Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor is probably the best Lord of The Rings game we’ve ever had. Shadow of Mordor is a mix of Assassin’s Creed, and the Batman Arkham Series. You can even throw a little of Splinter Cell in the game because of the stealth mechanics. All of these mechanics blend together perfectly in Shadow of Mordor.
In Shadow of Mordor you play as Talion, a ranger captain of Mordor that witnesses the death of his family and dies soon after. He is then cursed and forced to wander Mordor alongside a wraith, Celebrimbor. Your goal is simple… get revenge for the death of your family.
Shadow of Mordor is a really fun game. I can’t remember the last time I had so fun playing a game like this. Shadow of Mordor is open world, but it’s not a huge game. If you wanted to you could complete the game in under 8 hours if you just focus on the main story and ignore all of the other stuff, but where’s the fun in that?
The best parts of Shadow of Mordor is exploring the world, killing shit, and taking on the warchiefs. The Nemesis system is by far the best feature of this game. Any random Orc that kills you can be promoted to Captain. If you die enough that same Orc would continue to grow in strength. This means that he’ll be harder the next time you decide to fight him. He might even be warchief one day if you’re not careful.
There were plenty of times that I found myself surrounded by multiple captains. The smart thing to do would be to run away, but I like to challenge myself. I tried to fight all of them and eventually died. The Orc that killed me will get a large increase in power and everyone that survived would get a small increase in power. The Nemesis system is great, but it could use some work and hopefully in the sequel Monolith will improve on it.
Graphically, this game is beautiful. This game oozes details in almost everything, but I did manage to find some really muddy textures that were hidden quite well. You won’t find them unless you look for them.
The voice acting is spot on for every character in the game. I loved Golum, but I thought his role was a little pointless. After two or three missions you don’t see him again until the very end of the game. You can say that about everyone you meet though.
The soundtrack in this game is amazing. It feels like it belongs in the Lords of The Rings Universe. I loved how the Orcs would chant their warchiefs name as he entered the battlefield to take me on. It got me pumped up to fight the ugly fucker.
The story has it’s ups and downs. I was really invested in the story of this game until the end of the game. Not every story mission is very good though. I enjoyed meeting the Orc that wanted to be warchief, I enjoyed seeing Golum even though he played such a small role in the game, I enjoyed meeting the dwarf, but honestly the game would have been just as good without him. There was a hint of romance, but it never really went anywhere.
The final fight was the most disappointing fight in the game. The last boss was just a QTE event. I felt like it was a waste of an opportunity to give us a good boss fight.
Shadow of Mordor is a content rich game. When you’re not busy killing Orcs you can save the common folk by killing their Orc slavers. There are special missions scattered around the world that lets you rescue human slaves from the Orcs. You can also take one of the many stealth, bow, or warrior challenges too. Completing these challenges will keep you busy long after you complete the story.
Shadow of Mordor has good replayability. There is enough here to keep you occupied until some good DLC or an expansion comes out and I don’t think I would mind supporting this game because of how much fun I had with it.
Shadow of Mordor isn’t a perfect game, but I can’t deny all of the fun that I had playing through it. The gameplay is perfect for this kind of game and even though I was highly skeptical about it at first I ended up loving every second I spent in Middle Earth and I hope I get to experience more of it in the near future.
Our Verdict: 8/10
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