Middle-earth: Shadow of War Definitive Edition – Review
Follow Genre: Action/adventure
Developer: Monolith Productions
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Enterprises
Platforms: PlayStation4, Xbox One, PC
Tested on: PS4

Middle-earth: Shadow of War Definitive Edition – Review

Site Score
8.9
Good: Storyline, voice-acting and graphics are of very good quality
Bad: Talion seems emotionless from time to time
User Score
10.0
(2 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)

In 2014 the first game in the Middle-earth series was released, this record-breaking game was called Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor. Three years later they brought us nothing less than Middle-earth: Shadow of War. Fast forward another two years, and now we get the definitive edition of Shadow of War for the late adopters, or those still stuck on the fence. Which means we get every last bit of amazing content and expansions, all on one disc! If you forgot the names of those, we are so kind to add them for you: Desolation of Mordor Story Expansion, Blade of Galadriel Story Expansion, Slaughter Tribe Nemesis Expansion and Outlaw Tribe Nemesis Expansion.

Story

There are a few storylines that intertwine in this definitive edition. Shadow of War focusses solely on the return of Talion and Celebrimbor, who need to go out of their ways to get behind the enemy lines. Every new city and town will be a struggle and a grind to seek those who will follow them through fire to defeat the dark lord Sauron.

In the Desolation of Mordor Story expansion, you’ll discover the most beautiful places in the desert of Lithlad as Baranor. The events that will occur will happen after the events of the main story and add a new front to the war for the Middle-earth.

Blade of Galadriel Story expansion is probably one of the most intriguing expansions, after the main events you take control of the character Eltariel. Her fingers are healed, after the severe damage they have taken and she immediately staggers in a new battle against the Nazgul.

Slaughter Tribe of Nemesis Expansion The gruesome tribe arrives in Mordor to bring even more havoc on the Middle-earth and The Outlaw Tribe Nemesis Expansion does pretty much the same, here you can witness the arise of the Outlaw tribe.

The story is mostly present in the main part of the game and a bit of side story in the expansions Desolation of Mordor and Blade of Galadriel. All of this is mainly with a lot of cutscenes at the ‘start‘ of the game.

Graphics

Every visible aspect screams AAA-game in our opinion. Even in the start-up menu, they add a background that knocks you right of your chair, couch or girlfriends lap (whatever you are sitting on really). The developers included a lot of cutscenes from the start of the game, which are movie quality. Lighting is good, atmosphere is good, weather conditions are good, NPCs are good, cities are good and every landscape you see you can admire. So if you are a sucker for beautiful environments in games, this is a must-have for you.

Sound

Just like its predecessor the sound of the game is top notch. The atmospheric background noise is giving you chills, the character lines are some of the better ones in AAA-games and the voice acting of the Uruks is still creepy, disturbing and spine-chilling. Sadly, when it comes to Talion, they make him a bit too emotionless which results in a more bland storyline from his point of view.

Gameplay

Middle-earth: Shadow of War Definitive Edition is an action role-playing game where you continue on where the story left off in the previous game, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor. When we look at the gameplay of Shadow of war it doesn’t stray far from its predecessor. Only in terms of gear, there is a more RPG-like approach as it can be obtained by killing enemies and levels up linearly with your character or can be upgraded further by completing a little challenge.

Questlines are easy to follow and find around the world. Obviously, they make use of main and side quests to keep us interested. When we look at the objectives, it made us think about Assassin’s Creed’s approach. You need to capture points in the city where you can unlock certain objectives and see where they are ‘hidden’. You need to complete them all to get 100% completion in a city.

Talion’s long-standing rivals can, like in the previous game, be dominated and added to his side. To make this more in-depth the developers made them more dynamic, from now on they can develop a sense of loyalty or hate against him. All of this can lead to a more fierce way of defending him or that they abandon him when they have the chance. They aren’t just obedient slaves anymore.

After conquering back the different lands and making some unlikely friends or receiving some questionable loyal soldiers, you will bring the fight to Sauron. This will take up a lot of time and work because you’ll need your back-up to save your ass from time to time.

Since the first release of the game, they changed a few things in their patches, with the end result that this game is now more enjoyable to play. So maybe, if you haven’t touched it in a while, it’s time to blow of the dust and put the disc back in your console.

Conclusion

Overall in our opinion Middle-earth: Shadow of War Definitive Edition ticks our boxes in most of the areas. Since the first release of the game a lot has changed and most of it for the better. If you want to get more into the story of J.R.R. Tolkien, this is actually a decent way to do so. Some of you Lord of the Rings fans will hate it but others will fall madly in love with this game, so take a leap with this one and you might just end falling in a spot that even your friends can’t budge you from.

 

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Middle-earth: Shadow of War Definitive Edition - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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