Posts Tagged ‘Ragnar Tornquist’

Secret World’s Tornquist On F2P, Single-Player Games

By Nathan Grayson on July 6th, 2012.

The Secret World is officially live, and we’ve both locked it in a room with our most dangerous mythical creature, Adam, and hurled questions at creative director Ragnar Tornquist until he cracked – by which I mean “willingly and jovially answered my questions in a highly consensual fashion.” And today, the insane brutality continues. Specifically, we discuss free-to-play, what Tornquist plans on doing next (hint: probably not another MMO), social gaming, whether or not MMO business models hurt fun, and more.

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Secret World’s Tornquist On WoW Copycats, What’s Next

By Nathan Grayson on July 4th, 2012.

Secrets! Everybody has them – even you. Maybe you occasionally take two samples at the grocery store, or talk on your cell phone while driving, putting millions at risk. Or perhaps you’re just part of some boring, hum-drum Illuminati that controls the world’s every thought and action. The Secret World creative director Ragnar Tornquist used to be like you – except more interesting and with a cooler name. Now, though, his secrets are all gone. Yep, I snatched up every last one. He’s afraid of liquorice-flavored jellybeans. True story. But also, more pertinently, he thinks Secret World “doesn’t feel like any other MMO” in existence, and he has big plans about how to keep you wayward folk interested long after launch. Read on for all of that and more.

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The Not So Secret World: 30 Mins From GDC

By Craig Pearson on March 20th, 2012.

Are you John Walker?
I’ve been waiting for a John Walker simulator to arrive, and this is the closest I’ll probably ever get. It’s the Secret World’s GDC presentation, showing off Ragnar-Tørnquist’s increasingly-interesting (to me) MMO. You can pretend you’re in the room being John Walker, who can be seen here following Ragnar. Toss some water at the screen to simulate the tears that usually flow when John experiences a game by Ragnar. Or you can just watch the most complete look at the upcoming MMO yet. It includes a scene that suggests oral sex is being performed, so I’d not risk it at work or at a funeral. They really go down… look down… LOOK DOWN on that sort of thing.
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Ragnar Tørnquist: The Secret World’s Myths & Mechanics

By John Walker on March 15th, 2012.

Scenes turned ugly during the interview.
Last week I sat down to play some The Secret World for the first time. But not before I’d chatted with project lead, Ragnar Tørnquist, in the rather creepy location of a 90th floor bedroom in a vast hotel suite. It’s an interview in which he threatens to kill me. We also talk about how people are getting bored of MMOs, why the game has XP after all, and the role of religion in a game based on myths.

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Voices In The Shadows: The Secret World Interview

By Adam Smith on February 25th, 2012.

The setting for the interview was opulent but not packing factor 60 had been a mistake
After spending some time with The Illuminati, I escaped from The Secret World to speak to lead designer Ragnar Tørnquist about overcoming the challenges inherent in building a story-based MMO. We talked about creating coherence in a vast and varied world, the confused and confusing role of the hero in an MMO, and how it’s possible to reinvent and deconstruct a genre.

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Funcom Unveil The Secret World: Part Two

By Adam Smith on November 28th, 2011.

Even the bright parts of The Secret World have monsters in them

In the first part of this in-depth conversation about The Secret World, the talk focused on the game’s fiction and mythology. As the discussion continues, we explore how different the game will be to other MMOs as well as talking about the importance of lore. After covering connections to Indiana Jones and Tintin, the questions turn to other matters as we wonder aloud how long we may have to wait for more Dreamfall. The interview followed a full day hands-on session with the game and those present were: Marten Bruusgaard, lead designer of The Secret World, lead content designer Joel Bylos and the game’s writer/director, Ragnar Tørnquist. We were also joined by Norwegian journalist Knut Gaute Vardenær.

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Funcom Unveil The Secret World: Part One

By Adam Smith on November 23rd, 2011.

Our conversation took place in a distant land, but thankfully it was Oslo and not a splintered realm between two realities

Playing The Secret World was enlightening but the only way to explore its most secret parts was to sit down with some of the myth-makers who are conspiring together to create this story-led MMO. So I did what was necessary, gathering together three of the minds behind the game and forcing them to talk at me and each other for many an hour. In the first part of this two-part conversation, you will DISCOVER the reason the game is set in the modern day, THRILL to the origins of the secret societies, CONSIDER the difficulty of inserting narrative into an MMO, and PONDER religion and mythology at great length.

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Player Interaction Versus Story In MMOs?

By Jim Rossignol on April 7th, 2011.

An unhealthy longing for this kind of interaction.
This article by Secret World lead Ragnar Tornquist, in which he argues that there’s still room for stories that aren’t generated by player interaction, is a bit awkward. I can’t help thinking that it’s a defence against exactly the kind of criticisms I usually make of MMOs – that the effort put into their stories and quests would be better spent on providing players with the kinds of tools that they need to make their own stories. I am thinking here of the years I spent in Eve. But it made me think about the MMOs which actually put player interaction first. Other than Eve and Mortal Online I couldn’t really think of any. The Twittermind came to my rescue, suggesting Planetside – of course, with its lack of anything aside from purely player driven combat – but also Wurm Online, Neverdaunt, Love, and A Tale In The Desert. Which led me to think: What else is there? Could we make a list of MMOs where dev-developed story, fiction, and narrative content is necessarily secondary to the interaction of players? And how would be set up criteria for deciding that in borderline cases? What are the best examples of doing away with story? And what is it that generates the best stories from player interaction in MMOs? Comment peoples, open your brains.

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Speaking Out: On Voice Direction

By John Walker on May 24th, 2010.

Actors, in a studio, recording voices!

As a fan of narrative-led games, there’s one subject that I’ve never taken for granted: voice direction. Which led me to wonder why so many games companies apparently do. Why do so many games have perfectly decent actors struggling with scripts, lines delivered with completely incorrect intonations, and conversations between characters which couldn’t sound more disjointed? Something as simple as this can change the tone of a game, reducing a big-budget epic to sounding like a junior school play.

A few months back for PC Gamer I investigated voice direction by speaking to those who get it right. I spoke to LucasArts’ David Collins, responsible for directing Monkey Island, FunCom’s Ragnar Tørnquist about creating April Ryan and casting The Secret World, and 2K voice director Jack Scalici who is responsible for the enormous voice cast of Mafia II. I also spoke to two of the most respected voice actors. Dominic Armato is the voice of Guybrush Threepwood, and Sarah Hamilton plays April Ryan in the Longest Journey games. Below they discuss the craft, and express their passions and frustrations about voice acting and directing. This article originally appeared in PC Gamer issue 206.

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The Secret World: Teaser, Ragnar Speaks

By Jim Rossignol on April 7th, 2009.


Where do you go after Conan The Barbarian? To a contemporary conspiratorial supernatural setting with a cute girl and a horrific monster, of course! “A world where magic is real and monsters roam…” Funcom’s next MMO is The Secret World, and it is revealed in a whirl of internet magic beyond the jump. Not revealed by us, of course, because we’re too wee, but by the all-seeing eye of GameTrailers. There’s two bits, so watch the first one first, as it’s got the beautiful Ragnar “Dreamfall” Tornquist talking about his creation. “Fight rising darkness!” Anything for you, Ragnar. “This is an MMORPG without classes, without levels, this is completely skill-based,” Ragnar, now you are teasing us! You naughty beast!

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