hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Beleram enters the fray in LOTR: War in the North

8:00 AM on 06.01.2011 // Nick Chester

When you strap on armor and wield your steel against an army of orcs in Lord of the Rings: War in the North later this year, expect to have some help. I'm not just talking about two friends, either. We've already extensively covered this three-player cooperative action-RPG; no doubt you've already formed your Fellowship within your own social group.

No, I'm talking about a big ass eagle. At a pre-E3 event a few weeks back, developer Snowblind revealed that players will be able to call upon Beleram, one of the Great Eagles of Middle Earth, to assist in battle. I saw him swoop in and tear an enemies' head off in my hands-on, and in the game's E3 trailer (above) he straight up knocks a troll on its ass.

I guess if you're going to be fighting a war in the North, it's best to have a big ass eagle on your side.

In a short introductory gameplay demo, three Snowblind developers walked us though an area where our three heroes must free Beleram from chains. He's being held prisoner, shackled to a hulking stone slab. As our "three bright flames of courage" approach, they see Beleram being tormented and teased; the ordinarily formindable eagle can do nothing but snap at (and miss by a nose) his aggressors with an imposing beak.

Heading into battle, the three fight their way through a wave of guards, hacking and slashing, burying arrows into unfortunate skulls. Farin, the dwarf of the Fellowship, uses a war cry which attracts enemies to his position. While the opposition storms the short and stout warrior, a ranger named Eradan evokes a stealth ability to sneak through and begins to bash away at the chains holding the Eagle captive. With at least one of his feet free, Beleram swipes his sharp talons at one of his captors, sending him soaring through the air. With all of the fetters eventually snapped, Beleram takes the opportunity and flies off towards the sky. But it's not the last you'll see of him.

Like Snowblind's previous titles -- Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance, for instance -- War in the North will focus heavily on loot. We're talking all manner of stuff here, "literally thousands of items" I'm told, including unique bits of weapon and armor. But among this loot you may find feathers which can be used to call upon Beleram, who will swoop into battle and do some serious damage to your foes.



Watching him in action, I couldn't help but think of the magic in Sega's Golden Axe, where the single press of a button rains down hell and clears an area. War in the North's Beleram may be even more satisfying, however. While his descent happens quickly, you'll want to stop and soak it in. Because the game proudly wears its M rating, you might see him take off limbs, or crash into a crowd of enemies with the expected barbaric results. As gratifying as it was to watch him in action, you'll have to be conscious of when and when not to use your feathers; don't expect them to be falling out of the purses of every enemy or hiding in every chest.

As I write this, War in the North should have probably been on store shelves. Warner Bros. and Snowblind first revealed the game a little over a year ago, and its release date seems to keep getting push back further and further. Based on how I've seen the game progressing over the past year, that extra time certainly hasn't been wasted. Combat and the overall feel of the game is much improved, even since the last time I played it, which was only a few short months back at GDC.

The latest release time frame for War in the North is simply "2011." Based on how far along things are looking and feeling, I'd guess it won't be too long before gamers are dropping Beleram Bombs all across Middle Earth.

Photo Gallery: (9 images)
Click to zoom - browse by swipe, or use arrow keys



Nick Chester, Former Editor-in-Chief (2011)
 Follow Blog + disclosure Tips
Editor-in-Chief @ Destructoid.com nick at destructoid.com  more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our moderators, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

TheDefenestrator avatarTheDefenestrator
I dig the feature in Until Dawn where, if you have the Playstation camera, it will record you briefly during jump scares for you to watch later. It's a really neat use of an underused peripheral. Too bad I'm dead inside and never react to them.
Shinta avatarShinta
[img]http://i.imgur.com/oZ7CQJa.jpg[/img]
nanashi avatarnanashi
Fallout Shelter: Impossible to Learn, Easy to Master.
Mike Wallace avatarMike Wallace
Not saying this is the case, but Kojima has gone on record as being a huge Mad Max: Fury Road fan. Konami decided to release MGSV on the same day as Mad Max TVG. They're trying piss on Kojima's lawn, man.
ooktar avatarooktar
Downloading Phantom Pain. ETA, 16 hours. Just in time for lunch tomorrow.
Mr Knives avatarMr Knives
OH WOW. Talk about a complete about face. After slogging through the horrid beginning and slow ass swap sequence this game picked up exponentially. So far, I'm enjoying the hell out of it now. All if forgiven. Thank you based Kojima.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
Oh, joyful night. [youtube]https://youtu.be/6EfhAFA2yFE[/youtube]
techsupport avatartechsupport
After a summer of on-and-off casual play, I've finally reached lv. 34 in Destiny :')
nanashi avatarnanashi
also Fallout Shelter just made me utter this: "I have to get these pregnancies done.." life is trivial in this game!
Mr Knives avatarMr Knives
Let it be known that Metal Gear 2 for MXS has aged horribly and is no fun to play. In the midst of a MGS marathon, looks like I'm skipping ahead to MGS.
Rad Party God avatarRad Party God
"Available: 31 August - This game will unlock in approximately 2 hours" HOLY SHIET! [youtube]https://youtu.be/9jK-NcRmVcw[/youtube]
nanashi avatarnanashi
-nudge nudge- hey Sony, discount Ys: I and II Chronicles and Ys: Seven on the PSP :D
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Just out of curiosity, does anybody here still play Mario Kart 8 at all frequently?
Cosmonstropolis avatarCosmonstropolis
Neighbors ended up calling the cops. I hid under a cardboard box. Police officers were perplexed but went back to their patrol routes after a minute or so.
techsupport avatartechsupport
!a new MGS: Ground Zeroes update file auto dl'd and installed..the day prior to MGSV... hmm.. coincidence? OR... coincidence?
GoofierBrute avatarGoofierBrute
Just got an email from Nintendo saying that my Club Nintendo reward has been shipped and is on its way. Now it's the end of an era. *pours one out for Club Nintendo*
wutangclam avatarwutangclam
I've been thinking of starting up a criticism-minded "game of the month" type podcast. Would anyone be interested in something like that? If you'd wanna be part of it, let me know, I'm generating ideas and looking for contributors
CJ Andriessen avatarCJ Andriessen
Playing the most difficult strategy game ever: trying to figure out what order to beat your backlog in.
ChillyBilly avatarChillyBilly
Transient Ryu stays ripped by riding the rails and throwing other transients off of his rail cars - [IMG]http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b321/Felth/homeless%20ryu.jpg~original[/IMG]
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
I'm so, so sorry everyone. :(
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -