New Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor Trailer Emphasizes Humor and New Ratbag Character

Warner Bros. Interactive released a new trailer for Monolith Production’s Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor. The new trailer, which can be viewed below, showcases the game’s Orc character, Ratbag the Coward.  The latest video does a good job emphasizing the fun humor and levity in the game. I do not expect overt comedy from the game, but I am happy to see that the characters will exhibit some more lighthearted moments in a game with such a grim setting and premise.

Based on the new gameplay footage, players as Talion can actually hire Ratbag in their employ, rather than brainwash Ratbag with the use of the Wraith powers of Celebrimbor. The banter between Ratbag and Talion in the trailer is quite humorous and amusing, and the clips reinforce why I look forward to playing this game.

The much-hyped Nemesis System is an attractive feature in the game. However, the game is due out soon, and there is still not much information regarding how well the Nemesis System works in practice rather than mere presentation. The success of the game hinges on how well the system works. The idea of recruiting and hypnotizing Orcs and using them in the fight against Sauron’s forces is intriguing. Ratbag, the sniveling and backstabbing Orc, is a an interesting character. He is a character who appears to be willfully betray his own comrades.

Based on a statement from Warner Bros. Interactive, Ratbag will have a fixed, crucial story role in the game. Due to the mechanics of the Nemesis System for Shadow of Mordor, Orcs in the gameplay are dynamically generated by the Nemesis System. The Orcs are supposed to be unique for each player experience. However, the statement from Warner Bros. Interactive implies that Ratbag will have an arbitrary role in the main storyline regardless of player choices and the Nemesis System. Ratbag’s presence in the story is probably similar to Queen Marwen, Gollum and Celebrimbor.

One other detail in the trailer: One of Talion’s weapons of choice is a broken sword. Considering the fact that many artifacts and weapons in the history of Middle-earth and The Lord of the Rings have deep, complex backstories, I want to know the backstory behind Talion’s broken, bladed weapon as well. It reminds me of Narsil, the broken sword Isildur used to cut the ring from Sauron’s hand. The sword was later re-forged as Anduril and wielded by Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor hits PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, and Xbox 360 on September 30. It will be released on Windows PC on October 2.