Author Topic: Gears Of War  (Read 1122 times)

Offline dm-horus

  • Banned
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1043
    • Division 32 Community
Gears Of War
« on: August 03, 2006, 02:18:02 PM »
I posted this on SLASHDOT regarding Gears of War which is slated to be released this November.


I playtested this game several times and while Im excited to see a full demonstration of the new unreal engine, I will say that GoW itself isnt anything spectacular. Basically it is a checkpoint grind ala halo, but with less story. You start out in some kind of prison whose population have gone amok and you have to fight your way to the evac point. Your enemies are interesting looking, but each one looks the same. Once again, it looks spectacular but if youve every played Unreal, Quake or Halo, the title will bore you quickly. The nonstop firefights can be broken up by your (necessary) use of scenery as cover but it rapidly becomes utilitarian and loses its wow factor. I encourage people to get the game and have a look but if story and drama are your thing, dont expect to be swept off your feet.


Since /. wouldnt let me log in, I had to post as an ANONYMOUS COWARD and this mode doenst let you edit or add to threads. Thus I tried posting a reply to the above comment but /. would not let me do it. Youll see why when you read.


Well, /. wont let me log in so Ill have to add to my last comment this way:

In my experiences with the game, the aspect that stood out were the unending crashes. On my first day of testing I burned up an Xbox 360 in less than ten minutes. We then switched over to a Dell PC to complete the first day's testing (Yes, MS uses Dell. Dont ask me to explain because frankly I'm at a loss). The PC locked three times requiring a hard reboot and crashed to blue screen twice. When I managed to get to a point past the initial story sequence at the beginning I noticed some serious "issues" once the wow factor wore off (keep in mind I wrapped up testing last month). Yet more lockups requiring some work on the console (GoW uses Unreal Tournament cheatcodes just so you know!), texture flickering, disappearing scenery, clipping and CPU overheat. I managed to get past an area in which several enemies were firing down at me from a balcony by shooting through the balcony floor with a pistol. While I am sure (err, hope) these errors will be fixed by November, the game itself was in its final stages of development and from what I saw there was little gameplay tweaking left to do. The cover system is clunky and buggy. You have to hold down the White Button to enter the cover selection menu where you are left standing and unable to control movement or weapons to choose what type of stance you want to take and how you want to get there. For example you can roll into cover, jump into cover, dodge to cover or even sprint between objects to get to the covering object you want. Pretty cool, but a title cannot ride that gimmick alone. At the beginning of the first level you are given very vague orders which amounts to "This place is tearing itself apart! Run!" You have to assume the place you are running to is through the open doors arranged in front of you and in fact that is how the rest of the level plays out: running through the open doors and killing everything in your way until you get to the evac point. After which you are dropped into another "hallway" and the formula repeats. The scenery is interesting and somewhat destructable. You can blow the corners off certain concrete blocks or shoot some material off marble pillars but you can never completely destroy anything since the environment around you has a Roman Gothic feel. If you were able to shoot out those pillars the roof would cave in and the game is not designed to take that into account. Your weapons are the FPS standard: Knife, Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun, Machine Gun, Weird Energy Weapon, Rocket Launcher, BFG. There are squad members who follow you around but they serve no purpose. At one point I had 5 soldiers in my squad (halfway thru the first level you come up to a crashed dropship and link with the survivors) and all of them took cover and stayed there without making an attempt to fire at the enemy. The player is not informed of locations where your squad will for some reason not follow. The game requires the player to take certain locations solo commando style and your squad will stand behind a wall and refuse to respond to your orders. Just as well since they are actually more of a problem by taking up good cover that you could use. The environments are littered with weapons that you cannot pick up. Turrets and gun emplacements are usable only for a short period of time and then cannot be used. Not because of lack of ammo, but simply because the game decides that you should move into the next area. You remember those old side scrolling shooters that forced you to move ahead or risk being PUSHED forward by the side of the screen? GoW is very similar. While the scenery is nice to look at, it is all vanilla. Concrete and asphalt with some marble pillars. Also, the character models are straight out of Unreal 2: The Awakening. Anyone who has played it will immediately see that the lead character modeler was hired for GoW. Non-organic objects are realistically rendered but human faces are caricatures of the Juggernauts seen in Unreal Tournament 2004.

Note: The enemy AI has a nasty habit of camping your corpse. Unfortunately, enemy knives cause 1-hit instant death while your knife can require up to 5 direct hits to kill. In GoW you are able to respawn at your corpse when you die. The enemy AI will always run to your last known location. Upon death, that location is directly on top of your lifeless body. When you repawn, you simply stand back up right in front of a half dozen enemy knives. Any one of which will kill you again instantly. Entering god mode at respawn was required during final testing.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2006, 02:25:54 PM by dm-horus »
Always outnumbered. Never outgunned.

Offline dm-horus

  • Banned
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1043
    • Division 32 Community
Gears Of War
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2006, 02:26:20 PM »
Someone replied with:

QUOTE/You start out in some kind of prison whose population have gone amok and you have to fight your way to the evac point/QUOTE

Wait... isn't that literally the exact same starting plot of the original Unreal?
« Last Edit: August 03, 2006, 02:26:57 PM by dm-horus »
Always outnumbered. Never outgunned.