Parents' Guide to

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor

By Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Action game set in Tolkien's fantasy world is ultraviolent.

Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 29 parent reviews

age 12+

Shadow of Mordor

Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor is an epic action/adventure game based on the fantasy world created by J.R.R Tolkien. The game it's self is very good, I see no flaws as of now (I recently bought the game off amazon), and I have completed about 80% of the game. As far as content and material, I gave this game a 12+ due to the amount of action in this title. The violence in this game is similar to that to the movies, so if your child has watched those with out any problems, they should be fine. There are some pretty graphic kills your character can preform, but that isn't as much as a problem as it could be due to the fantasy aspect of this game. The fighting in this game is similar to that of the Assassin's Creed or Uncharted Series, although slightly more brutal then uncharted's and slightly less then Assassin's Creed. All in all, the game is no worse then the movies, and most mature preteens should be fine.
1 person found this helpful.
age 14+

A very violent game, but is OK if your child knows the difference between real-life and fantasy

Middle-Earth Shadow of Mordor is an open-world game that can be very violent at times which earned its rating of M for Mature. This game is based off of Tolkien's LOTR saga (Lord of the Rings). In the game, the player plays as a ranger named Talion who is captured and killed along with his family by evil Uruks and Orcs, by the command of the Black Hand of Sauron (the main antagonist in the game). Talion is killed by his throat being slit. However you can't see the aftermath. All you can see is the blade slide across his neck. Afterwards, Talion is resurrected by an elf lord to get vengeance on the man who killed his family, so, of course you will have to kill a BUNCH of orcs and uruks in order to find the right one. Talion is also accompanied by a spirit called a wraith, which gives him superhuman abilities (Being able to enter peoples minds, being able to sprint fast, survive long falls from towers, etc.) Talion is able to kill Uruks in somewhat violent ways using a range of weapons from a bow and arrow to a sword. There are also things called brutalizations, where you're behind an enemy and you repeatedly shank them. When in combat, Talion can execute a variety of moves including stabbing orcs in the face with his sword up to being able to decapitate them. But I say if your child knows the difference between real-life and fantasy and is 12, 13, or older, then I say that they can handle this game. Thank you for taking time to read this.

This title has:

Easy to play/use
Too much violence
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (29 ):
Kids say (47 ):

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor feels like what you might get if you dropped an Assassin's Creed game, a Batman game, and Peter Jackson's Hobbit and Lord of the Rings films into a blender. There are collectibles to find, towers to climb, and a special type of vision to be exploited, as in the Assassin's Creed series. Combat feels strongly inspired by the fighting in Batman games, with Talion surrounded by mobs of enemies as players tap the proper buttons to counter and dodge incoming blows while pulling off 40- and 50-hit combinations. And there's no denying that the humans, orcs, and elves as well as the dialogue and the setting all strongly recall the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films (if not necessarily the books).

It sounds like good fun for mature fantasy fans, and it frequently is. But some things just feel off. The world is surprisingly small and ugly. Mordor isn't a pretty place in the books or films, but it has a majesty and spectacle that this virtual version lacks. Plus, the narrative consists of a series of too-short mini-movies shoddily stitched together. Dramatic opening and closing scenes aside, it has neither the emotion nor memorable characters found in Tolkien's stories. And the combat, while often terrifically satisfying, can sometimes be challenging to the point of frustration, especially since enemies only get stronger if they defeat the player. The makings of a great game are here, but Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor never quite manages to get beyond the stuff of an average action RPG.

Game Details

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