Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor - Five Point Review

Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor - Five Point Review

I'm a little late to this one, but I've been super busy and have had a decent back log to get through with GTA V, Destiny's expansion, Call of Duty and general human business. But in today's return to the Five Point Review we take a look at Shadow of Mordor and whether or not it's worth your time. I'm not a huge fan of the Tolkien books, but fan enough to see all the movies and be interested in it's games. When Monolith announced this one, I was a bit weary as the past few Lord of the Rings games have essentially been bad, and the MMO hasn't been all that great. But after the game started to get some good press, and good reviews, I figured I'd give it a look. 

Summary -  In Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor, you play as Talion, a non canonical character in the Middle Earth universe created by Tolkien. I'm not going to get too much into story, as it's a bit of a spoiler, but the easiest way to put it is that the actions in the game's story give the reasoning behind Talion's abilities as plausible. For example, jumping off of ridiculously tall structures, what happens after you die, using your bow and arrow, and so on, and so forth. The game reminds me heavily of the Arkham series, and Assassin's Creed series and does a really great job at marrying them together. The game does get repetitive, but it's a kind of welcome thing to just mindlessly slay the Uruk's who never seem to stop coming. The Sauron's Army component is awesome. Essentially, having in game NPC's fight it out for power and control to move up the ranks. Dying moves the captains around and empowers others, making them stronger and more difficult to deal with. At times, like last night for instance, I found myself fighting 4 different captains at once because they just happen to be wondering by. I absolutely died as probably a hundred enemies eventually slid in and out our combat zone, but that was actually half the fun of it. Dealing with different strengths and weaknesses of each captain, while managing their minions and the possibility of giant monsters joining the fight is a blast. There's hunting challenges, weapon challenges, scavenging challenges, and a ton of content. It's definitely a good time, even through some of it's repetitiveness.

  • Arkham and Assassin's Creed clone - but it works
  • Sauron's Army mechanic
  • Upgrading/Abilities are fun to mix and match, and find
  • Killing Uruks, no matter how many, doesn't seem to get old.
  • Ratbag and Gollum are great
  • It's bloody and gory and violent, everything you'd expect from Middle Earth
  • A ton of content
  • Original Story
  • Great Voice Acting
  • Combat is fluid
  • It does get repetitive
  • Some of the platforming and free running is an annoyance. I get stuck on geometry too often
  • There are some things they took right out of the other series that seem kind of lazy
  • The enemies respawn way too quickly in your immediate area
  • Story is a little convoluted
  • The typical collectibles - find 45 of these, 25 of these, etc.
Should you play it? Yes.  If you like games like Arkham City, and Assassin's Creed, I would highly suggest it. There is enough going on in the game and it is fun enough even if you aren't really a huge fan of those games. Also, if you like the Tolkien universe, I would suggest it as well as it seems like a pretty great representation of the world and his vision. 

Should you buy it? Yes. Especially at this point. I got it for Christmas for about $30, so it's probably hovering around there still.

Score - 8.25 The game is solid fun and a great time waster. If you're not involved in any other game and want to waste some time brutally beheading some Tolkien-esque monsters, go get it.

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