Tired of the standard shooter with first person view? Tired of getting shot from afar ‘cuz you didn’t know your foot was visible through your cover? Gears of War brings 3rd person firefight into the limelight and we are loving it! Developed by Epic Games and published by Microsoft, the game delivers hardcore singleplayer story driven mayhem and chaotic, yet still tactically sound, multiplayer combat.
The game looks amazing, the console version (pang xbox mga chong) isn’t a far cry away from the PC version. Although if you want all the eye candy on, the PC version is the way to go. The character models are somewhat unique to the game. They are all bulky and seem like they can eat a flock of chicken in one meal. But they’re overall size and they way they move give the game that visceral feel. The textures and environment models in the game are of the post-apocalyptic kind (parang sinabugan lahat ng pinupuntahan mo ng bomba). One thing to note is the game’s near monochromatic look. The color pallete to the game is very limited, instead of being a step back, it actually promotes the game’s ‘may gierra dito’ setting.
I have to note the sound of the game though. Some guns, including the most basic rifle with the chainsaw (yum), have a very distant sound model, weak in fact. I find it hard to relate to a gun that doesn’t seem powerful when I fire it. The shotgun, the hammer of dawn and even the sniper rifle are pretty much ok in the sound department but the rapidfire guns, including the mounted ones, fail to deliver that umphf! we look for in sound when we fire them. The musical score is right on the money as a saving grace.
Gameplay of Gears of War is absolutely fun. Which is what we look for in a game when the lines are drawn. We have what we call sticky covers. Your character sticks to walls, ducks behind sandbags and tables and comes out only to fire while aiming or just fire while in cover (itataas niya baril lang niya at titirang bulag, minsan sinusuerte tumatama yokyokyok). Also, using the sticky cover system, you can jump from cover to cover. Gears has a great singleplayer story driven experience (wont give away the story here). Amazingly, Epic Games included a cooperative campaign which you and a friend can play through the story mode either on LAN or through the internet increasing the game’s replay value.
Gears multiplayer is its bread and butter though. It offers game mode after game mode and combat is visceral. You can compete by teams or just go melee. Team game modes is its selling point which can offer you hours of addictive gameplay when you sign up for your Microsoft Live ID (di mo malalaro multiplayer kung wala ito pero may hamachi multi mode rin na mod – search niyo lang po ‘Hamachi Gears of War’).
Overall the game itself is a must get. Especially since Epic Games decided to put a little icing on the cake. They included Physx support, making explosions, mutilations, bullet impact and crashes look real and feel real. Hurray for Physx.
Graphics – 9
Sound – 8
Gameplay – 9
Replayability – 9
Here’s a parody video of Gears of War as the A team from the 80’s where Mr. T became famous.