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The Park Review | A true psychological thriller

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
funcom, PC games, Psychological horror games, The Park

The Park Review | A true psychological thriller

It’s a fact I’ve stated time and time again, but Funcom’s MMORPG The Secret World has some of the best world building of any game I’ve played. Each of the zones is filled with lore that details of the Lovecraft-inspired dangers that roam the lands, and the tragedies caused by them. It’s because of this I’ve always felt that there were more stories to tell and bigger secrets to uncover, and thankfully Funcom felt the same way.

The end result is The Park – a single player experience that tells one such story. Players assume the role of Lorraine, a single mother who loses her son Callum at the Atlantic Island Theme Park. Of course, TSW players who have been to The Savage Coast region will already know the theme park quite well, along with why it’s probably the worst idea ever to take (let along lose) your child there. While the opportunity to learn more of the park’s history and its mysterious owner is there, the main focus aims at delving into Lorraine’s troubled past, and how it affects the relationship with her son.

The Park Review | A true psychological thriller

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The Park opens on October 27th - get it for just £6.16

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Deals
Tags:
funcom, Green Man Gaming, PC games, The Park

After announcing its existence earlier this summer, last week Funcom announced that its single player horror title The Park will be releasing on October 27th. To coincide with the announcement, a new trailer has been released (viewable above that gives us a better idea of what to expect from the game, including how its gmaeplay mechanics will work. If you're intrigued with this spin-off to MMORPG The Secret World, you should take advantage of the deal below, which will save you almost £4 over the usual asking price of £9.99

Thanks to Buzz for the heads-up!

 

COMMENT | Why now is the time to experience The Secret World

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Features
Tags:
DLC, EA, funcom, Horror games, MMORPGs, PC games, Puzzle games, The Secret World

COMMENT | Why now is the time to experience The Secret World

Last week I finally revisited The Secret World. After reviewing it at launch, calling it “a brave new world worth spending time in,” I gradually had less and less time to play it. This was despite former colleague Jon falling head over heels for it, proclaiming his love it again, and again, and again. I could only watch from the sidelines as the intrigue and mystery of its storyline evolved, new systems added to its class-free combat, and new dungeons opened, filled with brutal bosses to beat.

Last week, Funcom released Issue #12: To The Dark Tower Below. The new patch not only added in a new dungeon and open world content, but included new social features, a revamped currency system and daily rewards program. It’s not ground-breaking for the genre, but it’s an important step for The Secret World. You see, it not only gives former players a reason to return, but provides newcomers with the more accessible way to experience the game, as well as catch up with the rest of the community.

Basically, with Issue #12 live on the servers, now is the time to experience one of the most unique MMO properties on the market, and I’m going to explain why.

Click here to read more...

Funcom release teaser for single-player horror experience The Park

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
News
Tags:
funcom, Horror games, PC games, Teaser, The Park, The Secret World

Funcom release teaser for single-player horror experience The Park

'The Secret World' themed title coming this October

Funcom are primarily known for their online experiences such as Anarchy Online, Age of Conan, and The Secret World, but today they have released a teaser trailer for a brand new single player experience. The Park, which according to Red Thread Games' Ragnar Tornquist is planted in The Secret World universe, looks to feature a character named Lorraine and "the most terrifying nightmare of her life" at a theme park. The images shown in the teaser should look rather familiar to players of The Secret World, especially for visitors of The Savage Coast. You can judge for yourself by hitting the jump.

Click here to read more...

The Secret World: Issue #11 - Reaping The Whirlwind Review | Endgame

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
DLC, EA, Expansion, funcom, MMORPG, PC games, Puzzle games, Survival Horror

The Secret World: Issue #11 - Reaping The Whirlwind Review | Endgame

I love The Secret World.

If you're a regular, chances are you already know that. I've written article after article, update after update, in an attempt to shine the spotlight on what I'd consider to be the best MMORPG on the market and an exceptional game that dared to do something revolutionary. After three years of waiting, the very last piece of the puzzle has released and the first major story arc has come to a close.

So it's fitting that my final review for Dealspwn.com is the final DLC pack for one of my favourite games. And immensely pleasing that Issue #11: Reaping The Whirlwind is one of the most extraordinary MMO expansions I've ever played.

The Secret World: Issue #11 - Reaping The Whirlwind Review | Endgame

Issue #9 introduced us to Tokyo and its sinister filthy inhabitants. Issue #10 let us meet the cult and the man behind the bomb that changed everything. Issue #11 finally lets us assault the Orochi Tower to put an end to... her... schemes and get some answers. Of course, seeing as this is The Secret World, there'll be a few questions too.

Just in case you're interested, Funcom gave us a guided tour of Issue 11 before launch, which contains sweet flowing wisdom and major spoilers.

My wisdom flows so sweet. Taste and see >>

PREVIEW | The Secret World Issue #11 Guided Tour: an extraordinary finale for an extraordinary MMORPG

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
DLC, funcom, Games previews, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

PREVIEW | The Secret World Issue #11 Guided Tour: an extraordinary finale for an extraordinary MMORPG

The time has come.

Every decision we've made, every sanity-shredding revelation we've uncovered, every terrifying monster we've slain and augmented reality puzzle we've solved over over the last two years has led to this. The Orochi Tower is open, chuck, and promises to bring the first season of The Secret World's story arc to a breathtaking conclusion.

There's a lot riding on Issue #11, then, and I'm delighted to report that it's potentially one of the most astonishing pieces of content to have ever graced an MMORPG.

PREVIEW | The Secret World Issue #11 Guided Tour: an extraordinary finale for an extraordinary MMORPG

I don't say that lightly. Armed with questions and concerns, I delved into the newly-released content pack (available today for subscribers and those who bought the Fall Of Tokyo bundle) with The Secret World's lead designer Romain Amiel and Communications Manager Tor Egil Andersen, who were kind enough to lead me on a guided tour of a huge swathe of the Orochi Tower on a test server. Not only does Issue #11 represent a completely unique venture for an MMO, 21 different stories assembled into a staggeringly replayable tower, but it's also set to bring back our previous decisions in an awe-inspiring if unexpected way. Plus a hint at what's to come in The Secret World's future.

All the screenshots you see here were captured directly from the guided tour. Click to enlarge.

PREVIEW | The Secret World Issue #11 Guided Tour: an extraordinary finale for an extraordinary MMORPG

My wisdom flows so sweet. Taste and see >>

Delve into The Secret World this weekend for bonuses & boosts

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
funcom, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

Delve into The Secret World this weekend for bonuses & boosts

The Secret World is still the most unique MMORPG on the market, and in my personal opinion, the best. Thanks to a massive recent update that makes early-game progression smoother, there's never been a better time to get involved in this atmospheric, dark, Lovecraftian and richly evocative experience that prioritises brainpower, teamwork and exploration.

If you've already chosen your faction and are exploring the darkest recesses of The Secret World, or have been waiting for an opportunity to return, this weekend might be a good start. A promotional Power Weekend is now running until Monday the 20th of April, which confers some boosts and bonuses that late-game players will find absolutely essential. You'll find me in Tokyo.

Click here to read more...

The Secret World is better than ever - and it's time to get involved

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
funcom, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

The Secret World is better than ever - and it's time to get involved

The Secret World is my favourite MMORPG of all time and I make no secret of it. Last April I wrote a call to arms entitled The Secret World Is The Secret MMORPG Revolution, explaining how it's the most unique and forward-thinking example of the genre we've seen in years.

Breaking from World Of Warcraft's template, it's an experience that puts the focus on storytelling, on detective work, on brainpower and fourth-wall breaking alternate reality, a classless and peerless adventure that takes you from New York to Egypt and dark dimensions beyond. A game that slows down to let you engage with its lore, to find the macabre and the terrible behind modern life, where every myth, legend and Lovecraft short story has a basis in fact and is probably hiding down the next dark alley. Its atmosphere is palpable, its pacing perfect. Also, Tuvok and The Reanimator are in it, so there's that.

However, there's also no denying that The Secret World had a few flaws; a handful of gripes holding veterans back from returning and newcomers from finding their feet.

The Secret World is better than ever - and it's time to get involved

Bugbears that have now been either fixed, removed or mitigated by one of the most important updates that The Secret World has ever received: the Enhanced Player Experience.

Meaning that it's time you finally got involved... or returned to take on the fantastic Toyko content.

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The Secret World is only £8.49 on Steam

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
funcom, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

The Secret World is only £8.49 on Steam

The Secret World | Steam | £8.49 (no subs required)
Price ComparisonThe Secret World Review

The Secret World is my favourite MMORPG of all time. It's revolutionary, unique and focused on storytelling, deploying peerless writing, fourth wall-breaking alternate reality puzzles, atmosphere and exploration where other MMOs use trash mobs. It's groundbreaking, slightly broken and absolutely magnificent.

Better yet, you can buy once and play forever, no subscription required, and grab it for only £8.49 on Steam. The Massive Edition is also on sale for £16.49, if you want to try out the (brilliant) issues 5-7.

The Secret World: Issue #9 - The Black Signal Review | Welcome To Tokyo

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Reviews
Tags:
DLC, EA, Expansion, funcom, MMORPG, PC games, Puzzle games, Survival Horror

The Secret World: Issue #9 - The Black Signal Review | Welcome To Tokyo

Platform: PC

Developer: Funcom

Publisher: Funcom / EA

I've said it before and I'll say it again: you probably ought to investigate The Secret World. It's an MMORPG like no other, a thought-provoking, deeply atmospheric and peerlessly-written experiment that flies in the face of everything you'd expect from the genre. A twisted version of our world where everything is true, every fairy tale, conspiracy theory and horror story, where a working knowledge of sheet music and ISBN numbers is just as important as a deadly skill rotation. Not to mention steely nerves and a willingness to actually flex your grey matter.

Shame about the ending, though. The Secret World closed like a TV season finale, promising grand revelations and a triumphant return to Tokyo: the horrifying ground zero that kickstarted the game's events. Two years and a shift from subscriptions to 'buy once,-play forever' later and I'm finally in a position to say "konichiwa" from Kaidan. Promising a new playfield, horizontal progression system and the beginning of the end for the current story arc (if time is actually linear in The Secret World... goodness, there's a whole separate article in there), this is the descent into madness we've been waiting for.

The Secret World: Issue #9 - The Black Signal Review | Welcome To Tokyo

Was it worth the wait? For both hardcore and lapsed fans, Issue #9 is arguably the pinnacle of the experience thus far. A terrifying, chilling, haunting, deeply referential lungful of filthy air.

My wisdom flows so sweet. Taste and see.

Click here to read more...

VIDEO | Sexy Demons & Tokyo Terror: The Secret World Issue #9 Brings The Horror!

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
funcom, Gameplay footage, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

VIDEO | Sexy Demons & Tokyo Terror: The Secret World Issue #9 Brings The Horror!

The Secret World is still the most atmospheric MMORPG ever made. Or, to put it another way, it's bloody terrifying when it wants to be.

I'm currently polishing off our review of The Secret World's long-awaited Tokyo story arc, which has now begun courtesy of Issue #9: The Black Signal, so figured that I'd share some of my misadventures with you in video format. Having recently run through Outlast on Xbox One, I was confident that a quick jaunt through an abandoned parking garage would be a piece of cake, only the cake has already been eaten by murderous ghostly children-that-aren't-any-more oh god no THEY'RE FOLLOWING ME DON'T BLINK

Apologies. Beware major spoilers and disturbingly sexy demon overlords, since this is a story mission. Stay tuned for our full review -- and perhaps some videos narrated in coolly-assured confidence as opposed to nervy adrenaline-soaked rambling -- later this week.

Click here to watch Jon get terrorised by demons, ghosts and haunted shutters >>

The Secret World Is The Secret MMORPG Revolution

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Features
Tags:
funcom, MMOs, The Secret World

The Secret World Is The Secret MMORPG Revolution

(That You Probably Should Be Playing... Shhh!)

Massively multiplayer online games are all the rage these days, but MMORPGs are in a very interesting place. There are countless options to choose from and many are fantastic, but even some of the biggest guns are content to recycle the same old settings, levels and classes; afraid to break step with that Blizzard game. You know the one. The one with the Kung Fu Pandas. So it's probably time for an MMORPG to kick down the door, grab the genre by the lapels and shake it up.

All eyes are currently on The Elder Scrolls Online (erm... good luck with that) and Wildstar (now we're talking) to be the next big thing, but it turns out that one of the biggest and most disruptive MMORPG events already happened back in 2012. I'm talking about The Secret World.

The Secret World Is The Secret MMORPG Revolution

Funcom laughed at high fantasy, elves and castles, setting the action in our world... or at least a hyper-realised underground version of it where everything is true. Every conspiracy theory, every fairytale, every Lovecraft novella, every demon, angel, urban myth and bible story actually happened in some capacity - only we don't know the details. It's fiercely different, defiantly unique and challenges traditional notions of what MMORPGs are supposed to be at every turn - and that actually feels more relevant a couple of years on.

This is a game in which Nyarlathotep and Sasquatch could be hiding in the next menacing cavern or back alley, and in all likelihood probably are.

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The Secret World | £12.49 | Funcom | PC

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
EA, funcom, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

The Secret World | £12.49 | Funcom | PC

The Secret World | Funcom | £12.49 (save £7)
Price ComparisonThe Secret World Review

Just in case you didn't get the memo, The Secret World doesn't have subscriptions any more. It's buy once, play forever (or until the servers shut down, you know).

Get Double XP & Freebies In The Secret World This Weekend

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
EA, funcom, MMORPG, PC games, The Secret World

Get Double XP & Freebies In The Secret World This Weekend

The Secret World will be celebrating 'Black Weekend' from Friday June 14th (tomorrow) until next Monday, offering double XP potions and some free gear to those who log into the Lovecraftian MMO. Its new buy once, play without subscription model is paying dividends for the player base, which has significantly increased since the ropey launch. Carl heaped praises on the project in our 8/10 The Secret World review.

We've got the Black Weekend details below.

Click here to read more...

The Secret World: Subscription No Longer Required

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
EA, funcom, MMORPG, PC games, Subscriptions, The Secret World

The Secret World: Subscription No Longer Required

Funcom have abandoned mandatory subscription fees for The Secret World, allowing players to buy the game in its entirety for a one-off fee (£24.99 RRP, less if you find a deal). Money will be recouped from DLC, micro-transactions and an optional premium subscription that includes bonuses and accelerators.

If you buy the game before the end of December, you'll receive the first few DLC packs for free.

Click here to read more...

The Secret World | £4.37 (With Code) | Green Man Gaming | PC

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
Deals
Tags:
EA, funcom, MMORPGs, PC games

The Secret World | £4.37 (With Code) | Green Man Gaming | PC

Cost can be a huge barrier when it comes to MMOs, but thankfully Green Man Gaming are running an offer which sees The Secret World fall to just over £6. That price can be knocked down even further using the voucher code above, making it £15 better than the next best deal, as well as coming with a month of game time.

We claimed Funcom’s latest MMO was a “brave new world worth spending time in” in our colossal review, thanks to its mature storylines and willingness to focus on puzzle solving instead of just combat. With Funcom planning a special in-game / ARG event forin the run up to the 21st of this month, it could be the right opportunity to give The Serect World a try. Thanks to gamestraderjames @ HUKD!

The Secret World Issue 4 Trailer: Big Trouble In The Big Apple

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
News
Tags:
EA, funcom, MMO, The Secret World, trailer, Update

The Secret World Issue 4 Trailer: Big Trouble In The Big Apple

Funcom's latest update for The Secret World includes a New York raid event, some London-based theatrics and great big chainsaws. Oh my. Issue 4 will roll out later this month, as evidenced by this new trailer.

A rockey release window and controversial subscription pricing model lead to a seriously slow start for Funcom's MMO despite its impressive quality. More details are available in Carl's epic The Secret World review.

Click here to read more...

Dreamfall Chapters Announced

Author:
Carl Phillips
Category:
News
Tags:
Dreamfall Chapters, Dreamfall: The Longest Journey, funcom, Mac games, PC games, Ragnar Tornquist, Red Thread Games

Dreamfall Chapters Announced

Ragnar Tørnquist Forms New Studio For The Project

Funcom announced this afternoon that the Dreamfall Chapters, the long-awaited sequel to their adventure game Dreamfall: The Longest Journey, is currently in pre-production. The project will be headed by the series’ creator Ragnar Tørnquist, who stepped down as Game Director for Funcom’s MMORPG The Secret World earlier this year, and will be created by his new development studio Red Thread Games.

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The Secret World | £12.49 | Origin | PC

Author:
Jonathan Lester
Category:
Deals
Tags:
EA, funcom, MMORPG, PC games

The Secret World | £12.49 | Origin | PC

Funcom are desperate to attract more players to The Secret World, which takes the MMORPG genre in an exciting story-driven direction. Our resident MMO expert Carl reckons that it's "a brave new world worth spending time in," and if you want to get involved, EA are currently offering a major discount on their Origin platform.

However, remember that you'll have to pay monthly subscription fees. Will this be enough to drag you away from Guild Wars 2?