Middle-Earth: Shadow of War came out last September to mostly positive reviews. However, one common complaint among them , including in our review, was the implementation of a microtransaction system which allowed players to buy Orcs with microtransactions. Now, in an official announcement, Monolith has announced a series of free updates which will remove the ability to purchase in-game currency with real-world money, and rebalance Shadow of War’s game mechanics.
In the announcement, Monolith states that they have been listening to community feedback and have “come to realise 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.”
“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.”
In addition to the removal of the game’s microtransaction system, the update promises that the Shadow Wars portion of the game will be improved with “new narrative elements and streamlined for a more cohesive experience”, presumably to rebalance Shadow of War’s mechanics now that players aren’t encouraged to buy Orcs with real money anymore.
These free updates will begin rolling out in May, with the ability to buy gold with microtransactions removed on the 8th of May, and the permanent removal of the entire War Chest, Gold, and Market system on the 17th of July.
This update comes shortly after similar alterations were made to Star Wars: Battlefront II‘s gameplay mechanics to remove all microtransaction and loot box systems in response to player criticism.