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Gears of War 3 Beta Wrap Up

Going by the numbers it is obvious that people are ready for some more Gears of War and this coming Monday will suck just that little bit more. Anyway, I’ve already gone over quite a lot regarding the content of the beta, so now I’m going to deploy my flame shield and list the main issues that have emerged over the past four weeks. These are the things that will hopefully be acknowledged and rectified to guarantee an amazing launch for the full game on September 20th.

1: Spawn System  
Anyone who has played the beta has no doubt been completely shafted by crappy spawns, these are a huge problem during King of the Hill matches due to the heavy emphasis on long range combat in the beta. Sometimes it is literally impossible to get to a hill in time because you have spawned the absolute furthest away from it as you can. This also is an issue for capture the leader and occasionally in Team Deathmatch, while there is no definite way to solve this problem, a lot can be done to improve the current system.

2: Retro ChargeThis is a simple fix, just make it possible to stop someone retro charging without killing them. When a player can run through an onslaught of bullets and impale you moving at a snail’s pace you’re just asking for complaints. Either altering it so you need to charge for longer in order to impale or getting shot a set number of times will simply stop the move entirely. Retro bayonet kills are seriously awesome, but it does need balancing a little.

3: Mantle Kick
I really hate to get all “game developer” on you here, but seriously, the collision for this is complete garbage. The area of effect needs to be narrowed significantly, it literally covers entire walls of cover that are about three times the width of the player. It is a great addition, but it is far too exploitable in its current state.

4: Power Weapon Spawns
I still can’t figure out how anybody would equate the Torque Bow with the Longshot, the Torque is a one hit kill anywhere on the body, is very easy to aim, and is capable of killing multiple enemies with a single shot. The other is severely harder to aim and requires a headshot to kill. In skilled hands the Sniper is a match for the Torque, but let’s face it, that’s not always the case. Also, swapping out the Digger for the Boomshot is not equal, the Boomshot is basically a guaranteed way to pick up a minimum of 3 easy kills while the Digger is much harder to use. The scorcher replaces the Digger on trenches, which is a wrong swap for so many reasons. The grenades need a little work too, you get two frags and incendiaries and yet only one ink grenade, getting kills with the frags or incendiaries is easy and you get more of them. This problem has been brought up a lot, so there’s a good chance it will get resolved for the final game.

5: Meatshields

This really isn't that useful anymore. Especially when someone is coming at you with a sawed off...

Now I love using pistols in shooters, so this is really the only thing that seriously annoys me. There is virtually no point to grabbing someone as a meatshield anymore. Just a few shots from any weapon will take it apart and the Sawed off has enough power to cut right through them (and you). This does seem like an oversight due to the addition of dedicated servers, but they need to make meatshields more durable, there’s just not enough reason to grab them anymore.

6: The good ol’ Gnasher and Sawed off
Nothing embodies Gears multiplayer quite like the shotgun. While it is infinitely more reliable than in previous games, there is still that element of randomness to it. The range is still the biggest problem, it is very inconsistent, considering that Epic are really trying to encourage people to use the rifles in Gears 3, it is puzzling that the shotgun still has as much range as it does. Either finally give us a consistent weapon or just reduce the range of the Gnasher, I’ve got plenty of kills against people using rifles mid range with this thing which goes against what Epic are going for here. Now let’s talk ever so briefly about that Sawed off... Epic have finally made something that pisses people off more than the chainsaw. While not downright overpowered, it is borderline in king of the hill, it is far too easy to dominate the hill when an entire team is packing sawed offs. The reload time is a step in the right direction, but it can overcome the regular shotgun at mid range sometimes, the sawed should only be for point blank encounters.

And that will about do it regarding the Gears 3 beta, I’ve had a ton of fun playing it over the past month and as a veteran of the previous two games, this is simply the best that Gears multiplayer has ever been. It’s a good thing that there are so many promising titles due out over the coming months to help ease the pain of this beta passing, as always, be sure to let us know what you think in the comments below!


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