“Gears” is the first instalment in what looks like is going to be an epic series in gaming history, especially for Microsoft.
The game is centred on an imaginary character “Marcus Fenix” (Who you play the game as), and his squad of soldiers known as “Delta”, who are all human. Its set on a fictional planet called Sera (presumably in another Galaxy), which humans have colonized, but when they did so they were unaware that they were not alone! In fact the locals did not take kindly to being invaded, but the humans were lucky and the creatures remained hidden deep underground in there tunnels.
For years children had been scared by the boogey man, but on E-day (Emergence day) it wasn’t just the kids that were crying. The locust had risen up, and now the humans were fighting for their lives. You pick the story up several decades after E-day when you get busted out of jail by your old friend Dominic Santiago.
From then on you complete 5 “Acts” of blood, gore and destruction, wiping out hoards of Locust (who are your enemy), with increasing difficulty, (even though there are 3 levels of difficulty [Casual, Hardcore, and Insane] to choose from in the beginning). By the time you’ve got to the last level you think you’re indestructible, so it’s quite annoying that the very last bit of the game is so difficult compared to the rest and your just so relieved to finally do it, that you forget how happy you should be.
As for the game play, it’s a real shame that Epic games has made “Gears” a third person shooter (Over the shoulder view), most people would agree that it should have been a first person (Looking through the eyes of the character) like other great games such as the Halo series. Although by doing this you can actually see moves like the roll and the “roadie run”, so it’s not all bad.
It’s also disappointing that there is such a small variety of weapons, only 8. At least there are 6 different types of Locust to kill (even more in “Gears 2”).
One major plus point is the special effects, heads exploding, Locust blown in half, body bits flying everywhere, apart from the exaggerated amounts of blood coming out of people the graphics are quite a triumph.
“Gears” does have Xbox live, which can be played in several modes just like the other multiplayer modes (Split screen, System link) but with added extras.
The brand new sequel has just been released, Gears of War 2 (Out November 7th, 2008), which is said to be “Legendary”. And there’s also a book, “Gears of War: Aspho Fields”, and a comic “Gears of war: Hollow” who accompany the video game series, which are also recent releases.
Apart from a few slight problems which could be easily fixed, and hopefully are in the sequel, “Gears” is an essential game for any Xbox 360 owner.