Norwegian game developer Funcom, which is responsible for Anarchy Online and Age of Conan, is now working on The Secret World, a massively multiplayer game in which you play as a member of an ancient secret society doing battle with occult forces that threaten the world. We previously shared new trailers and some new details on the Dragon and Illuminati societies. For our final update, game director Ragnar Tornquist covers the least secret of the secret societies: the Templars.
GameSpot: Give us an idea of the combat specialties of Templar characters. We've seen a trailer in which a character, presumably belonging to the Templar secret society, uses a shotgun to defend herself from a crowlike monster. Will the Templars specialize in firearms?
Ragnar Tornquist: The Templars are crusaders, and the society operates like a private army. A giant private army. They pretty much have the resources of a small country. They could take Luxembourg in a second; maybe even Belgium; definitely Iceland. And they don't hide it. Take one look at their headquarters: These guys are not subtle. But they've got confidence to spare and the track record to go with it. No one's better at this "war on evil" thing than the Templars. They don't restrict themselves to firearms--anything goes. But players who join the Templars will certainly have access to some pretty cool weapons--shiny, pretty weapons with fancy logos. What's the point in hiding who you are when you rule the world?
GS: And in the trailer, we watched the character use some sort of holy relic to create a burst of white light in her battle with the monster. What kind of occult powers will Templar secret society characters possess? Holy powers to banish dark creatures? Blessings to increase their strength? Healing?
RT: In their eyes, the Templars don't participate in the war on evil--they are the war on evil. And they believe they're protected, untouchable, holy, even, though not necessarily in a religious way. It goes deeper than that--to the very core of the mystery of this world, which is a central part of our story. And they see magic--the occult--as their birthright; something they've inherited, something that's in their blood; the pure blue blood of their ancient order. Players may find themselves looked down on to begin with, but they'll soon fit right in and gain access to the powerful relics that this society has accrued through the centuries.
GS: We understand that members of the Templar secret society are so driven by their beliefs that the group is perhaps the least secret of the game's secret societies. How will this trait affect their questing and dialogue abilities? Will they use intimidation to get the details they need from interrogations?
RT: The Templars are quite arrogant. After dominating much of the secret world for most of the past millennium, this cockiness has hurt them in the past. But there's pressure from within their own ranks to change with the times--to adapt to the new world order--and this dynamic plays a big part in the Templars' story mission. As an initiate of the order, you'll definitely see for yourself how these guys operate, and you'll be able to use their methods to get the information you need. But, yes, they definitely use their massive might to get what they need, and players will get to experience that for themselves.
GS: What sort of player will most enjoy playing as a Templar character?
RT: Anyone who likes structure and order; taking--and giving--commands; being part of a massive and ancient organization; and waging a crusade against evil across the world and throughout time. Also, who doesn't want to march under the Templars' red flag? Best of all, you get to show those bloody Illuminati who truly rules the secret world. Might makes right…right?
GS: Finally, is there anything else you'd like to add about this secret society?
RT: There's so much history to these guys, which makes them an incredibly fun and deep secret society to dig into. Everything you've heard may be true or it may be a clever lie. But the Templars go way back, and they've been involved in pretty much every major religious and political event in Europe during the past thousand years. And further back than that. Much, much further. Think "cradle of the civilization" further. The Dragon may have their mysteries; the Illuminati their incredible wealth and, you know, rocking parties. But the Templars have history; they have depth; and they have the best tailors. And class. Plenty of class.