Create Dark Text Effect Inspired by “Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor” Game in Photoshop

In this tutorial, I will show you the process of creating this dark text effect inspired by the action game “Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor” in Photoshop.

This is a beginner to intermediate level tutorial.

Note: The Photoshop tutorial is done in Photoshop CC – therefore some screenshot may have slighting different layout as in the earlier version. Some brushes are exclusive to Photoshop CS6.

Here is a preview of the final effect I have for this tutorial: (click to enlarge)

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OK Let’s get started!

To complete this tutorial, you will need the following stocks:

Mountain

Font

Metal

Fire

Step 1

Create a new document sized 1440px * 780px with white background. Load the mountain stock image into Photoshop and and select the following portion:

Copy and paste the selection over to our canvas, reduce it’s layer opacity to around 60%:

Add the following adjustment layers on top of the mountain layer:

Black and White

Levels

Curves

and here is the effect so far:

Step 2

We will add some extra cloud movements on our image. Go back to the mountain image and select another piece of the cloud:

Copy and paste the selection to our image, use a soft eraser to fade the edges of the new cloud layer, then warp it with the free transform tool as shown below:

and here is my effect after the warp:

Load the fire stock image into Photoshop and select the following area with the Lasso Tool (40px feather):

Copy and paste the selection to our document, place it on the right side the mountain and set its blending mode to “Soft Light”:

Use a soft eraser to fade the edges of the fire, and use the free transform tool to adjust its shape to fit the shape of the mountain:

Repeat the process above the add another piece to the left:

Step 3

Use the font we downloaded, type some texts on the canvas:

Apply the following layer blending options to this text layer:

and here is the effect so far:

Step 4

We will apply some textures onto our text. Load the metal stock image into Photoshop and select the following piece from the stock:

Copy and paste the selection to our document, and place the layer above the text layer. Right-click on this layer and choose “Create Clipping Mask”:

and here is the effect so far:

Step 5

We will add some fire sparks around the texts. Let’s go back to the fire stock image and select the following portion:

Copy and paste the selection to our document and set its layer blending mode to “Color Dodge”:

Repeat the above process and add some more sparks around the canvas:

Step 6

We will add fire onto our texts in this step. Select a portion of the fire stock image as shown below:

Copy and paste the selection to our document and set its blending mode to “Screen”:

and here is the effect:

Repeat the above process the add more fire over the texts:

Step 7

We’re almost done! For final touches, we can flatten the image and duplicate the background layer, apply the following Oil Paint filter (CS6+) to the duplicated layer:

Attached the following layer mask on the duplicated layer:

Add the following adjustment layers on top:

Levels

Curves

and here is my final effect: (click to enlarge)

That’s it for this tutorial! Hope you enjoy it and find it useful. Till next time, have a great day!

My name is James and I have been using Photoshop since version 5.0 (long time ago!). PSD Vault is my spare time hobby and I write majority of the Photoshop tutorials and articles here. I hope you enjoy my blog, and feel free to leave a comment or contact me if you have any questions.