In Shadow of War, Talion will have to quickly re-learn many of his old Skills from the previous game, Shadow of Mordor, along with plenty of new skills and upgrades for each of the main skills. As enticing as the upgrades are, you’ll really want to focus on getting certain skills early on in the game, which will require going down the line of skills in each tree to get the best ones. While all of the skills are important in their own way, our Shadow of War Wiki writers have compiled 5 Essential Skills you should get as soon as possible.
After getting Execution – which is extremely useful in its own right, make sure to also get Perfect Counter early on too. It’s essential when facing down hordes of Orcs to be able to stun them long enough to focus on taking out a Captain or setting them up for a Ground Execution. Eventually, you can upgrade it with even more useful perks like gaining back ranged ammo, or instantly killing lesser grunts.
Down the Predator Skill Tree, you’ll have to unlock a few skills to get to Wraith Chain – but once you have it, stealth missions will become even easier. Using Focus, you can teleport your wraith-form to nearby enemies and take out groups of enemies at once from stealth, which is very useful when bonus objectives require you to not be spotted, or you need to infiltrate a fortress without sounding an alarm.
In the Ranged Skill tree you’ll find almost every skill has great use, but early on, try and get the Bird of Prey skill. It allows you to slow down time and focus when aiming in the air. Combined with Shadow Strider skill, you can double jump and change direction towards your target before slowing down to unleash a flurry of arrows on a group, or pinpoint a barrel to explode right before you land in the middle to take out the startled enemies.
In the Wraith Skill Tree, you’ll find one of the most useful skills to get early is Ice Storm. When you find yourself taking on lots of orcs or a strong captain, Ice Storm lets you freeze a target in place and either leave them out of the battle, or use a flurry attack to deal damage quickly and build up your might fast. Just be mindful to watch out for incoming attacks when you try and flurry attack a frozen target, and note that some Orcs will adapt to continued Ice Storms or become enraged by it.
Finally, the Mounted Skill Tree is always useful to exploit the weaknesses of enemies, and nothing is more useful than the Call Caragor Skill. With it, you can summon a Caragor from anywhere, regardless of if there are caged ones nearby. This can sometimes spell doom for a Captain who’s afraid or mortally weak to beast attacks – and you can even summon them in Commander’s room during a Fortress Assault to get a beast into an area where you usually wouldn’t find any.
Don’t forget to eventually upgrade the skill to summon other types of beasts to capitalize on your target’s weakness! Remember, if you need to get more skill points fast, be sure to take on every side quest, complete the Shadows of the Past missions, unlock towers, and find collectibles to gain additional skill points without having to level up.
Have any skills or upgrades that you think are worth getting as soon as possible? Let us know in the comments! For more on Shadow of War, check out our glowing Middle-earth: Shadow of War Review.
For more game help, be sure to visit these wiki pages:
Brendan Graeber is an Editor at IGN who shamed an Orc repeatedly until he went insane, and kinda felt bad about it afterwards. Follow him on Twitter at @Ragga_Fragga.