Guest post: Telling the Untold Stories of The Secret World

shhToday’s guest post is brought to you by reader Dots, who says she’s a writer if not a blogger!

Let me just start by saying I love The Secret World. I spend an appalling amount of time there. I have three end-game toons – one from each faction – a cross-faction Cabal, membership in another another Cabal, and a lifetime membership for the game. I play pretty much every day of the week. I love The Secret World for so many reasons – the atmosphere, the people, the game itself, but most of all, the story. Despite being 2+ years old, it’s well known for the quality of the missions available.

So, what do you do when you run out of missions to run (or you’ve run them so many times you can play them in your dreams?) You write your own, of course.

The Secret World is definitely not unique in having a set of mods written by fan-boy and fan-girl players, but it is the first in my experience to allow enough content creation capabilities that a mod like Untold Stories of the Secret World (US) can exist. SuperJenius wrote US in late 2014 to allow players to take those capabilities into their own hands. And for a would-be game content designer like myself immersed in my favorite MMORPG storyline, it is like Halloween and Christmas wrapped up with a bow. It’s also a boon to players who would simply like a chance to experience more stories within the Secret World between DLCs or want to experience US Lore, which features stories, fan art, cinematic panoramas, and more right in the game areas.

The mod is available on Curse.com and currently there are nearly a dozen or so quests available for players to enjoy, and more being written every day. The types of stories and content vary by author, but suffice it to say there are some enjoyable and creative stories to experience.

US allows the author to write a quest using XML, leveraging the game’s cinematics, subtitles, animations, and even character looks. You can add music and content via the in-game browser as well to tell your story and interact with NPCs, rare spawns, and more. As a mission author, you can chose to only allow a set group of friends to play your mission locally by sharing out the XML file, or by sending SuperJenius a request, you can get your mission published right inside the mod. Solon has even written a web-based XML editor especially for mission authors so creating your particular vision of The Secret World couldn’t be easier.

More information is available here. I’ve been having the time of my life writing my TSW Magnum Opus – a gigantic multi-part story mission. And, playing through Funcom’s newest DLC, it was eye opening to realize that I could have created more or less the same thing using the capabilities within US. If you haven’t checked out Untold Stories of the Secret World yet, give it a try today!

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2 thoughts on “Guest post: Telling the Untold Stories of The Secret World

  1. DDOCentral May 27, 2016 / 2:27 pm

    Taking a look now…

  2. Sylow May 30, 2016 / 11:27 am

    I still got mixed feelings on this. There are many MMOs out there, which could only have profited from such an addition. There are some others, which have a similar feature, e.g. Star Trek Online. I could go into a lot of info on it, but that’d be way off topic, so i just cut it down to this: while there are some really great missions, there’s also a huge pile of bad stuff.

    Now mind you, despite playing TSW since launch and being GM and despite having a number of addons installed, i never used this one, so i can’t rate its quality. But considering how tightly woven the story of TSW is and how well things link into each other after a while, i believe that we as players simply don’t have the chance to compete with the games lore. It’s not on how good or bad a writer we are, the problem is simply a lack of knowledge of what is still to come in TSW.

    I see no problem of yet another story of some Romulans or some other race turning up and creating a mess in STO. Star Trek always was about episodes, the later series got some bigger story arc, but in total is always was a little messy. At the same time, people know so much about it, somebody who does a bit of research can easily write something which fits into the world well enough. But while i as mentioned have not tested that addon yet and can’t rate the quality of the missions provided, i think it’s quite likely that some parts will collide with future developments in the game.

    [I could rant on about parts of gamers roleplayer / writer / fanfiction community, where i always find some people of who i wouldn’t want to read anything, but that’s getting too far off topic. ]

    So all in all, the idea is fine, and I see similar stuff working perfectly well in other games. But due to the much higher quality of lore and writing in TSW, this is the one game, where I remain hesitant to try such an addon.

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