User Score
8.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1264 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. 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
  5. 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
  6. 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
  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. 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
  9. 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
  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. 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
  13. 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.
  14. 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
  15. 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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  16. 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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  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. 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
  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. 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.
  22. 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.
  23. 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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  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. 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
  26. 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.
  27. 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.
    Expand
  28. 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
  29. 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
  30. 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. Expand
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.