When "Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor" hit in 2014, we were treated to one of the most hyper-violent representations of actual combat in the universe created by J.R.R. Tolkien. It didn't appear to be much of an attraction until most gamers finally had the chance to play it. Learning to use the combat mechanics to your advantage was half of the battle if you'll pardon the pun. It seemed to borrow a lot from "Assassin's Creed" and the "Batman: Arkham" series. It was the "nemesis system" which really made it stand out from the rest, with Uruks often returning for revenge if you didn't effectively kill them before, unless you branded them first (brought them to your side through wraith-powered brain-washing).

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It seemed to borrow a lot from "Assassin's Creed" and the "Batman: Arkham" series. It was the "nemesis system" which made it stand out from the rest, with Uruks often returning for revenge if you didn't effectively kill them before, unless you branded them first (brought them to your side through wraith-powered brain-washing).

Now we have a sequel in the works from Monolith, and the initial gameplay footage gave us a much broader scope of what will be involved in what feels more like an actual war. The footage included mounting a Drake and taking down something so massive it made "Shadow of Mordor"'s Graugs look like infants by comparison. You could bring an army of branded orcs and Uruks into the battle with you for a larger-scope scenario, bringing the combat a little closer to what we saw in "Return of the King."

You could even assign your individual army members to specific jobs depending on their skills, making it much more tactical and not as much of a lone-wolf "man vs.

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the world" scenario. Of course, if you prefer to do it alone, this game might not be as enjoyable.

There even appears to be a new ring involved rivaling the infamous "One Ring" from the books.

It's too early to know much yet

While the gameplay footage looks promising, a lot can still change. Anyone who's played the original "Watch Dogs" will know this well. The original footage looked much cleaner and nicer, and what ended up in the final product seemed pale and bland compared with the original footage. Thankfully Ubisoft countered that in the sequel with a more enjoyable experience involving drones, and some nudity, but that's another game entirely.

The visuals in "#Shadow of war" appear nearly identical to its predecessor, and that's probably just as well. Attempting to upgrade visuals can backfire, as "Assassin's Creed Unity" fans might remember. Instead of making it look "prettier," it seems the "Middle Earth" sequel is set to expand on the combat and tactics, focusing on more content and keeping the world looking dreary and unfriendly.

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The 'Shadow of War' gameplay in the latest footage seems to add little

Where the first video revealing gameplay appeared to deliver combat on a grander scale, the new footage seems bent on little more than showing off the city fo Minas Ithil while the demo player did some things we mostly already did in the first game. One of the only new aspects in the new footage was the chance to fight alongside Gondorian allies, which could, of course, backfire if they end up being useless in combat. Another appears to be a new spinning sword attack which cuts down enemies surrounding you, and a seige beast for help with those large-scale combat scenarios.

While upgraded visuals and more urban areas sound nice, most gamers will probably care more about how "Shadow of War" will succeed where the DLC missions in the first game failed. #Middle Earth Shadow of War gameplay #Shadow of War gameplay