Chaos Theory: A guide to finishing off the Filth in TSW's Whispering Tide event

Chaos Theory:  A guide to finishing off the Filth in TSW's Whispering Tide event
When The Secret World puts on a long-term event, it certainly doesn't skimp on the long part! The Whispering Tide commenced way back in September 2013 and just last month moved into the final phase. During that time, players have unlocked portals, collected lore, and fought the Filth, all with the ultimate goal of opening Tokyo at the end. And while the time of Issue #9 is is almost at hand, it isn't yet here. The best way to hurry it along is to see this event through to completion and eradicate the Filth in this final stage.

If you've missed any of the preceding phases, now is the perfect time to jump in and add your efforts to the cause -- not just for speeding up the release of Tokyo but for collecting all the loot and goodies for yourself as well! With this phase players have the chance to rake in all the slivers and fragments needed to purchase the available event loot (sadly, the past lore pieces are one thing that cannot be gotten). Even if you are just starting now, there are still numerous tendrils protruding from the portal, giving you plenty of time to get in on the action. And this guide is going to walk you through it.

It is important to note that any and all players can take part in this phase. There are no gear or QL requirements. If you are new to the game and have fewer skills, you can still lend a hand and get the rewards -- just be prepared to die a lot. It's definitely a great way to stock up on AP and SP to experiment with new builds!

So what do you have to do to get in on this segment of The Secret World's event? Get thee to the portal! Accessing this portal is actually easier than some in the past. Just walk the branch between the main cities and Kingsmouth (avoid getting swept up by the fast travel stream) and jump down to a lower branch located just short of halfway. Take a few steps along that branch then drop down once more; you can easily see the black Filth swirling around the portal below you.

The portal itself opens only every three hours. Be aware that the times have changed since Daylight Saving Time began: 12:00/3:00/6:00/9:00 a.m and 12:00/3:00/6:00/9:00 p.m (all EDT). You can enter the portal as many times as you want during that time frame, so if players land in a good group, they can conceivably get three Flappy kills in during one block. However, because of the timer, you can complete the mission (and obtain that reward) only once every three-hour block. Each subsequent boss kill gives half the reward tokens, just no reward bag.

Thankfully, Funcom was quick to mitigate the chance of getting a really bad group. When this stage first started, plenty of people continued with their mooching ways and just hung out AFK in order to get the goodies without lifting a finger. Unfortunately, unlike the open-world raids where plenty of others could pick up the slack, a hard limit of 40 people in this instanced raid made it questionable whether or not you'd get in a group with enough participants to actually complete it. And it was pretty frustrating to be stuck in a raid that couldn't be completed because too many happened to be "sitting this one out." The studio patched in a fix for this, instituting a timer that gave players 30 seconds to get back into the fight or get booted. Even those who still try to avoid the fight by hanging out on the edge end up with Filth monsters attacking them.

Thumbs up to Funcom for making this boss fight much more interesting! While there are strategies involved, it isn't a matter of knowing it and just standing there doing your part. I personally enjoyed the fact that you have to really keep spatially aware and moving around in order to avoid the huge repair bill that comes with multiple deaths. Most of the major attack sequences come with a verbal cue as well as visual and written. Here's a quick rundown of some specific things to look (and listen) for during the fight.

"We must reach the next platform!" Everyone needs to run and jump off the side of the main platform (which is looking decidedly darker) and be teleported to the top one, else be one-shotted when the Heat Death of the Universe explosion of Filth happens. While on the upper platform, if you are the target of the Filth Exposure attack (a circle centered on you), do not run into all the other players and get them punted off the platform! Run to -- or off -- the edge yourself.

"Be careful" or "Hurry, we have no time to spare!" Only a handful of DPS should try to make the jump off the main platform to get up top. There is an enemy that entered on the upper platform, which is now covered in filth. An NPC will give all the healing you need in special bubbles for up to eight players; everyone else lands in the Filth and dies in moments. ("Well done!" conversely means the mob up top was dispatched.)

"Be careful" also means that multiple Flappy birds are about to dive bomb the platform with long strips of Filth while giant spiders and Filth monsters add to the chaos.

As with all things Filth related, if it's black, don't stand in it! The semi-circular Membranous Tempest attack will often one-shot players, and definitely punts you around. The multiple spokes of Tears of Dis, however, are a bit less deadly. (Note: Whenever Flappy dies he casts the platform-wide Heat Wave insta-death attack, so jump off and go to the top. If you are on top, stay put even if Flappy is dying there!)

Here are a few more helpful hints and tips to get you through the fights.

In general: If you desperately need a quick bio break or something, go when you're dead. The respawn timer gives you a full 120 seconds of boot-free time to run and do what you need to do without fear of starting the AFK timer. However, don't abuse this reprieve often! Every moment you are out of the fight means it's a longer ordeal for everyone.

If you have more adds on you than you can take and no help nearby, jump off the side to lose aggro (especially helpful for pure healers who have no attacks).

If you are a healer: When targeting a mob, Alt+F targets what the mob is targeting; use this to keep heals on the tank because Flappy changes targets often. If your main tanks are well cared for, have a key bound to next player character and run around helping all the DPS. Trust me, they appreciate the lower repair bills! And you'll need their help when you have adds.

If you are a DPS: If you see anyone hit with webs, slice him out ASAP -- those bleeds are vicious, as are the one shots you can't dodge if you are stuck. If you see a healer run by you with an add, jump on it. So many times I have been saved from death by the DPS around me who snipe the adds and let me continue healing. Also, be sure to go after all the spider and Filth adds in general as they add up and can overwhelm the raid.

If you are a tank: It goes without saying that the tanks are awesome when they disrupt Flappy's attacks! You might find that your raid has an over abundance of tanks, however, and fewer DPS. In that case, switch on out and go to town with all the power you have. Just don't forgo all your health bonuses -- you'll need some!

When the event started, there was only one giant automaton merchant, but now players have three to choose from: two in between the main city portals and one inside the raid itself. If you worry about not having enough event tokens to buy stuff, don't. Just run the raid a few times and you'll soon be swimming in them! Each mission completion nets you 15,00 PAX, 100 slivers, 6 fragments, and a Writhing Bladder Sac. (Yeah, really makes you really want to open it, eh?) Although you can complete the mission only once every portal opening, each subsequent kill gives you 50 slivers and 3 fragments, as well as one more notch on your kill Flappy count. If you do the raid just a few times a day, you'll get plenty of currency in no time to spend on the event goodies!

The two mechanical merchants outside the city hub portals can be accessed any time. They have the automaton pet, the full bee suit (with the exception of the helmet), clothes, glowing eyes, purple signet reward bags, Black Bullion, toolkit upgrade items, and purple glyphs.

The merchant inside the raid, however, can be accessed only when the raid is open, but it sells the same glyphs available outside. The most important aspect of this merchant is a chance to repair your gear! If you really want to take your time to peruse the offerings on this merchant, your best bet is to jump into a raid right before the timer is up and when there are not enough people to start. Then, as long as Flappy is not engaged, you can take a leisurely stroll through the listings without worry of being booted out by the AFK timer.

If you have been following the event and completed the portal unlocking quest during phases one, three, and five, you've earned the Sentinel of Agartha achievement, which gives you the Carapace of the Immaculate Machine helmet. Once you participate in the raid, you start working towards other achievements.

When you kill the bird the first time, you get Kill the Dread Bird Dead. After defeating Flappy 15 times, you get the Blasting the Zero Point Bird achievement, which grants a pet teddy bear along with the chunk of experience. Called Inky, this little black toy does not animate and start following you around (as much as something that creepy would fit in TSW); instead, it just sits there then flops over on its face all heartbroken-like when you get too far away from it. Keep going to 50 kills and you unlock Mounting the Wings of Dis, which grants a boatload of slivers and fragments (so if you didn't have enough for what you wanted to buy before, you certainly will have a bunch now) as well as the title The Bane of Dis.

As for lore, only two of the three final pieces to complete the set are available in this raid; the final piece is apparently at the gate of Tokyo itself. The first lore piece is easy to grab -- it sits right on the ledge in plain sight. The second, however, will appear only after Flappy has been engaged and chased off for the first time. That one you pick up in the middle of the main platform.

Even though Funcom announced this as the final stage of The Whispering Tide event, the final moments in the raid allude to something more. Once you kill the boss, the disembodied voice of Zuberi ominously says, "Even Gaia will be tested by what is to come." While that could just be referring to Tokyo, you never know. So if it isn't the end of the end, it's the beginning of the end. And there at the end will finally be Tokyo in all its (Filth-encrusted) splendor.

Conspiracies, paranoia, secrets, and chaos -- the breakfast of champions! Feast on a bowlful with MJ on Thursdays as she infiltrates The Secret World to bring you the latest word on the streets of Gaia in Chaos Theory. Heard some juicy whispers or have a few leads you want followed? Send them to and she'll jump on the case!
This article was originally published on Massively.