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The Secret World Column: Everything is True?

By William Murphy on April 14, 2011

But then what the frak is “everything”?

The latest trailer for Funcom’s The Secret World is more of a puzzle.  True to the word of Ragnar Tørnquist, the new video seems to highlight the type of game players can expect from the company this time around.  That is to say it will be chockablock full of riddles, whispered rumors, puzzles, and mysteries to solve.  But I’m guessing that the video is more about the sorts of enemies, locales, and supposed mysteries we’ll be helping to uncover in the game than any massive ARG in and of itself.  Of course I could be wrong, but let’s suppose for a second that I’m not and try to decrypt a few of the trailers buzz-phrases and what they could mean for the game.  For the ones I leave out or simply don’t have a clue on, please do step up and smack me on the head to correct me.  I crave it.  Watch the video here if you haven’t, and then let’s get started shall we?  In no particular order here are the phrases that stood out the most to me.

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The Bees are returning: I did a little digging, and Funcom’s ARG (or viral advertising if you’d prefer) for the many mysteries of TSW does a lot of talking about bees.  A few of the loyal followers have traced it back to a group called Sanctuary of Secrets.  Apparently their leader’s name means “beekeeper” in Greek (Melissonomoi).  Now what it means beyond that?  I haven’t the slightest idea.

The Earth is Hollow: I like this.  This confirms to me that they’ve not completely ditched the persistent PvP space of “Hollow Earth”.  Hopefully we’ll get to know a lot more about it at E3.  I sure hope it’s more than another sort of instanced match-made map.  What it refers to in terms of lore?  Duh, the Earth is hollow.  Yeesh.

The Secret World The Secret World

The Host were here before us/They still are here: No freakin’ clue folks.  I imagine it’s an ancient race of beings that has somehow been directing Humanity.  But we’ll see.

Stonehenge is a Beacon: I love this idea.  A beacon for what?  Will we be hailing life forms from other planes of existence, different planets?  Or is it a beacon to bring sects of people together?

The Ark of the Covenant is an engine: Another very intriguing phrase and one that adds to the sense of wonder I hope we all have when stepping into TSW for the first time.  I would say be careful around the Ark though.  We all know what it does to faces. 

Eleven Days are Missing: I suspect this is in reference to the pagan holidays which were “covered” by Christian holidays to ease the conversion of non-Christian peoples way back when.  But then again, I’m completely paraphrasing from a thousand bad History Channel documentaries so maybe some Theology major can steer me straight.

The Old Gods are Awakening: As a fan of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods, I love this concept.  I hope we see gods from throughout history represented in TSW.  Really and truly, I do.  Just don’t screw with Odin.  He’s not exactly to be trusted.

The Secret World The Secret World

The morning light burns: Vampires?  Yup.  Maybe it means more, but I suspect that’s the rub.

Lilith’s children are unchained: I love this because it again signals that Funcom is tapping into more than just Christianity for its game.  They’re delving into Judaism with the demon Lilith and her spawn.  Very interested to see what other faiths they play with.  And if you’re the type who gets offended easily by any religion being used for entertainment, then I say to you: “Why watch all those reruns 7th Heaven then!?  You know you do.”  I rest my case.

So those are my favorites.  Did I miss anything supremely important that you feel like talking about?  Comment away!  I know the trailer wasn’t big on gameplay footage, but as I said in last week’s column: it’s the story that’s going to make this game sink or swim and so far it’s going all Michael Phelps on our arses.

Be sure to check out our exclusive screens and information about The Secret World and The Revenant.

William Murphy / Bill is the Managing Editor of MMORPG.com, RTSGuru.com, and lover of all things gaming. He''s been playing and writing about MMOs and geekery since 2002, and you can harass him and his views on Twitter @thebillmurphy.

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