Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Belated Update: Some Evil, Some Good and How It’s All Done…

Yeah, yeah, I’ve been behind a bit on this upcoming game from WBIE and developer Monolith Productions, but that’s because I’m confident it’s going to be a worthy Middle-earth experience no matter what it’s played on. I think I’ve said that already but it bears repeating. Respecting a developer and enjoying whatever they’re working on goes a longer way than nit-picking that work apart for not being 100% accurate to the original works. Particularly if that game does something out of the ordinary yet seems familiar at the end of the day. Pity the last-gen versions aren’t getting all the AI bells and whistles as the current (or next, if you’ve yet to update) gen new systems, but that’s the way the ball bounces. You get more power to use and you use it wisely. Hmmm… isn’t that one of the lessons Tolkien was trying to get across in his books? Well, well, well… I’m already up to speed, then.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor is out September 30, 2014 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. Yeah, pre-order madness exists in the form of different “exclusive” DLC from different retailers (boo), so do what you need to do if you want that extra perk. or maybe just buy the game outright when it’s in a store and hope WBIE decides to release ALL those bonuses once a few weeks or so have passed. Or they’re available as in-game unlocks once you’ve played long enough…

Shadow of Mordor Story Trailer: The Bright Lord’s Kind Of An OK Guy, Huh?

“And there will be no joy in Mordor… Mighty Crazy has struck out!” Well, okay, my feeble attempt at humor is based on me having a loooooong and boring day here fiddling with my PCs and clearing out stuff from some hard drives. But it had to be done and done it has been. Except for one computer here I’m wanting to beat with a baseball bat because it finally needs replacing after many years of service. But that’s neither here nor there, folks. This Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor update is brought to you from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, home of fine video games in the LEGO, Batman and Lord of the Rings franchises (among others). Hey, I’m not getting a dime for this post from them at all, folks – I’m just writing what’s rolling off the top of my head because my eyes are half closed right about now. Oh, I’ll be alright after a decent night’s rest. See you all tomorrow!

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Behind the Scenes #1: On Performance and Polish.

 
Initially, I’d thought this was going to be one of those online only games or an expansion to The Lord of the Rings Online, so it got sent to the bottom of my list of games I was interested in this year. Well, as this years E3 revealed, I need to pay a lot more attention. Monolith Studios is making what looks to be a really cool action game using the Rings license for current and next-generation platforms that’s worth taking a longer look at, so here you go – the first of a few making of videos. Enjoy!

E3 2014: Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor – Monolith Just Might Be Making The Lord of The Lord of the Rings Games…

MeSoM boxartVeteran developer (and former publisher) Monolith Productions has been around since 1997, but it’s upcoming game Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor may just be the studio’s most important game to date. The upcoming open world action/RPG set to hit PC, PS3/PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One on October 7, 2014 looks to bring an all-new hero, Talion (a ranger who’s been killed but revived with supernatural powers) into the familiar world created by J. R. R. Tolkien. The game’s story is written by Christian Cantamessa (a lead-writer and lead-designer on Rockstar San Diego’s Red Dead Redemption) and Monolith is working with Middle-earth Enterprises, Peter Jackson and Weta Workshop ensuring that everything in the game is as close to The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit canon as it gets while introducing some new and appealing elements.

 
Additionally, in the case of the PC and next-gen versions, the developer is also looking to expand the enemy AI in their game with something called the Nemesis System that gives each foe a back story, motivations and memories, allowing them to fight more fiercely and even remember how you’ve treated them if you happen to let them live when encountering them during gameplay. Another cool thing is the game will randomize who you encounter and allow no two play-throughs to be exactly the same. Talion will be able to influence enemies to fight each other, ally with him to take to the battlefield with some assistance and more. The PS3 and Xbox 360 versions will most likely see this system slimmed down a bit, but if those versions retain the open world,enough of the abilities Talion has to affect enemies and the unique enemy placement, it’ll absolutely be well worth a buy… Continue reading