- Actor Allusion: Possibly; Tugog the Flame of War, the fiery trickster uruk in the 16 minute gameplay video is clearly voiced by Troy Baker using his Joker voice.
- Ascended Meme: Brüz the Chopper became one of the most liked characters pre-release, and later got his own trailer where he explains the basics of the series and the new additions in War.
- Directed by Cast Member: Troy Baker serves as the performance capture director in addition to reprising his role as Talion.
- Fan Nickname:
- Flip-Flop of God: Before release, it was mentioned that the Bright Lord is the combination of Talion and Celebrimbor; if either is gone, the Bright Lord ceases to be. However, once Celebrimbor abandons Talion at the end of the game, orcs still call Talion the Bright Lord. Of course, it could be that the developers didn't want to record dozens of extra lines just for the endgame, they ran out of time before they could, or it could even be a case of Only Known by Their Nickname.
- Follow the Leader: The game takes even more cues from the Batman: Arkham Series, such as huge, mountable enemies, the ability to punch fallen enemies and chain takedowns, all of which were present in Arkham in various points. The Desolation of Mordor DLC turns this Up to Eleven, as Baranor uses a grappling hook to reach high places and a parachute to glide to traverse faster. (The latter two have been compared to Just Cause as well.)
- I Knew It!: As he became an Ensemble Dark Horse and wasn't decapitated in the last game, Ratbag's return wasn't entirely unexpected.
- Playing Against Type: Sauron fits in well with Steve Blum's usual roles, but Blum also voices Annatar, Sauron's disguise in the form of a seductive, boyishly handsome elf, and he's almost unrecognizable.
- Shrug of God: Funnily enough, the devs have an offical rule about this during livestreams. If a developer answers your question with "No comment", it means that the thing in question is either coming but they can't talk about it, or that it's somewhere on their list, but can't guarantee that it will be added in the future.
- Throw It In!: A rare case where the lack of Developers' Foresight was changed in a patch. The event where multiple captains betray Talion at the same time and location didn't have an official name for a while. After hearing reports about these events, the developers liked them enough to make a few tweaks, give them the name "Rebellion", and put these changes on the first major patch.
- What Could Have Been: There is stuff in the initial 16-min gameplay presentation that isn't in the final product. Even though it's heavily scripted, there are some noticeable changes:
- Battering rams appear, but are absent from the final product; Its likely they were planned to be one of the available upgrades when assaulting forts, but it's hard to say what replaced them if this is the case.
- The Stormbringer's class is "Necromancer". In the finished game, Necromancy is not a specific class, but a rare trait which any orc from any class can have if they fill the requirements.note
- Celebrimbor's wraith beats Stormbringer to death with his hammer using the exact same technique Sauron had used on him years earlier. Not only is this animation not in the game, Stormbringer returns from the dead almost immediately, before he is killed again during his introduction animation. Captains can come back quickly, but not that quickly, and they cannot be killed during introductions likely to avoid Anti-Climax Boss situations.
- Az-Laar the demolisher dies a scripted death, but it's difficult to say if this was just to add drama, since the devs quickly reassured that you'll be able to save followers in the final product.
- Although it was definetly scripted, orc introductions aren't quite as flashy as Stormbringer's, who holds a speech worthy of an overlord on the outer walls of his master's fortress.
- In October 2018, the devs revealed that they had considered having baby Caragors in the game. They were removed after they realized that the babies were just as powerful as the adult ones, with the exception that they could not be ridden, clashing against the game's power fantasy where you could control everything.
- Talion's character model was originally a bit leaner and had longer hair, among other differences. This model can actually still be seen in-game in the ring-forging intro cutscene and when Talion moves on into the afterlife in the ending.
- Starting from around 17 minutes, this archived stream details some of the removed content.
- Word of God:
- A moderator on the official forums confirmed that Talion is meant to feel a bit weaker than in the last game; When developing Mordor, they wanted the player to feel as overpowered as possible, while they wanted to preserve the feeling of challenge even after completing everything in this game.
- While he wasn't 100% sure, a developer mentioned during a livestream that the reason Dark Talion doesn't have any lines for branding and shaming is that they didn't have enough time to add any. This potentially explains other oddities as well (Orcs calling him the Bright Lord after the story ends, for example), and makes it possible they will be addressed in a later patch. Dark Talion was later given voice lines for Orc interactions in the Blade of Galadriel patch.
- When asked why their oddly-benevolent version of Shelob would attack Frodo, they stated she foresaw that he would succumb to the One Ring and attacked him to force him and Sam on to Mt. Doom, where Gollum would unwittingly do what Frodo could not.
- Yes, Zog the Eternal is intentionally designed to make you hate him.
- An another livestream confirmed that while mostly influenced by the films, the devs don't consider their games to be part of any of the already existing versions of LOTR.
- Again from a livestream, Act IV lasts for 50 years.
Trivia / Middle-earth: Shadow of War