In Shadow of War, you’ll find that many Overlords, Warchiefs, Captains, and leaders of Sauron’s Forces come with randomized Strengths and Weaknesses. This will also extend to any that you take over command of, and promote to lead your armies.
Because these Captains and Warchiefs are procedurally generated, Talion will need to gather intel to find out new info on his potential targets, which he can do by interrogating Worms. Finding these enemies on the battlefield will also reveal their strengths – but not their weaknesses.
Even after you reveal what an enemy brings to the table, these perks and flaws can still change over the course of the game. As these Orcs and Ologs do battle, defeat others, cheat death, get shamed and more, they may gain or lose perks, and even become Epic or Legendary.
Strengths are traits that Orcs can carry that give them advantages on the battlefield, or make them immune to some of your attacks.
Immunities are positive traits that enemies carry that render them completely immune to certain attacks – whether they be from Talion himself or from the environment or others.
If you want to bypass an Orc’s immunties, try attacking him in a way that triggers any fears he has or cause him to be dazed – as it will temporarily disable his immunities while he is stunned or terrified.
- Fire-Proof (Immune to fire attacks)
- Frost-Proof (Immune to frost attacks)
- Poison-Proof (Immune to poison attacks)
- Arrow-Proof (Immune to ranged attacks)
- Beast-Proof (Immune to Beast attacks)
- Immune to Curse
- Immune to Execution
- Vigilant against Stealth (Immune to stealth attacks)
Hates are specific traits that, while they do not render the unit immune, will send the Orc or Olog into a rage – increasing their damage and making them harder to kill for a certain period of time. Previously broken enemies will become unable to be grabbed or otherwise dominated until the rage wears off, and most attacks will become unblockable.
The one caveat is that while under the effects of rage, the target can no longer distinguish friend from foe – and will lash out at any targets nearby. This can be useful in large groups – but less so if your dominated orcs starts attacking others during a fortress assault.
- Bestial Frenzy (Becomes enraged after killing a beast)
- Blood Brother (Will ambush and become enraged when his Blood Brother is attacked or killed)
- Bloodlust (Becomes enraged when other Orcs nearby become enraged)
- Brutal Frenzy (Becomes enraged at the sight of brutal attacks or shaming)
- Devoted Master (Becomes enraged when target’s pet or gang is killed)
- Enraged by Acrobatics
- Enraged by Betrayal (Becomes enraged when allies fight each other)
- Enraged by Boss Defeat (Becomes enraged when his boss is killed)
- Enraged by Burning
- Enraged by Caragors
- Enraged by Cowards (Becomes enraged when high-ranking orcs flee or become dazed)
- Enraged by Curse
- Enraged by Drakes
- Enraged by Everything (Can become enraged at any moment)
- Enraged by Frost
- Enraged by Graugs
- Enraged by Ghuls
- Enraged by Injury (Becomes enraged when taking damage)
- Enraged by Morgai Flies
- Enraged by Mortal Wounds (Becomes enraged when at low health)
- Enraged by Pinning
- Enraged by Poison
- Enraged by Rival (Enraged by the sight of a specific rival Orc)
- Enraged by Spiders
- Enraged by Stealth
- Enraged by Undead
- Enraged by Weakness (Becomes enraged when higher-ranking targets become dazed)
- Haunted (Enraged by Shadow Strike)
- Killing Frenzy (Becomes enraged after killing a Captain)
- Last Stand (Becomes enraged when facing the Bright Lord alone)
- Possessive Master (Becomes enraged if his Bodyguards are attacked.)
- Power Crazed (Becomes enraged upon encountering a more powerful target)
- Vengeful (Becomes enraged when witnessing the death of an allied captain)
- Vengeful Master (Becomes enraged when a Bodyguard is killed)
Traits are additional attacks and skills that each Orc brings to a fight – and depend upon what their base Class and the Advanced Classes that they belong to. They are also influenced by Tribes they are apart of to give them additional skills.
Lethal killer who prefers to ambush enemies and strike them down quickly. These enemies prefer to ambush you when Talion is distracted. Handle these opponents cautiously, and be quick to retreat when low on health or you’ll be killed.
- Agile – Dodges, rolls, and vaults over opponents to avoid taking damage.
- No Chance – Does not allow a Last Chance QTE.
- Master of the Hunt – will track you relentlessly and call reinforcements to join his hunt.
- Throwing Knives – Can hurl throwing knives from a distance.
- Epic Throwing Knives (Epic Trait) – Throws an arc of multiple knives at all foes in front of him.
At one with the creatures of Mordor. Beasts will not attack him. Can often be found in the wilds or taming beasts. Take out any beast friends he summons quick, or tame them to your side to turn the tables.
- Bestial Roar – Calls Caragors to battle, heals allied beasts and send them at his target.
- Caragor Pack – Arrives to fights with a pack of Caragors.
- Drake Lure – Can call a Drake into battle.
- Den Mother – Calls and heals Ghuls into battle.
- Spider Summoner – Is able to summon Spiders on command to poison targets.
- Dire Mount (Epic Trait) – Starts the battle mounted on a Dire Caragor, and can ride others.
- Epic Graug Call (Epic Trait) – Summons a graug to fight alongside him.
Chaotic warrior who becomes enraged in battle. The Berserker thrives when damaging others. Attack him from afar if possible, or use the environment to distract, stun, and wound him before going in for the kill.
- Furious Charge – Charges after opponents, knocking them to the ground and beating them.
- Rabid – Utters terrifying battle cries that disorient and intimidate enemies.
- Rampage – Recklessly charges into battle, attacking friend and foe alike.
- Shield Slam (Defender Only) – Can strike his shield into the ground, stunning nearby enemies.
- Flying Axes (Savage Only) – Throws his weapons which will return back to him, dealing high damage to everyone in their path.
- Epic Rage (Epic Trait) – Stays enraged for long periods of time.
Emboldens those who fight alongside him, enabling them to fully unlesh their battle lust. Can often be found training troops in outposts. Use explosives or Eleven Light to clear the battlefield of his friends while you focus on your target.
- War Banners – Orders followers to plant war banners that strengthen and frenzy allies, but can be destroyed.
- Call Reinforcements – Uses a horn to continually call more reinforcements to the area.
- Dying Command – Upon death, his followers will be sent into an enraged state.
- Fanatical Gang (Epic Trait) – Leads a gang that becomes enraged if he is attacked.
An expert in explosive tactics and weaponry, he is equipped with bombs and mines. You’ll need to be constantly moving and dodging if you want to avoid their explosives, and move away from the body quickly once he falls.
- Final Blast – Upon death, triggers an explosion that stuns enemies.
- Elemental Blast – Upon death, triggers an explosion that can deal either Fire, Frost, Poison, or Curse damage.
- Sappers – Has a gang of explosive enemies who detonate in a suicidal blast.
- Mines and Bombs – Can deploy mines or throw bombs that stuns enemies.
- Elemental Mines and Bombs – Can deploy mines or throw bombs that can deal Fire, Frost, Poison, or Curse damage.
- Epic Bombs (Epic Trait) – Throws multiple bombs rapidly.
- Epic Elemental Bombs (Epic Trait) – Throws multiple bombs rapidly that can be either Fire, Frost, Poison, or Curse infused.
Unit is a specialist in ranged combat who sees farther, fires with more accuracy, and deals more damage. Try keeping them in melee range whenever possible so they can’t unleash their most damaging shots, and instead rely on easily countered melee swings.
- Power Shot – Fires a powerful shot that stuns his target.
- Explosive Shot – Fires ranged projectiles that explode on impact.
- Quick Shot – Can shoot successive bolts very quickly.
- Epic Quick Shot (Epic Trait) – Can shoot multiple targets at once.
Heavily armored fighters that withstand immense damage. The Tank can endure great pain is capable of a second wind moments before death. An enemy that can last this long in combat can be undone by mortal weaknesses or things that cause them to flee in terror.
- Determination – Heals himself during battle through sheer willpower alone, but can be interrupted.
- Wave of Might – Unleashes a wave of strength so powerful that it pushes back and disorients nearby enemies.
- Epic Determination (Epic Trait) – Heals himself completely during a battle through exceptional willpower, but can be interrupted.
Seeks you out no matter where you hide and summons reinforcements to hem you in. Be wary and perceptive to spot their traps when dodging about, and take the fight to them before they can call for help.
- Master of the Hunt – Will track you relentlessly, and sound a horn for nearby Orcs to join his hunt.
- Trapper – Can set traps to pin an enemy place, making them vulnerable to ranged attacks until set free.
- Harpoon (Olog Only) – Mid-range weapon that locks onto enemies, and will pull you in if struck.
- Epic Trapper (Epic Trait) – Throws multiple traps to ensnare enemies, making them vulnerable to ranged weapons until breaking free.
Expert in surprise attacks and unexpected tactics used to confuse enemies. The Trickster is difficult to predict. Use area of effect attacks like explosives or Elven Light to stop them from dodging – or pin them in place so they can’t escape.
- Smoke Bomb – Deploys Smoke Bombs to elude enemies
- Decoys – Can appear with an entoruage who look exactly like him, and it will make tracking the real target harder.
- Epic Smoke Bomb (Epic Trait) – Deploys more powerful smoke bombs that also stun nearby enemies while he eludes them.
- Elite Decoys (Epic Trait) – Can appear with a group of elite Grunts that look exactly like him, and will make tracking the real target harder.
Extremely skilled fighter. The slayer faces his enemies head-on and overpowers them with his exceptional combat skills. Don’t rely on using similar attacks – change up your tactics quickly and often and bring friends to swarm them if possible.
- Triple Strike – Attacks with a deadly three-hit combination. Use caution when fighting up close.
- Quick Learner – Adapts to your tactics quickly to render them useless.
- Slayer Counter (Epic Trait) – Responds to Executions from the front with an unblockable counterattack. Execute from behind instead.
Each Captain, Warchief, and Overlord is a member of one of many different Tribes, and each of them have a special attack trait they bring to the table.
- Mystic Tribe Bonus: Mystic Blade – Produces a dark blade and teleports to the target with an unblockable slash.
- Warmonger Tribe Bonus: Warmonger Clash – Locks your weapon in place with his gauntlets – break free or suffer extra damage.
- Terror Tribe Bonus: Terror Chains – Whips out dual spiked chains and lashes them in an arc around to damage nearby targets.
- Marauder Tribe Bonus: Hail of Bolts – Produces dual crossbows to unload in a frontal area with rapid arrows.
- Feral Tribe Bonus: Feral Claws – Engages in a furious unblockable charge to knock down their opponent and strike at them on the ground.
- Dark Tribe Bonus: Dark Strikes – Uses deadly blades to deal a series of strikes that must be countered fast.
Bonuses are positive perks that enemies carry into battle, whether through their equipment or part of their class. Some can randomly be given to any orc, while others are specific to one of the Tribes or Enemy Classes
- Beast Slayer – Can execute enemy beasts
- Caragor Rider – Able to mount and ride nearby Caragor, and can start a battle already mounted.
- Cursed Weapon – Wields a blighted weapon that can curse enemies.
- Flame Weapon – Wields a fiery weapon that can set others on fire.
- Flame Thrower (Olog Only) – Wields a large cannon that acts like a flamethrower, spreading fire in a wide area in front of him.
- Giant Slayer – Deals increased damage to Ologs and Graugs.
- Gang of Archers – Leads a group of archers.
- Gang of Defenders – Leads a group of defenders.
- Gang of Hunters – Leads a group of hunters.
- Gang of Ologs – Leads a gang of Ologs.
- Gang of Savages – Leads a gang of Savages.
- Gang of Warriors – Leads a group of warriors.
- Iron Will – Cannot be dominated (this perk can be lost if shamed).
- Loyal Bodyguard – Always found at his Master’s side.
- Necromancer (Mystic Only) – Can resurrect followers from the dead.
- Poison Weapon – Wields a noxious weapon capable of Poisoning his enemies.
- Unbreakable – Can never be reduced to a broken state, and therefore cannot be dominated.
Epic Traits are reserved for only the most legendary of Warchiefs and Overlords. These traits are often extremely deadly, and offer little countermeasures. Epic Units posess one of these Traits, while Legendary Units have two.
- Curse Master – Increases Curse damage dealt by himself and allies.
- Curse Warder – Decreaese Curse damage dealt to himself and allies.
- Fire Master – Increases Fire damage dealt by himself and allies.
- Fire Warder – Decreases Fire damage dealt to himself and allies.
- Fanatical Gang – Nearby followers become enraged if target is attacked.
- Gang of Elite Archers – leads a group of highly skilled archers.
- Gang of Elite Defenders – leads a group of highly skilled defenders.
- Gang of Elite Hunters – leads a group of highly skilled hunters.
- Gang of Elite Ologs – leads a group of highly skilled ologs.
- Gang o Elite Savages – leads a group of highly skilled savages.
- Gang of Elite Warriors – leads a group of highly skilled warriors.
- Great Strength – Attacks deal immense damage.
- Poison Master – Increases Poison damage dealt by himself and allies.
- Poison Warder – Decreases all Poison damage received on target and allies.
- Thick Skinned – Has greatly increased health.
Weaknesses are detriments that most orc Captains, Warchiefs, and even Overlords are randomly equipped with. They can range from flaws that allow for instant kills – or traits that can leave them stunned or terrified from your attacks.
Mortal Weaknesses are huge flaws that lesser captains and warchiefs might have that allow for a quick death if capitalized on – but many higher level enemies will shed them off. They may also be terrified of certain things that lower their guard allowing for a quick kill.
- Craven – Flees in terror when faced with higher level enemies
- Deserter – Flees in terror when witnessing the death of an allied Captain.
- Extremely Soft Headed – can be killed instantly with a headshot.
- Hysterical Master – Flees in terror when one of his Bodyguards is killed.
- Intimidated – Flees in terror upon seeing his rival.
- Mortal Beast Fodder – Can be killed instantly by beast attacks.
- Mortally Flammable – Can be killed instantly using fire.
- Mortally Sickly – Can be killed instantly by poison attacks.
- Mortally Vulnerable to Executions – Can be killed instantly killed by execution attacks.
- Mortally Vulnerable to Stealth – can be killed instantly using Stealth Attacks
- Soft Skull – Takes extreme damage from headshots.
- Terrified of Balefire
- Terrified of Betrayal – Flees in terror when Allies betray him.
- Terrified of Boss Breaking – Flees in terror when his leader is broken.
- Terrified of Brutality – Flees in terror when another orc is brutalized or shamed.
- Terrified of Burning
- Terrified of Caragors
- Terrified of Curse
- Terrified of Drakes
- Terrified of Executions
- Terrified of Frost
- Terrified of Ghuls
- Terrified of Graugs
- Terrified of Morgai Flies
- Terrified of Poison
- Terrified of Pinning
- Terrified of Stealth
- Terrified of Spiders
Vulnerabilities are flaws that allow enemies to be heavily damaged by certain attacks – either by Talion or by others.
- Vulnerable to Execution
- Vulnerable to Stealth
- Flammable – Heavily damaged by fire
- Sickly – Heavily damaged by poison
- Beast Fodder – Heavily damaged by beasts
- Soft Target – Heavily damaged by Ranged Attacks
- Clumsy – Can be grabbed or mounted without first being weakened.
Dazed attacks are special flaws that if capitalized on will make the enemy become vulnerable to follow up attacks, and cause them to lower their defenses. Immunities are temporarily forgotten while an enemy is dazed.
- Battle Weary – Becomes dazed after killing another Captain.
- Dazed by Stealth
- Exhaustion – Becomes dazed when his rage wears off.
- Fear of Burning
- Fear of Brutality
- Fear of Caragors
- Fear of Execution
- Fear of Graugs
- Fear of Ghuls
- Fear of Morgai Flies
- Fear of Pinning
- Fear of Poison
- Fear of Spiders
- Shaken Master – Dazed when Bodyguards are killed.
- Soft-Headed – Becomes Dazed when shot in the head.
- Weak Master – Dazed when his pet or gang is killed.
Hints aren’t specifically flaws – but they do point out what a Captain, Warchief, or Overlord can be damaged by if they happen to be immune to other attacks.
- Damaged by Ranged Attacks (and Shadow Strikes)
- Damaged by Executions
- Damaged by Explosions
- Damaged by Stealth Attacks
- Damaged by Poison