Saturday, April 26, 2014

GAMER GIRL WEEKENDS: GEARS OF WAR TRILOGY

E and I like playing games together. We’ve been through the Halo franchise, put far too many hours and money into Mass Effect multiplayer, and cannot wait for Destiny. We’ve even played COD together (we have two systems, one of us uses the TV and one uses a computer monitor and snuggle up on the couch). We were looking for another shooter to play together and I admitted that I had never played the Gears of War games, so we picked up the trilogy and Judgment.

The Gears of War Trilogy is as follows: Gears of War is a military science fiction video game franchise created by Epic Games and now owned by Microsoft Studios. The series focuses on the conflict between humanity, the subterranean reptilian hominids known as the Locust Horde, and their mutated counterparts, the Lambent. The franchise consists of four third-person shooter video games, which have also been supplemented by a comic book series and five novels.

Instead of dissecting each installment, I will give you my general impression of the games as a whole. I dug them. It helps that we played them one right after another, so the story works (though we didn’t play Judgment which is technically a prequel first as the changes in game mechanics and such from Judgment to the first Gears would have made me scream bloody murder)

Set away from Earth on the planet Sera, humans are not doing so well and are systematically being taken out by the Locust who are destroying mankind from below. Of course our hero Marcus Fenix and his friends rise up to crush the tide of invaders even though technically they were there first (You see as we colonized the planet we needed a new power source and found it underground where they were living = hornet’s nest stirred). It’s a fun game.

Image from Google
I hate those damn Tickers

My thoughts: E played Marcus and for a good majority of the games I played Dom. Sadly there really aren’t any female characters to play until we got to Judgment, but I connected with Dom so no worries there. In fact he kind of broke my heart a couple of times (those who have played the games understand what I am talking about). Cole and Baird are great characters as well and of course I love having Claudia Black in later installments (she’s one of my girly crushes and I get all warm and fuzzy whenever she does voice acting in one of my favorite games – see Bioware games). Of course Marcus Fenix is played brilliantly by John DiMaggio who voices both Bender from Futurama and Jake from Adventure Time.

It’s a shooter series which I am feeling more and more confident and comfortable with and occasionally kick E’s butt at (I only started playing shooters, being more of a hack and slash gal, about a year and a half ago). I really enjoyed that E and I could play the campaign together and the scoring system in Judgment made us all competitive like in a good way (Plus I love that you could choose to make missions a wee bit harder if you wanted).


The overall story itself was decent. I know that some say Gears is just a Halo rip off, but I was drawn in by the characters far more than Master Chief. I dug that we didn’t really understand what the Locust wanted until the end of the Third Game and quite often there were a lot of shades of grey. Of course as we played through each of the series, the game controls got better and better (Judgment being my favorite with Y switching your weapons and felt more like COD) as did the visuals. I think my favorite of technically was four games was Gears of War Judgment.

Conclusion: It’s enjoyable to play a game that has a tight narrative, excellent controls, great graphics and sound, AND happens to include some fun re-play features, especially with up to four player co-op.

Gears of War: 3 out of 5 controllers (it holds up really well for a launch title btw), Gears of War 2: 3.5 out of 5, Gears of War 3: 4 out of 5, Gears of War: Judgment: 5 out of 5

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