Middle-Earth: Shadow Of War

Strategy Guide/Walkthrough/FAQ

Review

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Easy fight pit wins

If your Orc is about to lose at a fight pit, simply quit the game and retry again until he wins.

Getting Legendary gear

Successfully complete the indicated task to get the corresponding Legendary gear piece; or defeat the listed Legendary enemy type(s) to have a chance of getting the corresponding Legendary gear piece.

Dark

    Sword: Dark Slayer and Dark Destroyer
    Dagger: Dark Assassin
    Bow: Dark Marksman and Dark Tracker
    Armor: Dark Tank
    Cloak: Dark Beastmaster and Darker Berserker
    Ringcraft: Dark Commander and Dark Trickster

Feral

    Sword: Feral Slayer and Feral Destroyer
    Dagger: Feral Assassin and Feral Berserker
    Bow: Feral Marksman and Feral Tracker
    Armor: Feral Tank
    Cloak: Feral Beastmaster and Feral Berserker
    Ringcraft: Feral Commander and Feral Trickster

Machine

    Sword: Machine Slayer and Machine Destroyer
    Dagger: Machine Assassin and Machine Berserker
    Bow: Machine Marksman
    Armor: Machine Tank and Machine Destroyer
    Cloak: Machine Beastmaster and Machine Trickster
    Ringcraft: Machine Commander

Marauder

    Sword: Marauder Slayer and Marauder Destroyer
    Dagger: Marauder Assassin and Marauder Tracker
    Bow: Marauder Marksman
    Armor: Marauder Tank and Marauder Destroyer
    Cloak: Marauder Beastmaster and Marauder Trickster
    Ringcraft: Marauder Commander

Vendetta

    Sword: Complete one Online Vendetta mission.
    Dagger: Use a Stealth Attack on an Online Vendetta target.
    Bow: Headshot an Online Vendetta opponent.
    Armor: Defeat an Online Vendetta opponent with at least 80% health.
    Cloak: Mount attack an Online Vendetta target.
    Ringcraft: Dominate an Online Vendetta opponent.

Bright Lord

    Sword: Open the Ithildin Door at Gorgoroth.
    Dagger: Open the Ithildin Door at Seregost.
    Bow: Open the Ithildin Door at Nurnen.
    Armor: Open the Ithildin Door at Nurnen.
    Cloak: Open the Ithildin Door at Cirith Ungol.
    Ringcraft: Get at least a "Bronze" on all "Shadows Of Past" missions.

Mystic

    Sword: Mystic Slayer
    Dagger: Mystic Assassin and Mystic Berserker
    Bow: Mystic Marksman and Mystic Tracker
    Armor: Mystic Tank and Mystic Destroyer
    Cloak: Mystic Beastmaster
    Ringcraft: Mystic Commander and Mystic Trickster

Terror

    Sword: Terror Slayer and Terror Destroyer
    Dagger: Terror Assassin
    Bow: Terror Marksman and Terror Tracker
    Armor: Terror Tank
    Cloak: Terror Beastmaster and Terror Bersekver
    Ringcraft: Terror Commander and Terror Trickster

Warmonger

    Sword: Warmonger Slayer
    Dagger: Warmonger Assassin and Warmonger Tracker
    Bow: Warmonger Marksman
    Armor: Warmonger Tank and Warmonger Destroyer
    Cloak: Warmonger Beastmaster and Warmonger Berserker
    Ringcraft: Warmonger Commander and Warmonger Trickster

All mounts

There are a total of seven beast mounts that you must ride to get the "Rough Rider" achievement. Four of them can be summoned at any time with skills. Three of them are rare elemental versions of the Graug (poison, fire, and ice). Successfully complete the indicated task to mount the corresponding beast:

    1. Caragor: Summon with the "Call Mount" skill.

    2. Dire Caragor: Summon with the "Dire Caragor" skill upgrade.

    3. Graug: Summon with the "Graug Call" skill upgrade.

    4. Drake: Summon with the "Dragon Song" skill upgrade.

    5. Rare Poison Graug (green color): It is only found in the Núrnen region. Fast travel between the three headir towers and look for two Graugs fighting each other. There is an 80% chance that one of them is a Poison Graug. Press LB (Xbox controller) to scan the area around the tower for Graugs. If you do not see any, fast travel to the next tower. If nothing spawns, advance time and repeat.

    6. Rare Fire Graug (blue color): Go to the following location. It is only found in the Gorgoroth region. It can take 20-30 tries to get it to spawn. If it does not spawn, advance time and try again.

    7. Rare Ice Graug (red color): Go to the following location. It is only found in the Seregost region. It can take 20-30 tries to get it to spawn. If it does not spawn, advance time and try again.

There is also a wooden version of each beast in the Carnán quest line, but these probably do not count. You have to ride them as part of main quests; they are unmissable. If you do not get the "Rough Rider" achievement after mounting the rare Graugs, play the Carnán quests.

All Ithildin Door Poem solutions

Use the following solutions to solve all five Ithildin Door Poems and get the Bright Lord's Legendary Set. You must find six Ithildin collectibles per region, return to the Ithildin Door, and fill the blanks in the poem. The Ithildin Door locations are marked on the map. When you hover over the icon, you can see white outlines on the map showing you the entrance to the tomb. Place a marker where the white outlines end to locate the entrance more easily. To get the six Ithildins to appear on the map, you must purify all Headir Towers in the region. There are always six Ithildins and one door per region. There are five total regions. Behind each door is a new gear piece of the Bright Lord's Legendary Set. None of these are missable; you can still get them after completing the story. Fill the indicated words in for the corresponding poem, from top to bottom, to solve it.

Region: Midas Morgul

  • Shadows
  • Drums
  • Cadence
  • Land
  • Wrath
  • Doom

Region: Cirith Ungol

  • Rises
  • Fires
  • Night
  • Beacons
  • Shines
  • Marching

Region: Núrnen

  • Iron
  • Serpents
  • Avail
  • Woe
  • Hordes
  • Claim

Region: Seregost

  • Slumbers
  • Nest
  • Poisoned
  • Trapped
  • Comes
  • Base

Region: Gorgoroth

  • Lurk
  • Bulwark
  • Impervious
  • Powers
  • Vicious
  • Fail

Final boss fight and game ending

The following video shows the final boss fight and first game ending. After defeating the final boss, the game continues to Act 4, in which you must defend your fortresses against attackers. Complete Act 3 to get the "Banish The Darkness", "Forged By War", "Stalemate Is Victory", and "The Stuff Of Legend" achievements.

True ending

After defeating the final boss in Act 3, you will start getting defense missions for your fortresses, which is called Act 4: "Shadow Wars". There are 10 stages in Shadow Wars where you must repeatedly keep defending your fortresses. After Stage 10, you will unlock the secret post-game ending and "Peace In Death" achievement.

Shelob Memory ending

Each Shelob Memory collectible reveals a new part of the memory. There are 15 total memories (three per region). After finding all 15 Shelob Memories, you can view the full sequence in Cirith Ungol. The Shelob Memory locations get marked on the map when you purify Headir Towers. Collect all of them to get "The Web Revealed" achievement. You can track and mark any missing memories in the quest log. There is a section just for Shelob Memories -- it will display which regions they are found in and highlight them on the map.

Easy "Bad Boss" achievement

You unlock the ability to recruit Captains during Act 2 (after reaching the Núrnen region). When you have recruited a Captain, attack him with the sword until he turns hostile again. After recruiting a Captain, you can either command them to stay and fight to immediately get the "Bad Boss" achievement, or use the bodyguard skill upgrade to call him to your location later. The bodyguard skill is unlocked automatically during the story; you can assign bodyguards in the army menu.

Easy "Blood On Blood" achievement

First, reveal all enemy Captains and Warchiefs in a region. The quickest way to do this is by interrogating Worms. While pressing LB (Xbox controller), Worms are highlighted in green. You can interrogate them by holding B and it will give you intel on an enemy Captain. When you see all Orcs, check which ones have a blood brother. This is done in the army menu by clicking the Right Analog-stick on an Orc and checking the "Hates" tab (second tab from the left). Search until you find one with the "Blood Brother" ability. It will also tell you who his blood brother is. Then, dominate one of the two blood brothers (preferably the higher level one) and command him to attack the other one. After domination, press A to issue the command. This will spawn a new mission on the map with a blue icon. Complete that mission, and the two blood brothers will fight each other. You are allowed to damage the opponent, just make sure the final blow comes from the captain.

Easy "Death Is Not The End" achievement

This requires the "Raise Dead" skill with the "Undying Loyalty" upgrade. To unlock it, you must complete Act 3 of the main story and then win all three fight pits in the Minas Morgul region. Fight pits are won by sending your strongest follower to the pit and have him compete against another Orc in a simulated fight. If your Orc is about to lose, you can quit the game and retry again until he wins. The fight pits are automatically marked on the map. Equip the "Undying Loyalty" upgrade in the skills menu (this skill does not even appear in the menu until you have completed Act 3). Then, go to the army menu and press Y on a dead Captain of yours. This will resurrect him and unlock the "Death Is Not The End" achievement. If you do not have dead Captains, assign one as your bodyguard, call him to you, and kill him. The skill cannot be used on hostile captains, only on your own army.

Easy "Everything Is Permitted" achievement

Equip the "Worse Than Death" skill upgrade (it is an upgrade for "Death Threat" under Predator skills). You unlock this skill by completing the "Worse Than Death" quest in the Brûz quest line. Open the army menu and find an Orc Captain with the "Assassin" class. It shows the class under the Captain's name. If you only see the silhouettes of Captains. you must interrogate Worms to reveal more enemy information. Press LB (Xbox controller) to highlight Worms in green, then hold B to interrogate them. Mark the Assassin Captain in the army menu to reveal his location on the map. Find the Captain and get his health down to just a little remaining, then hold B to dominate him and choose to "Shame" him. With the "Worse Than Death" skill equipped, there is a good chance he will become deranged instantly and you will get the "Everything Is Permitted" achievement. If not, you must track down the same Captain again and repeat the process until he becomes deranged. There is also a slight chance this actually makes him stronger, in which case you should kill him and move on to a different Assassin.

Easy "Trolling" achievement

This is the trickiest achievement in the game. Start by finding an Olog Captain who has the "Gang Of Ologs" bonus. You can view this by clicking the Right Analog-stick (Xbox controller) on the Captain in the army menu (fourth from the left in his bonus tab). Almost every Olog Captain has this. Even if they do not have it, they are very likely to have normal Ologs nearby. The quickest way to find Olog Captains is by interrogating Worms. Aside from having normal Ologs guarding them, they are also the biggest targets to hit (this makes coordination a bit simpler). After finding a Captain, reduce his health to 1%. When he is low on health, use only single sword strikes and arrows. Then, shoot another Olog in the head with a charged arrow and immediately press RB to mount him. Repeatedly press [Attack] while on the Olog's back and use the Left Analog-stick to navigate. Run into the Captain to kill him. If the Captain's health was low enough, you will be able to kill him. If it did not work, you can mount the Olog again; there is also usually a second or third one nearby. Be very careful that you do not kill the Captain prior to mounting the Olog. What makes this tricky is that normal Ologs do not inflict much damage. So if the Captain's life bar is still visible (meaning 3% health or more), you will not make it. Also, the Captain's health may refill a little bit if you wait too long (must mount the Olog quickly). Additionally, since this is relatively easy to mess up, back up your save game before engaging the Olog captain. Alternatively, you may also find Outpost missions where you must kill Ologs to draw out a Captain. These work perfectly for this but are completely random. You can keep doing Outposts missions until you get one of these.

Easy "Vertical Mobility" achievement

First, let a random Orc kill you. Then, play the resulting Vendetta mission and recruit the Orc (hold B to dominate him when his health is low). Go to the army menu, press Y (Xbox controller) on your new Captain, then press A on the current Overlord to make them switch positions and get the "Vertical Mobility" achievement. The earliest you can do this is after capturing the fortress in Núrnen. You need to be in control of the region's fortress to reposition the Captain. Also, you cannot recruit Orcs that are a higher level than your own. If the Orc is a higher level, write down his name, level up, and come back to recruit him later. Sometimes the reposition option is greyed out. If that happens, make someone else Overlord and try again, or issue the reposition command to your Overlord directly (instead of commanding the Captain).

Easy "Wild Things" achievement

The best place to do this is at the Haedir fast travel point in the middle of Núrnen. Keep advancing time by pressing B (Xbox controller) on the fast travel point. Do this until a Drake spawns (usually within 1-5 tries). Make sure you have the "Call Mount" skill and "Graug Call" upgrade equipped. Both are mounted skills. Call a Graug and chase after the Drake, then shoot it with some arrows. However, do not "break" the Drake (meaning its icon cannot turn green). Go to an open area and wait for the Drake to attack you with its flames. While the Drake breathes fire, shoot it in the head to force it to the ground. Then, attack it with the Graug to quickly kill it. You can also perform a few more headshots while it is on the ground for bonus damage. If you "break" the Drake in the air, it will try to escape. Keep its health above 50%. Drakes can also land during combat without shooting them, but this rarely happens. The only guaranteed way is to shoot it in the head while it breathes fire.

Steam achievements

Successfully complete the indicated task to unlock the corresponding achievement. To view your achievements and stats in Steam, select "Community", "My profile", "View all my games", then the game and view stats.

    No Orc Lives Forever: Win all Fight Pit missions.
    Avenged: Complete a Vendetta Mission.
    Bad Boss: Strike a Follower until he's had enough.
    Best Defense: Equip 3 Siege Upgrades on an Assault Team.
    Better Luck Next Time: Meet an Enemy or a Follower who has cheated death.
    Blood on Blood: Make a Captain kill his bloodbrother.
    Bound by Blood: Complete an Online Vendetta.
    Death is not the End: Resurrect a Follower Captain.
    Dismantled: Disable an Outpost.
    Everything is Permitted: Shame an Assassin until he becomes deranged.
    Feed the Beasts: Attract every kind of beast using bait.
    Finished Tales: Recover all Gondorian artifacts.
    Fit for War: Complete a challenge to upgrade a piece of gear.
    Follower Perks: Use a Training Order to give a Follower a gang.
    Forged by War: Unlock all player skills.
    Forger: Forge a higher-quality Gem by combining three Gems of the same quality.
    Headhunter: Recruit a Follower of every Advanced Class.
    Hostile Takeover: Defeat a Warchief.
    I Like to Watch: Watch a Follower murder another Captain without helping him.
    If You Can't Beat Them: Dominate an Orc after he's killed you three or more times.
    It Came From Within: Start a Conquest with all Warchiefs as spies.
    Life of the Party: Send a Destroyer on a Vendetta Mission.
    Master Forger: Forge a top tier Gem.
    Nemesis: Encounter the same Orc 3 times in nemesis missions without killing him.
    No Orc Left Behind: Rescue a Follower who's been captured.
    Overkill: Send a Follower to kill another Follower in a pit fight.
    Power Couple: Send a Follower to support another Follower in a Nemesis Mission.
    Promise Keeper: Issue a Death Threat, and then successfully kill the target.
    Purge: Purify all the Haedir.
    Rough Rider: Ride every type of beast and rare beast.
    Rule of Three: Unlock 3 Gem slots.
    Second Age Warrior: Complete all Shadow of the Past missions in one region.
    Speak Friend and Enter: Open one of the Ithildin Doors.
    Such Great Heights: Reach the rank of Captain in Online Conquest.
    The Operative: Turn all of a Warchief's bodyguards (minimum 2) into spies, then confront him.
    The Stuff of Legend: Equip a full Legendary Gear set.
    The Web Revealed: Uncover the final Shelob memory and reveal the Web of Fate.
    Trolling: Kill a Captain while riding an Olog.
    Vandal: Destroy a Monument.
    Vertical Mobility: Help a grunt become an Overlord.
    Wild Things: Kill a drake while riding a graug.
    Stalemate is Victory: Defeat the Witch-king and reclaim Minas Morgul.
    Banish the Darkness: Complete all Eltariel quests.
    Banished: Defeat Suladân.
    Brought to Heel: Defeat Helm Hammerhand.
    Fall and Rise: Complete all Brûz quests.
    First Steps: Conquer the Fortress of Núrnen.
    For Gondor: Complete all Gondor quests.
    Lord of Horror: Defeat the Balrog.
    Peace in Death: Complete the Shadow Wars.
    Undeath Defeats Undeath: Complete all Carnán quests.
    What Once Was Lost: Complete Act I.
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