Developer: Epic Games
Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios
Platform: Xbox 360
Genre: Third Person Shooter
Metacritic Rating: 91/100
Copies Sold: 3 million (As of September 2011)
Release Date: September 2011
Much like its predecessors, Gears of War 3 is a third-person shooter that places a high emphasis on the use of squad and cover tactics and strategies in combat. The player is able to carry four weapons: one set of grenades and one pistol as well as two additional weapons, each of which can be switched for other weapons that are in stockpiles throughout the game or which have been let go of by fallen enemies. There is a secondary fire mode feature that most weapons in the game possess, including the Lancer, the signature rifle of the game. This features a chainsaw bayonet that can slice enemies through when used at close range. All weapons ammunition can be reloaded by the player. The player can use an “active reload” that is designated by a small-sized cursor that moves above the HUD or heads-up display. When players hit their control buttons the cursor will appear in the section that is marked and the resulting reload will be faster and more powerful than if standard bullets were used. If the button is depressed outside of this region, however, the weapon will temporarily jam and the player will be left vulnerable throughout this time. Conversely, players can opt to use the active reload which essentially reloads weapons at the standard pace. Players can even, at times, opt to carry heavier weapons such a gatling guns or mortars. These weapons, however, will ultimately slow the player’s pace as long as they are being carried.
Players can take a measured amount of damage from enemy fire when in combat. This fills up a red “crimson omen” on the heads-up display and denotes the player’s health. As the player continues to remain out of the line of fire, the “crimson omen” will dissipate. When too much damage is taken by the player, the player can go down but can be brought back up by a comrade during a short “bleed out”. Alternatively, the player can die. If the game is being played at a superior difficulty level, however, the player will instantly die after extensive damage has occurred. Enemies can use execution moves to kill players during “bleed-out” periods. Additionally, head shots and explosives can instantly kill players without “bleed-out” periods. Enemies can be similarly be used by players to “bleed-out” as well. Players and their enemies and allies alike can use almost every structure to find cover. They can fire blind bullets from behind these structures or lean out in order to aim and take shots. Players are also able to switch rapidly to close by structures or walls or jump over cover that is lower than their starting position in a forward rush. Some forms of cover within Gears of War 3 can additionally be destroyed when impacted by a substantial amount of damage, which can ultimately provide tactical advantages when enticing enemies to come out from their hiding places.
The ability to tag opponents is a feature that is new to Gears of War 3. With this feature computer-controlled allies will focus their fire on the enemies that have been marked while human allies are additionally made aware of the locations of marked enemies on the HUD. Weapons and ammunition can now also be traded among allies throughout the battle.
The player is able to maintain an experience level throughout all modes of the game. Experience is gained through kills, making special types of kills, aiding and reviving teammates and through competitive modes and campaigns. Earning new levels will unlock the use of special weapons and character skins when the game is played in multiplayer mode.
Marcus Fenix and the COG forces were set to eliminate Jacinto Plateau in Gears of War 2, which was the only remaining major city on planet Sera following the Emergence Day arrival of the Locust seventeen years past. Creatures that have mutated as the result of exposure to Imulsion, an energetic liquid, the Locust and their tunnels were necessary to destroy in order to reduce the spread of Lambent.
During its launch week, Gears of War 3 sold in excess of 3 million copies. The sales for Gears of War 3 were higher than the first two games in the series.
As of September 27, 2011 more than $1 billion has been grossed by the Gears of War franchise.