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A Delayed Patch brings Horses

This week’s patch was delayed for 24 hours. Although the exact reason isn’t clear one thing is clear. The new patch does contain a lot of tweaks and changes to the game and the client in general.

The main highlights of the patch were the ability to Double or right click on a teleport in the Teleport UI instead of the system that requires an extra click on the description. The Psychic AEGIS shield now displays an animation when it refills and you now have the ability to choose from two types of client download from the launcher.

Minimal downloads the first five hours of the game (if you are new) and then downloads content in the background as you play. This is great for people who haven’t played in a while or who have a slow internet connection. Full on the opposite hand downloads all the content before you start playing leading to a delay in you getting in game but hopefully less loading and buffering between un-patched areas. It is worth noting it is not downloading the entire game again, simply the assets you don’t have.

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In addition to the various tweaks and bug fixes the patch was also missing something that had the community in an uproar lately. The patch notes for the 27th showed a nurf to the Bombardment skill. The patch on the 28th did not contain the much maligned nurf. The delay could be part of a larger picture of future changes or it could just be a technical issue with the nurf. Hopefully there will be more information about that in the coming Streaming Ones.

Last (but by no means least the patch brought with it two new Item Store items. The Swift Thoroughbred mount, and the Rough Rider outfit are now available and bring a touch of western to The Secret World. The horse itself is pretty impressive and I know we’re glad to see new clothing and items being made available directly and not through RNG bags.

You can read the full patch notes here and visit the Item Store in-game or on the web here

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Mags Answers The ArchiText Questions

Yesterday Lead System designer Mags answered The ArchiTexts questions and there was something for everyone.

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He went into great depth about future PvP plans in Fusang including a new direction for the missions, shared battle groups and new dynamic events.

He also addressed the question of creating Nightmare versions of the existing zones as well as well as mentioning Augments.

You can read the whole thing over on the official forums here and it really is worth the read.

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Episode 54

This week we are joined by Lead Writer of The Secret World Joshua “Scrivnomancer” Doetsch and discuss all things dark and macabre.

As with our previous interview it was streamed live on Twitch and very little in the way of editing has been done to the recording.

News

Missing Episode: Due to RL issues Kle has not edited the previous episode where we discovered evidence of player housing and Tattoos. He will do it and hopes to have it out next week. It doesn’t contain anything time sensitive but we still hope to have it out mid next week.

Azathoth Wakes Update: Sound is taking a little longer than expected. One person so much sound. Extended deadline to start of May. You can find the update here

Otterdown Contest Update: Jennet has not been well lately but is working on getting the pictures and winners together. She hopes to have it sorted by next week.

 

Events

Saint & Sinners Writing Event: Write a short story based in the club, no word limit and share it with the @SnSTsw twitter account. It’s open until the 29th and has nice prizes up for grabs.

Streamers:

Radio:

As always you can get in touch with us by email info@thesecretpodcast.co.uk, Twitter@TSW_Podcast and on Facebook as well as our contact page. You can get the latest episode of the show from iTunes here, Sticher here and directly from the site.

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Jingi’s “Sunday” TSW Column #8

It’s been quite a month. Ups and downs and turn around but I’m back. A long battle has been waged and I am slightly worn but victorious. It may not be Sunday but it has been exactly a month since I have written the column.

Back to everything #TSW. I’ve missed you guys. There’s been so much that’s been going on, so much to cover; I hope I don’t leave out anything.

With that – this week I will be going over a few hot topics, (a) The Streaming Ones Episode 19 & 20, (b) Beyond the Veil Podcast Episode w/ Tilty, (c) The Secret Podcast Anniversary Episode w/ Andy, (d) Contests, (e) Weekly occurrences and more!


There have been two episodes of the Streaming Ones out since the last column, and most have covered on the recently released Issue 14, “The Call of the Nameless.” Episode 19 was a teaser, where in episode 20 was the preview of the starter investigation mission.

Scrivnomancer, Tilty, & Andy have confirmed that next week will be another overview of Issue 14 and will be delaying the Templar stream until the time comes up to preview it. My colleagues want to keep this as a running joke, saying that the Templars don’t deserve a stream at all.

WELL!

We’re just too good for it. Perhaps.

So, if you haven’t played ANY of Issue 14 yet and would NOT want spoilers, make sure to skip on the next Streaming Ones Episode 21 on Friday, April the 15th.

But if you would want spoilers you can visit here for an indepth interview & know that it came by lots of hilarious streaming and dying.


Next up, Beyond the Veil! It’s been great being back on the team I missed folks while I was away. This latest episode featured us interrogating Tilty, aka the Lead Game Director! We found out he was bequeathed with his new title relatively recently and we were honored to have him on board.

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Tilty spoke about quite a bit concerning issues that were brought up with the masses concerning the recent Issue 14, Fusang, and much much more. I will post the remastered video once it is published, soon.

On an interesting note we found out that the 3D modeling and concept of outfits can certainly be VERY expensive, totaling up to around $8,000 when you take time and money into the equation. We’re very expensive clothes collectors.

With a downside, he also touched on the Aux weapons – mentioning that just the creation of one takes the entire team’s attention to create. They do have plans for them in the future BUT currently it is not on the table.

The team is also looking into the end of Issue 14 rewards, noting the feedback that they have gotten so far. You may find the RNG factor removed soon if they do decide to act on the feedback.

He also teased us with a variety of new things, however – They are working on a new feature, and he confided with us that he thinks role-players will absolutely enjoy it. Another teaser is that they are working on new world events in the future.

On a last covering tune, he did imply heavily that time does equal money. They can’t get to absolutely everything but they haven’t forgotten what needs to be fixed. Remember – your voice is heard, and heard well! We just have to be patient at times with our overlords.


Moving on – time to party! Last Saturday we had the Secret Podcast’s anniversary episode and the lovely Andy Benditt came to celebrate with us! As well as party crashing GMs. It was quite the time.
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We used our time wisely as well, making sure to interrogate our community manager who may or may not have been a robot. He showed his very down to earth side – noting that even if he works for Funcom that he will still regard and make sure that people he talks to feel that he’s listening to them whether rain or sun.

He even let us kill him. Well, our dear GMs killed him but we pretended to do so! Turns out you can also infinitely heal him. He was up to around 30 million health until he was smitten.

We also were able to get the chance to name his beard! On the 15th, the final choice will be submitted by TSW players and it will be official for the stream! You can vote for his beard here.

Lastly, he touched on how he could be exiled every lunch time due to his taste in sardines. Be sure to send Andy some to the Funcom Office, and watch hilarity ensue. (Note: Don’t do this. Send him argyle sweaters instead he needs more.)

If you missed this episode and would like to view it, you can listen to it here!


Coming up – there hasn’t been much going on in the scope of contests besides Otterdown and Saints and Sinners but they have finally come to a close! Jennet will be voting for the winners soon so keep on the lookout and good luck to everyone who entered!

Azagthor and I entered the contest as Orochi. We were very pleased with the outcome. Or perhaps at least one of us was.

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As far as Saints and Sinners go, I WON THE LAST CONTEST! I NEVER WIN ANYTHING. HAPPY DAY. The next contest is already in effect and he has made it a written contest!

Write a prompt that is in the setting of the Saints & Sinners club in New York. It has no word limit at all, so you can be as creative or minimal as you wish! Make sure to tweet or submit your writing to @SnSTSW or on the forums here!

Winners have also been chosen for the Secret Podcast! You can see the results here.

There will be more contests in the future – specifically with giveaways, but for now there was not a contest from me due to the break I took. Sometime in June will be the next month-long contest so keep on the look out!


Lastly, the weekly occurrences.

  • The #TSW Consensus survey has been closed as of April 1st, 2016 and reports are in the process. If you feel like sifting through the rough data it is available for everyone here. There will be another survey up roughly in May.
  • The Sanctuary Network is getting a head start on #ExtraLife and forming a team! If you want to join in on the ExtraLife charity fun & streams, find more info here!
  • Issue 14 Bugs have been fixed! Do you have any bugs to report? Make sure you report them with the in-game petition. They won’t know what to fix unless you do!
  • The Secret Buzz Issue #4 is underway. Ever wanted to be a model? Message @TSB_Fred to see if you can schedule a shoot!
  • The Secret Podcast will be interviewing Joshua Doetsch on April 22nd, 2016. If you have any questions you would like to ask the Dark Lord Scrivnomancer – do so here!
  • We also welcome Zoe! Our latest Author to the Secret Podcast team. If you would like to follow her and her updates, please find her here on twitter!

That’s it for now! Stay tuned for Next “Sunday’s” Column.

Do you have an event that would like to be featured in our columns or podcasts? Would you like to join our writing team? Contact us and we can help you out – please send me a message at GinSynrio@Gmail.com or over twitter at @Djinngi.

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A Personal Look at Depression

I want to look at a topic that, thankfully due to the nature of our community here in The Secret World, isn’t a taboo subject. Depression. Before I start I want to point out that all the experiences I discuss are mine and that this article will not be able to provide support. If you do feel you need support I recommend you talk to your GP or one of the mental health charities who do amazing work.

Let me start by telling you a little about myself. I have lived with depression now for over sixteen years. I have good days and I have bad days. Finding an even keel is not easy for most people. It is even more difficult when you have depression and anxiety to add to the list of things to manage.

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Gaming can be a great way for people to get away from the frustrations of day to day life. I mean let’s be honest, who doesn’t enjoy coming home after a tough day and letting loose on some zombies? For people with depression gaming can be a way of working through issues and resolving them by facing them in ways that just aren’t possible in real life.

But there are downsides to that too. When I started playing The Secret World back at launch I had no real clue what kind of person my character was. I didn’t even sign up for the role play dimension at first. However as the months passed I found myself connecting more and more with him. He was able to say and do things that I could not and he was stronger than me in every way imaginable.

And that in itself is not a bad thing. Many role players imbue their characters with strengths they have or wish they had in real life. But it got to a point for me where my character was displaying the same flaws that I had in real life too. He was beginning to display signs of depression and anxiety.

A particular incident springs to mind. After a party in-game a group of people were hanging around chatting. I am not the most social of RPers in-game. I may talk big on Twitter but you’ll rarely see me alone. I need someone to hold my hand. Unfortunately there wasn’t anyone this time. There were a few people there that I kind of knew from Twitter, not well enough to talk to but I wanted to get to know them better. But try as I might I couldn’t get the nagging feeling that I wasn’t good enough for this group out of my head. I couldn’t face the idea of being rejected by them. Of course these were unfounded concerns. I’ve spoken with many of the group individually in the past. But the idea of facing a whole group was daunting. So instead Kyle sulked off and left the group to their own devices. Exactly the kind of thing I do in real life.

I know you’re probably thinking wait Kle, the man who strips at Psy’s shows twice a week and who does a podcast? The man who goes on stream and makes a fool of himself regularly. How can he be daunted by the idea of talking to a group? It’s because this was a much more personal setting. These were one to one interactions and I was very worried about making the right impression. The podcast and the silliness at Psywarrior’s show does not really impact how people engage with me one to one. It doesn’t change their views of my character as (for the most part) the shows are not 100% in character. Nor does it change their view of me as a person. For me this felt more like a real life situation, one where I was being judged and where one wrong word, one wrong emote could make or break me.

Sound over dramatic? It probably is. But when you’re dealing with depression the brain doesn’t always see things in a rational way. It doesn’t always separate the game world from the real one and that is especially true when the game is set in a world so similar to our own. Suddenly the world I escaped to held all the same pitfalls and horrors that real life did and it was no longer a safe place to be in.

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I was lucky. I was able to take a step back. I was able to find a way of compartmentalising things and this is where we as a community are at our best. When I told everyone what I planned to do I was sent messages of support both on Twitter and in-game. People offered me a space to talk and more importantly they allowed me the space I needed to gather my head together.

And that is what I want to get across. When things are tough don’t be afraid to take a step back. Don’t be afraid to tell people that you are struggling. I know that can be tough, from personal experience I know, but the community for the most part will support you. They would rather have a good experience with you in the right frame of mind then force you to continue to play through your depression and anxiety.

We are all here to tell stories. Make sure that yours is told in an environment where you feel safe and secure.


UntitledKle regularly can be found sighing at Auroris on the Podcast and in-game wearing very little clothing at Psywarrior’s shows. You can follow him on Twitter @klethetemplar or you can get in touch by email kle@thesecretpodcast.co.uk

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