The Naked Gamer is a regular opinion column that strips back the superficialities and looks at the flesh underneath. If you’ve got a topic you’d like discussed, drop columnist Kristy Green a line!
It’s no secret that I enjoy playing The Secret World and I would like to spend this week talking about why. This isn’t a review, I am not trying to be objective or discuss the finer points like what’s good and what isn’t. This is just simply why I love playing this game.
There is nothing I enjoy more in an evening than playing The Secret World with my lights turned down and my speakers turned up. I log in, sit back and let myself be absorbed into the world.
It doesn’t have the best graphics currently around but it does have something far better, and that is atmosphere. I adore the contrast of light and dark – it’s spooky and the sound effects are superb. It’s actually the only MMO that I play with the sound on. I like having the music set just loud enough to be classed as background noise and running around Kingsmouth hearing all the groans and growls. It is heart in the throat type stuff, I just love it.
I wouldn’t say I am big on role-playing, but I do enjoy creating characters and playing them with a style that suits my little back story of them. Now that I am absorbed into the game, The Secret World allows me to be absorbed into my character. Outfits aren’t designated by gear or costumes – you can wear whatever you want. My only disappointment is that the female clothes aren’t at all interesting and I don’t really like them. I only hope they design more outfits that suit all fashion tastes instead of the more obvious choices.
Another thing that helps me stay captivated is that we aren’t given a voice. I know it’s been some people’s biggest complaint but there is nothing more cringeworthy than creating your amazing character and then having the game assign them a voice that just doesn’t match. It’s painful having to play through a whole game and cut scenes with a voice that makes just makes you want to shudder.
Speaking of cut scenes, I really enjoy watching them in The Secret World. They use this time to really let the other character’s personalities come through. There is no talking heads or limited movement during these video breaks. Instead, characters use full body language, they move around, they stop and pause; they think and feel and they allow their individuality to shine.
Then there are the investigation missions that can only be completed by figuring out all the clues. The world is slowly opened up and you will discover that not everything is as it seems. The Secret World is filled with secrets that only make me want to play the game more so that I can learn. Oh and the twists! But I won’t tell you about any of those.
All of these things come together to really give you a living, breathing world. When playing The Secret World, I can’t help but be pulled in. If you let yourself go and just fall into the game then you are in for one awesome ride. It’s really intense, fun, challenging and scary. It will have you thinking, wondering, and pondering about everything you see and everyone you meet.
The Secret World isn’t perfect but it’s an experience and one I am glad to have never missed.
(Editor’s note: As you know I’ve raved on about TSW endlessly too – are you seeing a trend here? This is a very immersive game – why not give it a try? And no – I’m not being paid by Funcom)