The Secret World has dumped it's paid subscription model. You can now buy the game and play without a monthly fee, and have access to everything that is in the game currently, so if you were on the fence, now is the time to dive in. IMO, the monthly fee was the only thing keeping it from being a must buy. Fantastic game. A little buggy here and there, but otherwise pretty solid, and takes things in several new directions when it comes to MMOs. (Modern day setting, no classes, quests that are much more than "kill 10 giant rats") As of right now, it's $30 on steam.

They do have a membership plan, basically the old subscription model, which now has benefits such as bonus items and discounts and free points at the in game store (which is mostly cosmetic items currently). They will be releasing future content as DLC for around $5-$10 or so.

FYI, they are also doing what they call an ARG (Alternate Reality Game) right now themed around the 12/21/12 stuff. Basically its like blending real life and the game together a little. The community has a puzzle to solve (as well as several puzzles for individuals) and it involves things like hacking web sites, searching meta data, stenography, cryptography, and doing a lot of general research to figure out what's going on. You do get in game rewards for participating, but it's kinda fun even without the rewards. Here's a link to that if you want to check it out.