Middle-Earth: Shadow of War gets tautological with Shadow Wars missions

How do you solve a problem like Mordor? Specifically Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Monolith Productions’ 2014 fantasy RPG which took The Lord of the Rings into uncharted territory via its refreshingly unpredictable Nemesis System and grim prequel storyline. Much as Shadow proved a critical darling, reaping Game of the Year awards aplenty, one shortcoming kept cropping up in reviews – the lack of additional missions for Ranger-spirit hybrid Talion to wade through once he’d bested all of Sauron’s minions.

Indeed, that minor reservation appears to have played a substantial hand in the thinking behind the narrative structure of Monolith’s impending follow-up, Shadow of War. Case in point: a just-announced series of bonus missions set to bridge the final moments of the sequel’s main campaign with the opening sequences of the iconic trilogy of novels from J.R.R. Tolkien which first inspired this sub-franchise.


  • When players finish conquering Mordor with the help of Talion’s newly-forged ring – and Celebrimbor’s incorporeal support – they’ll have the option to defend the fortresses they’ve claimed against waves of ever-toughening adversaries, defending capture points and slaughtering oncoming war-chiefs until the siege subsides, then rescuing any Orc allies taken hostage in the interim.
  • Perhaps “option” isn’t the right word, though, since, in order to experience the full ending of Shadow of War, you’ll have to complete all of these so-called Shadow Wars challenges, maintaining control of those fortresses regardless of the odds until such a time as Monolith deems fit.
  • Quite what these coda scenes will depict that warrants their exclusion from the core campaign’s final moments Monolith won’t say, but they have teased that we’ll discover how Talion’s quest for revenge on Sauron for tearing his family apart segues into The Lord of the Rings – perhaps Gollum and Torvin the Dwarf are due return appearances to set up the former and Gimli’s roles in the trilogy ahead?

If the divisive delayed plot resolution of Batman: Arkham Knight proved anything, it’s that Warner Bros-published projects can frequently provoke just as much irritation in fans with the inclusion of an extended endgame as with its omission. While many players will rejoice at the news of more Shadow of War narrative content, the Eye of Sauron now seems firmly fixed on Monolith in terms of meeting expectations with the finished product, especially given their recent struggles to justify the presence of micro-transaction content here too.

Keep following D-pad Joy for more news and views on Middle-Earth: Shadow of War in the run-up to its October 10th launch on PS4, Xbox One and PC, including Daragh Payne’s report on the new Terror Tribe trailer from earlier this week.

Meet the ‘Terror Tribe’ in Middle-earth: Shadow of War

We have a new video for Middle-earth: Shadow of War out today that shows us the ‘Terror Tribe’, a faction of Orcs who, you guessed it, specialise in spreading fear throughout Mordor… They look like a nice bunch.

In Shadow of War, Orcs now belong to tribes, which extend their influence stemming from the Overlords ruling the rather large fortresses throughout the open world, providing an ecosystem of missions and exploration.

These guys are master tormentors and rely on their infamous reputations to inspire fear among their enemies. Fear is a form of control, after all. You can see them below.

Shadow of War will be available for Xbox One X and Xbox One, Windows 10 PC (Windows Store and Steam), PS4 and PS4 Pro on the 10th October.

Shadow of War allows you to import your worst enemy from Shadow of Mordor – Uruk-‘ha’!

A new update to Shadow of Mordor will let your greatest enemy come back to haunt you in the game’s sequel, Shadow of War. Any Uruk-hai that gave you real trouble can annoy you some more…


  • A free update for PS4, Xbox One and PC, “Nemesis Forge”, will allow the game to automatically detect a player’s highest ranked Uruk. You’ll then see them again in Shadow of War.
  • Nemesis Forge will also import each player’s most loyal orc follower – it’s not all bad news then.
  • Shadow of Mordor is now free to play on Xbox One and Steam until 9th July.
  • Shadow of War launches on the 10th of October – so you better get your practice in.

The cast of Shadow of War includes: Kumail Nanjiani (The Big Sick, Silicon Valley) and Pollyanna McIntosh (The Walking Dead, The Woman). Performance Capture Director Troy Baker returns as Talion.

Alastair Duncan (Westworld), is also back as the memorable Celebrimbor and Laura Bailey (Injustice 2), will play the elite assassin, Eltariel.

Middle-earth: Shadow of War looks awesome in new story trailer, “I have given up everything!”

The new trailer for Middle-earth: Shadow of War shows off some epic story scenes to come, and quite frankly, it looks awesome.

It shows Talion and Celebrimbor as they use the power of the New Ring to forge an army and confront the deadliest of enemies, including Sauron himself!

The video also features a host of new allies, villains and creatures that ‘The Bright Lord’ will encounter. Excited? Watch the trailer below.