As a long time fan of The Secret World, I’ve been a tad concerned I may not like the changes that will come with the transition to Secret World Legends. Now, after reading MJ Guthrie’s interview with Game Director Romain Amiel, I’m wondering if I might not end up skipping out on it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m cool with Funcom doing what they need to do to keep the game going, but unfortunately, I think these changes will mean it’s no longer the game for me… story or no.
Like most TSW fans, I am admittedly there for the story. The combat — though not great — was okay within the context of what I was there for. Combat has now changed to one of my least favorite types… action. For fans of games like TERA, this will surely be a joy. For a lot of existing TSW fans, it may be one of the things that makes it not worth the move.
As with previous action combat games, fighting will be mapped to the mouse buttions while movement is all WASD based. The good news here is that players will have the ability to rebind keys to fit their preferences, so it may not be that bad. (Of course, I’ll give it a chance before writing it off altogether.)
Like many fans, I actually enjoyed the wheel. Though the interview notes it was daunting, it was more or less a second game to me, plotting out how to best go about completing deck after deck in order to fill the whole wheel.
For the sake of making things less daunting for non-TSW fans, the devs decided to eliminate the wheel and go to a tabbed page system. Each weapon has it’s own page with tabs for active and passive abilities. They’ve also eliminated abilities, reportedly those that were more or less ones people didn’t really use.
I’m not terribly upset with the removal of lesser used or “filler” abilities, but I am a little skeptical that going through a tab system for each weapon is any easier than simply using the wheel.
Another interesting thing of note is that levels — as in the kind you would find in a typical MMO where players get boosts in their stats as they level rather than having to make the decision on how to spend ability and skill points and potentially hindering their progress in the process.
As noted in the interview, levels have always existed in TSW, they’ve just kind of been hidden behind other things and it put the burden on the player to figure out their own stat increases. This way, no matter what decisions the player makes, the game will prevent them from making choices that prevent them from being able to progress smoothly. As far as changes go, this one seems to be one of the less drastic, and fairly benign.
As noted above, I am pretty skepitical about how much I’ll actually like these changes at the moment. But like any reasonably person, I’m willing to give it a go before writing the game off for good. Here’s hoping I’m wrong.