Middle-Earth Shadows of War is coming out with it’s biggest update yet. While there are numerous things being done in this patch the biggest has to be the removal of the Market and improvements to general progression and the Epilogue. This update will go live for everyone on Tuesday, July 17 at 6:00 AM PDT. Below is the list of what is being done with my thoughts having touched on them briefly in a preview build.
o The market is removed from the game, replaced with an updated Garrison menu that allows access to your Garrison
Orcs, Chests, Training Orders and Boosts.
o The Spoils of War Rewards and Community Challenge Reward Chests no longer contain Orcs. Instead, they now
focus on Training Orders.
o You can now purchase Training Orders directly with Mirian.
o Captains recruited during Online Vendettas and Ranked Conquests can now be found in your Garrison when you
return to your world.
o Captains killed during Online Vendettas and Ranked Conquests now drop gear, the same as Captains killed in your
world. You still receive a Gear Chest at the end of the mission, in addition to any gear dropped by Orcs.
o With the removal of the market, any unspent Gold currency has been converted into Gold Loot Chests.
Improvements to Epilogue (Shadow Wars):
o Reduced the number of stages and missions required for 100% completion of the Shadow Wars.
o Completing the Shadow Wars now earns you the pieces of gear listed below. Players who have already completed
Shadow Wars will receive this gear when they begin playing.
Servant’s Blackened Armor: Allied grunt Orcs have a chance to resurrect when they die. This includes allied
Mask of the General: Consume and Drain kills create a Curse explosion.
Mask of the Undying: Waters of Lórien and Spectral Dash cost no Focus. Melee and Stealth damage
increase for five seconds after use.
Mask of the Fell Rider: Graug Call summons an Elemental Graug.
Mask of the High King: Raise Dead summons Gondorian Wights.
Mask of an Empress: Wraith Execution, Wraith Chain and Chain of Shadows each deal more damage with
each successive Wraith.
o Additional narrative elements:
Additional dialogue from Orcs, Shelob, Dark Talion and the Witch-king.
o You can now reach level 80. Continuing to earn XP after reaching level 80 earns you additional skill points.
o Enemy Orcs can now reach level 85.
o New Prestige Skills, accessible after Act III, allow you to customize your character build. Each Prestige Skill can be
purchased multiple times.
o You can now spend Mirian to raise the level of a piece of gear to match Talion’s current level. You must complete
any upgrade challenges on the gear before you can raise its level.
o You can now spend perfect gems to re-roll secondary traits on gear. You must complete any upgrade challenges on
the gear before you can re-roll.
New Player Skins:
o You can now choose to appear as Celebrimbor and Dark Eltariel.
Those are the big parts of the updates for Shadow of War. Included in that is a host of general stability updates, UI fixes, Nemesis system updates as well as several Balance fixes for the game. The Garrison menu is easy enough to figure out and works well. Of course, the main offset now is the want to grind some additional Mirian to purchase various training orders to upgrade your Orcs. While playing this honestly didn’t feel like a bad thing and is something that should be reachable as you progress through the game natural story and side quests. Of course for those wanting to be extra sure they have the most toughest Orcses around, grind, grind, grind. The improvements to the Epilogue overall help smooth the transition to a non-IRL money market, making things a bit easier. Weather you reach the new max level of 80 or not depends on how many side quests and captains you feel like taking on, making your particular Talion more badass.
Overall this update does alot of what is needed for Middle-Earth Shadows of War and feels solid. The question remains is this too late or will this bring people back to play or even bring new players to play?