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Eternal Words on Gears of War (part 1)

As some of you may or may not know, Gears of War is one of my favorite game titles and is also my go-to game for multiplayer. Even though this game has been out for nearly two years, I still go back for gruesome fun. There are some aspects of the multiplayer that get me stirred full of anger (I will discuss in a future article), but I overcome these to have a good time.

What I would like to do here on Platform Nation, in a series of articles, is talk about new features for Gears of War 2 (multiplayer and single player), classic moments from Gears of War 1, and also give some insight to playing online and dominating the competition. This Eternal Words portion will cover three tweaks to the online experience.

FIVE vs FIVE: Rare are the days of small squad-based death matches, etc. It seems that new game titles try to push 16, 32, 60, or even 256 players at once into the shooter genre. There were many complaints on the size of Gears of War 1 with four vs four, so Epic added a teammate to each side, hoping this would appease some of Epic’s fans.

I would have to say this is a good move on Epic’s part. Adding too many players into the mix could break the system of gameplay they are trying to accomplish. Since there are no respawns in Execution or Warzone, bigger teams would ultimately mean bigger maps, and if the round is left with one versus one, chances are they would not find one another–hence a draw.

Of course another perk to ten players in the room will be more friends from your list can join the fun. This gives better odds in avoiding the chance of being stuck with a teammate who is one or all of the following: bad at the game, glitches, stands around and does not contribute, quits, or is just flat out annoying.

CHAINSAW DUELS: Now gone are the days of randomness when two gamers go head-to-head with chainsaws. There have been several occasions where I notice an unsuspecting enemy around a corner and on the rare occasion when I feel like holding down the B button with the Lancer, I come around the corner with the bayonet revved–but at the last second the enemy revs their chainsaw and I wind up losing to them. I guess my logic on that was since I had mine revved first, I should have won.

Now Epic has added the chainsaw duel, when two players must repeatedly press B for 2-3 seconds and whosoever hit the button the most, wins the duel. This is more like it. Epic took the coin toss element out of the fight and made it a bit more fair. If chainsawing is your majority style of playing: first, shame on you and secondly, enjoy the mini-games.

NEW GRENADE FEATURES: Grenades had a small tactical role in Gears of War 1, but now some things have been added to your arsenal for greater control of the battlefield.

We all have tagged a few unsuspecting enemies in our days in the first title, but now you can tag walls to set traps. This is yet another reason to be careful going around a corner or through an entrance. Smoke grenades induce a concussion-type explosion, knocking your character down, and regular grenades will more than likely blow you into a hundred pieces.

If you are left alone and do not feel like swinging the camera around every two seconds to watch your back, the grenades will act like a wingman, alerting you to baddies out of camera’s sight.

There is also the addition of the poison grenade, but I will reserve that for another part of this article series.

Enjoy other articles at Platform Nation and return often as another Eternal Words on Gears of War will be back soon with more from Epic’s masterpiece.

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