I’m still adjusting to TSW and I’ll be back with more details later as I give it a cursory week of play during my core evaluation. It’s B2P following conventional MMO design ideas. Those ideas are pretty easy to follow: You have gear that mandates what content you can push into such as dungeons or quests, you get xp that lets you improve abilities and you have quests that involve running around and picking up things you might rather reconsider.
TSW approaches the conventional ideas unconventionally and to a point I find amusing. While you will find hubs like the local sheriff station that has various people in need of help or instruction, you’ll find other details and items around the world that will add further clues to the events at large. I’ve since returned a bit of bone that has lead to further instruction on travelling to Cairo, for instance. You are limited in how many you can pick up, forcing you to choose on what paths you work and emphasizing the story elements tied to each quest.
Skills and abilities are tied to experience you earn as you complete quests and vanquish monsters, these points in turn being used to buy abilities on the Ability Wheel (Google Image Search: TSW Ability Wheel). You’re not forced into a canned class or path instead allowed to pick your road down a winding variety of powers that synergise into your character.
I’m not sure what else I’ll see in the game that could change what I’ve said. I find it amusing and I’m deeply thrilled by the freedom of class design. My only qualm about the game is the minimum barrier for entry as it cost me via Steam Sale $22 and I’ve heard you can get it for less via Amazon.
Otherwise this is a game of modern horror with supernatural elements. I’d recommend TSW to anyone a fan of Lovecraftian horror or looking for a World of Darkness approach to online gaming.