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The Secret World Column: Paying Tribute to the Redshirts

By Shannon Doyle on June 04, 2014

As we enter the final stretch before Tokyo I’d like to pause for a moment to pay tribute to our favorite Redshirts, the Orochi. We will be heading straight to the heart of Orochi headquarters to find out what exactly happened. There is no doubt that we will meet many Orochi along the way. And maybe, just maybe one will survive. But we aren’t going to hold our breath. The Orochi have, for as long as The Secret World has been a thing been the redshirts, the dispensable, nameless men who are more often than not are dead or die. And yet there seems to be an endless supply of them. Orochi must have a great recruitment team.

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We first met the Orochi in Kingsmouth. They block the only bridge out of town and have instated a quarantine which is keeping anyone from leaving. The head Orochi there is Harrison Blake, voiced by none other than Star Trek veteran Tim Russ. It was that moment that I first realized who and what the Orochi were going to be in The Secret World. They are the redshirts. Those sad extras in Star Trek who go on away missions with the main cast just so the writers can kill someone without it impacting the show. They often don’t even get names, and yes, more often than not they are wearing a red uniform. Though Orochi prefers a more modern and sophisticated black uniform there is no doubt that they are the redshirts of TSW.

As you continue your journey through The Secret World you’re constantly coming across the very questionable actions of Orochi who seem to love to play with fire as they experiment on Filth, children, and just about anything else in between. They appear to have a lust for power and insist on being in control of every situation. But as much as they seem like an evil giant corporation you can’t help but love them.

But all of that may change after Tokyo. We’ve known since very early on that something terrible was going to happen in Tokyo. The flashback at the beginning of the game is really only the start of Tokyo’s troubles. And now those troubles are finally coming to light.

We did learn just last week thanks to a rather disturbing video that the threat isn’t over. Citizens of Tokyo are being advised to stay indoors, avoid crowds, and most of all avoid certain areas which are of course infected with Filth. The video, if you haven’t already seen it is sure to raise a few hairs on the back of your neck. And you can watch it right here, if you dare.

We know we will meet one member of Orochi who is alive, for now. A shell shocked tank commander who was part of the first wave of responders to the events in downtown Tokyo. He’s also the last survivor of that group. Kurt “Buster” Kuszczak is a broken man. A man who should have never been brought to Tokyo who has only managed to survive because of his tendency to shoot everything and ask questions later. Perhaps it is this that will save him from being a redshirt. At least he has a name, that’s a good sign.

The Tokyo expansion may end up being the turning point for Orochi. Up until now they’ve been the black helicopters in the sky, the nameless corpses on the side of the road. The somewhat harmless, mostly amusing companion through the dark world of The Secret World. This could be the moment they turn into a real enemy. The moment we find out the true nature of the eight headed dragon.

But! This is meant to be a tribute. Whatever Orochi may become I would like to remember them for what they are now. As well as remember the countless numbers of Orochi who have died in service of the great corporation. They may have questionable motives, and they most certainly do stupid things. But they are the comic relief of our dark tale. They are the redshirts who die getting information so we don’t have to. We, the players thank you for the services you have provided. And thank you for the entertaining opportunity you have given us by doing something that was quite likely very stupid in Tokyo.

I’d like to end this week’s article on an entirely different note. A new cover of Pharrell William’s Happy has been making rounds on the social media for TSW fans. Two particularly talented players have made their own version of Happy dedicated to everyone’s favorite Filth corrupted bird, Flappy. One is just a Google Document with lyrics, the other is an actual recording. The recorded song is more about the event while the lyrics are for a song sung by Flappy itself. Whichever version you prefer you have to admire the talent that went behind them both.

Because I’m Flappy

Flap along, if you grow a lot o’ tentacles outta you.

Because I’m Flappy!

Flap along, with your fear - and do whatcha gotta do!

And it is things like this that make me love the community of The Secret World so much. The Flappy event replay may be over with now but that bird will remain in our hearts forever. I wonder if I can convince someone to write a tribute song to Orochi…

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