Preview: What goes bump in the nights of Funcom's The Secret World
Your parents lied: monsters don’t just exist in fairy tales and myths. They’re all around us, hiding in the shadows and underneath the stairs, biding their time before unleashing hell upon the world. It’s up to you to keep these horrific creatures at bay, working behind the scenes as part of a secret society to ensure that darkness doesn’t overtake civilization. Such is life in The Secret World, the modern-day MMO from Funcom that isn’t afraid to spook its players.
As a member of the organization of your choosing (the manipulative Illuminati, the chaos-conducting Dragon, or the fanatical Templars), sending these monsters back to oblivion is your number one priority. Our gruesome bestiary is the edge you’ll need in your quest to exterminate these paranormal horrors.
Like the Lovecraftian abominations of legend, the Akab are beasts not of this earth, or even this reality. Conjured forth by necromancers who hoped to harness them as guardians, they long outlived their masters, and now wander their ancient grounds with no purpose besides exterminating intruders. They can be as small as a dog or as huge as an elephant, but no matter their size, they’re most definitely deadly.
Be warned: The Akab travel in packs, and you’d be wise to avoid their nests. When they spot you, the Akab will close the gap with a charging tackle. Try to escape, and they’ll slow you with a vile goo spewed from their repulsive mandibles.
The ultimate patchwork monstrosity, a Scarecrow is a being forced into existence with a singular purpose: to kill. Assembled from a stitched-together mess of hay, human entrails, and tattered burlap clothes, this mute golem seeks to terrify more than just crows. Once he’s set his sights on you, he won’t rest until one of you is dead—but how do you kill that which was never truly alive?
Be warned: Scarecrows wield a variety of weapons, but the most brutal is a rusty chainsaw. Your only option may be to turn and face it, perhaps with a chainsaw of your own.
The origins of this freakish orange figure are shrouded in mystery, but it’s apparent that running into this ghoul in the middle of a pumpkin patch spells certain doom. Time and again, this cackling creature rises from the fresh soil to feed his bloodlust with the changing of the seasons. For the residents of Solomon Island, winter can’t come soon enough.
Be warned: The Jack O’Lantern likes to hide in pumpkin patches during the harvest, bursting forth from the ground to attack unsuspecting passersby. Instilled with the power of the earth, he can ensnare players with suffocating vines or hurl chunks of dead root.
Dripping with slime and salt water, the frightful fishmen known as Deep Ones have dwelled in the frigid depths of the Atlantic Ocean for centuries. With the emergence of the Draug, they’ve been forced to relocate to the shores of New England in search of victims to sate their carnivorous cravings.
Be warned: You may be fighting them on land, but they’ve retained the slippery, agile movements they once used to navigate through the watery deep.
Those possessed by the pitch-black disease known as the Filth are no ordinary zombies. This foul, dark magic seeps up from below as a noxious liquid or imperceptible radiation, causing hysteria in its victims before mutating them entirely. Be you living, dead, or immortal, no one is safe from the alteration wrought by the Filth.
Be warned: Thanks to your anima-imbued powers, you’re resistant to the mind-warping powers of the Filth—but that doesn’t mean it can’t harm you. When Filth-infected enemies die, their vile disease will waft into the air as their corpse erupts into a plume of dark energy, debuffing any who step into it.
Spectres / Wraiths
Spectres are the unfortunate victims of brutal and undeserved death, who have—with or without their consent—returned to the corporeal world. Those Spectres with the most hatred for humanity become Wraiths: scythe-wielding ghost lieutenants who orchestrate evil like a maestro conducts a symphony. To face one is akin to staring down the Grim Reaper himself.
Be warned: Unlike harmless apparitions, Spectres have terrifying brute strength, which they can use to manipulate objects or rip their prey’s head off its shoulders. Able to materialize out of thin air, a Spectre can get the jump on you when you least expect it. Wraiths can use their supremely sharp scythes to rip a shred from the fabric of time itself, letting them warp around during fights in the blink of an eye.
This spindly freak is a being of pure evil, living solely to prey on the fears of lost children. He resides in an abandoned amusement park from the ’70s that was forced to close after a series of unexplained deaths. Now the Bogeyman lurks through the park’s attractions and rides, biding his time until the next unfortunate child crosses his path.
Be warned: The Bogeyman won’t face you head on. Gathering power from the surrounding rides, which he can manipulate at will, he’ll draw you into his own nightmarish realities, using illusions and trickery to gain the upper hand as he taunts you.
Birthed by the unholy union of the Filth and the waterlogged bodies of drowned Norse Vikings, these godforsaken creatures exist somewhere between life and death, transformed into coral-encrusted, tentacled monstrosities. Now the Draug use the bodies of their seafaring victims to serve as new soldiers in their army, or as raw organic material to facilitate their pod-based birthing process.
Be warned: This boss Draug is intimidating enough on his own, but things only get worse when he summons mind-wiped zombies to fight on his behalf. His gargantuan claws aren’t just for show, smacking attackers around or gripping them with bone-splintering force, and his would-be killers better get out of the water when he sends pulses of electricity in an area around him, lest they sizzle to a crisp.