The Weekly OT #21: Gears4, Nintendo Switch, and Wrestling Gifs
Spoiler free mini-review of Gears of War 4. I had a great time playing Gears this weekend. Teaming up and playing a few, very short rounds of MPvs was the only time I was miserable. I couldn’t buy a kill and we got dominated. Horde is cool and the campaign was excellent. For play-through enjoyment, I probably rank it #2 after the original. There was never a time when we were so frustrated, even on Hardcore, that we couldn’t move forward, or had to step back and take a breather. Figuring out the strats to take down the bosses was just old school gaming (i.e., fun). The difficulty was perfect for these veteran Gears players and the story and action were fun. It really is a soft reboot of the previous three games, much like Star Wars 7 is to the original trilogy. Literally, the enemies have changed appearance, but their behavior is the same (a new ticker, a new wretch). Story elements and plot devices also were almost all parallels to the same in previous games, all mashed together. For objective quality, graphics aside, I place Gears 4 at #4 after some absolutely incredible campaigns in the previous games. I really enjoyed playing the short campaign with Cornie, but the scale and quality of the major set pieces/events was not up to those of Gears 2 and 3, nor was it as fresh as 1. When I remember the set pieces in the previous games (facing off against the Beserker, inside the worm, the teeth!, the boat and sea monster, the Oil Derrick ride, riding the Brumack, didn’t we ride Reavers as well?, the multiple and varied center-of-the-earth caverns, the locust launching out of the earth, the train, taking down RAAM, etc.), I cannot say it was better than the previous games. Still, Gears campaigns rank among the few that are interesting enough to hold my attention, and playing through it with Cornie, from beginning to end, entered my hall of fame for favorite gaming experiences. Two thumbs way up!
I will continue to dabble in MPvs, playing longer when I do well, and cutting my sessions short when I am off. It was smart of The Coalition to provide statistical information as to how much damage we do to the enemy when we fail to gib them, but they gib us. We no longer have to ask in disbelief, “Did you take any damage at all?” We know whether they did or not by the numbers on the screen. Gears more than any other game, seems to create dubious moments in copious amounts. I maintain that Dodgeball is one of the greatest innovations to the staple modes of vs gaming. I just need to play better to make it more enjoyable. I will also play some Horde when that is what everyone is doing.
Next on the platter is BF1, launching this Friday (Oct 21). Kenai sent me a message telling me LevelCap gave “Operations” mode a great review, claiming it is better than RUSH. High praise indeed! Gamers win!