Gears Of War 4 – one of the most anticipated releases of 2016 gets the beta treatment – and leaves us with mixed feelings.
The bread and butter of Gears of War is still there, but smaller intricacies have been altered. The ability to cancel mid-slide is a huge change which allows the player to start a slide and stop it at any point. The spray of the shotgun has been tightened so it has less range, but more damage. Still, the damage isn’t consistent and the return of the “Kill each other” shotgun made famous in Gears Of War 2 leads to frustrating exchanges. Stopping power has made a return. The newest introduction however is the return of the “improved” vault kick and its counter, the yank. The yank works by pulling someone on the other side of cover over to your side and proceeding to execute him with a knife if the player hits the right button combo.
It seems that the graphics took a backseat on the beta so we will give this one a mulligan across the board. The levels look pretty good, but the characters look roughly rendered just for the sake of differentiating characters.
Dodgeball is the new mode that was introduced as of this article and it was by far the best thing in the beta. The mode works just as it says. Kill someone and you can respawn a dead teammate, get killed and the other team gets that option. The mode plays like a hybrid of Guardian and Execution. This variant opens up for the most tactics to be used and is a welcome change to Team Deathmatch which offers no consequences for your death.
The beta only introduced the dropshot which is a mine-dropping system that operates like a quick-acting mortar. Very effective with a small blast radius, this weapon is perfect for keeping enemies from grouping up on objectives.
The game offers promise, but key aspects that have made Gears Of War an online multiple staple have been altered. The sound design leaves a lot to be desired as the biggest peeve of the Obnoxious Gamer team was the shotgun just not sounding like the old shotgun. Without the same force, it makes it seem like an entirely different game. The three maps that were offered were essentially the same map. Dodgeball has a chance to become the new favorite amongst e-sports advocates but there are many issues with the game. Gears Of War 4 will be releasing on Xbox One on October 11th, 2016