Today Monolith Productions finally released gameplay footage for their upcoming game, Middle-earth: Shadow of War. It's bigger, better, and builds on everything the first game established. Here's everything that the trailer shows off.
The world is much better this time around. Instead of fighting a series of small battles Talion is the vanguard for a war and must amass an army. To do this Talion uses the newly forged Ring of Power to lead attacks against Sauron's appointed leaders to capture ground and obtain resources to aid the war effort.
Each environment has unique enemies, terrain, and allies. Players can expect Overlords, Warchiefs, Captains, Strongholds, and much more.
Shadow of Mordor debuted the Nemesis System, a network of NPCs that react to how the player alters the world around them. Killing and controlling leaders to shift the leadership of the Orc military in Talion's journey for revenge. Now that system is back with new features and refinements so Talion can take the war to Sauron.
Like in the previous game each unique enemy has their own set of strengths, weaknesses, and fighting style. Exploiting these are essential to survivor but the newly refined Nemesis system adds a new layer of strategy.
Allies can now intervene in combat, aiding Talion in battle. In 2 situations during the gameplay video, Talion's allies come to his aid because of his actions during the campaign. Allies will be subject to the same strengths and weaknesses that Talion's enemies must follow. However, they may not stay loyal.
The Nemesis system adds betrayal to the equation, meaning your treatment can lead to allies going rogue. In one instance Thrak Storm-Bringer, shown in the video, betrays Talion and joins Sauron's army. Imbued with dark powers he's immune to the new Ring's power, a brand new power to Shadow of War. Best of all the brutal kills from the first game return with outstanding new animations. Your allies can perform deadly kills as well, such as ripping the head off an infantry Orc.
Shadow of War will introduce not only betrayal and revenge but loyalty and friendship. Depending on Talion's actions players can forge powerful bonds for unique encounters.
Like in Shadow of Mordor players can control Orcs to aid in Talion's war effort. This includes mounts such as drakes. Once controlled Talion can force the recruit to Retreat, Shun, or Stay and Fight.
As previously leaked Talion can take flight with flying mounts. Taking control of a Drake and actually flying through the air while reigning fire down, something Bethesda didn't deliver in Skyrim.
Talion isn't alone in this fight and has Celebrimbor's abilities at his disposal. Shown was the ability to teleport to allies and pull foes to Talion for quick kills. Talion is agile and was shown sliding between the legs of larger enemies, something he was unable to do in Shadow of Mordor.
Other skills shown were smashing an open fire to blaze enemies in all directions, slowing time down for quick kills, and multi-stealth kills.
New Armor System
Armor will now feature unique properties such as special attributes. It was shown on the interface that swords, short swords, bows, armor, helms, and accessories will be available as well. This could mean microtransactions via the crates that were shown to be bundled with the special edition version of the game.
Large battles to take over land in Shadow of War highlight the carnage and new direction of Shadow of War. Instead of small battles these large scale fights were shown as separate advancements, each with different obstacles to overcome. Side objectives become available that allow your forces to advance further, for example, Talion was shown destroying explosives so his forces could get deeper into the fortress.
Thanks to the Nemesis System to every Overlord will be unique to their world. Each arena is customized based on the Overlord's taste, requiring the player to adapt to each fight.
Victory means experience, loot, and a new base of operation. The army screen allows the player to view their enemies and select Overlords to spread their influence over the region.
Middle-earth: Shadow of War is looking extraoridinary. It's clear that Monolith Productions isn't cutting any corners with after the massive success of the first game by building Shadow of War based on the community feedback. With such a refined Nemesis System, the promise of a unique experience for every player, and intense, large scale, fights that ensures a dynamic experience. Shadow of War looks like a must own this year.
Middle-earth: Shadow of War launches on August 25th for Xbox One, PS4, and PC.