Temporary Templars: Secret World’s First Beta Weekend

Oooo, I think I see a bunny! Wait, no, just another Dracula.

Riddle me this: If everyone knows about it, is it still a secret world? And, if everybody in the entire whole of human existence makes that joke, have we failed as a species? Are our greatest works – from the Great Wall to the Sistine Chapel to Twitter – rendered invalid by a primal attraction to terrible humor? These are the questions we must ask ourselves as we peer into the nightmarish depths of our own reflections, glances dancing and darting around – never lingering – for fear of drowning in the oozy shadows of truth. Well, that and also “Did I pre-order The Secret World?” If the answer’s yes, then you’ve got a hot date with the Templar starting area this weekend. Hooray!

Specifically, you’ll have access to the Templar hub area in London and the suspiciously foggy town of Kingsmouth – which, I’m sure, is nothing to fret abou–

“Here the small town of Kingsmouth is under siege and you must discover what dark force lies behind it all. A strange fog has come in from the ocean and death has followed in its wake. The dead are rising. The monsters of the forest are stirring. An ancient and terrible power is awaking.”

Oh wait, is that what fog normally does? Goodness, this means my tiny San Franciscan hovel’s probably been under siege for ages now. Man, I feel really guilty for not pitching in – not to mention kind of silly. That is so like me to miss the supernatural apocalypse. Maybe, though, if I hurry, a zombie will still feel up to sinking its rot-ridden fangs into my clavicle.

So right then, the beta event kicks off at 9am PDT/5pm BST on May 11th  and runs until Sunday May 14th at 12:00am PDT/8:00am BST. And now I’m off. Wish me luck!


  1. Choca says:

    You can get keys for this at Gamespot : link to uk.gamespot.com (thanks Jockie)

    I’ll be playing all week-end to get a write-up done on the game so if anyone wants to join up…

    • f1x says:

      Thanks for the link!

    • Luke says:

      Aye, cheers.

    • sneetch says:

      It says they’re for the US, UK and Australia only, now it could be just a matter of lying about where you’re from but I stopped when I saw that.

      • Utnac says:

        Funcom don’t do any sort of IP blocking, I guess they just mean the game’s not been translated yet

        • hyzhenhok says:

          Unfortunately this is not quite true. Funcom management seems to come from the EA School of Utterly Retarded Corporate Decisions Made By Someone Who Doesn’t Know How Anything Works and have completely IP blocked people in China from creating accounts or logging in–similar to how swtor.com and the SWTOR launcher’s log in server refuse to accept any traffic from China.

          Yes, there are ways around it–which is why it is utterly stupid in the first place–but it is a serious inconvenience.

          • sremorse says:

            It’s probably due to the fact that the large bulk of scammers, gold farmers and hackers originate from China, Russia and the Middle East, leading to companies simply geo-blocking entire countries/regions out of the western specific parts of their games.

      • f1x says:

        The account/key worked for me, I didnt even have to lie because actually I was never asked about my location…
        and I will keep it secret!

    • derbefrier says:

      thanks man i was just looking at this game last night and saw the beta news.will download it when i get off work. I dont know a lot about this game but the setting is enough for me to want to try it out. The no levels and classes thing really sounds cool.

    • djbriandamage says:

      Greatly appreciated, homie. I got a beta invite this past week and have now secured a second key for my wife.

    • mentor07825 says:

      Thank you for the link! Surprised I even managed to get it, considering I’ve been banned from Gamespot.

  2. The Dark One says:

    Do you have any info on how that Facebook social thing ties into the beta? I got an email from Funcom that used both ‘guaranteed’ and ‘chance’ to describe the likelihood of getting beta access, as if that cleared things up.

    • Rymdkejsaren says:

      There’s a chance at guaranteed beta access! So first you have to be lucky and win it, and in that case it’s 100% guaranteed!

      I do wish PR people would assume we have rudimentary intelligence out here. Then again maybe they would be wrong?

    • Surlywombat says:

      Once you earn a certain number of points in the game you get guaranteed access. It’s quite a lot of spamming your timeline though. Possibly not even possible to make it (now) before the first weekend. I think they also have a few keys to give away randomly.

      • Utnac says:

        Make a fake Facebook account, add a few other accounts off of the games page, once they add, add ALL their friend, and then all their friends of friends until you have ~200. Come back next day, and come back every hour and use all your agents, I got far enough into the game to get beta access and all the items on one day.

  3. byteCrunch says:

    Just browsing the website despite this game being subscription based, they plan to add a in-game shop and expect you to pay for things like character slots (£8.49 each.)
    Wondering if this is a setup to make the transition to free-to-play easier down the road.

    • Midroc says:

      Oh wow, they want you to pay subscription and still act like it’s free2play? I really can’t see this game succeeding in the already oversaturated MMO market.

      • Dominic White says:

        Premium retail + Subscription + Cash-shop. Funcom really love their monetization.

        • wuwul says:

          And I love to tell them to go fuck themselves with a barbed wire covered pole.

      • Sic says:

        Am I the only one that thinks this has a distinct bouquet of Hellgate: London?

        • Punchbowled says:

          Perhaps with a smidgen of an olfactory taint of ROMA VICTOR, up in the high notes, just below the faintest tang of burning bridge and greased palm.

        • Hardmood says:

          to clearly write it down: its stinkin…i always wondering how funcom was/is able to join the club of rotten ea managers. lets face it, aoc is permanent construction sight. didnt deliver what they intended to do and now its rotting (i played it since release, but …couldnt stand the managment policy anylonger. sigh for the nice ip…)
          maybe both management folks had a lot of fun in a strip club and the breakfast next mornin.
          hilarious to believe that this product will be perfect, more than vague that it will be even describable as good.
          lets say “itll be working as intended” from some moneymaking point of view …and thats not the gamers point

  4. Askeladd says:

    I don’t know about you guys, but I’m getting Tortage flashbacks of this news.
    It might have something to do with me accidently logging into my old AoC account while applying the SW beta key. *shrug*

    • f1x says:

      I’m afraid it will be like that…
      but still I will try the beta see the game a bit at least, even tho as it will show only the initial part, we wont be able to see if the game is actually going to be shipped in the same unfinished state as AoC was

      anyway, I dont plan on getting it, at least not on day one

    • djbriandamage says:

      My early experience reminds me very much of Tortage – voluminous dialogue from well-defined, well-voiced characters in a gorgeous, believable setting. I’ve only put in a few hours but I’m thoroughly in love with this game already, just as I was with Age of Conan.

      Thank goodness for Funcom; the only developer who makes MMOs for intelligent grownups.

      • Utnac says:

        Up until level 20, then it’s once big cluster**** of lies and half assed content all the way up to the non-existent endgame, Horrah!

  5. Xzi says:

    This game seems like everything else that EA publishes. Too much focus on presentation, not enough on actual gameplay. Combat looks very boring and the “story” is all over the place. Not to mention that every character will end up exactly the same in that they can all unlock every skill. “No classes” sounds like a nice selling point, but I prefer the way that Guild Wars 2 has done it wherein there are still classes but no real defined “roles” within dungeons and events.

    Here’s what it looks like in action: link to youtube.com

    • MataDor says:

      GW2 gameplay looks quiet good, but enviroment and characters graphics are more then I can take, don’t want to play MMO with characters looking like pokemons and low manga, this is to embarrassing.
      And I really, really like climate of SW.
      Anyway, just bought preorder for Secret World, so by Sunday I’ll know if those money were well spent

      • Runs With Foxes says:

        Looks like The Secret World has its fair share of embarrassing moments: link to i.imgur.com

      • Xzi says:

        IMO, a stylized aesthetic is a much better choice in an MMO. After all, the idea is to attract as many people as possible, and therefore run on as wide a range of machines as possible. Rarely do you see MMOs go for super high-res graphics, and when they do, view distance is usually sacrificed.

        Okami is my favorite game up to this point in history, and while Guild Wars 2 doesn’t have the painted look on that level, it’s similar to what they were going for. The problem with Secret World and its “realistic” look is that you then just end up noticing everywhere that the textures are lacking in quality. Quite frankly, if nobody told me it was TSW and just gave me some screenshots without the UI in place, I would think it was The Sims.

    • aliksy says:

      Looks like a fair amount of “trade blows while standing still or slowly moving backwards”? Boring.

  6. never722 says:


  7. Eynonz says:

    Hmmm why not, i’ll give it a bash. Nothing like free entertainment for the weekend.

  8. onedeveloper says:

    After the experience i had with Funcon other MMO public beta weekend ( Anarchy Online, we got locked in the starter area, disconnects, etc ) i am expecting to see a lot of stories about craziness in the game.

    I really wish they put out a great product, specially because i am eating up the “secret world” setting. I hope they don’t screw it up.

    • djbriandamage says:

      You should probably expect the worst as Funcom is calling this weekend a “stress test”. I played last night and the game seems remarkably stable to me with good latency (from Canada, at least).

  9. otaku4225 says:

    Lucky for me I got into the closed beta. Illuminati all the way. So far it’s very interesting. Not the best graphically, limited character customization, but good combat, great specialization, and awesome writing. I have been waiting more then a year, and I am not disappointed.

  10. Brise Bonbons says:

    I got a key for this last weekend, but faced with actually playing it, I’m struggling to muster up any interest in yet another hotkey MMO. Also, whose bright idea was it to schedule their first test on Mother’s Day weekend? Has it been that long since any of the devs have left the studio to visit family?

    Maybe I’ll grab it just to experience these puzzles that seem so interesting. That shouldn’t take long in theory…

    • utharda says:

      Mothers Day is the second sunday in february, you missed it.

      Well in Norway. The holiday you refer to is a hallmarkization of the 4th sunday in lent, Mothering Sunday.

      However, enjoy your brunch, and find a good card!

      • Brise Bonbons says:

        You’re quite right of course. I wouldn’t count myself a good citizen of the good old USA if I didn’t slip up once in a while and assume everyone else just blindly does what we do.

        Anyway, I have a Xenonauts demo to play, and that’s not limited to the weekend. So there.