Yesterday we made the earth-shaking announcement that, with Microsoft’s acquisition of the rights to all things “Gears of War,” one of the Xbox 360’s marquee franchises would be making its way to the new generation and beyond. While it’s still far too early to speculate as to what a “Gears of War” game for Xbox One would look like (without drooling all over ourselves), it’s the perfect time to take a look back at some of our favorite memories from the series’ history. For the sake of those who didn’t play the games on Xbox 360, we’ll try to keep things relatively spoiler-free from here on out.
The first appearance of the Berserker – Right up until through the moment Marcus, Dom, and friends saw General RAAM kill Kim in cold blood, “Gears of War” felt like an action game through and through. However, once the team entered the Tomb of the Unknown, the tone shifted dramatically. Suddenly, we were playing something that felt more like a survival horror game (and an intense one at that!) as we dodged the Berserker’s charging attacks while holding our breath and hoping she wouldn’t hear us.
Avoiding the Kryll – In “Gears of War” Marcus and friends are tasked with making their way from a Stranded outpost to a gas station under the cover of darkness. Sounds easy, right? Hardly. Thanks to the addition of deadly swarms of bat-like Kryll (which could tear our heroes to pieces in a matter of second), the Gears were forced to stick to well-lit areas or create their own with some well-placed explosives. If you’re like us, you probably wandered out into the dark just to see what happened. Let’s just say it wasn’t pretty.
Escaping the Riftworm – While the first two entries in this list were focused on some of the “Gears of War” franchises more frightening moments, this one is decidedly more amusing. Sure, being eaten whole by a massive worm might sound terrifying, but there’s a macabre hilarity about messily battling your way out of it. The sight of the Gears emerging victorious from the worm, yet literally covered in blood and gore from head to toe, was enough to make even the most jaded fan chuckle.
The many deaths of “Carmine” – We sincerely pity any fools cursed with the surname Carmine. In “Gears of War,” Pvt. Anthony Carmine was one of the first COG soliders to die, taking a sniper’s bullet while complaining about his jammed gun. He lived on in multiplayer, but we were sure he was done for. Surprisingly, a Carmine made it back to the front in “Gears of War 2” (it was Anthony’s brother Benjamin in the same armor), only to lose his life inside the aforementioned Riftworm. Sure enough, one Clayton Carmine popped up in “Gears of War 3” to redeem his family’s good name. But would he make it through battle in one piece?
Finding Dom’s wife – Dom’s search for his wife Maria was, for many players, the emotional lynchpin that held the “Gears of War” series together. After all, while it can be hard to identify with hulking dudes battling subterranean bogeymen, it’s easy to identify with someone searching for the missing love of their life. The saga of Dom and Maria finally came to a close in “Gears of War 3,” in a manner befitting all of the action that came before it. Not everyone was happy with how things turned out, but there couldn’t be any other way.