Review by methedemon
"A huge disappointment."
When I bought gears of war I thought I was buying something new, expecting a true next gen game. What I got was: another standard shooting game. Seriously, Gears of war is by no means a bad game, it is just not what one would expect from a next generation system. I also blame the hype it received from the media/fans.
The graphics are what next gen games should look like. I am talking about amazing environments, sharp textures and lots of details. The graphics are simply real-life like you have never seen before. I never thought 360 could deliver such graphics in its early age. If you have HDTV the game will look even better.
Now the gameplay is what really disappoints. Gears of wars did not bring anything new to the genre. I hoped for some real innovation. The game does bring some new ideas, like the cover system. Gears of war emphasizes on taking cover and playing strategically. So no run and gun action. The cover system is flawed, taking cover will simply make you invulnerable to any attack, be it a normal gun or a rocket launcher. The game gets repetitive quickly. Since you will be doing pretty much the same thing. You will take cover (always), asset the situation and then wipe out all enemies. Taking cover is a good strategy but the game overuses it. Other minor flaws like not having a jump button, and having a very weird way of reloading your guns increase the feel of tediousness.
The game difficulty is pretty much balanced, but a little challenging at times due to the advanced AI. The AI is true next gen, they act exactly as any human would do. They use the cover mechanics better than you will do on your first play through. On harder difficulties the enemies don't just get more stamina-but smarter too. So while it's a challenging game, it does not feel cheating or frustrating at all.
Gears of war can be finished in less than 20 hours. Its would be even shorter if it was not for the difficultly level. The replay value is low, there are no extra things to do after you beat it. You might want to play it again on harder difficulties though. There is online play, and I *heard* its good, but haven't tried it myself.
BUY/RENT? This is a tough one, Gears of war IS worth the money but just don't be expecting something revolutionary . It did not take the genre to the next level, but it brought some new fun ideas and delivered true next gen graphics. I just wish they worked more on the gameplay aspect. So why the low score? Well simply because it did not meet my expectations. I would rate it 8 or even 9 if it was an Xbox/PS2 game.
Reviewer's Score: 4/10 | Originally Posted: 11/09/06
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