(You can follow my complete playthrough of The Secret World on Bio Break’s projects page! WARNING: Spoilers and stories ahead!)
The Ghosts and the Darkness (sabotage mission)
- I know, I know, it’s been a long, LONG time since I’ve worked on this playthrough series. Nothing against TSW, just got out of the habit of it. So I’m going to try to complete a mission here and there to work up these posts.
- So where did I leave off? Blue Mountain somewhere. Might as well head to the Franklin Manor and start knocking off those quests! First up is the Ghosts and the Darkness, in which Eleanor asks me to do something about those sad ghosts that got killed in the mine all those years ago. She’s so matter-of-fact about the ghosts, pitying them more than fearing them. It makes for a great story.
- One thing I like about The Secret World is that it doesn’t hold your hand through the story and march you through it all linear-like. Going into this mission we know that something bad happened in the mine, that people died, and that Eleanor’s husband was involved somehow, but past that the details are vague. Going through these missions is a way to fill in the blanks and resolve the cutscenes that kick them off.
- Getting to the mine is a little tricky, although it’s fun to ride a motorcycle through the abandoned factory and watch the golems go “GUH?!?”
- The Blue Ridge Mine was one of the scariest locations in my first playthrough of the game, definitely. I never like dark underground locales with unknown evils lurking inside. And boy does this place have them.
- So what do you have to look forward to in the mine? For starters, it’s dark but not quiet — there’s some generators running and a few unkillable, one-hit-death golems wandering around. Then the generators explode and it gets really dark, which must be dealt with on top of red rune rings that will nearly kill you, unstable dynamite, no map, and filth pods.
- The goal here is to creep around and locate the four ghosts hanging out by their skeletons, then make them happy (get a picture, some whiskey, etc.). The common refrain they say is that Ed (Eleanor’s husband) took the fall for Jimmy’s temper. So Jimmy did something terrible here.
- Ultimately, I mollify the ghosts and track down Jimmy’s spirit, who is quite the vengeful dude. Fortunately, the good ghosts help me out in what must be the first such time this game’s sent ghosts to bat for my side.
The Haunting (action mission)
- Franklin Manor is as stereotypical of a haunted house as you’re going to get in this game — a game chock-full of haunted houses. And yet it’s not quite what you’d expect, especially as its sole living person is completely unafraid of the dozen or so ghosts, even the one of her husband. Eleanor asks me to check in on the ghosts, starting with a broken mirror up in the attic. And here we go with one of my favorite missions in the game!
- I bump into Ed on the second floor, who tells me that he was ready for death. “I thought it would solve everything,” he said.
- A flyer on the second floor talks about the various tragedies and deaths that took place in the mansion during the past hundred or so years. This is what we in the biz call “foreshadowing.” Why? Because this is a freaking TIME TRAVEL MISSION. A time travel haunted house mission. Perhaps the first such ever quest in an MMO.
- The portal for our time travel is the attic mirror, which first takes us back to 1904. I was playing with headphones on for this mission and was really taken by the many sound effects, such as the eerie whispering that happens when you transition into this time period.
- This quest must’ve taken the designers some time, as every time period features a different arrangement and type of furniture and decorations. Then again, the manor as a whole kind of remains the same since it has a timeless quality to it and Eleanor isn’t really the high-tech type of gal.
- In 1904, the manor is rich and tastefully done, albeit with older furniture. Now, this is an action mission, so there are plenty of ghosts to kill (bitter servants). The goal of this time period is to find the servant girl who’s been locked in the cellar.
- It’s a little unclear what I’m doing here. Am I actually changing the timeline? Because I don’t think that’s shown to be the case. So I guess I’m popping back to help the ghosts get revenge and soothe their souls or something. Maybe just some spectral sightseeing.
- Next up is the winter of 1918. The mansion is definitely cheerier and more inhabited, and a kid is running around in the back yard. The goal here is to find the kid (there are a lot of decoys that transform into nightmares) and protect him and his mom from his axe-wielding maniac of a father.
- 1966, and according to the calendar, Orochi’s Bingo soda is available to purchase. The mansion is more decrepit and is occupied by a ton of hippies. Dead hippies, as this is in the middle of a massacre. The corpses start rising — they always do — and one is called an “ungrateful dead.” Heh.
- I’m tasked with (sigh) saving hippies from the murderous Billy. It’s not really that hard, although this is one of those missions where it’s like take two steps, fight a mob, take two more steps, fight a mob, and so on.
- Finally, I zip back to the present and Ed shows up to say that now that I’ve seen the past, it’s up to me to decide which side of the mirror I want to stay on. What does that even mean?
Skeleton in the Attic (side quest)
- While I’m up here, I grab a sasquatch skull and anima port back to the bigfoot camp to give it to the chief. Easiest sidequest in the game!