TSW: All-Seeing, All-Knowing

This weekend saw another repeat of the Gilded Rage event in The Secret World, bringing with it the usual double ability points and world bosses. As soon as it was announced, I knew my time had come.

My main stands over the corpse of Samsu Nasiru in Kaidan in The Secret WorldAt long last, I was approaching completion of my main’s ability wheel. I had only about a dozen abilities left to unlock, spread between pistols and shotguns.

I knew the Golden Weekend could take me over the top. And so I made myself a new leech build for killing golems, girded myself, and sat down to grind.

And I slew many a Blingzilla. And I endured lag, and poor tanking, and long hours of spamming Bloodline. I healed tanks, and I killed adds, and slew bosses from Kingsmouth to Kaidan.

The AP flowed quickly, yet so close to my goal, it felt agonizingly slow. I resisted the urge to buy a booster from the item store — must conserve bonus points for pretty clothes. I just kept fighting, boss after boss.

And thus, at long last, I came to the end of my journey. After nearly two years of playing and countless hours of farming, I bought my last few abilities and completed my wheel, earning the Panoptic Core.

My Dragon shows off his new Panoptic Core outfit in The Secret WorldYay me.

I probably could have done this much sooner if not for my scatter-brained bouncing between games and my deranged need to play alts in TSW.

I do think the ability wheel is my favourite progression system to date in an RPG. It’s quite easy to create a build — or several — that works and is fun for a minimum of effort, but to complete it all takes vastly longer. It can keep you busy for weeks, months, or even years, yet it never feels like a grind, because you’re never really forced to keep advancing it. It provided a steady flow of accomplishment without being something you need to worry about.

And even now, I’m still far from “done.” I’ve still got my auxiliary and augment wheels to finish — I’ve barely started on those.

I also had some good luck with drops this Golden Weekend. Got myself a purple Signet of Breaching, a purple DPS augment, and enough bullion to upgrade my head talisman to 10.3. So it was a productive weekend all around.

Since I haven’t posted about TSW in a while, might as well chronicle some other recent adventures of interest.

Dungeon soloing:

My main soloing the Hell Raised dungeon in The Secret WorldSoloing out-leveled group content is one of my favourite things to do in WoW, but I always figured TSW’s light vertical progression would render such an impossibility. However, I’d heard of others managing it, so I decided to give it a try.

It went better than I expected. I was able to burn through all of Polaris without much difficulty, though the Ur-Draug nearly got me a couple of times.

I also managed to complete Hell Raised, but that was far more challenging. I died numerous times, and I had to experiment with a long list of different builds to make it work. It eventually became more frustrating than anything. But at least I finally beat it.

Oddly enough, Machine Tyrant wasn’t too hard, but Recursia was nearly the end of me.

On the plus side, it was yet another example of how there is almost no problem in TSW that cannot be fixed with enough cleverness and adaptability. That is something I very much appreciate.

I haven’t tried soloing anything past Hell Raised. I imagine I’d probably be dog meat.

The Last Pagan:

RIIIIICKYYYYY PAGAAAAAANI don’t really have much to say about the most recent Sidestories pack other than to say that Ricky Pagan is fantastic, and both his missions were absolute joys to play through. Truly TSW at its best.

He’s another example of how top-notch the writing in TSW is. He could so easily be written off as a completely silly joke character, but they made sure to let us see beneath his cartoonish exterior to the scared, traumatized man beneath. Ricky Pagan is funny and colourful, but also tragic and poignant.

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