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Middle-earth: Shadow of War's Nemesis system hailed as 'greatest innovation' in gaming

Richard Lee Breslin

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Middle-earth: Shadow of War's Nemesis system hailed as 'greatest innovation' in gaming

Featured Image Credit: Warner Bros. Games

It’s been a while since Warner Bros. Games has given us a new Middle-earth title and fans have been reflecting on its innovative Nemesis System.

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Developed by Monolith Productions, set in a non-canon world of The Lord of the Rings, the patented Nemesis System was first introduced in 2014’s Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor before making its return in the 2017 sequel, Middle-earth: Shadow of War.

Check out the Middle-earth: Shadow of War trailer below!

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The Nemesis System is a villain generator that creates an illusion of a rivalry with an enemy NPC. This can result in fun tensions with the Orcs of Mordor and depending on how many times they might defeat you in combat, the more arrogant they may or may not become. It also implements a hierarchy system in which when an enemy is defeated, another will take its place. What’s more, if an enemy defeats you, they will get promoted. It’s a fantastic mechanic that made the experience of both Middle-earth games feel reasonably organic.

It’s fair to say the Nemesis System is an underused gameplay mechanic by Warner Bros. Games, considering that it’s not been used since 2017. Thankfully, however, the upcoming Wonder Woman title will apparently not only be a non-live service game, but it will also see the return of the aforementioned Nemesis System. Happy days!

Until the Wonder Woman game arrives, which is expected sometime between 2024 to 2025, fans on Reddit have been discussing the Nemesis System, a feature dubbed as the ‘greatest innovation’ in gaming. “The nemesis system in Middle-Earth Shadow of War is the best gaming innovation in the past 20 years and it's incredible that WB is doing nothing with it,” said Redditor potatoguy21, before going into great detail about the mechanic.

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Fellow Redditors in response have been talking about their favourite rivalries related to the Nemesis System in the Middle-earth games from Monolith Productions.

“My ultimate nemesis was an unkillable b******,” replied Invincidude. “I must have killed him 50 f****** times.” To which Vectorman1989 responded with: “The best part is when you completely break their spirit so they come back and just talk like "woo woo? Arooooo woo woo!”

“Mine became like this too. I stabbed him so much in the head that he went from speaking a ton to talking slowly and simply to finally just making noises and speaking gibberish,” explained YouKnowWhatToDo80085.

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“Man, my nemesis for the longest time was an assassin. The f***** out-levelled me hard and showed up in every other mission I tried to do,” exclaimed Bizarkie. “At the time I was p***** but looking back, it's a very cool and engaging mechanic. I don’t remember hating anyone in any video game as much as I hated that guy.”

Will we ever see a third Middle-earth game from Monolith Productions? I certainly hope so. For now, at least both Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War are available on PC, PlayStation and Xbox.

Topics: The Lord Of The Rings, Warner Bros, PC, PlayStation, Xbox

Richard Lee Breslin
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