First Steps into The Secret World’s Elder Game



I realized this week that it’s been a while since I’ve talked about what I’ve been up to in The Secret World. My weekend was filled with Black Desert Online’s beta but all of last week and this was spent working my way through issues 5 and 6 and trying to earn enough Black Bullion to start upgrading my gear; what I consider to be the first steps into The Secret World’s elder game content. I have to say, so far those two along with issue 7 (which I accidentally completed while still working my way through Transylvania) are real gems. If I can expect as much from the following issues then I have a lot of great content ahead of me.


Is anyone else hungry for donuts?


Last week was spent playing through issue 5 and running through some of the Kingsmouth quests again on my main character. Kingsmouth is still my favorite zone although that could be simply because it was such a memorable introduction to a game that I absolutely love. The fifth issue starts in the Blue Mountains and involves tracking an NPC named Tyler Freeborn; the author behind a blog that is exposing the events of Kingsmouth to anyone who will listen.

Of the three issues this was my least favorite, but it was enjoyable all the same and I’d like to run through it again soon. Tyler wasn’t all that interesting to me but I did enjoy following his trail and watching his documentary style videos. The final mission left more questions than answers but the landscape out in the fog was eerie and surreal. It brought back that feeling of tense anticipation that The Secret World is so good at cultivating.


Play it cool, Katerina. You don’t want to disrupt the space-time continuum.


Issues 6 was much better, however I could have done with fewer sabotage missions at the beginning. Said is one of the more colorful (and memorable) characters in The Secret World and working for the mummy with questionable morals makes for good missions. Time travel was a nice touch and it wasn’t overdone, just enough to move the story forward in a clever way. I’m still a little foggy on my 3rd Age lore but I’m hoping this era is explained more later on. I thought it was funny though that my character had to wear the clothing of a Roman slave to “blend in” all the while garnishing an assault rifle.

The following missions are where the whip as an auxiliary weapon can be earned however I missed this the first time and went back through the last three missions again to get my whip and to ride the train a second time. The final mission, The Last Train to Cairo” is one of the best in the game but also one of the more frustrating. When I would fall off the train (something that happened to me often due to a spotty Wi-Fi connection) the respawn points had me running through quite a few train cars to get back to where I left off.


“Sweep the leg!”


Now that I’ve made it through those two I’m going to run through Issue 7 a second time and then possibly continue to run these issues in order to earn the Black Bullion I need to get better gear. You earn a lot of AP, SP, and BB from these issues and having been through them once a second run through should go even quicker. However there may be faster ways to earn these resources so eventually I will need to look into other options. Just getting the base QL purple gear is going to take some time and is made all the more complicated by the fact that I can’t decide which weapon set to pursue for group content. So for now I’ll work on obtaining and upgrading my head and major talismans and hopefully by then I’ll have decided upon a weapon set.

3 thoughts on “First Steps into The Secret World’s Elder Game

  1. Very interesting, how you see the issues. For me, Issue 5 was the one where i finished and logged off for the day, as i had to take a break to stomach it.

    If you connect all the dots from what Tyler Freeborn revealed, what you find during the missions and what the research reports from the Orochi camp says, the atmosphere here switches from “grim” to “the rapture is here”. I can’t go into more detail without spoiliering this for readers who might not have done that issue yet.

    “If I can expect as much from the following issues then I have a lot of great content ahead of me.”

    Don’t expect much from issue 8. And if you are not into dungeons, then you might want to skip issue 12 for a while, it adds very little content outside of two new dungeons. But the issues 9 to 11 i think you will enjoy very much, as long as you get a grip on Aegis (an additional combat mechanic in Tokyo) quickly.

    For Aegis, there’s a lot of discussion about that going on at the moment at Bio Break.
    ( )

    It really throws rocks between your feet when entering Tokyo for the first time, and it’s no shame to get a bit of help there for a headstart, be it fire support or simply information on how to handle the Aegis system. The first hours in Tokyo will be a pain, but once you got used to Aegis, it’s no problem any more, and the story there is certainly worth it.

    On the train sequence and lag: Ouchies! My comforts! That one is a challenge the first times even without lag, we’re generally not used that much to fighting in so tight space, where a misstep can kill you. With lag, it must be hell. 😦

    On dungeons and if you need a group: just holler. 🙂

    And on the gear: i’d advise to just upgrade the custom items you got from the issues. Those are usually the ones where the specific signets fit into, so you might want to take a look there. For weapons and talismans where you don’t have customs yet: delay those, till your present customs are well upgraded. When going for dungeons, in elites you get QL 10 blue loot, in nightmare difficulty you get purple loot in the range of QL 10 to QL 10.2.

    As no veteran player is interested in that stuff, you can freely pick, so if you start doing nightmare dungeons, you’re almost certain to have full purple equipment after just a few dungeon runs. Replacing all of those then with custom gear can be a long term goal, but doing so really can take a while, i don’t think that should be on top of your mind. 🙂

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  2. I’ll have to run through issue 5 again soon, maybe I’m missing something. That’s one of the advantages to TSW; if I need to I can run a mission again.

    I knew 8 wouldn’t have much to it, it’s just the scenarios right? Which is why I’m trying to upgrade at least some of my gear because my first time in a scenario and I did not have enough dps to take down the mobs quick enough. I am focusing on the head and major talismans and then will upgrade them before doing anything else. I’ve only done one dungeon so far but now that I’m through all of the story I wanted to see I will probably switch my focus to group content and getting ready for nightmare dungeons. You had mentioned I stick with range and I found a shotgun/ Elementalism build; would that be a good weapon combo to start out in dungeons?

    I’ve already bought everything through Issue 13, so no matter what I’ll at least be able to see what all they offer. I’m looking forward to Tokyo but if I understand correctly, I need to get through the scenarios first, right? That’s what my main story quest has me doing right now. That’s why I stopped to go run the issues and work on gear. As soon as I have a build and the gear for Tokyo though I’ll be jumping right in.


    • On Issue 8 and scenarios, as far as i know, by now it is enough to do one dungeon and you can progress to Toyko, but i am not 100% sure about that. (Also, if you have enough money spare, you can just buy a faked certificate at one of the vendors there, to pass scenarios alltogether. Basically you just bribe your way through them, without ever doing them. )

      On taking down enemies quickly enough in scenarios, that’s relative. Generally speaking, people tend to use survivability oriented setups in scenarios. It’s quite normal for people to run around at the spawning phase, attract the mobs at the survivors and kill them with spamming AoE abilities while moving from one playe to another, so not killing them quickly but wearing them down by outlasting them, while collecting all of them.

      In nightmare difficulty the game changes, there you have to find the thin balance between killing them fast enough so they don’t shred you while still being able to gather enough of them in short time, so they don’t kill the survivors. But that’s something you don’t have to worry about. (I mostly skip the nightmare scenario challenges, they are a wicked combination of being terribly hard and still somehow having the touch the mind-numbing of all scenarios. )

      But as mentioned, you don’t have to spend much time to get past the scenarios. I know that at some time the price was changed, that you needed only tokens of one scenario to buy the certificate to move on. By now the tokens are gone, as all the many currencies are replaced with BBs and MoPs, but i never checked how many of them you need for the certificate. So without final info at hand, i would guess that the time you have to bother with scenarios is very little.

      On a Ele/Shotgun setup as DPS: this sounds fine. While shotgun has shorter range than any other ranged option, it does work and sees plenty of use in dungeons. The same is true for Elementalism. Both of them also offer a nice damage buff, for shotgun it’s Breaching Shot, for Elementalism it’s Short Fuse.

      Established DPS setups these days most often combine Shotgun and Pistols for the two buffs Breaching Shot and Deadly Aim, while a second DPS brings Elementalism and most commonly combines that with Blood or Assault Rifle to exploit the longer range. This by now means is necessary, the only reason for that is a mechanic in the New York raid, where there are different spots, each of which buff several weapons.

      One of those spots only buffs shotgun and pistols, while another buffs blood, elementalism and assault rifle, so for that raid these combinations are preferable. For convenience reasons, many people now use the same setups for normal dungeons. That being said, in the rare case that i am needed as DPS, i use Ele/Shotgun for some bosses, to have the range and mobility (Flicker) of Elementalism, while also bringing the utility (Cleanup) from Shotgun.

      So all in all, Ele/Shotgun is a good combination for where you are. In the run of time you’ll collect more passives all over the wheel to optimize even further. When done with that, you automatically also have collected everything you need for building most other useful DPS setups. 🙂


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