My first two hours with Shadow of Mordor (Xbox One)

Shadow of Mordor Xbox One

Tonight I played about two hours of Shadow of Mordor on the Xbox One and enjoyed it quite a bit. I managed to kill off a few Captains, but also ran into some very sticky situations and managed to die three or four times already. I’ve had fun so far, but I started to get frustrated toward the end of my two hours.

I completed the first two story missions (or 2 of 3 that were available) and enjoyed those. I managed to die mostly because of mistimed button presses and the fact that I tend to play most video games poorly in the first place (unfortunately there’s no difficulty adjustment in Shadow of Mordor). I’m never any good at timing dodges right, especially when you not only have to time dodges with ‘A’ but also counters with ‘Y’. I’ll do alright if it’s just one or the other, but when I’m being attacked by different enemies and have to use both I just can’t get the hang of it.

Toward the end of my time with the game tonight I ran into a Captain who I didn’t have any intel on and probably shouldn’t have tried confronting him. He had some sort of ability that made my screen go red and constantly drained my health and I couldn’t figure out what was causing it or how to stop it. I’d run away and try to find some herbs to regain my health, but eventually he killed me off and I decided to take a break from the game for now.

I really like the idea of the Nemesis system, where enemies in the game can be promoted based on their actions and become stronger and gain new abilities if they defeat you in combat. You’ll be certain to face them again later and they’ll certainly remember you. Also if you happen to defeat an enemy they may also return, beaten, battered and scarred and ready for their revenge. It’s a pretty cool system that I think will add hours of exciting gameplay as you’re tempted to try to topple them all. It’s worth noting that the genesis system is only available on current gen consoles (Xbox One, PS4, PC). I can’t imagine how the game plays on last gen systems, as I think the genesis system is a core part of Shadow of Mordor and what sets it apart from other hack and slash games.

I look forward to diving deeper into Shadow of Mordor and hopefully figuring out how to overcome the Captain’s who haven slain me thus far.

 

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