The Secret Adventures: You were eaten by a Grue (Scorched Desert #12)

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(Join Syp as he attempts to document a complete playthrough of The Secret World from start to finish. What will The Secret Adventures discover next? Find out in this exciting installment! WARNING: Spoilers and stories ahead!)

The Prometheus Initiative (sabotage mission)

Ladies and gents, today you’re going to meet the most elusive of the Orochi set — a live agent. There’s, like, five of them in the entire game. The dead to alive ratio is at least 120 to 1. And this agent is Lisa Hui, a stressed soldier who’s apparently been abandoned both by her bosses and by the Prometheus Initiative, some sort of project that the Orochi were sent here to defend. She suspects that it was an inside job, too. Time to go snooping around!

The camp is a mess — there are leaking tankers of Filth spewing that crud everywhere, and grotesque transformed scientists are patrolling the area. They’re super-tough, so a straight-up fight is out of the question. The job is to sneak around, avoid aggro, and shut down the pumping station’s many controls. There’s an achievement for not being spotted at all during the mission but HA HA it’s me so you know I might as well be sending up fireworks and singing showtunes wildly off key for all of the stealth that I can manage.

At the end of it all there weren’t any answers, including why the project leader kept the pumping station working even after it started Filth-showering the area.

Pass the Ammunition (side mission)

The Orochi camp has five missions, including this one. It’s a good one to pick up while you’re off doing the bigger quests, since it only asks you to keep a lookout for a few crates of ammo. I wish I had an exciting tale of bravery and near escapes, but this was more or less like my last trip to the grocery store.

Old Scotch, New Problems (side mission)

While in the Prometheus camp, I spy a box of scotch and apparently have the brilliant idea to get so drunk because the world is going to end anyway. No, actually I’m supposed to find more bottles to bring back to the Orochi as some sort of sterilizer/anesthetic. It’s a nice two-for-one mission bonus if you’re doing it with The Prometheus Initiative.

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From Below (action mission)

With my brand-new chainsaw equipped and skilled, I’m itching for a straight-up fight! Lisa asks for my help with the Orochi’s last stand, and while I’m not normally that sympathetic to the Orochi, I like her spirit. Sure, I’m in!

The first part of this mission is to defend the camp, which isn’t too hard if you take the time to activate one of the gun turrets lying around. After that it’s some plowing through various camps of ex-Orochi, current-Filth-infested bad guys. I found it amusing that, in a couple of places, the mobs were tagged as yellow (non-aggro) instead of the normal red.

As I’m going through this camp, I kept hearing radio calls for Orochi personnel and Lisa Hui to report to HQ. It’s been years at this point — I don’t think any of them are coming home. Do you?

Primum Non Nocere (side mission)

In the fallen Orochi camp’s tent is a computer detailing reports of secret experiments being performed on Orochi employees. Gotta love that work environment; if you’re not being abandoned for dead, assimilated into the Filth culture, eaten by a giant locust, or ripped apart by zombies, all you have to worry about is your bosses using your DNA as a playground.

Anyway, on my way out from the last mission I was tasked with taking blood samples from four of those poor individuals. Hey, more Orochi corpses! I’m starting to feel at home here.

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The Little Drone That Could (side mission) & Droning On and On (side mission) & A Flight of Locusts (side mission)

I backtracked a little to give some assistance to a downed Orochi drone. Even this company’s drones are dead in this game! If you like escort missions — and who doesn’t? — this is a nice, easy payday. Both quests require you to follow around a drone that meanders all across the map, often aggroing groups of mobs and getting re-broken in the process.

Ultimately, the two drone quests lead to a downed Orochi jet that spewed out all sorts of cargo and dead bodies. After paying a visit to each of the unfortunate employees for their keycards, I unlocked the cargo — no, we never find out what it is because The Secret World is a total tease sometimes — and fended off several waves of giant locusts. Still better than Ak’abs, any day!

The best part of this chain is that I was able to knock off three missions from my checklist in less than 15 minutes. Score!

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Immersion (investigation mission)

The Secret World should come with a disclaimer: “Investigation missions will take up hours of your life and possibly drive you insane.” Some of these missions can last incredibly long, particularly if you’re used to the zippy quests of other MMOs. Immersion is a great example — start to finish, it can easily take two or three hours, depending on how good you are.

It starts out with Lisa Hui sharing some backstory on the activities and fall of the Orochi presence in the area. Fascinating stuff although not that revealing. Do I need to be told that the Orochi got their butts kicked? That’s kind of a given.

The mission then segues into completely unexplored territory for The Secret World: A text-based adventure game. Like what you’d find from an early-1980s Infocom adventure. Seriously. And it’s not just a little thing; there are five sizable adventure segments (Game 1.0 through Game 5.0) contained in Immersion, and all of them need to be successfully completed to get codes and clues for the next stage of the journey. So the end of Game 1.0 points to the location of the 2.0 chip, which requires traversing the cities and Solomon Island as well as Egypt. As I said, it’s quite time-intensive, but the novelty of playing a text adventure game as an actual part of an MMO doesn’t quite wear off… at least, for the first time you play through this.

The end of the mission took me all of the way to Venice, which is kind of surprising considering that it starts in Egypt. There’s a connection made to Tokyo’s “John” which won’t be resolved for many, many, many more missions to come.

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