It looks like we can add another game in the mix that will be implementing micro-transactions in the way of Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War. Yes, it looks like we are getting them here as we have just been introduced to The Market aspect of the game that will allow us to purchase upgrades, weapons, and other boosts to help us survive the game that Monolith Productions has for us here. Sadly, this is not a huge shocker as many titles are going down this path to continue to generate revenue after a title has been launched. Now we just get to add Shadow Of War to that list of titles when it lands on the PS4, Xbox One, and PC on October 10th here. Before then though, let us dig into what this new market will offer up to players who opt into it all.
Note that I mention "players who choose to opt into it" as this is not a required aspect of Shadow Of War but another option to "expand" your gameplay. As with many other titles out there as of late, we will have multiple in-game currencies to be used and here we have Mirian and Gold. Both can be earned by just playing the game and hitting certain milestones and such during play among other things. We can then take this in-game money to The Market and use it just as we could assume, all to beef up our followers and make sure they have the latest and greatest gear. Not a huge surprise. Of course though that is that Mirian sounds like it will be a bit more abundant in Shadow Of War's core game and Gold will be a little scarcer. That is where you can spend real money to purchase all of this to speed things up.
Prices have yet to be set for any of it, but once Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War is live, the Market will offer up ways to purchase quantities of these in-game currencies and then you can "go to town" making sure everyone is the best that they can be. You can see a full list of it all just below and over on the community forum for the game.
An important aspect of the Nemesis System now comes in forging, customizing and leading your own army of unique Orc Followers against the fortresses of Mordor. Players can attack and defend fortresses throughout the single player main story campaign and also attack other player’s fortresses through Online Conquests. Players can forge their army by dominating Orcs in the open world while encountering them as part of Orc society, and players can acquire Orcs and other items through the Market (in-game store).
Through the Market, players can purchase Loot Chests, War Chests, XP Boosts and Bundles (accessed only with an internet connection).
To purchase these items, players can spend Mirian or Gold throughout the game as one progresses. Mirian is a type of in-game currency that can be acquired by:
Gold is another form of in-game currency that can be used to get higher level Loot Chests, War Chests, Boosts and Bundles of the aforementioned content. Gold can be acquired by:
All of this sounds fairly straightforward and, while not the best for video games in general, how developers and gamers have been seeing games going and generally being okay with it all. Sure, you can play the entirety of Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War without spending more real-world money than you did when you purchased everything in the first place. It will be slow going, but it can be done. Alternatively, you can shell out the extra cash and get a whole lot of in-game currency to super-charge everyone. While the team claims this gives no advantage, other than getting to a certain place in the game quicker, I can see this being a lot different. Especially when you mix in the fact that players can attack each other's fortresses and oust them from where they currently hold power.
That is where the whole pay-to-win thing can come in for Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War if Monolith Productions doesn't keep an eye on things or makes sure matching is set correctly. Seeing as these upgrades carry over to the multiplayer side, at least as of this writing, it totally looks like someone who wants to play their game and level up organically has a severe disadvantage against someone who has a whole lot of disposable income and the want to crush all of other fortresses in Shadow Of War. That is at least how I see it here as you can level and equip better things with Gold, that can be purchased, than playing the game and earning "small amounts" along the way. Instead of giving the option for players to pay to bypass the grind, it is more giving them the advantage over those who enjoy the grind. That's just my take on it though.
What do you think about The Market for Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War as it stands here? Do you see it as a great advantage for those who want to use it or will it be a game breaking thing that originally had great intent? How do you feel about the industry going down the micro-transaction route in general over the last few years? Let everyone know what you are thinking and then discuss it as you wish down in the comments. We will have more for Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War as the game is coming up quickly for release. Be sure to keep your eyes on the site here as we will have it all here as it comes and you won't want to miss out.