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Gears of War 3 - Xbox 360

  • Publisher: Microsoft
  • Genre:Action, Shooter
  • Developer: Epic Games
  • Release Date:Sep 20, 2011
  • # of Players:1 player
  • ESRB:M - Mature (Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language)
  • Platforms:
Game Description: Gears of War 3 is the final chapter in Epic's gritty shooter. Gears plunges players into a harrowing tale of hope, survival, and brotherhood. With the last human city destroyed and the remaining survivors stranded, time is running out for Marcus and his comrades as they fight to save the human race from the jaws of extinction.
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    (172 Ratings)
    4.6 / 5
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Gears of War 3 Multiplayer Beta Hands-On Impressions
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Article_73697

Gears of War 3 Multiplayer Beta Hands-On Impressions

By Jake Gaskill - Posted Feb 24, 2011

Gears of War 3

Beep…..beep…..beep…beep..beep..beep.beep.beepbeepbeepbeepBOOM! A cloud of pink mist erupts inches from my face as one of my teammates is disintegrated before my eyes. A cleverly perched opponent picked him off from a distant ledge with the One Shot, a sort of “elephant gun,” as Epic Games creative director Cliff Blezinski refers to it, that features a scope that scans the battlefield and locks onto a target and then turns said target into nothing more than mist in the wind. And so began my hands-on session with the multiplayer beta for Epic’s “most polished,” and “best” installment yet in its acclaimed shooter series, Gears of War 3.

From the outside looking in, and especially as someone who hasn’t played a round of Gears multiplayer for easily a couple of years, the Gears 3 multiplayer looks and feels exactly as you’d expect Gears multiplayer to look and feel. Granted, the visuals have been improved sine Gears of War 2, thanks to the stunningly capable Unreal Engine 3, which brings the environments and characters to life in absolutely stunning detail. But, for the most part, its Gears through and through. This means that fans of the series will most likely feel right at home, and gamers who have been away from Marcus Fenix, Dom, and the gang for a while, will also be able to jump right in and be able to hold their own.

One of Epic’s goals was to make Gears 3 the most accessible entry yet. To help with this, the developers have added a couple new tactical features to give players a clearer idea about what’s happening on the battlefield. For instance, holding the left bumper dims the screen slightly and adds a white outline to your teammates, letting you instantly see where they are on the map, and letting you see the placement of weapons. The weapon icons are hard to see sometimes, and they only tell you where you can find the weapon, not if it’s still there, but it still a welcomed addition. There’s also a top down map that shows your teammates’ positions for that added bit of intel.

As for weapons, Ia lot of old favorites have returned: the Lancer rifle, the Gnasher shotgun, and the Hammerburst to name a few. I tended to favor the Hammerburst rifle, which now has iron sights that can be accessed by clicking the right thumbstick while aiming, and which adds a whole new level of skill and satisfaction to this long-ranged weapon. While I definitely used the Hammerburst the most, I found the damage to be a little lacking. Six or seven solidly placed iron sighted shots to the torso and neck region should be more than enough to bring an opponent down.

Gears of War 3

The biggest new addition in the close-quarters weapons class is the double barrel shotgun, which happens to be Epic lead Cliff Bleszinski's favorite weapon by the way. This utterly devastating weapon fully embodies the risk/reward design of the Gears multiplayer. From about two feet and under, this shotty is capable of liquefying enemies in a single, gooey shot. However, from anything beyond two feet, it might as well be firing marshmallows, and with its agonizingly long reload time, this is one of those weapons that you’ll most likely only whip out in spaces where you can catch people hastily barreling around corners. Still, when you connect with this thing, it’s a big mess ‘o fun. For more info on the other new weapons and abilities, read our previous Gears of War 3 preview.

Gears of War 3

Another nice new feature is that you can now change your loadout after you die, ensuring that you can constantly adjust to best suit your team’s, as well as your opponents, strategy. There are plenty of new weapons to keep you killing in style. In addition to aforementioned One Shot, there’s the Retro Lancer, which is standard lancer machine gun but with a knife bayonet instead of the standard Gears chainsaw (harkening back to the early days of the battle between human and locusts). The Digger Lancer fires an explosive, burrowing round in the ground that will then pop up and decimate any players in its vicinity.

Each weapon also comes equipped with executions. If you want to quickly curbstomp someone, all you have to do is tap Y near their downed body, but if you want to pull off a flashy, ultra violent finisher, then you have to hold Y for a few seconds, which leaves you vulnerable to attack, but also nets you bonus points if you’re successful. One particularly gnarly execution has you ramming a the tip of a flamethrower into an enemy’s stomach and melting them from the inside out. Good times.

The X button (i.e. action button) also has this new hold system, and it’s meant to remove the frustrations of accidentally picking up a nearby weapon when you’re trying to revive a fallen teammate. Now if you want to revive a pal, you just tap X, but if you want to pick up a weapon, you have to hold X, which makes picking up weapons a bit more nerve-wracking, but also makes you no longer dread having to help up dying squad mates.

The smoke grenade has been given a concussion feature, which can stun enemies, knocked them off turrets, or even cause them to drop their precious meat shield (aka an opponent they’ve picked up and used as a human shield). But new to the game is an incendiary grenade, which behaves similar to a napalm Molotov cocktail, spreading fire and agonizing death wherever it happens to land. Another nice new addition is that grenades can now explode on impact, making perfectly placed tosses all the sweeter, especially when it results in a fiery ball of molten death.

As if all of that wasn’t incentive enough for you to check out the Gears 3 multiplayer beta, Epic is offering up two items that can be unlocked in the retail version of the game, but that can only be acquired via the beta: the Golden Retro Lancer, which is just a blinged out version of the Retro Lancer and Gears vet Cole, who appears as an unlockable character. But Epic isn’t just handing these bonuses over to just every player who strolls into the beta; they must be earned two fold.

For the Golden Lancer, you have to play 90 multiplayer matches, and then you have to get 100 kills if you want to keep it. To unlock Cole, you have to play 70 matches and then an additional 13 matches to keep him.  And, again, these items will not be available in the retail version of the game, so if you want them, be prepared to sink some serious time into the beta, which, based on my hour or so playing it, you’re definitely going to want to do when it goes live.

Comments are Closed

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  • nathen

    cant wait

    Posted: March 2, 2011 6:46 PM
    nathen
  • christopherkandrat

    Can't wait to get my hands on the game, its going to be aaaamazing.

    Posted: March 1, 2011 9:06 AM
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    Posted: February 28, 2011 4:42 AM
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  • lobato1

    I love the people that complain about the concussion grenade on a post... Like it's going to change anything. give feedback on it and show you don't like it. we will find out if the concussion grenade will mess with peoples gameplay. i love how certain people don't seem to realize what a beta is and seems to think its stuck in the game no matter what. probably cause he is too poor from not trying to find a job to realize that a beta is a free thing and if you really want to whine about something in the game. participate in the beta first before opening your mouth.

    Posted: February 27, 2011 3:44 AM
  • VivicaGsy

    Shame the Gold Lancer and Cole are Beta exclusives... Both should be available post-beta!

    Posted: February 26, 2011 7:42 PM
    VivicaGsy
  • Undead-Paradox

    The concussion effect is only going to be in effect when you tag someone with the grenade.
    I don't mind this from the sound of it, but I'd just have to play the beta to see. And if it sucks, I'll voice my opinion on the forums. That's the magic of a beta, nothing's set in stone.

    Posted: February 26, 2011 5:23 PM
  • regularxjoe

    Hey people complaining about the concussion grenade calm down. They might have changed the way it works, but also they are doing it for the beta. If no one likes the grenade in the beta they will for sure get rid of it in the retail version.

    Posted: February 26, 2011 4:31 PM
  • lowkevmic

    @easyt82- Cole will be in the game, the unlockable version is one with cole wearing his football gear. Which is the Cole you see in the pictures wearing a helmet

    Posted: February 25, 2011 3:59 PM
    lowkevmic
  • Divine110

    I love how cliff admits they screwed up at the gears 2 launch... man they are on the right track to a amazing game..

    Posted: February 25, 2011 2:11 PM
    Divine110
  • KingZarcon612

    I can not wait for this beta I will deffintly earn the bonuses on this game and at the same time will be having fun curb stomping some noobs. Follow me on Twitter

    Posted: February 25, 2011 12:53 PM
    KingZarcon612
  • i<3masseffect

    I really hope the multiplayer in this game is better then Gears 2. I loved the first ones multiplayer but my friends and I could never get into the multiplayer and I havent touched it in a while. But i am really looking forward to this game, except the concussion grenade (I HATED THAT!!).

    Posted: February 25, 2011 8:58 AM
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  • XXXSpartan118XXX

    Stop complaining at a concussion grenade you babies. Jeez don't turn into those cod fans yelling over the mic because someone got you with a concussion grenade. I liked it because It changes the game a little. When I get surrounded I can plop one out and get a way safely. Not my fault you're a noob for not evading it.

    Posted: February 25, 2011 7:04 AM
    XXXSpartan118XXX
  • trekkerguy

    Yeah the concussion grenade thing I don't get. They always claim to "get it" and that they're "fixing everything" and then pull some stupid stunt like this.

    Posted: February 24, 2011 11:47 PM
    trekkerguy
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