Tag Archives: The Lord of the Rings

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Review

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Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor is third-person, open world action adventure game from Monolith Productions, set in The Lord of the Rings universe. This title isn’t a movie tie-in however, you won’t be going there and back again as Bilbo Baggins and journeying to deliver the one ring to the fire of Mount Doom as Frodo. No this is a brand new tale that takes place during the events of The Hobbit and LotR sagas.

You play as Talion, a Gondorian Ranger stationed at the Black Gate. When the forces of the Dark Lord Sauron — lead by his Black Captains, attack the gate, everyone is killed including Talion and his family. The fallen ranger awakens to find himself not only banished from death but also bound to a mysterious amnesiac wraith. Turns out the Black Hand is to blame for their predicament, casting the curse that binds them together. Upon learning this, Talion sets out to kill the one responsible, break the curse and claim his vengeance.

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Talion

Unfortunately an army of Uruks and all manner of beasts stand between Talion as his goal. Luckily the ranger is well equipped for battle. Armed with the sword Urfael, players will engage the enemy in melee combat similar to the free-flow system made popular by the recent Batman games. Though instead of takedowns, players can perform a variety of brutal executions. From impaling enemies to decapitating them, Mordor’s combat is sure to make your jaw drop on separate occasions. The wraith’s bow Azkar, is ideal for quietly taking out the opposition from a distance. If you want to go loud however, it is also great for blowing things up because it wouldn’t be an action game without glorious explosions. Players can get up close and personal with their stealth kills or ground executions using the dagger, Acharn.

Shadow of Mordor is a challenging game and you won’t last very long by mashing the attack button over and over again. Expect to die or flee often as the Uruks are a tough bunch and you will often find yourself outnumbered by a great deal. The Uruk Captains also add another layer of challenge with each of them having their own combinations of strengths and weaknesses. One Captain could be weak against stealth attacks but invulnerable to ranged, making the bow ineffective and requiring Talion to get in close for the kill. Another could be invulnerable to both stealth and ranged attacks but also afraid of Caragors (Four legged dog monsters). Setting a few loose in his vicinity will strike fear in his heart making him easier to kill. This game is just as much about planning strategies, as it is about killing your foe.

The nemesis system is by far SoM’s standout feature. This innovative mechanic remembers player encounters with Talion’s enemies and alters the way they interact with him later on. The Uruk who manages to land the killing blow, will be rewarded with a promotion and remind you of his feat the next time you come across him. A badly wounded Uruk who successfully manages to escape your wrath, will vow his vengeance for the pain you caused. Just don’t expect your follow up encounter to get any easier, as he will have gotten stronger with even more strengths and less weaknesses. Once again, strategically planning your battles is the key to success.

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No Mercy!

The Uruks have their own hierarchy system within Mordor and are constantly looking for ways to move up the ranks and increase in power. Taking advantage of these power struggles to weaken Sauron’s army, further enhances the fun factor of the nemesis system. Interrupting duels, thwarting executions and so on, is incredibly addicting. For every high ranking Uruk, you defeat, another takes his place and you may find yourself spending hours upon hours just traversing through the game’s open world messing with their chain of command. Especially once you unlock the wraith’s ability to brand the enemy, which allows you to take control of enemy Uruks and bend them to your will.

Fans of RPG elements in their games will be happy to learn that SoM features an impressive progression and upgrade system. Players can level up by earning XP for every kill and completed mission. Each new level rewards you with a skill point which can then be spent on helpful and devastating new abilities. With Mirian, players can increase Talion’s attributes, such as his overall health and unlock additional runes slots for his weapons. Fallen Captains and War chiefs will drop these runes, magical items that provide a variety of enhancements to each weapons stats — such as increased damage while riding a beast, once equipped. The stronger your defeated opponent was, the more powerful the rune. What runes you are rewarded with is randomized, so no two players feature the exact same weapon loadout. Combine that with the randomization of the Uruk’s names, strengths and weaknesses, and you have a gaming experience that will be unique for each player.

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“Nan iChir Gelair!” Which probably means you’re f**ked in Elvish.

As mentioned before, Shadow of Mordor is an open-world title. That means players have the freedom to tackle each mission whenever they want. They can assault an enemy stronghold from any angle or just screw around with the nemesis system. There are also a plethora of mostly fun side quests to complete that range from liberating human slaves to collecting various plants (Which is boring by the way).

The world of Mordor, is rather bleak but impressive to look at and the same can be said for its characters. The Uruks are highly detailed, everything from their armor to the hideous scars on their grotesque faces are expertly done. Not to take anything away from Talion’s design but from an artistic standpoint, one would say they look better than the game’s protagonist. The wonderful sound design help invoke the tone of the LotR films.

Shadow of Mordor is ultimately a revenge tale that is told across twenty story missions, each one varying in its objective. The actual plot is entertaining and benefits from well written dialogue and great voice acting. It just pales in comparison to the game’s combat and nemesis system. This title’s biggest annoyance however are its disappointing boss battles, with the final showdown being the worst of the bunch. You know the great feeling you get after you’ve defeated a tough yet fun final boss? Yeah you probably won’t feel that in this game. The impact of the game’s final scene was lessened due to the sour taste it left in my mouth. At least, until the final line was spoken. Players will be glad to know that they can keep exploring Mordor even after the credits roll, allowing you to finish off any remaining quests or mess around with the nemesis system some more.

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Bleak but impressive!

Final Verdict:

Despite the disappointing boss battles and a story that is somewhat overshadowed by gameplay, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor is an amazing experience. There’s plenty to do in its impressive open-world. Combat is incredibly brutal and fun. The nemesis system is by far one of the coolest game mechanics out there and helps this title truly standout among the rest of its genre. Fans would do well to pick up this GOTY contender.

Official Trailer:

 

Overall Score: 9.5/10

RGN Rating: Platinum Game

Developer: Monolith Productions

Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Available on: PS4 | PC | Xbox One | Coming to Xbox 360 and PS3 November 18, 2014

Played on: Sony’s PlayStation 4

Review copy info: A physical copy of the game was purchased by RealGamerNewz for the purpose of this review.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20141021 and was last modified on 20141027 .

New Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Screens Feature A Familiar Face

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Some brand new and awesome looking screenshots for Monolith Productions upcoming open world action title.

The screens shows a Black Captain, one of Sauron’s faithful and a formidable foe for the game’s protagonist. Fans of The Lord of the Rings, be it the movies, books or both will be happy to see Gollum’s inclusion in the game. The former ring bearer seems to play a vital role in the game as he is seen conversing with Talion and Celebrimbor, the elf wraith who is bound to him.

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Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor launches on September 30, 2014 for PS3, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360 and PC.

 

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140814 and was last modified on 20140814 .

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Releasing A Week Early

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Once again the month of October just got a little less crowded as Warner Bros. has announced today that the release date has been pushed forward. Monolith Production’s Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor will now launch on September 30 in North America for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One, with a Worldwide PC release on Oct 2.

Though it was originally scheduled for an October 7th release, the Publisher stated the reason for the push was due to “fan excitement”. I’m sure the fans will be even more excited with this bit of news.

Thank you Jesus (Fellow RGN writer, not the son of God) for catching this awesome piece of news.

 

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140725 and was last modified on 20140725 .

SDCC 2014: New Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Story Trailer Out Now

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Warner Bros. has released a brand new story trailer for Monolith Productions’ Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor during the SDCC 2014 (San Diego Comic-Con) event today.

The trailer offers more insight into the Wraith –who is bonded to main protagonist Talion, as they attempt to uncover the secrets of his past. The wraith gives Talion the ability to impose his will upon his enemies and bend them to his will, and fans learns of the connection between this power and the dark lord Sauron.

In cased you missed it earlier, Warner Bros. announced Shadow of Mordor’s new release date.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140725 and was last modified on 20140725 .

Witness The Dark Ranger in Action in This Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Pre-Order Video

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Warner Bros. has released a quick trailer for their upcoming Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor title by Monolith Production. The 30 second video clip showcases the pre-order bonuses for the game; The Dark Ranger Skin for main protagonist Talion and Challenge mode.

“Increase your power and prove your skills by playing the exclusive Test of Power’ challenge mode. Face Sauron’s captains and defeat them to earn powerful Runes giving you a head start in the campaign. Test your speed, skill and strategy and measure yourself against your friends on the leaderboards.”

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor launches on October 7 2014 for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC.

 

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140717 and was last modified on 20140717 .

One does not simply Go Behind the Scenes in This New Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Video

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A new video has been released for developer Monolith Productions’ Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor. The behind the scenes interview features the voice of main protagonist Talion, Troy Baker (The Last of Us, Saints Row IV) and lead writer Christian Cantamessa (Red Dead Redemption) as they discuss working together on the game.

According to the two, everything included in the game was done so to drive the story forward. “There’s not one scene in this game that is superfluous,” explains Baker. “Everything is incredibly purposeful, and if it wasn’t, it got cut.”

Click the video below to learn more. Okay, so maybe it is a simple task after all.

 

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor releases on October 7th for PS3, PS4, PC, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140711 and was last modified on 20140711 .

Talion must Prepare His Army in the Newest Story Trailer for Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor

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Warner Bros. Interactive has released a brand new trailer for Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor that focuses on more of the game’s plot. If Talion hopes to defeat the Dark Lord Suaron and his army, he too must raise a vast army of his own; an army of Orcs.

How can Talion possibly expect to accomplish such a task? By using his new found ability (Thanks to the wraith bounded to him) to take control of his enemies and bend them to his will. He must seek out an Orc leader and make him a War Chief, thanks to the game’s innovative ‘nemesis‘ system. With a War chief under Talion’s control, the army he commands will ultimately follow the resurrected Ranger in his quest for vengeance. No doubt, it will not be an easy task.

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor will launch on October 7, for Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4 and PC.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140522 and was last modified on 20140522 .

Find Out What It Will Take To Journey Through Middle-Earth In Shadow of Mordor On Your PC

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Want to know if your rig can handle Monolith and WB Games’ Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, when it launches later this fall? Well the requirements for PC owners have been revealed on the game’s steam page. Take a gander and see if you can just simply walk into mordor.

    Minimum:
  • OS: 64-bit: Vista, Win 7, Win 8
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-750, 2.67 GHz | AMD Phenom II X4 965, 3.4 GHz
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 | AMD Radeon HD 6950
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Network: Broadband Internet connection
  • Hard Drive: 25 GB available space
    Recommended:
  • OS: 64-bit: Win 7, Win 8
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-3770, 3.4 GHz | AMD FX-8350, 4.0 GHz
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 | AMD Radeon HD 7970
  • DirectX: Version 11
  • Network: Broadband Internet connection
  • Hard Drive: 40 GB available space

 

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor launches October 7th 2014 for PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140408 and was last modified on 20140408 .

Middle Earth : Shadow of Mordor – Story Trailer

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Check out the trailer for Monolith Productions and WB Game’s newest title “Middle Earth : Shadow of Mordor “. This game is set in the same universe of as The Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit Universe, where players take control of Talion a ranger on a quest for revenge. Middle Earth : Shadow of Mordor will be released the PS3, Playstation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Microsoft Windows on October 7th 2014.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by DJ Killzown Jones on 20140403 and was last modified on 20140403 .

Getting Aboard The Hype Train And Why It Is Harmful For Gamers

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Corruption is a strong word, but in some areas it is well warranted. There is a gray area in the gaming industry that no one seems to try to tackle and that is the corrupt part. With headlines on major gaming news sites like “Why Lord of The Rings Fans Should be Excited For Shadow of Mordor” it is growing more and more evident of what these news outlets are doing. They are hyping games and feeding it to their viewers as if it were news. This type of reporting can be harmful to the people that matter the most though. Those people being the viewers. Sites hype, hype, hype and hype until the game has a hype level so high it could not possibly reach the expectations set by the authors. More importantly it hurts game progress. As we’ve seen with Call of Duty. Call of Duty came from a small setting with barely any hype and really little knowledge about the game in the real world. Now, what we have is a mega sized hyped series which almost always fails to meet expectations.

Call of Duty is by all means a huge success and sells millions every year generating billions for its company, but does that make it a great game? Success should not equate quality and in this area it really doesn’t. Fans have shown this at an increasing number which is fantastic, but it is not enough. The games are hyped by gaming news sites and people fall prey for it. Remember last E3 when every news outlet was reporting about the new engine? Dynamic shadows, amazing graphics, more fluid gameplay, solid frame rates! It was a hit and what it did was shed hope to their viewers, but what happened when the game came out? The dynamic shadows weren’t so dynamic, the fps not so stable, and the gameplay hadn’t changed a bit. It is a logical argument to state that the consumers should be more aware, but it doesn’t excuse the hype machine built by news outlets. As a consumer you really should not fall for hype and do your research before dropping $60 on a game and possibly $20-$50 on a season pass. You should educate yourself, but where do you go for that? The people who are supposed to educate you have been feeding you hype. So, really the problem doesn’t lie with the consumer him/herself.

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So what can you do? You can not buy in to it. Find a new site or maybe a specific author who holds your interests. You can find YouTubers with the same interests as well, watch them, and listen to their opinion. The most important thing you can do though is not read, but watch. Watch what the companies actually give you. Don’t listen to their words of hype, don’t buy in to it, and don’t read obvious articles that are designed for hype. Look for gameplay, game features, and Q&A’s. It isn’t easy, but it can save you money and heartache.

The hype some times is innocent and genuine, but a majority seems to be bought and that is where corruption comes in. We hear stories about YouTubers being paid by Microsoft, EA, and other companies to give their products positive reviews. The companies themselves send out swag in many forms. Some times it might be an actual person in the studio other times it can be as simple as personal items such as the game itself or collectibles. Regardless of the method though the action speaks very loud to the company and at that point most feel ‘compelled’ to give the game an above average review despite the game being below average.

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So, where does this leave you? As I said earlier find someone you like. Find a site that shares your opinion, a specific author, or a specific YouTuber, but don’t stop there. Actually watch the game itself, listen to developer Q&A’s, and essentially make your own preview of a game before you buy it. When you see an article titled something like “Why you should like Blah Blah Blah!” skip over that, write the author’s name down, and be weary of his/her’s postings. Because odds are you aren’t going to open that article and be reading why you specifically will like that game you are going to be reading a generalized advertisement of that game. I’ve fallen for hype, I’ve felt the pain, and I’ve learned from it. When will you?

Note*: This article is the opinion of the author who wrote it and does not represent the views of everyone at RGN

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Christopher Stahler on 20140315 and was last modified on 20140315 .

Watch Pre-Alpha Footage of Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Here

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Warner Bros. Interactive has released a pre-alpha gameplay walkthrough video for their recently announced action title, Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor. Being developed by Monolith Productions, Mordor is a large open world title featuring a brand new story set between the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. It stars Talion, a Ranger of Gondor who was tasked with guarding Mordor’s Black Gate. After he and his fellow Rangers were wiped out by the returning Sauron and his Black Captains, Talion was denied entrance into the afterlife by a mysterious spirit and turns into a being that is part human and part wraith.

The video footage below focuses primarily on the game’s “nemesis system”. Enemies that happen to survive encounters, kill you or even flee the battlefield, can go on to being promoted and rise amongst the ranks. They won’t forget you however or whatever harm you brought upon them and their fellow comrades. In short they will hold one hell of a grudge against you, making for some very personal encounters. Check out the nemesis system in action.

It all looks pretty promising so far, from the Arkham style combat mechanics to the intriguing nemesis system. If Monolith Productions can deliver a satisfying story and bring everything together cohesively, then we may finally get a Lord of the Rings game on consoles (since the PS2 generation) that’s worth playing.

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor will be available for PS3, PS4, PC, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. Stay tuned for further details as the arise, including a release window.

Editor’s Note: RealGamerNewZ has moved web servers, some older posts can no longer be commented on and have been preserved without their images. Thank you for your understanding in this matter. This article was written by Jermain Jackson on 20140123 and was last modified on 20140123 .