Here Comes Gears of War 4

Microsoft today unveiled its launch trailer for Gears of War 4, the upcoming reboot of its Xbox-exclusive game series. The game is coming October 11, but those who pre-order Gears 4 can play a few days early.

According to Xbox, Gears of War 4 takes place 25 years after the events of the original Gears trilogy. And while protagonist Marcus Fenix and the rest of Delta Squad should have been able to enjoy the fruits of retirement, that wouldn’t have made for a very exciting game. So the Locust Horde—sorry, the Swarm—has emerged, literally, to introduce some chaos.

As a fan of the Call of Duty series of games, maybe I’m in no position to criticize the set up here, but seriously, can’t we just let Marcus die in peace, as a hero? Apparently not: If I’m seeing this trailer correctly, not only does Marcus Fenix have to suffer the indignity of seeing yet another subterranean alien culture explode onto the surface of his world to destroy humanity, but he appears to be killed, quickly and easily right there in the trailer.


So like those young adult books and movies that are so popular now, the torch is passed to Marcus’s son JD—Yes. JD—and his diverse group of young friends. “Now JD, along with his friends Del and Kait, must fight together and survive the night,” Xbox explains. I assume the action last longer than one night.

There are things I like about the trailer, like the apparent cameo by Gears stalwart Augustus Cole and the voice-over by John DiMaggio, who plays the voice of Marcus Fenix in the games. There’s even a non-subtle introduction of color, late in the trailer, something that’s been mostly missing in action in the series. (The first game in the series, in particular, is a presented in a palette of grays and browns.)

But the trailer also tries to recapture past magic, with a remake of Metallica’s “”Nothing Else Matters” coming nowhere close to the original Gears’ “Mad World” promo video. Which was itself remade for Gears 3, annoyingly.

Anyway, Gears of War is like Halo: You’re either in or you’re not. I’m in, but only for the single player experience, which I’ve always enjoyed. And of course for the game’s Xbox Play Anywhere functionality, which in this case will even allow for cross-platform co-op gameplay on Xbox One and Windows 10. Nice!

You can catch the Gears of War 4 Gameplay Launch Trailer on YouTube now.


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