Shadows of Mordor, Dawg

Someone got paid to be a Tolkien nerd. Do you realize how amazing that is? That’s like finding out someone got paid to write fortune cookie fortunes, it’s like the dream job of a lifetime. I just realized right here and now what the end of my career path has to be.

The premise of the game is that you’re a Ranger from Gondor named Talion, who gets killed by Sauron’s lieutenants, and is resurrected by an Elf ghost named Celebrimbor. Celebrimbor, half-possessing Talion, teams up with the Ranger and the two go into Mordor to fight orcs and get revenge. I’ve heard the game is excellent, think of it as Batman in Middle-Earth.

It sounds like the game is structured as a sandbox game where you can run around as Talion collecting abilities and stuff like that and just do side quests. There’s apparently some kind of dynamic enemy system where, if someone manages to escape you, they’ll return later, stronger, and apparently have some memory of you. It’s called the Nemesis system and while it isn’t a huge selling point for me, it’s a neat idea.

This game reminds me of The Force Unleashed series, though this one annoys me less.

I think it’s because The Force Unleashed wanted so very hard to be cool. While there’s some element of that in Shadow of Mordor, I think it’s somehow better managed. It’s probably because it feels less like Look How Cool My Guy Is, and more like Look How Cool Everything Is.

From what I’ve observed Talion/Celebrimbor is quite powerful. Probably ridiculously powerful, but I guess he doesn’t go around beating up people from the book. That might be it, simply, Talion interacts with mainly characters that aren’t well known, and Celebrimbor knows some celebrities, but that was millennia ago. They do meet Gollum at one point but surprisingly, I think he acts in a manner pretty consistent with things. Whereas the guy from Force Unleashed basically is pivotal in every important moment in Star Wars history.

Anyway, definitely a game worth making your friend who is good at video games play so you can watch.

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