PC Gamer

How the loot boxes work in Middle-earth: Shadow of War


When J. R. R. Tolkien sat down to write The Lord of the Rings, I wonder if he ever imagined that his fantasy world would one day involve people spending real-world money on imaginary treasure chests stuffed with cockney orcs. Imagine going back in time and trying to explain that to him. Middle-earth: Shadow of War has microtransactions, and people are mad. And I sympathise, because microtransactions are depressing. The crass commodification of an artform.

A gaudy fast food joint popping up on a quaint village high street. An airline charging you $10 for a tiny, weak beer when you already dropped $200 on your damn ticket. I reviewed Shadow of War and not once did the game flash up a message trying to sell me shit. There’s a Market option on the pause menu, but I never bothered clicking on it. I figured I’d wait for the microtransactions to be intrusive or hamper my enjoyment in some way before getting annoyed at them. But to give you an idea of what exactly Warner Bros. are hawki

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