Monolith Productions announced that real-money microtransactions in Middle-earth: Shadow of War will be fully removed. In a press release, the developers addressed the concerns of the community, and over the next week the ability to purchase in-game currency to obtain Orc followers from War Chests will fade out.
Buying in-game currency will come to an end on May 8, and players have until July 17 to spend any additional gold they may have. Any extra gold after this point will be converted into in-game items. The developer detailed the following changes in their announcement:
The core promise of the Nemesis System is the ability to build relationships with your personal allies and enemies in a dynamic open world. While purchasing Orcs in the Market is more immediate and provides additional player options, we have come to realize that providing this choice risked undermining the heart of our game, the Nemesis System. It allows you to miss out on the awesome player stories you would have otherwise created, and it compromises those same stories even if you don’t buy anything. Simply being aware that they are available for purchase reduces the immersion in the world and takes away from the challenge of building your personal army and your fortresses. In order to fully restore the core promise of the Nemesis System, we’ll be permanently removing Gold, War Chests and the Market from Shadow of War. This means the option to purchase Gold with real-world money and the ability to gain Orc Followers from War Chests will be removed. There will be a specific amount of time given for players to utilize their unused Gold. If players have unused Gold by the end of the time allotted to spend it, any remaining Gold will be converted to in-game items.
Along with these changes, Monolith addressed the upcoming changes to the fortress protection aspects of Middle-earth: Shadow of War. They plan to add more narrative elements to this part of the game that will make the story clearer and more coherent. The Endless Siege update will continue to be playable, but things like skill tree branches, new skins, gear upgrades, and other updates will be coming to the game soon.
While the microtransactions weren’t as blatantly unfair as Star Wars Battlefront 2, Shadow of War played its part in the loot box controversy of last year. Fans of the series were thrown off by the addition although it didn’t directly affect the gameplay; however, Monolith is taking steps to appease the community.
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