Several months after its release, Middle-earth: Shadow of War is permanently removing all microtransactions.
Posted on WB Games’ official website, the announcement stated that being able to buy orcs with real-world money undermines the experiences born from Shadow of War’s Nemesis System.
“The core promise of the Nemesis System is the ability to build relationships with your personal allies and enemies in a dynamic open world,” reads the post. “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.”
The changes will go into effect on May 8, when players will no longer be able to purchase Gold with real-world money. Players will still be able to spend Gold and receive it until the Market is closed for good on July 18.
The timing is in step with Shadow of War’s Desolation of Mordor expansion, also due next month. Desolation of Mordor will feature a new story campaign which allows you to play as Baranor, the Captain of the Tower from Minas Ithil. It will also include a new region – The Desert of Lithlad – and new beasts, the Were-wyrms.
Lucy O’Brien is Games & Entertainment Editor at IGN’s Sydney office. Follow her on Twitter.