After doing away with the buddy key system a few weeks ago, The Secret World has now launched a new free trial program. Rather than requiring a referral from someone, anyone can sign up for the new trial immediately, and it now lasts for ten days.
I’m posting about this because, in typical Funcom fashion, they have decided to basically not advertise this at all. Increasingly I am convinced that their marketing department consists of a thousand monkeys working at a thousand typewriters — though I doubt they’d spring for that much staff, honestly.
And as I have said countless times before, TSW is an absolutely brilliant game that everyone should try. It has the best story in the MMO world (possibly in all of gaming), unmatched mission design, beautiful graphics, and near limitless build customization.
Since the new trial will hopefully lead to more people giving The Secret World a try, I now present a brief list of beginner tips.
You should always have two separate weapons equipped — two different swords, for instance, offers no benefit. Nearly all resource builder abilities generate resources for both equipped weapons, so you should have a resource consumer for each weapon to maximize your damage. Beyond that, you can feel free to focus on a single weapon if you choose. My main’s build is entirely blade abilities save for one blood consumer.
Most active abilities only function if you have their corresponding weapon equipped, but most passive abilities will work with any weapon. You can and should begin unlocking abilities from weapons you don’t use just to access their passives.
Unlock the passives Lick Your Wounds (fist weapons) and Immortal Spirit (blades) as soon as possible. They’re the simplest, easiest way to add survivability to your build early on.
Attack rating is the most important stat for leveling builds. You need only a small amount of health. One to two minor talismans with healing rating can be worth it if your build uses self-healing or leech abilities. For secondary stats, penetration and hit tend to be the most valuable early on. Defensive secondaries are never worth it unless you plan to tank dungeons.
Do not attempt to blow through story missions, such as Dawning of an Endless Night, all at once. You’re meant to slowly work through them while doing other things. If the story mission sends you to another zone, make sure you’ve finished the content of the current zone before moving on.
That said, TSW’s leveling curve is fairly forgiving, so you can afford to skip the occasional mission if you wish. Just try to at least do a majority of the missions for each zone.
TSW does not have a “respec” feature in the traditional sense. You cannot refund spent skill or ability points. However, you will never stop receiving new points, and unlike most RPGs, you actually level faster in TSW the farther you progress, so if you’re unhappy with your current build, it won’t take long to unlock e nough points to change to something new.
Spend your skill points on all three talisman lines and whichever two weapon types you favour. Each weapon has two skill lines, but you only need to advance one to start. The damage line is usually preferable. Skills determine the level of gear you can equip, and in the case of weapons, only the highest line matters for what you can equip, hence focusing on one.
Do not post anything vaguely resembling a spoiler or hint in general chat. Trust me on this. The Mission Hints channel is open season, however.