Gears 5 is the much-awaited sequel to Gears of War 4 and it’s already become the best selling game for the Xbox exclusive platform including PC this generation and there’s a good reason why. It’s an extremely good game from every aspect so let’s take a look at what makes Gears 5 an absolute must play.
Let’s start off by answering a question that many people probably want to ask. Can a newcomer play this game? And the answer is yes, yes they can. The game has recaps for the original Gears of War trilogy and a separate recap for just Gears of War 4 in case you’ve played through the first three games but didn’t get the chance to play Gears of War 4 and want to get right into Gears 5.
While you might not catch some of the smaller character interactions or callbacks to previous games, you honestly won’t be missing out much and it will further get you to go back and play the older titles.
Speaking of character interaction, I really have to say that the story and writing are great. In a story that’s filled with burly men and space monsters, the interactions that take place between characters feel extremely human. Like when JD and Marcus have a disagreement or when Kait and JD talk about the aftermath of a rather aggressive conversation, it feels so right because that’s how a lot of us would react to such situations.
The story moments in the game are very heavy-hitting and all I’m going to say about it is, prepare yourself because I don’t think anyone was ready for what was about to happen.
And this story is brought to life with stunning visuals. The detail that’s been put into crafting each and every facet of the game just show how much this game means to The Coalition. From the scratches and dents on the armor to the massive sprawling levels that are as intricate as they are big, there’s no visual element at which you can say “yeah, that was just ok”.
The lighting is also a thing of beauty and even though there’s no Ray tracing, it never really felt like the game needs it because of how great the reflections already are. From the dark tunnels and building interiors that have just a few light sources and rays of light to the cities and open areas that are bathed in light, you can always see how nuanced the lighting is.
The impressive part is, it isn’t really hard to run this game on modern hardware because the game is extremely well optimized. Usually, you’ll see systems struggle to run the game well but that’s not at all the case here. Even on the Xbox One and One X, the game both looks great and runs great giving players the Ultimate Gears experience.
Speaking of the Ultimate Gears experience, this game nails what makes Gears, Gears. The cover-based shooting that the franchise has been known for is not boring or repetitive. With the weapon choices that you get and your trusty side-kick robot, encounters are never really boring or drawn out. On the intermediate difficulty setting, the game was fairly challenging and did not feel too simple or too hard. To me, that was the perfect difficulty setting to get an optimal experience but hey, they’ve added in various settings for a reason and that’s to make the game accessible and enjoyable for every type of player.
Multiplayer modes are aplenty this time around with Versus, Horde and Escape along with the campaign co-op mode that supports up to three players that too with split-screen. In this mode, two of the players are humans while the third player plays as Jack, the robot support who can get pretty OP. Meanwhile, Versus is a Player vs Player game mode, Horde is a survival mode where you take on waves after waves of enemies and Escape where you along with two other teammates try to escape a hive after setting off a bomb inside.
There’s plenty of variety for everyone which means that whether you want to play solo or co-op with friends or with random strangers online, you have the ability to do that with all the various modes available to you.
Now on PC, you might have issues with the Xbox Beta app or the Windows Store acting up so make sure to update Windows and all the Xbox related applications fro the Windows Store. I struggled with running the game when I tried installing it on a 2nd PC and after re-downloading the game 2 whole times, it still threw me an error that when googled didn’t help much. The only thing that fixed it was downloading those Xbox-related updates which hadn’t been auto-updated for whatever reason.
In conclusion, Gears 5 is an absolute masterpiece that will please Gears veterans and newcomers alike. With its relatable characters, touching story-telling, gorgeous visuals, and fun gameplay, you’re most likely to absolutely love this game and understand why this is the best game to have come out on the Xbox platform this generation.
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