simply amazing. All in all one of the best MMORPGs i've played so far. It brings all the innovation the genre needs and it should be played by any fan of MMO Gaming. A must have for adventure fans. Expand
  72. Aug 20, 2012
    10
    I was not going to get this game...as I never got into the "futuristic" or "modern" MMO's, being a pure fantasy nut. SWTOR was just a reaffirmation of avoiding that.

    Bored with nothing new out lately, I tried the 3 day trial and was blown away! For the first time I found an interesting story and the way the game handles quests is refreshing. Instead of the basic FedEx quests and Kill
    X creatures, you are have your choice of a vast number of types of quests. The puzzles are nice with the in-game browser, and having a great time.

    Even though Funcom is doing poor, I am finding this MMO stirs something in my that I haven't felt since the days of AC1...something that may keep my interest longer than a week or two.

    It is definitely worth trying out the trial...and you have to get into Kingsmouth before you throw in the towel and say it's not for you, as the starter area does not represent the game...
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  73. Oct 11, 2012
    9
    Really 8.5 but as there are no half marks, I gave it a 9. Perfect MMO? No. Innovative MMO? Hell yes. In truth this is like a breath of fresh air in the stagnant world of MMOs, most of whom aspire to be WoW-but-looks-a-bit-different. The Secret World actually *is* different. Moreover Funcom are reactive to major bugs, the Devs actually comment in threads on the official forum and I have never had better customer service in any game from in-game GMs when I file a petition for some reason. That last point alone is probably worth 2 points on the score! The freedom this game offers from the cookie cutter 'Trinity' and 'One Best Build for Task' is very refreshing indeed. The story lines are uncompromisingly adult and the puzzles are bloody hard (the game has a modern setting and an in-game browser so you can google things!). So if you like a game to molly coddle you and not force you to think, then this is *not* the game for you. Likewise you actually have to move in this game because position matters, so if you prefer games that are essentially your min-max spreadsheet against his min-max spreadsheet, again this game might not be your cup of tea. Otherwise, I cannot recommend it highly enough. Oh and if you are a fan of the HP Lovecraft genre of horror, you will be hit in the face by all the references like a rubbery Shoggoth tentacle. Simply splendid. Expand
  74. Jul 5, 2012
    10
    This game surprised me big time, I had no intention of buying this game until I watched a couple streams, but wow its fantastic. The world, music and all has such an amazing spooky, realistic feel. The gameplay is simple tab targeting but feels alot more fast paced than most mmos, not to mention the dodge feature which must be used to evade monster attacks. The variety of weapons, skills, and environments is absolutly incredible. Expand
  75. Nov 6, 2012
    4
    I was really excited about TSW. It seemed to offer heaps of innovation. I pre-ordered it, and only played for a week, didn't renew my subscription. Very disappointed. The setting, theme etc are really different. It has story, voice acting etc. Great stuff and well done for that. More MMOs should be like it. BUT, the game is dull. You spend ages just running around, unable to interact with the world around you (especially the bicycles lying around which would really speed things up if you were allowed to click on them!). The combat is extremely repetitive and old-fashioned. Just mash the same button over and over again, against the same-looking set of zombies over and over again. It's like SWTOR, story and character, but the gameplay is stuck in the bad part of 2003. Expand
  76. Jul 18, 2012
    9
    I am absolutely blown away by this game. Its not perfect people! In fact, there are quite a bit hiccups that need to be ironed out. And I believe they will be. PvP is not very engaging or thought out, but again, Im sure that will be addressed. Seriously though, I have never been so immersed in a game like this one. When im not playing, I daydreaming about playing. The Story, the quests, the atmosphere, even the combat are excellent. At first, I was a little worried about what I had invested in. Not more than an hour later, I had a completely different view. I love being able to yield a gun and magic. The options for your choice of weapons are so diverse. And come on, its got Zombies!!! I've even had a great experience with the other players when I've asked for help, or needed something. I'm a lifer now, and I have no doubt that I will not lose interest in this game anytime soon. Expand
  77. Jul 21, 2012
    0
    There's something very strange about the user reviews here for The Secret World. Almost all of the positive 9's and 10's were left by people with only one review: TSW. Not only that, but when I read these reviews, I can't help but wonder what game these people are playing, because TSW is not NEARLY as good as they are making it out to be. I was in the closed beta, and have been following this game for years, and I am completely disappointed by it. While the modern setting is cool, the story fails at being realistic at all. This is the SECRET World, not the OBVIOUS World. For example, when starting the Illuminati quest, you eventually are led to this building where it is obvious the base has to be inside, with hands pointing the way to your end goal. Then, when you get there, the Illuminati are wearing... Illuminati uniforms... Where are they getting this stuff made without exposing themselves? How has normal society NOT discovered their barely hidden base entrance? And characters are running around with their weapons on their backs, in modern day, not hidden -- the fact that no one is being noticed by the police further wrecks my immersion. The quests feel very single player, and if you have to gather items, prepare to compete with everyone around you to pick up the items (that have a terribly slow respawn rate, too). The graphics are very outdated. I found myself staring at the doctor's misshapen arm while he talked, and couldn't pay attention to what he was saying because he looked so terrible. If this game was 10 years ago, the graphics would be acceptable. Character customization is limited and bland, and while there are no "levels" or "classes" advancement is still done with XP and you choose your specialty weapon (which defines your abilities like a class). Most of those weapons are terrible, unless you pick something melee. Combat is terrible, clunky and slow, and absolutely not fun. Don't bother trying to play a ranged class, because enemies run up on you faster than Left4Dead (hence why you need to pick a melee weapon from the start). I've also experienced random bugs, such as getting stuck in a doorway, and having to log off to get unstuck. Do not be fooled by all these good reviews on here about this game -- it's currently unpolished, unfun, and a great disappointment that isn't showing any signs of getting better. I expect whoever has been leaving these false reviews is going to thumbs down mine, but I have to get the word out anyway. It's very possible this game will go F2P like most other Funcom titles, and when it does, that would be a nice risk-free way to give it a try. Expand
  78. Jun 28, 2013
    0
    This game has great visual design and awful gameplay. I'm reviewing the gameplay. ZERO. unplayable
    There are so many games out there that deserve the exposure of TSW. TSW does not deserve any.
  79. Jul 4, 2012
    9
    TSW is a brilliantly conceived MMO. The horror story elements are excellent and really draw the player into Its virtual world. A big positive is the new skill system which removes the need for leveling. The AP system also allows the player to experiment with different skill sets depending on the situation. A far different MMO from the usual and justly so. Recommended!
  80. Aug 12, 2012
    10
    A refreshing setting. Quests that feel meaningful and challenging. And a solid base for improvement after a smoothest launch in recent years. It tells a story unlike I have encountered in an MMO. It has potential to last, but only time will tell if Funcom can utilize it to fullest. It's main fault and blessing is that it does not try to please everybody.
  81. Jan 2, 2013
    3
    I didn't expect much from this game, and that's what I got. Stiff animations, boring story, and cooldowns on shotguns? Really? TSW tries, but fails to entertain me. A game can't survive on cut scenes and dull combat.
  82. Nov 10, 2012
    8
    The game is a blast and for an MMO the game play, setting, and story is refreshing. Unlike many MMOs as you continue through the storyline you do feel that your character is taking a side in the world conflict.

    I would say this game is designed with the target audience being experienced MMO players who are tired of hight fantasy MMOs and are looking for something different. While the
    game does not strictly put you into one of the basic classes (Tank, healer, DPS) because of the open ended ability wheel and being able to hot-swap what your character does, don't think this means it's a "classless" game. The community as well as how the game mechanics work will eventually lead you to building a set of abilities that basically makes you a tank, healer, or dps. However what is nice is the variety of combinations that you can use to achieve your goal makes leveling and unlocking new abilities and trying them out to see if one is better than another a real treat.

    Endgame still has the same problems as any other MMO in that once you hit it and once you've gotten all the gear you want, there's basically nothing left to do but PVP and finish up the numerous little achievement goals they set out. I hit the cap about two months ago (been playing since release) and am finally to the point where I'm not playing the game every day.

    The monthly updates makes sure that there's always a reason to keep your subscription going (or at least reactivate it ever two or three months).
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  83. Aug 24, 2014
    7
    Story wise it is great, graphic wise a failure you basically have to constantly adjust you brightness and gamma for outdoors then when you do underground scenes, 2 yrs out and you would think they would have fixed it. Will tell you that the game is almost impossible to solo using melee, magic and shooter is somewhat easier but still labor intensive. The system requirements are higher than they say. Expand
  84. Aug 29, 2012
    0
    At first i realy liked the game, but unfortunately there is a fair amount of game breakers in this game. It starts with little things which are most likely the influence of EA. For example even though its a subscription based game, there is a cash shop. Many outfits have a single item, which is not available ingame except from the cash shop. So either pay cash or never complete your outfit.---------------------- Next thing they offer in the cash shop is server transfers. Dragon faction members are underpopulated on almost all "Dimensions" (virtual servers on the single TSW server). But instead of offering free transfers to them, they are blackmailed into "stay in your factions empty "fusang" (persistant pvp area), or pay 20 euros". And there is a huge bunch of annoying bugs, some of the dungeon bosses are only killable by exploiting and especialy pvp is full of bugs. For example a signet that is bugged and gives 100% blockrate. Its known since months, and fixing it would only require to change it from "stacking" to "not stacking". But it simply isnt fixed because no one cares. Or an ability called Reap and Sew which basicaly makes healers useless as in its bugged state causes dmg output to heal the passive target constantly. There can be fun had in this game, but you should wait until you get it for less then 20 Expand
  85. Jul 9, 2012
    10
    I've been playing MMO's since UO Beta back in 97. TSW was the first game that actually got me to learn the lore and go through the quests while listening to them. It's intelligent - challenging - and has plenty of tongue in cheek references for all of us who love science fiction / horror.

    Try it and get into the story. You wont regret it - Guaranteed hours of fun.
  86. Jan 15, 2014
    9
    I absolutely love this game, it's wonderfully unusual when compared to other MMO's. Admittedly its style may not be for everyone as there's a significant emphasis placed on research and puzzle-solving rather than straight up kill-everything-that-gets-in-the-way. I love the atmosphere, Funcom pulls off the 'dark fantasy' theme and world exceptionally well. The abilities and powers available to the characters are diverse and interesting, and the potential combinations between them are fun to explore. The voice acting is also exceptional, and in my honest opinion the quality of writing is worlds better than any other MMO I've played.

    My only gripe with the game is that there are a number of small bugs that seem to have avoided the dev-hammer and while they're nothing truly gamebreaking, at least not for me, they are noticeable. For example, when using the sitting down function, it doesn't visually display for other players that were not present when the emote was used and so to them you're still standing. As I said before however the bug issue is relatively minor and has very little impact on the brilliance of the game. It's a definite must-buy for dark fantasy fans and those who are looking for an MMO experience beyond the straightforward World of Warcraft-esque grab n' grind.
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  87. Jan 13, 2013
    0
    The game's topic is fascinating, some of the cut scenes are OK, and the combat system is interesting. Unfortunately, for a secret societies / end of the world game, it does not have any suspense or horror feeling.

    Expect to start playing the game either with heavy support through game chat, or by searching the net for hints, as both the user interface and the quest design often is
    lacking. The community is nice and helpful, though, compared to other MMO communities, so getting started is not too bad.

    I cannot imagine that a developer studio that has quite some past experience with creating and running MMOs produced such an obvious B title on purpose. My impression of the game is that it was shoved out the door both regarding design and implementation, before the funding ran out, hoping to fix some of the design errors later. "Later" never came, as many customers these days rather spend their money for finished games, having enough MMOs to choose from.
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  88. Jul 14, 2012
    10
    I've played a lot of MMO's and while I did not find there was a lot of innovation besides the class system in MMO style of play, I was completely taken in by the atmosphere and immersion. The story telling aspect is top notch and the dungeons require a lot of thought and teamwork. There are plenty of solo quests to keep you busy if that's your thing as well. I heard that there is new content already planned and the upcoming stories sound interesting. I can tell right away that I will be sticking to this one and look forward to seeing how it improves over time. If your on the fence I'd say give it a shot. Expand
  89. Dec 25, 2012
    0
    I really have to admit funcom aspires to make a great game. They try on a lot of fronts. But not on bugfixing. There are bugs in there - major bugs which exist already since beginning and there are a lot of people complaining about it. what do they do? put new clothes in the store that you can buy. really i mean. i see that it takes time to fix stuff, but forever? for that unbelievable bad service they do not deserve any points at all. that is just bland evil. Expand
  90. Aug 12, 2012
    4
    The Secret World is an amazing mmo, with unique style setting it apart from all others. Unfortunately it is dragged down by technical issues and the worst tech support seen on the mmo-market.

    Let's start with the good parts: The Secret World is the first mmo in a long time that wants you to think. It takes place in a mock version of our own world and time, where monsters and
    conspiracies are real but hidden from regular people. It takes inspiration from H.P. Lovecraft and Stephen King in fabricating a world of horrors, and dumping you in the middle of it.

    Pay attention to the details, because they are masterfully crafted. Every character, monster, or even piece of decor has a good reason for being where it is. Similarities to the real world shouldn't be ignored, because this game flirts heavily with Alternate Reality Games. If you find a business card in-game, you will find the company's website on the real net. Many quests requires you to browse these websites for answers, or ask you to use real skills, like history, religion or even Morse code in order to solve them.

    And beneath it all lies hints to a story that keeps growing every month.

    Game play is class-less, with a system of unlocking skills that theoretically allows you to learn every skill in the game. Skills only scale in power depending on you equipment, and unlocking new skills offers more flexibility instead of power. At any time, you have a small sub-set of skills "equipped", and can swap them out at will. Much like a good trading card game, it all boils down to finding unique and powerful combinations, or "decks", of skills.

    This system of advancement works well, and as you progress, you will need to keep optimizing your skill-set to stand a chance against more difficult enemies.

    The game play, story and setting are all masterfully done, so what stops it from getting a top score?

    The bugs. All mmo-games have bugs, especially at launch, but The Secret World is a top offender. Broken quests (in a story-driven game), unreliable chat-system, non-functioning skill-management, often bad performance, and a lot more. What makes things worse is that after more than a month since launch, only a small handful of bugs are really fixed. Communication is almost non-existent, and players have no idea if it will take days, weeks, or even months to fix core mechanics of the game.

    The tech support is no help either. Every question you ask will be met by a wall of apologies and sympathies, but no real help is ever provided. GMs do not communicate with each other, and the ticket system can have you bounced between a dozen different GMs, all giving wildly different answers, or asking for information that has been provided several times before.

    It is not uncommon to see tech support giving answers that completely ignore the actual issue you are having.

    The final verdict is that The Secret World could be a great game, but isn't yet. If you are very tolerant of technical issues in games, it may be worth it to take a gamble at this game. For everybody else, I recommend you wait and see what happens. If Funcom gives The Secret World the treatment it deserves, all serious issues will be fixed in a few months, and you can enjoy one of the best mmo-games ever to be released.
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  91. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    This is not your father's MMO. I had some trouble initially adapting to the game as it's really quite different from anything else. The UI is sparse and it's got a very single-player game type of feel, so you can focus on playing instead of action bar layouts. The graphics are excellent and the overall atmosphere in this game is like none other.

    The quests are phenomenal. Instead of
    being lead from zone to zone you are often given quests by random things that you may find; an arm in the middle of the road or a cell phone you find, for example. You are limited in the number of active quests you can have, which I like, because it keeps you focused on the immediate area and its story.

    There is also a huge range of quest types. They aren't just your typical gather and kill type of MMO quests either--you're solving puzzles and using items in the environment. Instead of grind you get great diversity, fun and excitement as you look forward to what's coming up next. I expect many, many hours of enjoyment from TSW.
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  92. Jul 3, 2012
    10
    A brilliant and Epic game, a amazing MMO full of possibilities, a great world with numerous quest, a good sound quality and Perfect graphics , and overall 10!
  93. Jul 7, 2012
    9
    Stunning RPG and 90% positive reviews just confirms how good the game is.

    Giving it a 10 would mean it is perfect, it isn't but nothing is. By far the best launch of a modern big game in past few years .. just think Skyrim steam issues, Diablo 3 servers .. and for single player games at that.

    If money is no object, get it. If you are a conspiracy nut or like X-files, its a must
    really. Scary in places, creepy, immersive, graphics are stunning, like being part of a good thriller. Expand
  94. Jul 9, 2012
    2
    I really tried to like this game. I can usually forgive a newly launched game a few bugs, but this is too much. I consistently felt that the developers were in over their heads, and trying to dress up five year old graphics. Animations are crude. The game crashed regularly (on a new machine). Occasionally I got dropped into a no mans land with nothing to do but restart. Combine that with game mechanics that feel awkward, even cut and pasted, and the few "innovations" of the game mean little. I tried several decks. Gradually, you realize they all function exactly the same way (no matter your build, you keep doing the same things). I also tried each faction, but found that they are all essentially the same (even the "decks" are exactly the same; you would think each faction would have its own type of character builds, but no: "cut and pasted"). The so-called "puzzle" gameplay is just a novelty. It gets old, like the rest of the game. I had lots of fun with their "Age of Conan", so this was a real disappointment. I do not see this game surviving long. Expand
  95. Jul 9, 2012
    10
    I've bought TSW just for "kill the time". After some days, i had to admit that it is one of the best MMO i've played in a long time. "Think out of the box" is the key for TSW, since you can surely enjoy killing stuff in your OWN way with a totally customizable ability tree (wich is a wheel, actually), but you HAVE to THINK when playing it. I found myself doing research, calling a friend asking "Ehi man, what you about Morse Code? I'm stucked with a quest!" (followed by his "what in the...?"), checking wikipedia, youtube, and more in order to complete the quests, wich are, together with the mood and the versatile combat, the awesome part of this, by me, innovative and very, very smart MMORPG.

    P.s. the main char can't talk (yeah, sad) but the NPC dialogs are something...stunning and charming

    I admit it: this game is a piece of art.
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  96. Dec 30, 2012
    5
    This game was a wonderful game for the first two areas to the middle of the third area. I was surprised by the game, I liked the model of the monsters, but not the character models (no matter how much you try it seems impossible to either make a good looking female character or a tough looking male character) - they all look weird and off. The game was intriguing and fun until Blue Mountain. The game soon became annoying. Your build begins to fall apart and even trying to take on two individuals on a mission labeled Very Easy becomes tedious and almost annoying. I can understand difficulty in a game, many of the investigation missions were fun and enjoyable until they become more of a problem than their worth. The investigation missions go from using wit, and intelligence to say "hey, this sounds like I should go to city hall to complete this quest" to "match the symbols". Mobs go from minor problems and quite fun play toys to annoying pests that make trying to walk on roads on a problem. Trying to flee will turn from an easy escape when you are overwhelmed to getting a small dose of hope before you essentially commit suicide because you know that when three regular mobs are on you... you are screwed. The Savage Coast was the most fun of the entire game I had. The mobs were diverse and fun except for the charging bug creatures. Blue mountain soon becomes cluttered and traversing an area without being attacked by any mob means you are lucky. The game has this idea that there are no level system but your level is basically determined by the quality level of your items. In the same sense that a level 1 will be devastated by a level 10 in other MMOs, a player with quality level 1 gear will be devastated by a mob designed to be attacked by a player in quality level 10 gear. I may have bashed the game severely, but do not get me wrong... I loved the game for a large portion of it and made me addicted to it. However, I have never played a game that made me so frustrated that I impulsively uninstalled the game and there have been games that have had me consider breaking my computer at the infuriating aspects. Expand
  97. Sep 12, 2012
    3
    Terrible combat. Rubbish animations. Too much running back and forth due to Funcom deciding you can only carry one of a particular type of quest. I'm giving it 3 specifically for the investigation quests. These are the ONLY good part of the game. The rest is pretty poor. The story is OK, not great. The voice acting is awful in places, especially the NPCs with English accents, and London in general is a joke. I really wanted to love this game, but in my opinion, Funcom did their usual thing and rushed it to get it out before GW2 and maybe MoP. It didn't work. I'm glad I wasn't one of those suckers that bought the GM pack. The biggest fail here however is the monthly sub. This game does not warrant the largest monthly sub fee of any MMORPG that is available in the UK. Funcom are ripping players off by charging around £3.00 more than the market leader - World of Warcraft. That's suicide right there if you ask me. Expand
  98. Oct 29, 2012
    1
    I created an account just so that I can provide my opinion of this game. I purchased this game when it launched on steam (after the initial launch) and was very disapointed with my purchase. The game was still lacking in the polish department which was unacceptible for the price paid. Text dissapearing from character names and logs, poor font visibility, and insanely poor combat animations are all things that should have been fixed before this game came out. People should not pay retail for a company to actually finish their game. I have played many MMO's over the ages, (DAoC, WoW, UO, Tera, LoTRO, GW2, etc) and trust me this is an MMO to avoid... I gave this a three due to good ideas and decent atmosphere but overall this game is a mess. Further, I honestly think NoFuncom is paying people to Lie in here... Expand
  99. Jan 21, 2013
    9
    The Secret World is a hidden gem in the MMO landscape. The quests are brilliant and very few are simply fetch X of this and kill Y of that. They have a lot of thought put into them and the resulting questing experience is really enjoyable and has a lot of flow. Some of the investigation quests are down right devious and you'll be finding yourself using the ingame web browser to help solve them, or if you are up for a bigger challenge, spending a couple of hours trying to crack the code yourself. For instance, one quest involves deciphering morse code to figure out a location to go to. Not so hard if it was written down, but the morse code is audio. Of course the answer is freely available on the internet if you wish to go that way, or decipher yourself if you're really up for a challenge.

    The dungeons are also well paced and thought out and offer a good challenge, very minimal trash so the action really flows.

    There are no "levels" as such but you'll need to complete quests to gain XP to allow you to wear better armour and gain access to better skills.

    Given that this game has dropped the monthly subscription (I'd be surprised to see any major MMOs launch with a monthly subscription in the future btw - I think the micro transaction model is the way of the future) it is well worth the purchase up front for hours and hours of gameplay.
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  100. Jan 26, 2014
    8
    I have been playing this mmo more like a 'normal' game than as I would normally approach an mmo and, as such, it is quite enjoyable. Fully voiced npcs with unique and genuinely interesting personalities alongside its novel weapon-leveling system makes this one well worth it. I am just in love with this world and they definitely delivered on giving a genuine Lovecraft experience.
  101. Jul 8, 2012
    0
    I went into the Secret World wanting to like the game. Since the game was announced a few years ago, I have followed it's development, curious to see where the game would be taken. After playing it for the first time during the game's beta, I was excited to see what the game had to offer. I was not impressed. The story was interesting, but the game itself just doesn't hold up to a modern standard. The game's story is somewhat interesting, but the combat mechanics did not hold my attention enough for me to get very far in the beta. At it's release just a few days ago, I tried again. I really did want to like the game, and I was able to excuse some of the previous flaws I had seen based on the fact that I had been playing a beta. But the same weak combat just could not hold my attention. The game was very ambitious, but when it comes down to it, The Secret World doesn't have enough to offer in today's MMO saturated market. Collapse
Metascore
74

Mixed or average reviews - based on 55 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 55
  2. Negative: 1 out of 55
  1. Oct 22, 2013
    90
    The Secret World delivers an MMO experience that's distinctly different from its competitors, and it's likely going to remain the standard for future games in the horror/supernatural genre.
  2. Dec 17, 2012
    81
    I am really looking forward to the next mission, the next dialog, the next puzzle. As in a solo role-playing game flat. And this is not an error but a boon.
  3. Sep 18, 2012
    76
    I like the open character development where I don't have to wear a class straitjacket as well as the quiet discovery of mysterious dangers. But more often that it wants to, The Secret World is "just" an ordinary MMO.