At VE3D, Andrew runs down the details of the latest Funcom financial report. They’ve reported a strong first quarter, revenue has gone up and Age of Conan subscriptions have seen a significant increase. There are currently 120 employees still working on AoC content and improvements, excluding customer service.
Additionally, in-game player time has also increased. Funcom plans to release significant enhancements in the coming months, and they are also developing ways to reduce the size of the game client download, to ease the burden on those wanting to check out the free trial. We’ll see yet another marketing blitz coming from them, focused on bringing back former players.
The Secret World development team is now up to 100 members, and a significant milestone was completed on May 7th. Included was the first iteration of the game’s combat system, character creator, dungeon, 11 near complete zones, content development tools and the first cut-scene.
Funcom also reported that the first Secret World trailer has been viewed by around one million gamers, and that the level of interest in the game is higher than Age of Conan received at a similar stage of development.
MMOSite features a new Secret World interview with Ragnar Tornquist. They talk about the awesome trailer footage we saw from GDC, the demon, the no-level system, the game’s setting, quests and the state of development. Give it a read!
Durham, USA – April 7th, 2009 – Dark days are coming. The words are now everywhere. After deciding to make the development its next massively multiplayer online game a little less secret, Funcom have now released information, artworks and the first ever trailer video for ‘The Secret World’. Journalists across the world recently had the chance to sit down and talk to game director Ragnar Tørnquist about the new game and hear his vision, thus generating reports on websites everywhere such as Eurogamer, GameTrailers, and MMORPG.com.
“It is great to finally be able to talk about The Secret World, after several years in the dark,” says senior producer and director Ragnar Tørnquist. “The real world is such a rich and fascinating setting for an MMO, and we are able to draw inspiration from ancient history, stories of lost cities and forgotten civilizations, folktales, urban legends, conspiracy theories and pop culture. We are building a game that mixes modern day Earth with terrifying monsters, dark and occult magic, cool weapons and awesome powers – and it’s unlike anything you have ever seen before in an MMO.”
‘The Secret World’ takes place in our own, modern-day world. Players can explore locations such as New York, London, and Seoul, as they unravel the mysteries, legends and myths that make up our world and its history. But the real and realistic will clash with the unreal and fantastical, as the darkness of the secret world approaches. Not only will ‘The Secret World’ offer a setting never before experienced in an MMO, Funcom is also expanding on the genre standards by introducing gameplay that is not based on classes or levels. Players will have the freedom to become whatever they want to be and play however they want to play, allowing them to explore the world at will and master anything from voodoo and black magic to martial arts and modern firearms.
By following this link you can download a fact sheet, artworks, and the first ever trailer video for ‘The Secret World’. These assets are meant to capture the spirit and vision of the game and its world, giving the viewer a small, but significant glimpse into what can be expected when the game is launched. Funcom have also made updates to the official website – www.darkdaysarecoming.com – and gamers are now invited to leave their name and e-mail. In the future, exclusive information will be provided to those who choose to sign up.
IGN is the latest site to show up with a preview for The Secret World. In their preview they confirm that there are other videos which have not been seen by the public yet. There is a longer version of the HD trailer that was released today, which we will have to wait to see.
“The gist of the videos goes something like this: a normal human in the real world is going about everyday tasks when they suddenly encounter something completely supernatural or paranormal. Then the gloves come off. This is a game that’s going to be centered heavily on combat. It’s also interesting because it’s an MMO that will not have rigid classes or even experience levels. Instead, you can amass different abilities into you character and, if you want, you can respec your character at any time. Instead of creating a new character from scratch, just take your existing character and modify abilities as needed.”
Here’s another little bit on budget and voice actors:
“This is also a big budget project. Ragnar said that the game currently has a voice cast of more than 100 actors, and that they’ve recorded in cities around the globe, including New York and London. This sounds similar to Funcom’s adventure game Dreamfall, which had a stellar voice cast that was also assembled from around the globe.”
CryGaia has posted the fact sheet for The Secret World. The poster covers the very basics of the game. You can also find links to the trailers and screenshots in the forum here.
The GDC 2009 The Secret World trailer kicks serious butt. And I do mean SERIOUS! So if you haven’t seen it yet, stop by VE3D for a look! This should get everyone’s blood pumping for TSW pretty good.