One does not simply walk into Mordor for a second time without encountering a few development setbacks along the way.
That’s the impression we’re getting from Monolith Productions anyway, since their follow-up to 2014’s Game of the Year-winning Lord of the Rings spin-off Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor has had its release date pushed back by two months.
Rather than shipping in August as developer Monolith had originally planned, the Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment-published Middle-Earth: Shadow of War will now launch on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC this October 10th worldwide.
Once again taking place before Peter Jackson’s two LOTR trilogies – which appear to have influenced its grim, quasi-gothic visual style and brutal action – the sequel will reprise Mordor‘s unique Nemesis system, enabling players to dismantle Sauron’s Orc hierarchy and build their own army in the process.
Yet despite this returning mechanic, resurrected protagonist Talion will have his fair share of new challenges this time around as he strives to gather the forces necessary to confront the Dark Lord himself, not to mention tame the tempestuous influence of a recently-forged Ring of Power over the course of his odyssey.
As for precisely what’s holding Talion’s journey back from hitting consoles this summer, Monolith doesn’t have much to say on the matter beyond wanting to “ensure that Middle-Earth: Shadow of War will deliver on [their] promise” of “the highest quality experience” expected from their hit licensed series.
News like this inevitably always comes as a blow for industry fans, particularly long-term devotees of such a prolific brand as the Tolkien-inspired Lord of the Rings, but from GTA V to South Park: The Stick of Truth to WB’s own Batman: Arkham trilogy, the list of past titles which have benefitted from extra development time goes on as long as The Return of the King: Extended Edition.
Monolith and WB don’t look set to rest on their laurels when it comes to providing samples of Shadow of War in its current state, though, with new livestreams uploaded each week and an E3 gameplay demo guaranteed to lie around the corner.
In other words, while you might wish that news of this delay had never come to you, that’s not for you to decide – all you have to decide is what to do with the time that’s given to you between now and October 10th. Why not check out this weekend’s new Skills-driven Shadow of War walkthrough video for starters?