Posts Tagged ‘Funcom’

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DAW: Funcom

March 28, 2013
shout out

Shout-out to Funcom

Outstanding. Apparently, my blog’s revival has serendipitously coincided with DAW, or Developer Appreciation Week. This is good, because I would have been loath to miss out on this tradition. Let’s all take part in sharing the love! Originally the brainchild of Scarybooster, DAW is a chance for gamers and bloggers everywhere to show our appreciation for developers, and thank them for their hard work in bringing us the games we enjoy.

Anyway, there are so many devs that deserve a pat on the back, but this year I would like to dedicate my DAW post to Funcom and the team who brings us The Secret World (and I’m not the only one).

TSW enchanted me from the outset to become the biggest and most pleasant gaming surprise for me in 2012. To be honest, I didn’t know what I was expecting at first, but it certainly wasn’t something I anticipated playing past the first 30 days. I think I bought the game out of curiosity more than anything. It was meant to be an MMO to dabble away in for a while, a summer distraction and not much more.

Fast forward almost nine months later, and I am still playing. More importantly, I am still having a blast.

Of course, Funcom has had its struggles and TSW has not been free of issues, but I’d like to think I know a gem when I see one. The guild I am in has even set up weekly sessions to play TSW together, and I have to say that week after week it still never fails to entertain me, to shock me, to make me shake my head and say to myself, “Damn, this game is bloody brilliant.”

So, to the good folks working on TSW, keep up the good work. You have in me a loyal subscriber who does not at all mind her money going to support the likes of creepy Innsmouth Academy occult headmasters or rifle-dancing Marya. Thank you for your ingenuity, for having the guts to push the envelope, and for making one hell of a unique MMO.

Good times:

werewolf

darkness war

Hell Fallen

cat god

templars

 

 

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The Secret World: Post-Celebration Hangover

August 6, 2012

Ugh…world…too bright.

What can I say? I had fun in The Secret World “One Month Celebration” weekend. Maybe a little too much fun.

Yep, one month into TSW and still going strong. Pretty big deal for a game I had initially written off as “just something to pass the time.” Like some blind date set up by an obscure yet well-meaning relative, I never expected my stint with TSW to lead anywhere, but it just goes to show again that anything can happen.

As we wind down from the game’s first month celebration, I even find myself suffering a little from “lifetime sub envy”, wistfully contemplating the wisdom of my friends and fellow players who have upgraded to the Grand Master Pack. And let me tell you something: I. Don’t. Do. Lifetime. This is why feeling this way is kind of a shock.

My struggles with the decision of getting my own LTS notwithstanding, I will definitely keep playing into a second month. I see a lot of potential in TSW and I think it’s a quality game, which is why in an age where more and more MMOs are switching over to a free-to-play model, I will still readily and happily pony up the monthly subscription fee to support this Funcom project. Developers of niche and creative games which think outside the box deserve some love.

Plus last month’s State of the Game report about monthly new content doesn’t hurt. We’ve already seen Funcom successfully deliver Update 1.1, which gave us more than half a dozen new missions (oh, “Hell and Bach”, how you tortured me. This mind-bending quest occupied my brain for two nights, but the high I got after completing it on my own is something I have never gotten from any other MMO). When asked if Ragnar Tornquist and Co. can keep up with this ambitious update schedule, their answer was a resounding, “Yes, yes we can.” That remains to be seen, but if time shows they can walk their talk, I may be sticking with TSW for longer than I thought.

I spent the first night of the celebration weekend running through Kingsmouth again doing my 30 missions for my bonus Funcom points (which I ultimately spent on the “Hardcore Punk” clothing set, seen above) and in-game shirt reward. I thought I’d been quite thorough the first time I played KM, but it’s a real testament to the exploration aspect of this game that I still managed to find two side quests I’d never done. The last few days also saw me finishing up the Egypt zones, which means I’ll be heading into Romania (more specifically, Transylvania) very soon and I’m very much looking forward to that.

By all accounts, the celebration weekend was a great success, minus a few hours on Sunday morning where the load got to be too much for the servers to handle, prompting some downtime (which Funcom made up for by extending the event for 6 hours). Did anyone else participate? And if you did and also completed the 30 quests, sorry, the fashionista in me just has to ask: What did you buy/are you going to buy with your points (it better be an outfit!)? Any new players take advantage of the free weekend? What did you think?

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Don’t Look Back In Anger

July 9, 2012

It was the summer of 2008, and I was sitting down to another session of Age of Conan, only to be bombarded with a whole host of problems ranging from minor graphical glitches to game-crashing memory leaks. After the third time I had to reboot my computer to restart the client, I said to myself, “ENOUGH!” and promptly switched over to play another game instead. Two weeks later, still getting problems and no fixes in sight, so I calmly logged into my AoC account and canceled my subscription. Anyway, that’s the story of me /rage quitting, guys, or the closest you’ll see me get.

Have I ever been pissed off by a broken game feature or mechanic? Of course I have. Have annoying issues ever made me stop playing? Sure. But has it ever made me lose faith in a developer completely? Hmm.

I don’t know, maybe I’m just too lenient, and it’s entirely possible that I’m not picky enough. If things get fixed, I guess I’m always willing go back. Or if they ever end up making a new expansion or game that catches my fancy, sure, I’ll check it out.

Which is why a couple years ago, I picked up AoC’s Rise of the Godslayer expansion at launch, and again — surprise, surprise — same problems. I was able to play a new Khitan character, but was unable to experience any of the new zones with my level 80 without crashing to desktop within five minutes.

Anyway, one would think I’d learn. When The Secret World was announced, yeah, I had my reservations that it was Funcom. I generally like what I see from them, but I’ve been burned by them in the past; in my case it was a myriad of technical problems and game instability during the early stages.

Still, as you know I did end up buying and playing TSW. Okay, so it’s not without its problems. I did have a few freak-outs especially at first when the game kept asking me to update my already updated drivers and starting up in a distorted window, and I still stumble upon little bugs and glitches, like this weekend when we had a complete meltdown of the chat servers. But hey, unlike my experience with AoC a few years ago, at least the game is playable. I’m immensely glad that I lucked out there.

When it comes to bungling companies, I guess I subscribe to the “I’ll never forget, but I can forgive” philosophy. And the truth is, I’m glad I keep giving Funcom chances because if I didn’t, I would have missed out on TSW. I don’t think I’ve had this much fun in an MMO in ages.

I hope they continue to fix any issues, because currently I feel they’re the biggest drawback. For instance, it’s hard to enjoy an investigation mission when you’re not sure if you’re just too bloody dense to solve a puzzle or if the quest itself is bugged to hell.

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New Kingsmouth Trailer for “The Secret World”

February 2, 2010

Gamespot had an exclusive premiere of a new trailer for The Secret World this past weekend, and since I’m actively following the development of this game I thought I’d share it here.

The trailer hints at a major “incident” that has occurred at the town of Kingsmouth, the first location to be revealed in the game (in case you haven’t seen it already, here’s a link to the town’s website, pre-incident). It also reveals “first actual gameplay footage”, but a word of advice–take that with a grain of salt. In point of fact, this video is nowhere near as tantalizing as some of the other trailers we’ve seen for the game, and as teasers go, it’s not exactly awe-inspiring. Still, it’s feeding the hype and I’m not any less excited for this game.

Funcom, for the love of God, please do not screw this one up!