When a lot of people hear the word Funcom, they think of Age of Conan. For reasons we won't dive into here, odds are they're hoping to get more people thinking about their next project, The Secret World. For those of you who haven't heard of the game before - and since it lays in the shadow cast by Star Wars: The Old Republic there are probably a lot of you - it's best described as an MMO based in the modern day world of secret societies. Actually, it's best described by the development team themselves. Trust me, the video is worth a look.
These days it's hard to give a legitimate shot to any MMO that doesn't begin with "World" and end with "Warcraft," but the truth of the matter is that we won't know what we're missing until we get it. The story of The Secret World is undoubtedly the most intriguing thing at this point in their marketing, and I have to say it was probably a good decision to feature it so strongly.
Whether you like it or not, the advertising of most MMOs has to begin by emphasizing how it is different from WoW, and it's already clear that TSW is taking a very different approach. Taking place in the modern world is always an idea I've been looking forward to from an MMO, and delving into mythology of secret wars between cloaked societies is always cool. I mean take a look at the Templar Character designs:
If the idea of ancient societies with ancient weaponry operating alongside modern firearms in today's world doesn't get you nerding out at least a little bit, then I don't know what to tell you. But for those of us that do, this first look at the Templars' backstory and structure within London's underground make for interesting thinking at the very least.
The video also shows off an interesting plot device: the players are given an opportunity to be transported into their own future by a mysterious character known as "The Fallen King." The player is given a look at not only how the war they are waging will escalate, but how they will master their abilities as well: a welcome spin on an old gaming convention.
I was (apparently) one of the few people who checked out Age of Conan and dug alot of the elements unique to it. The ability to use directed attacks instead of simple mouse-clicks was a feature I wish more games would adopt, so I'm hoping for more innovations with the release of The Secret World. We'll most likely be getting a closer look at the game by the time it is released on Xbox 360 and PC in late 2012.
But what do you think Ranters? Have you had enough fantasy in the past year, or have the memories of Age of Conan's glitchy gameplay soured you from giving Funcom another shot?