Former Secret World Lead Dev Reveals What Went Wrong

I love what The Secret World tried to do. I love what The Secret World represents. But the game just didn’t click with a wide audience and failed to be a commercial success. Speaking with PA, former lead designer Martin Bruusgaard expressed his thoughts on what went wrong, suggesting the team may have pushed the envelope too far.

Bruusgaard said:

“I think we probably should’ve gone for something that was maybe a bit more familiar. No classes, no levels, different weapons, and you have the skills. Yes we have quests, but some of the quests are weird, where you look up on the browser to get the solution… it’s all familiar, but with a twist, and I don’t think we should’ve twisted that many things.”

“I have to stress I really like the game the way it is now, but if I’m thinking about making the game a more commercial success, I think we should’ve gone more commercial. That’s what I mean about not putting our twist to the degree that we did.”

Bruusgaard admitted that the absence of a traditional leveling system may have hurt the game, a sentiment I shared in my review of the MMO. He said:

“This may be a radical thing to say, but I think it would have helped if we actually had levels in the game. I’m sort of ashamed to say it, but I think that might’ve made things feel more familiar when it comes to players tracking their own progression and telling how strong they are, and knowing where to go. I think people got lost because they don’t have this number telling them how strong they are.”

What do you think went wrong with TSW?

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1 Comment on Former Secret World Lead Dev Reveals What Went Wrong


On October 10, 2012 at 4:28 am

The main trouble with The Secret World really wasn’t the lack of familiarity it was very much the lack ofexperimenting.

There was not enough in the game that made me want to shift over to it and play.
It seemed pretty much like any other MMO, where you walk around killing things, constantly respawn to try adn try again…

Who knows, maybe if it had benefited from some of the thigns Guild Wars 2 tried it would have been interesting. Meanwhile I am actually fond of a Level less game, but you still need a sense of Agency, not somethign that is easy to create without giving everyone the same.\