Monolith and Warner Bros., are back at it with the upcoming Middle-Earth: Shadow of War, the sequel to the action-RPG from 2014 called Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor. They released a new gameplay walkthrough video to give gamers a look at the massive and brutal world.
The video was posted up over on the WB Games YouTube channel, featuring 16 full minutes of gameplay. This is a way to give gamers a thorough look at the returning gameplay mechanics, the new gameplay mechanics, and the improved gameplay mechanics.
The video for Shadow of War starts with a quick montage of the gameplay, and then it dives into an actual walkthrough of the gameplay that's set several hours into the actual game. There's narration on how the game is setup by the way of engaging in battle and even picking your battles. We see an overworld map of Osgiliath, where there are various fortresses and strongholds beyond Mordor that players can take over. In the video they settle on Seregost.
When heading into battle, the game lets you see the units you can bring with you onto the front lines. Much like a real-time strategy game, each unit has its own skillset and purpose. You can bring the followers with you into battle to help aid you in the sort of tasks you plan to accomplish.
They explain that much like in the previous Middle-Earth game, there is still a nemesis system present, and you will have to work your way around the different abilities and nuances of the new enemies you'll be facing off against throughout the game.
Early on they showcase a battle with Thrak the Storm-Bringer, a dark necromancer. Thrak is cursed and is immune to the power of the Ring, so your tactics against him will require more than just storming in head first. The game takes on a Dynasty Warriors-type feel as players will have to battle through Thrak's forces to get to the dark necromancer.
Eventually Thrak is defeated and the point is captured. During this time we see some cool spectral attacks, where the player performs a couple of slow motion, mid-air arrow takedowns, not unlike Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. We also see the the platforming and building scaling returning from the original Shadow of Mordor, allowing players to move around freely and take advantage of the game's verticality.
The battle also reveals a new layer of depth to the Nemesis system that involves your followers. The followers you bring into battle with you can also add to the Nemesis layers, allowing the NPCs to develop their own stories alongside the player in Shadow of War.
The mount system is also briefly put on display where we see a mount making its way through a fiery landscape. Later the player teleports onto a drake, and then makes their way back into the mix of the battle.
The final boss battle at the fort is against Ur-Hakon the Dragon. They explain that each overlord of a fort will be tailored to the player, so no two forts will be the same and the Nemesis system will ensure that it's different each time you play. After you complete a fort you can assign one of your followers to the position of Warchief. Assigning a new Warchief will create a new Nemesis thread, creating an all new way to create emergent gameplay and story opportunities in this newest Middle-Earth title.
Shadow of War is due for release on August 22nd for Xbox One, PS4 and PC.