Middle-earth: Shadow of War - Blade of Galadriel Xbox One X Review

Those yearning for more Shadow of War content will find Blade of Galadriel a fun distraction but for many, it's a pass

By Grayshadow, Posted 06 Feb 2018

Middle-earth: Shadow of War ended with a lot of unanswered questions, many about the Blade of Galdriel's Eltariel. The story expansion not only delivers the same solid gameplay from the core campaign but gives players the chance to play as Eltariel, complete with new and old abilities. While the ending doesn't deliver the same emotional conclusion it does provide an alternative that some fans of Shadow of War will appreciate.  This review contains spoilers from Shadow of War, continue at your own risk!

Blade of Galadriel,NoobFeed,WB Games,Monolith Games,

Blade of Galdriel starts off during the final moments between Sauron and Celebrimbor, with Eltariel wounded and betrayed. With her morale drained Eltariel desperately ask Galdriel to return home but is ignored, now charged with a new task. To find Talion and fix the mistakes she has made.

The journey isn't long, taking about 3 hours but has all the elements of a good expansion. Eltariel has many of Talion's athletic abilities with her own twist. For example, Talion's knives were great for distractions but too weak to do any significant damage. Eltariel can instead use her bow as a quick draw for significantly more damage and use Galadriel's light to blind targets. These enemies are then more exposed to heavy damage.

Light plays a major role in the game and is incorporated into the Nemesis System. Since much of Eltariel's attacks are light base some Uruks adapted to the change. Uruks can now resist Light-based attacks, adding another layer of strategy when facing these ever-changing enemies.

Blade of Galadriel,NoobFeed,WB Games,Monolith Games,

Speaking of the Nemesis System, Eltariel can recruit Uruks but not the same way as Talion. Instead of dominating their minds Eltariel has to win their loyalty, and she has one chance to recruit Uruks. This means you can't keep going after powerful Uruks and must pick from a pool that is willing to join you. This can feel limiting but given the circumstances of Eltariel's abilities and her stance on the matter it fits the character.

Like Talion you can equip Eltariel with various augments to boost her existing equipment. Gems, weapons, armor, and other additions are available throughout the game from Captains. Like the core campaign, Eltariel's look is altered based on what armor she is wearing. The set bonuses better tailor to Eltariel's skills but it's nothing new from what we've seen from Talion's equipment.

Eltariel's skills are unique and separated into combat and ranged. Legacy skills carry over from Talion's adventures, giving Eltariel access to Spirit Step and Talon Strike. As before you'll earn skill points by obtaining experience from completing quests. The basic experience grind.

Blade of Galadriel,NoobFeed,WB Games,Monolith Games,

Much of Blade of Galadriel is the same from Shadow of War. The new way to recruit Uruks feels limited and while the story does provide some resolution to the plot the overall DLC is short. The boss battles are excellent, easily overshadowing any major fight in Talion's adventure, but these are small and far between. Those yearning for more Shadow of War content will find Blade of Galadriel a fun distraction but for many, it's a pass.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, PC
Publisher(s): Warner Bros.
Developer(s): Monolith Games
Genres: Action-Adventure
Themes: Fantasy
Release Date: 2018-02-06

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