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    u1088451's Shadow Of Mordor (PC)

    [January 18, 2018 02:04:03 AM]
    As I watch the player character pull his dagger through the face of an enemy, I can't help but feel underwhelmed by Shadow of Mordor. It is the type of action game where violence is the means to nearly all ends; where exploration and adventure is an afterthought. All roads lead to bloodshed. Collectibles are hardly hidden and serve only to increase the player's ability to kill.

    What's more, the character interactions of the "nemesis" system are quite superficial and uninteresting. If there were something at stake, some range of emotions to be explored, then maybe the slaughter and torture of orcs would be more ethically dubious. Instead, I yawn as yet another enemy prematurely proclaims his victory over me before I lop off his head.

    That said, I don't blame the game for being a gory kill fest. It's got some really incredible character design, some amazing animations, etc. As a media experience, I almost want to compare it to metal music. Mythic, intricate, aggressive, violent, and maybe a little beautiful. But it's also a narrow band of expression, and to me that's what is holding Shadow of Mordor back.


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    [January 16, 2018 02:18:20 PM]
    My second session begins with a quest helping Ratbag, a wayward orc, become a captain. Ratbag is much more conversational than the average orc, and after sparing him, allying with him and killing a captain for him to replace, he promises to repay me by killing another captain himself. His propensity for treachery seems high but, although I don't enjoy him, he's arguably the most human character in the game thus far. The player character begrudgingly agrees to help him, and Ratbag's antics help cultivate similar reluctance in me as a player. Yet, despite no significant reward, Ratbag receives his promotion at my hand.
    Shortly after the Ratbag quest, my indiscriminate slaughter of orcs is interrupted by an orc I already killed! Despite being decapitated previously, he scolds me for not ensuring his demise the last time. Determined not to make the same mistake twice, I kill him via interrogation this time around. Interrogation is a mechanic which allows the player to learn the identity and weaknesses of an unknown army captain. These weaknesses haven't been useful yet because even the toughest orcs die in a matter of seconds. Ultimately my torture of this orc was pointless, but I can't help but feel that he was asking for it.
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    [January 16, 2018 01:47:16 PM]
    *Edit* This log was written on the 11th but didn't previously save as intended so I'm resubmitting!

    The first 15 minutes are almost entirely cut scenes, providing an introduction to the characters, world, etc. The antagonist is undeniably evil, and his misdeeds against the player character establish the tone of the game, as well as the moral justification for the inevitable orc murder that follows. Beginning my journey into Mordor, I kill some orcs attempting to stop my progress. This act is arguably in self defense, although I probably could have run past them, perhaps risking minor damage. The game clearly intends they die, encouraging me by flashing controls to fight on screen. Soon after I'm presented with a range of missions to kill for power up rewards, and I carry out the first one in bloody fashion. It's satisfying because the orcs are utterly nasty fairy tale monsters. It feels fair because they are openly hostile to me. Self defense, right? That is, until you kill their leader, which sends the underlings scampering away in fear. With the bow and arrow, I shoot a few of them as they run. Do they deserve to be spared, having hungered for my man flesh only moments before?
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    Status

    u1088451's Shadow Of Mordor (PC)

    Current Status: Playing

    GameLog started on: Thursday 11 January, 2018

    Opinion
    u1088451's opinion and rating for this game

    No comment, yet.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstar

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