|First Impressions of Shadow of War plus a mention of Divinity 2.|
I got Shadow of Warís silver edition on a 25% discount, so I have a slight upgrade from the standard for the same 60$. I donít think it includes the expansion pass yet so thatíll have to be something I worry about on a different payday. For now, it was worth the price just a couple hours in.
One of the things I was afraid of is that my previous experience with Shadow of Mordor would make me unkillable, which is what happened. SoM basically has no more replayability because I know how the orcs walk, talk, and how best to stealth kill them all into oblivion. If I canít stealth kill them, then theyíre probably vulnerable to headshots. Only the rare shield user gave me issues (and they continue to do so in War).
Thankfully War is kicking my ass right out of the gate with a Gondorian city-like area that is fucking littered with officers. I do my usual thing of getting all the towers and taking on several officers before moving from story mission to story mission and itís damn difficult because inevitably, my attempted assassination is interrupted or capitalized on by nearby officers to the point where I do not think Iíve had a single 1v1 with any of them. One time I stealthíd a guy and finished him off only for an ambush by some hooded assassin class jackass, and I couldnít take him on because literally seconds later a previously killed orc officer (and the highest level one thatís running around, to boot) came to yell about he was put back together and became ďThe MachineĒ.
(He didnít originally have that eyepatch or faceplate).
This guy is interesting for a couple of reasons. One, he was originally a blood-brother of some sort that came to avenge some other officer I killed. Secondly, heís like 12 levels above any other orc thatís wandering around, the usual highest Iíve faced was 8 or so, but most of them are 5′s and 7′s and the like.
I managed to kill him a second time but not with any definitive blow so I hunted for his ass on one of those ďtrialsĒ they go through sometimes, only to be interrupted by some bard class guy who sang to me.
I managed to kill the bard but as I was fleeing to find orcs to sap for health, Grisha himself apparently abandoned the fight for a trial encounter that popped up, and thatís about when I stopped playing because I was downright exhausted, and in a good way.
War ramps up the difficulty in that way, but in another. Doing those ďtrialsĒ and interactions didnít pass any time in SoM, but it does here. Previously in SoM you could have an officer screen full of dead duders and it was only refilled if you happened to die or just used a tower to pass time (which you can still do here). So every encounter and trial I interrupt, inevitably a couple more officers come to fill the roster of dead mates and I find it consistently difficult to clear the area so they can leave me the fuck alone, so I can get to the story properly.
But I like this. It probably needed that mechanic in SoM, because only the earlygame was hard then. It still might be now and I might become increasingly more badass once I get access to creating a real orc army, but for now Iím still in the first chapter. Iím enjoying it.
forgot to talk about Divinity for a little bit. Still really into it but was forced into yet another reroll, and they may be one more in the future. For now Iím waiting for the Lady Vengeance bug to get fixed and maybe some kind of DLC/Expansion to add new races, classes, and content. Wonít be for many months yet of course, itís like aÖ what, two week old game?
I am enjoying my undead rogue and that might be my go-to character. Not a lot changes on a gameplay standpoint, just some unique dialog that acts as an extra tag. I think I mentioned in 203 that overlaying armor with new armor doesnít ďrevealĒ me at all.
With some new AoEís that she gets from the Tempest class mod, having a lot of fun. I also got a double mob spawn mod which has led to some intense moments despite some of the cheatier aspects of what I do. So far the highlight was the Kniles (is that his name?) the creepy dagger dude in the Fort Joy dungeons. Basically everywhere thereís a mob, the mod adds one extra in the area, so there were three uncaged meat golems standing around. He even survived my initial burst so he ran around a bit. That fight was five times longer than it usually is.
On explorer and with that cheat commander mod (which I use to gear up my undergeared people because I run with a 6-man party size and the game isnít really designed for that) Iím not running into too much trouble yet but I love the gameís combat so I donít really mind.
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