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Middle-earth: Shadow of War guide: Collectibles

And why you should collect them

Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Like any open-world game, Middle-earth: Shadow of War is full of optional extras to pick up as you explore. Shadow of War makes finding the artifacts and secrets very easy. And finding them is a lucrative endeavor: You’ll get mirian (in-game currency), gear and skill points and upgrades for finding them.

This guide will show you everything you need to know about Shadow of War’s collectibles — basically just where to find them and what they are — so you can get that sweet, sweet loot.

How to find collectibles

Middle-earth: Shadow of War actually makes it very, very easy to find all of the collectibles it contains. In any new area you visit, you’ll find Haedir towers marked with an orange, Eye of Sauron icon. (Haedir are basically Palantir knock-offs). At the top of these towers, you’ll “purify” the Haedir and get a new interface.

Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

As you move the reticule around (we picture it like those Empire State Building coin-operated binoculars), you’ll be able to zero in on the exact locations of the four kinds of collectibles. Once you find them and mark them, they’re on your map forever. You just have to walk up to them.

Types of collectibles

There are four types of collectibles in Middle-earth: Shadow of War.

Lost Artifacts

Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

In the first game, finding artifacts restored pieces of Celebrimbor’s memory. In the second, finding lost artifacts will give you a bit of lore or backstory and, when you collect all of them in an area, a skill point. (The skill point is the important part there.)

Ithildin

Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

In Middle-earth lore, ithildin is a specific type of mithril. The “speak friend and enter” doors into Moria that the Fellowship goes through are made out of ithildin. In the Middle-earth: Shadow of War, they’re hidden and invisible Elvish words that you find and collect to open a door to some really good gear. You should always do the ithildin collectibles.

Web of Fate

Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Spoiler: Shelob’s in this game. It happens in the first five minutes, so it’s not really a spoiler, though. Throughout the areas you explore, you’ll find Shelob’s memories, which are called The Web of Fate. These are little lore and backstory tidbits that you pick up that will reward you with skill points.

Shadows of the Past

Monolith Productions/Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

The last one is not really a collectible, but it fits here anyway. Shadows of the Past Quests are mini-missions or challenges based on Celebrimbor’s memories. They’re kind of the closest thing that Middle-earth: Shadow of War has to tutorials. In each one, you’ll have to do a specific thing or use a specific skill to accomplish a goal. In fact, you’ll notice that a lot of them are locked until you purchase or equip the requisite skill in your skill tree. You’re graded (bronze, silver or gold) on your performance, so the rewards vary, but you’ll get mirian (money), skill points and gems.