Gears of War 4's multiplayer excels thanks to esports
Scott Butterworth, whats up?
Hey, how's it going man?
So Gears of War 4 is fast approaching.
October 11th it will release, and it will be the first original Gears of War game from the developer the Coalition, who took it over from the previous developer Epic Games.
And of course a lot of people on the coalition, including Rod Ferguson, worked on the games.
But they have been showing more and more Gears 4, including pretty much all of their modes which you got to play them.
Yeah, I just actually visited the coalition up in Vancouver and got a chance to play all three of the major pillars of the game.
Versus modes, horde, and single player campaign.
Yeah, I think the most interesting stuff was, to my surprise, was the versus stuff.
I played versus really early in the year, and was kind of like okay, this feels a bit like Gears, but wasn't all that excited.
But I finally got to play some of the new modes, but they were actually really exciting and different.
The one mode that's really different for gears is a mode called escalation, which they repeated told us, this is built for E Sports, we really wanted to have an E Sports mode.
And i'm not a huge E sports fan, but I will say that I really love this mode.
I can actually see this becoming my go to gears mode.
Just because there's so much strategy built into it.
It's like the base line Gears game play is all there.
It's all well balancing and shotgunning for people who wanna do that kind of thing.
But it's still heavy and all the movement and the grit and the gore of the five versus five team Gears gameplay.
But layered on top of that are all these new sort of structures.
That make it way more team-focused.
So basically the way Escalation works is it's the best, the first to seven, it's a round-based mode, and it's basically a point capture system.
So there are three points on the map Every point that you currently hold contributes to your point total and once you get to a certain point total you win that round.
However in any given round you can also win by controlling all three points at the same time so no matter how far behind your team is.
You can come back and win the round like instantaneously by dominating the map.
Which is actually really cool.
I mean, just in the time that I was playing it lead to some really great turn arounds.
Yeah, you could throw up some hail marys at the end, I would imagine.
And it really does make strategy much more important.
Because it's only a five person team on a map with three capture points.
Just doing the math, it's like how do you cover all of those bases?
So it's definitely made some really interesting moment to moment like tactical positions with my teammate.
And in addition to that structure like the six, six you have to win seven rounds and you have to capture the three points In between each round the re-spawn rate actually goes up.
So by the time you get to the sixth round, it's like 20 seconds between re-spawns, so revives and keeping your teammates alive becomes super crucial.
If your team lost the previous round you actually get to place a weapon on the map, You don't get to place any weapon you want anywhere you want.
You get to pick from pre-selected kinda like, you can place a boom shot here, or you can place a sniper there, but your team gets to pick where that goes.
That definitely does sound East Force-inspired with the increased re-spawn timer.
I know there's a few mobas that do that, and then the weapon placement kinda seems like that, like deeper, strategically or underneath the foundational mechanics of a DRS game.
And you can actually go a lot of different directions with it.
I mean, so if your team is really good at this [UNKNOWN], you like to play the spacing game, you can put a sniper down because you know your team's really good with a sniper.
Or you could just take a completely different route and say, hey, Hey we're gonna put a boom shot over here as bait, let the other guys go for it and know that that's where the team's gonna be.
And why they're off doing that we're gonna capture the point.
Yeah so there's all different kinds of ways you can play it.
And again this is all stuff I got to experience just with people i sat down to play the game with.
We didn't really plan, we weren't really a team.
This stuff was just kinda naturally emerges as you're playing this mode which is really cool.
Get me out!
So you said there were a few other modes you got to play, right?
Yeah so, escalation is by far the most, kinda, hardcore of the new modes.
But they also added some just fun.
Head States called them casual modes.
The things that are definitely designed to be more social and more fun.
One of them was Arms Race.
Which is very similar to a mode you'll find in Overwatch.
And like, Gun Game, in Black Ops.
Where there is a series of 13 guns.
Both teams start with the same guns.
And after a team gets three kills with that gun, they then are downgraded to the next gun below that.
So the guns actually get worse as you go.
You start with a boom shot and I'm pretty sure you end just with a snub
So it's kind of cool because the teams lead is constantly at a disadvantage because they have the worst weapons and it allows the team behind them to kind of catch up and it's insanely chaotic, it's unbelievable the amount of just carnage.
It's sort of the opposite of Escalation where you have to be really strategic and how you're moving and how you're positioning and keeping everybody alive Arms races just carnage everywhere at all times, everyone running and everyone shooting.
And there were definitely some hilarious moments where at one moment you have a gnasher in your hands, and then all of a sudden you have a sniper rifle and you're right next to someone.
And it can be a little frustrating at times, and I sort of wish the respawn timer was lower because given how fast paced the game is, it's really frustrating to be out of the match.
But it's just so chaotic it's a really nice change of pace from like the seriousness and strategy of something like Escalation.
[SOUND] It sounds especially kinds of like it upsets the Gears formula.
Like noticing somebody has a [UNKNOWN] or a sniper so I'm going to take cover.
But it sounds like it could lead to a crazy twist in the gameplay.
And I think that was very intentional on the collation's part what can we do to kind of mess with the formula to make sure it just doesn't feel like Gears Because it's important to mention that execution, like the classic team death match mode that has been in Gears forever is still there and hasn't changed as far as we know.
We actually didn't get a chance to play it, but we were told during a presentation at The Coalition, hey this hasn't changed at all, it's still there, it's still execution.
For people who want classic Gears it's there, we're just adding new things in addition to that.
Another one that they added that's also kinda casual and fun
And potentially, we do some really amazing reversals and turnarounds with Dodgeball, that's one we actually did get a chance to play earlier this year, but I had another chance to play it this past week.
For anybody who hasn't followed the games, basically the way Dodgeball works, is
Every time you get a kill, one of your dead teammates is brought back in, so you can go from being like five versus one to suddenly four versus two back to three versus three and you can really turn the tables as you're
Like if you're the last man standing, you're not necessarily alone.
Like if you can get one kill, you can claw your way back from the brink of defeat.
Which is really cool.
Use the void, like being outnumbered.
And try to isolate one person so then each time you have another person on your team.
It's kind of like an attrition game play or like tug of war almost.
That seems super appealing.
That's the mode I'm looking forward to most.
Just in my time with it, it's.
There are some, like those moments when there is one guy left and his entire team is watching him and like come on man, you can do it.
And he gets that kill, the room just explodes, just just celebration.
It's built for those.
Tagging him in.
Yeah, I hate to use the phrase because this is the PR phrase they were pushing on us but it's totally built for clutch moments.
That proves true in my time with the game.
I will say that if the teams are kind of unbalanced the mode kind of falls apart.
Like if you're on a team that is clearly worse than the other team, it's just like instant slaughter because there is no respawns.
So you have like no recourse, no way to kind of fight your way back if you're not able to get that one crucial kill.
So if the teams are not balanced It, yeah, it becomes actually even more frustrating than certain other modes.
But as long as you're confident in your teammates.
And as long as the matchmaking does its job, it ends up being a really interesting mode.
And like a just a nice change of pace from traditional straight up team death match.
Hey, get over here and stop watching me bleed.
So, I guess the overarching question for multiplayer that I have is--obviously at it's foundation it's very mechanically similar to earlier Gears Titles.
Are these modes doing enough to set it apart in your opinion from the few hours that you've spent with it?
Would this be enough to bring me as a Gear [UNKNOWN] back in the multiplayer mix?
I mean, I think absolutely, yeah.
It's a little early to judge the final review build isn't gonna be in for a few weeks, but I had a blast, and honestly like it is still Gears, it plays like Gears, feels like Gears.
The classic modes like Execution are still in there but there's enough new stuff that you can engage with if you want that I think will bring in fans and people who have kinda fallen away froM Gears.
Because That stuff is genuinely new, like [UNKNOWN] is the genuinely new idea for gears, and it really makes the moment to moment game play kind of more meaningful, and more tense.
I mean it's not just about staying alive, or if you're having a good kill death ratio, it's about dominating these points and working with your team to outsmart the other team All that strategy on top of the traditional Gears gameplay really does change the way you approach Gears.
So yeah, I honestly think it's a really smart and comprehensive approach to multiplayer, that hopefully, and I think will, bring old fans back to the series.
We also have some coverage on Horde mode, we have videos, we have Your written piece that you did, as well as a campaign written piece that you did.
We got to play through a little bit as JD Phoenix.
Yeah, yeah, it's really interesting.
There's a lot of new story stuff.
I definitely recommend people go, if they're at all interested in the lore of Gears and the world of Gears, please go read my single-player campaign feature.
There's a lot of really interesting stuff I got to play.
And yeah, I got a little more hands-on time with [UNKNOWN] mode.
But we played a ton of that [UNKNOWN] so we also had videos on site for The first ten waves, playing Horde Mode 3.0 which is also like way more strategic now than it used to be.
Really fun, definitely worth going and checking that content out for sure.
Cool, so Gears of War 4 will release for Xbox One and Windows 10 October 11th I believe, and like Scott said stay tuned to Gamespot for more news until then.
Get out of the way.
This unit does not tolerate