Middle Earth: Shadow of War Guide -- Dominating Orcs with Iron Will

Orcs with Iron Will giving you trouble? This Middle Earth: Shadow of War guide will help you dominate your enemies.

The ability to dominate and recruit orcs is one of the best features of Middle Earth: Shadow of War. Meticulously hand-picking the best of the best to join Talion’s conquering army makes for a consistently unique experience well after the story has come to a close.

Unfortunately, every now and then you’ll come across that one stubborn orc with the Iron Will trait which makes them immune to Cerebrimbor’s new Ring of Power. This guide will outline exactly what the Iron Will trait does, how to overcome it, and basically everything else you’ll need to know about this annoying trait.

What is Iron Will in Shadow of War?

Iron Will is a trait that can be randomly acquired by any orc when they are first generated in the game. Orcs with this trait are able to resist being recruited into your army after they have been Broken and Dominated.

Orcs can also gain Iron Will after a Betrayal, which can be triggered in several ways:

  • Cheating Death -- This is a hidden ability that some orcs possess. Cheating Death allows any orc, friend or foe, to come back from the dead following their death. After a dominated orc with the Cheating Death ability dies, they have the possibility of returning under the effects of Betrayal, blaming you for their death.
  • Humiliation -- This is another hidden ability some orcs possess. Humiliation allows them to pass up the opportunity of striking you down in Last Chance, instead choosing to taunt you and flee. Some of your followers may see this as a sign of weakness and betray you.
  • Talion’s Death -- Every time you die, there is a small chance that one of your Captain’s will lose faith and betray you.
  • Friendly Fire -- If you repeatedly attack an allied Captain, there is a chance that they will eventually turn against you.
  • Blood Brother -- Killing an allied Captain’s Blood Brother can cause them to instantly betray you. This is the case even if you send your ally to do the dirty work and kill his own Blood Brother.

How to Recruit Orcs With Iron Will in Shadow of War

Unlike orcs carrying the Unbreakable trait, there is a way to recruit Captain with Iron Will. First, you’ll have to track down and fight the Captain you want to recruit, reducing his health until he has the Broken status effect.

Now dominate your target and choose the Shame option. Shaming reduces the level of an orc, can add or remove abilites, and most importantly in this case -- Shaming an orc has a chance to remove the Iron Will trait.

It won’t always work on the first attempt, but if you’re determined to make your target serve the Bright Lord, then just keep trying. It’s important to know when to cut your losses when using this method. However, as losing buffs and gaining weaknesses through this process may render your chosen Captain completely useless.

With this knowledge, you’re now well equipped to go forth and build a terrifying army to rival Sauron’s. If you think we've missed anything crucial on how to dominate orc with Iron Will, leave a comment down below!

And for more on this Lord-of-the-Rings-inspired video game, check out some more Middle Earth: Shadow of War Guides! Here’s a few to get you started:

Published Oct. 19th 2017

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