Hello again!

My name is Ash, and today we’re going to talk about a game series that seems not to change at all since the release of its first “episode”. I’m talking about Gears of War that I played long-long ago in 2006 on a pc ’cause xboxes were a luxury back then (as it is now, tbh). Since then, because the publishers were really clever making the next parts as exclusives for xbox360, I never played them. Instead, I played Uncharted on my trusty PS3 at that time. You might ask, why the comparison? That’s because without the comparison the review of Gears 5 will consist of one simple sentence: GEARS 5 IS THE ULTIMATE SNOWBOARDING SIMULATOR.

It’s simple: Gears of War for Xbox was the same exclusive console-seller as Uncharted was for PS3 and PS4. However, when Naughty Dog always tried its best in improving the technical level of their games (Uncharted 4 is a beast even on a standard PS4 graphically – don’t know how they did it but kudos to them for that), story lines and gameplay in general. While the initial episodes of Uncharted were cover-based shooters with puzzles and in-your-face action sequences, Gears of War was simply the cover-based shooter on a really decent level. With Uncharted 4 there were added: 1. stealth (not the greatest one, though), 2. grappling that made platforming more interesting, 3. a lot of mud to flex the graphical engine. With Gears 5, Coalition added semi-open world and a skiff to do some side-missions and a drone that can be upgraded in some ways.

The rest is the same is a traditionally good cover-based shooter with satisfying process of killing different types of monsters that really does not get boring. I feel like the game was supposed to be represented in a “Call of Duty” approach where a player gets his/her new portion of the same old product with a little twist. However, I do really feel that there could’ve been offered some new elements to the game (some puzzles or stealth missions would’ve been nice for example). Especially taking into account that Gears 5 is being played in a post-apocalyptic techno-environment, we could’ve had some mecha-stuff that would’ve made some levels Titanfall-ish. But no, we’ve got a decent shooting rate with bullet-sponges as our enemies. I guess, Gears won’t be innovative so far.

The story was also okay, I guess. I’m really grateful for the included cinematics explaining what the heck happened in the previous episodes to get some sort of context for the stuff happening with our protagonist. It is Kait – a young girl that finds herself capable of controlling the hordes of Swarm and this episode tells the story of her relationships with guys in big armors. You might think that it rips of the plot of Starcraft and…I guess you might be right. I did not get the sudden plot twist making you choose the characters that will make it till the end of the game because it was really sudden and abrupt.

The plot itself barely reaches the line of being sufficient for traveling from one point to another and shooting enemies in different locations. The side-quests are the same: we travel to a certain point on the map, shoot enemies, return to our skiff. Traveling on that skiff was the most satisfying part of the gameplay – I really enjoyed just riding the snowy hills and sandy deserts, jumping and drifting – it was so nice! Like it really was more fun compared to the actual shooting from time to time.

The major problem of the game is its technical stability and definitely not the traditional loop of gameplay over and over. I personally had to replay certain sections of the game because its auto-save did not work properly; I also was capable of discovering transparent walls that I could even use as a cover. The game could stuck randomly in unknown moments blocking your progress and making you replay it several times, which is not good. The registration of quests’ stages completion was also improper, especially in the “desert-level”. I really hope that the devs and pubs will fix this stuff with patches because otherwise the game will cause a lot of frustration.

Graphically I liked it though. Despite the fact that the 99% of areas were lifeless territories that were rarely interesting to explore, I appreciate the fact that the developers tried their best to include as many details there, as possible. For some reason, it left an impression of Metro: Exodus; however, Exodus had much more “content” inside much smaller maps creating more activities for the player. Here, we sometimes waste more time riding skiff and looking at Kait’s ass running from one point to another (I don’t mind though, but the choice of camera positioning with her dashing was a strange one indeed).

In total, it’s a really decent game. For me it’s 3 out of 5 because the shooting is okay, but the lack of versatility is not. The dialogues and characters are okay but the shallow ending is not. The skiff is okay but the bullet-sponge enemies is meh. The graphics and style are okay but the technical glitches and bugs are definitely not. Still, when the next part comes, I’ll be more than eager to play because there are times when you just want the same product that you know with no surprises.

(Thanks for reading till the end! Leave a comment about whether you played the game or not, whether you liked it or not and about what should I review next. Or tell me what you thought on Twitter.
Plus, I stream on Twitch occasionally, so you can ask me anything live if you catch me there. And now, that’s it for today, thank you once again and I’ll see you in the next one! Goodbye!)

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