The literary legend JRR Tolkien painted the image of Shelob, the great spider of the shadows, as a malevolent eight-legged beast who lived in the caves of Ephel Duath (Mountains of Shadow), close to Cirith Ungol in the passes above Minas Morgul. To the surprise of many Lord of the Rings fans, the game "Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War" took a step further in weaving a creative lore to what is already an epic masterpiece. In "Shadow Of War," Shelob appears as a pale seductive woman instead of the monstrous arachnid written in the books and as seen in the movies.

The game shows Shelob with having the power to grant visions and the capability to fight the Nazgul in their spiritual forms. The change seen in the lore of LotR is discussed by Monolith creative vice-president, Michael de Plater.

The transfiguration

In a recent discussion between Michael de Plater and Eurogamer, Michael explained that the approach they took for Shelob's character came from their interpretation that Shelob and Gollum are the unsung heroes of "The Lord of the Rings." In the book The Two Towers, Shelob is depicted as someone who "serves none but herself, drinking the blood of Elves and Men, bloated and grown fat with endless brooding on her feasts, weaving webs of shadow; for all living things were her food, and her vomit darkness." Her character in the game might appear to contradict the lore as it was told but in fact, it is deeply rooted in Tolkien's fiction.

Shelob's lineage grants her the ability to shape-shift, Tolkien describes her mother Ungoliant as a primordial with the ability to take the shape of a giant spider which is why she is seen morphing as both in "Middle-earth: Shadow of War."

An unexpected hero

Many fans see Frodo as the successful protagonist in "The Lord of the Rings," but to Michael de Plater, Frodo failed to cast the one ring into the fiery veins that lie in Mount Doom at the crucial moment - instead Gollum succeeded where our hero cannot.

For de Plater, he felt that Shelob sensed Frodo's weakness and therefore devised a plan to send Gollum to Mount Doom where he ultimately destroyed the ring. Her successful manipulation of Gollum led to the triumphant result of the quest of the fellowship of the rings, preventing Sauron the deceiver in covering the world in darkness and death. An unlikely story for an unlikely hero.

"Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War" will be available for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on October 10.