Warner Bros. have announced that next month Middle-earth: Shadow of War will be removing its controversial loot box system.
Pretty much from launch, one of the biggest issues with Middle-earth: Shadow of War was its loot box system which essentially let players pay to win the entire game. Many would even say that this is the title which sparked outrage against such a practice. So it comes as no surprise that the game is ditching microtransactions later this year.
In a community post, Warner Bros. wrote:
“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.”
Players who have any remaining real-world money in the game have until July 17 to spend it. This, according to Warner Bros. is when the company plans to close the game’s various marketplaces via an update.
Loot chests will still remain in the game however, but players won’t be able to purchase them with real money.
The update will also bring with it some changes to Shadow Wars including “improved with new narrative elements and streamlined for a more cohesive experience”. This does mean however that Shadow wars will restart for those currently in progress.