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Gears of War 3 | The Clapper Bored

Gears of War 3

by Brett Stewart

Gears of War 3 is a bit of an older title now, but nevertheless it’s never too late to head back and do a good retrospective review of the franchise’s pinnacle game. Let’s get into it:

Gears 3 is beautiful by any standard. The series has always suffered from painstakingly monotonous brown and black landscapes across the board. Gears 1 and 2 didn’t really look much different. Gears 3, while still occupying the same ravaged world, has managed to make it stunning. Exploring abandoned towns and cities to caves and valleys has never been so fulfilling.

The storyline is actually half-decent, too. Characters you care about will die, characters who annoy you will likely continue to do so, and the emotion-driven backstory of these military brutes will continue to develop in a very cool way. The game does a remarkable job of making every battle feel like your last, intensifying the game heavily as you progress.

The new Horde and Beast modes are where Gears 3 really delivers. Essentially, they have taken elements from Call of Duty Zombies and an RTS to form the ultimate Horde experience. You fight wave after wave of giant bugs and baddies with options to build structures, defenses, and weapons throughout whatever section of the map you deem worthy to cordon off as your base. A welcome feature is the ability to save and return to a game, and the awesome ability to start a game at your chosen wave. It’s wonderful to know you can save and come back, and it’s also great to know you can skip the first ten easy-goer rounds if you want. You can tell developers took a look at gameplay from Call of Duty and realized those two options would make the Zombies mode infinitely less frustrating and far more fun. These modes are especially fun in multiplayer.

Multiplayer is more polished than Gears of War 2. In Gears 2, it felt like an afterthought. It was clear that in order to compete with the multitude of online-capable games being released; they threw the mode in and hoped for the best. It ended up being pretty flawed in many areas and not particularly fun. Gears of War 3 has vastly improved this system, especially in the areas of Horde and Beast modes, where multiplayer makes the kick-ass experience all the better.

Gears of War 3 is a wonderful game. It’s beautiful, fun, and the multiplayer is a blast. Unfortunately, it suffers from Assassin’s Creed sickness and has a tendency to blur the line between itself and its previous installments. This is of no fault of developer Epic Games; it’s just simply hard to differentiate from Gears formula. Either way, it’s a roller coaster and worth checking out.

Title: Gears of War 3
Developer: Epic Games
Consoles: Xbox 360
Release Date: September 20, 2011

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