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Massive first look at Gears of War 3

Cliff Bleszinski


A quick chat with Mr. Gears of War



Q: You’re a celebrity game developer! What’s that like? 

A: Fun! It’s the best kind of fame in the world, man. It’s like I get recognised once or twice a week tops – I can go do whatever and not have to worry about being photographed staggering drunkenly out of a bar. At the same time, when I go to a game or comic convention it’s like non-stop. It’s the best of both worlds, if you ask me. I just love being an ambassador for the industry.

Q: Do you find that because Gears is the flagship game for the Unreal Engine, you’re almost under obligation to push it to the limit?

A: Absolutely, and we want our licensees to make games that are as impressive technically as Gears too. Each game is an emissary, an evangelist for the latest version of what the tech can do.

Q: What would you say to critics who reckon all Unreal Engine games look the same?

A: The perception exists because Gears established a certain visual style that lots of people gravitated towards. Take Borderlands. While it’s a variant on Gears’ post-apocalyptic setting, it’s got that cel-shaded look, skinny characters and bright colours. Lots of people might not assume that it’s an Unreal Engine game. BioShock, Lost Odyssey, Mass Effect – they all look nothing like Gears, but people still get hung up on that!

Q: Do you think you’re now forever linked with Gears? Are you getting bored of Marcus?

A: Not at all. Plus I might be working on things you might not hear about for years. I’m the kind of person who absolutely needs to have multiple piles of projects to work on. Gears happens to be the big pile at the moment, but I assure you that Bulletstorm is building up to a larger pile and there are other projects as well – multiple irons in the fire. It just happens that Gears is the one presently in need of some hammering.


Rod Fergusson


Executive Producer of Gears



Q: Modern Warfare runs at 60 frames per second. Is that an aim for you? 

A: We’ve always been about pushing the visual bar with Gears, and there’s a trade-off you need to make to go to 60fps. That’s not the Epic way. In our universe every doorknob is highly detailed! If we were to go back and redo the original Gears, using the current Unreal Engine, we’d just make it more unbelievable looking. It’s not ‘how do we make it faster?’ It’s ’how do we make it sexier?’

Q: Epic is a hugely successful studio, will you ever get careless?

A: You always try to be better. We look at certain games and say ‘wow, we wish we could do that’. Games are very subjective; some people think we have just the right amount of story, others think the story is terrible. You have to deal with balance and feedback. Gears 1 was nothing but risk. When I came to it as a producer I was like: ‘we have a team that hasn’t done a single-player, story-driven game since Unreal. And it’s a brand new platform.’ Risk on top of risk, on top of risk.

Q: But you did ride on a wave of hype with that Unreal Engine tech...

A: Right, it helped us a lot. We certainly hung our hat on the visuals at that time. Even if people didn’t necessarily like the game, they might buy it to go show their girlfriends or wives: ‘this 360 I just bought –and this HDTV – is all worthwhile because look how fricking cool this looks!’ We needed to set the visuals bar high, at least in our first iteration.

Q: Do you think the West is obsessed with graphics, compared to – say – Japanese gamers?

A: I don’t know. I’m not a hardcore Japanese gamer. I don’t import stuff, but when I look at Eastern games like Final Fantasy XIII, what I love and admire is their sheer beauty. I tend to look at their aesthetic beauty, their sheer art more than I do with Western games. I see Western games as practical, and Eastern games as beautiful.


Karen Traviss


Scriptwriter for Gears of War 3



Q: Games like Gears of War, Modern Warfare and Halo are very popular with real-life troops... 

A: When Gears of War 2 came out, my friend was serving in Kabul. He wrote that all he could hear, up and down the corridor, were soldiers swearing, alongside the sounds of Lancer fire. It was weird, because they were in a real war; there was combat going on outside!

Q: Do the COGs in Gears closely mirror proper solders?

A: Hopefully. People occasionally say to me: ‘Why are you working on Gears?’ and I’ll respond: ‘This is a band of brothers who will die for each other.’ You can forget politics – they really don’t care about the COG. They’re looking after their mates, and that’s the universal feeling – this incredible combat bond.



Q: How different is writing a Gears’ script to a normal novel?

A: You have to realise that you can’t control the pacing, can’t control what the player sees and hears. And what you’re doing is not TV, but steering someone through a game, punctuated by drama that will keep them interested. Also, because most gamers play through Gears in several sittings we need to repeat things. Not just to remind them about current objectives, but also: ‘this is what happened in the first and second game’. It’s a challenge!

May 21, 2010

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81 comments

  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 25, 2010 8:48 p.m.

    NO JUMPING=SHITTY NON VERTICAL LEVEL DESIGN..U CANT CLIMB WITHOUT A JUMP THAT'S FUCKIN LAME.
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 25, 2010 8:47 p.m.

    LOLOL ANYONE'S WHO'S PLAYED OLD SOCOM'S VS GHOST RECON...knows ghost recon is more noobish. NO JUMPING=SHITTY I JUST PROVED WHY NO JUMPING SUCKS http://i49.tinypic.com/14ikeh0.jpg AHHA^ CANT FALL OFF SIDE OF STAIRCASE WITHOUT RAILING WHAT A JOKE http://i47.tinypic.com/2vkce8l.jpg AHAH CANT JUMP OVER SIDE OF BRIDGE LAME
  • avantguardian - May 25, 2010 12:27 p.m.

    @killa451 % combatwombat: i'm sorry you guys had to deal with that troll's raving lunacy...just don't write him back...seriously guy, take that sh*t to ign or somewhere where cussing people out for no good reason and writing in all caps(WHAT I HAVE TO SAY IS IMPORTANT!!!DUURRR!) is acceptable behavior...people like him feed on your disbelief that someone could actually be that big of a douche... to sum up his level of articulation: "no jump is for noobs" your obviously dealing with some unparalleled brilliance here... oh, and @ addjumpgoddamnit: please don't feel the need to respond to this if you should read it...you're dead to me...
  • CH3BURASHKA - May 24, 2010 8:12 a.m.

    "We never intended for GOW to be a trilogy."B BULLSHIT. "Gamers don't like trilogies." BULLSHIT. So far, it's looking good. It also led me to discover Sun Kil Moon.
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:19 a.m.

    FLANKING=FOR NOOBS...REAL OUTSMARTING IS TAKING SHORTSCUTS IN THE LEVEL THE OTHER PLAYER DOESNT EXPECT U TO TAKE..DUMBASS NO JUMPING=BORING LEVEL DESIGN. I GUESS IM BUYING UNCHARTED 3 AND NOT GEARS 3 SINCE THEY ARE LISTENING TO FUCKIN NEWBIES I TOLD U TO SHUT THE FUCK UP NOOB U DONT KNOW SHIT ABOUT GAMEPLAY SO WHY U COMMENTING? U DONT EVEN UNDERSTAND WHAT I MEAN IF U DID EVEN U WOULD WANT JUMP IF I SHOWED U IN PERSON HOW NO JUMP EFFECTS GAMEPLAY MAKE IT SHITTIER U WOULD REALLY UNDERSTAND AND WANT IT. KILLZONE1=NO JUMPING GEARS OF WAR KILLZONE2=JUMPING WITHOUT THE ABILITY TO SHOOT. KILLZONE2 DEV'S REALIZED NO JUMPING HURTS THE GAMEPLAY. EPICGAMES SHOULD KNOW THIS AND STOP LISTENING TO DUMBASS LITTLE NOOB KIDS LIKE KILLA451
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:17 a.m.

    IM TIRED OF FUCKIN LITTLE KIDS GOING AROUND COMPLAINING EVERY GAME WITH JUMPING HAS BUNNYHOPPERS..U CAN PREVENT PEOPLE JUMPING AND SHOOTING JUST DONT LET U SHOOT AND JUMP AT THE SAMETIME LIKE UNCHARTED OR KILLZONE U FUCKIN MORONS. PLUS IF UR GONNA COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE JUMPING IM GONNA COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE RANDOMLY CANNONBALL ROLLING ALL OVER THE FUCKIN LEVEL. U FUCKIN HYPOCRITES NEED UR FACES SMASHED IN. A JUMP IS ONE OF THE WAY U CAN IMPROVE AND EVOLVE FUCKIN GEARS OF WAR INTO BETTER MORE COMPLEX GAMEPLAY GAME U FUCKIN DUMBSHITS
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:16 a.m.

    IM TIRED OF FUCKIN LITTLE KIDS GOING AROUND COMPLAINING EVERY GAME WITH JUMPING HAS BUNNYHOPPERS..U CAN PREVENT PEOPLE JUMPING AND SHOOT JUST DONT LET U SHOOT AND JUMP AT THE SAMETIME LIKE UNCHARTED OR KILLZONE 2 U FUCKIN MORONS. PLUS IF UR GONNA COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE JUMPING IM GONNA COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE RANDOMLY CANNONBALL ROLLING ALL OVER THE FUCKIN LEVEL. U FUCKIN HYPOCRITES NEED UR FACES SMASHED IN. A JUMP IS ONE OF THE WAY U CAN IMPROVE AND EVOLVE FUCKIN GEARS OF WAR INTO BETTER MORE COMPLEX GAMEPLAY GAME U FUCKIN DUMBSHITS
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:15 a.m.

    IM TIRED OF FUCKIN LITTLE KIDS GOING AROUND COMPLAINING EVERY GAME WITH JUMPING HAS BUNNYHOPPERS..U CAN PREVENT PEOPLE JUMPING AND SHOOT JUST DONT LIKE U SHOOT AND JUMP AT THE SAMETIME LIKE UNCHARTED OR KILLZONE U FUCKIN MORONS. PLUS IF UR GONNA COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE JUMPING IM GONNA COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE RANDOMLY CANNONBALL ROLLING ALL OVER THE FUCKIN LEVEL. U FUCKIN HYPOCRITES NEED UR FACES SMASHED IN. A JUMP IS ONE OF THE WAY U CAN IMPROVE AND EVOLVE FUCKIN GEARS OF WAR INTO BETTER MORE COMPLEX GAMEPLAY GAME U FUCKIN DUMBSHITS
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:13 a.m.

    I SWEAR TO GOD GEARS OF WAR 1 I GOT OUTSIDE THE LEVEL ROLLING INTO A WALL SOMEHOW I ROLLED OVER THE WALL AND I COULDNT GET BACK INTO THE LEVEL. IF I HAD A JUMP I COULD OF GOT BACK INTO LEVEL WITHOUT RESTARTING MISSION JUST PROOF NO JUMP SUCKS
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:12 a.m.

    I SWEAR TO GOD GEARS OF WAR 1 I GOT OUTSIDE THE LEVEL ROLLING INTO A WALL SOMEHOW I ROLLED OVER THE WALL AND I COULDNT GET BACK INTO THE LEVEL. IF I HAD A JUMP I COULD OF GOT BACK INTO LEVEL DESIGN RESTARTING MISSION JUST PROOF NO JUMP SUCKS
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 2:10 a.m.

    FLANKING=FOR NOOBS...REAL OUTSMARTING IS TAKING SHORTS IN THE LEVEL THE OTHER PLAYER DOESNT EXPECT U TO TAKE..DUMBASS NO JUMPING=BORING LEVEL DESIGN. I GUESS IM BUYING UNCHARTED 3 AND NOT GEARS 3 SINCE THEY ARE LISTENING TO FUCKIN NEWBIES I TOLD U TO SHUT THE FUCK UP NOOB U DONT KNOW SHIT ABOUT GAMEPLAY SO WHY U COMMENTING? U DONT EVEN UNDERSTAND WHAT I MEAN IF U DID EVEN U WOULD WANT JUMP IF I SHOWED U IN PERSON HOW NO JUMP EFFECTS GAMEPLAY MAKE IT SHITTIER U WOULD REALLY UNDERSTAND AND WANT IT. KILLZONE1=NO JUMPING GEARS OF WAR KILLZONE2=JUMPING WITHOUT THE ABILITY TO SHOOT. KILLZONE2 DEV'S REALIZED NO JUMPING HURTS THE GAMEPLAY. EPICGAMES SHOULD KNOW THIS AND STOP LISTENING TO DUMBASS LITTLE NOOB KIDS LIKE KILLA451
  • killa451 - May 24, 2010 2:01 a.m.

    funny how you didnt actually adress anything i said and instead turned a GLITCH (means its a MISTAKE dipshit) into a reason why they shoul,d overhaul the gameplay. and have you EVER played multyplaer? lol u can outsmart people plenty (i think they call it FLANKING, or is that 2 much skill?). O i get it. u just wanna run aorund jumping on reandom shit and finding every exploit u possibly can in a level (cuz thats skill right?) . Cuz that OBVIUOUSLY takes MORE skill then actually 1v1ing someone in a true battle where its u vs them and theres no gay ass jumnping over random shit to get an advantage. thats called skill. and u dont have any. lol u just want jumping cuz u SUCK AT GEARS . its not HALO . gosh dude seriously stop ruinging the forum for a good game and go have fun jumping all over the fuckin place in halo or some shit.
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 24, 2010 1:14 a.m.

    LOLOL I ACCIDENTALLY WENT OVER A WALL IN GEARS OF WAR LOL I WENT OUTSIDE OF LEVEL AND I COULDNT GET BACK OVER WALL BECAUSE WALL WASNT PROGRAMMED TO JUMP OVER BUT GAME GLITCHED AND MOVED ME OVER WALL LOLOL. I COULD OF GOT BACK OVER WALL WITH A JUMP BUTTON..BUT I HAD TO RESTART WHOLE MISSION STUCK OUTSIDE MAP LOL. no jump is for noobs EVERYONE ON SAME FLAT GROUND=NOOB GAMEPLAY U CANT DO CRAZY TACTICS WITHOUT A JUMP BUTTON LIKE USING THE LEVEL DESIGN TO OUTSMART PEOPLE
  • killa451 - May 24, 2010 1:06 a.m.

    and i play gears cuz its good. and not cuz its made by fucking epic. and im good at it. dont call me a noob cuz i havcent played EVERY EPIC GAMRE EVERRRR just cuz u have been a nerd longer then me doesnt make u pro and me shitty. lol i bet i could ru8in u at gears cuz u dont kno how to play a game with out jumping hahahahahahahahaha
  • killa451 - May 24, 2010 1:05 a.m.

    u realize the whole point of gears is to get up close, wall bounce, move around and shotty, to try to get up close with the person. getting on top of shit goes COMPLETLEY against the gameplay. if u dont like the gameplay, then fine. but dont U FUCKING DARE try to change gears. gears wont ever have jumping. it wont work. it goes against the idea of the game. it will always have a cover sytstem. u dont like that? go play ur stupid ps1 nukem what ever but dont ruin a good game with ur caps lock bullshit.
  • itkonlyyou77 - May 24, 2010 1:03 a.m.

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  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 23, 2010 10:57 p.m.

    HERE'S ALL THE PROOF U NEED NO JUMPING SUCKS LOOK AT PICS NO JUMPING=I CANT STAND ON ANYWHERE I WANT AND SHOOT FROM THERE..ONLY CRAPPY PLACES WHERE DEV SET. http://i49.tinypic.com/14ikeh0.jpg AHHA^ CANT FALL OFF SIDE OF STAIRCASE WITHOUT RAILING WHAT A JOKE http://i47.tinypic.com/2vkce8l.jpg AHAH CANT JUMP OVER SIDE OF BRIDGE LAME
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 23, 2010 10:54 p.m.

    I JUST PROVED WHY NO JUMPING SUCKS KILL10451=A FUCKIN NEWBIE DOESNT BELONG PLAYING EPICGAMES'S GAMES HE HASNT PLAYED UNREAL SINCE 1998 LIKE ME WHY ARE YOU COMMENTING UR JUST HOLDING BACK EVOLUTION OF GEARS OF WAR AND MAKING IT A BORING NO SKILL FUCKIN NOOB GAME LIKE IT CURRENTLY IS FUCKIN BORING SLOW PACED SHIT HERE'S ALL THE PROOF U NEED NO JUMPING SUCKS LOOK AT PICS http://i49.tinypic.com/14ikeh0.jpg AHHA^ CANT FALL OFF SIDE OF STAIRCASE WITHOUT FALLING WHAT A JOKE http://i47.tinypic.com/2vkce8l.jpg AHAH CANT JUMP OVER SIDE OF BRIDGE LAME
  • Addjumpgoddamnit - May 23, 2010 10:51 p.m.

    NO JUMPING=CRAPPY NON VERTICAL LEVEL DESIGN. GEARS OF WAR 2 LEVEL DESIGN SO FUCKIN BORING WITHOUT JUMP I NEVER FINISHED GAME I STOPPED ON HORNETS NEST I SWEAR TO GOD I WAS BORED AS FUCK WHOLE GAME. NO JUMPING=I CANT STAND ON ANYTHING I WANT AND SHOOT FROM THERE..ONLY CRAPPY PLAYERS WHERE DEV SET. ADD KILLZONE2 JUMPING WHERE U CANT SHOOT SO THE KIDS DONT COMPLAIN ABOUT PEOPLE JUMPING AND SHOOTING THEIR GUN THE SAMETIME. I WANT A MANUAL JUMP SO I CAN GET AROUND THE LEVELS FASTER. HERE'S ALL THE PROOF U NEED NO JUMPING SUCKS LOOK AT PICS http://i49.tinypic.com/14ikeh0.jpg AHHA^ CANT FALL OFF SIDE OF STAIRCASE WITHOUT FALLING WHAT A JOKE http://i47.tinypic.com/2vkce8l.jpg AHAH CANT JUMP OVER SIDE OF BRIDGE LAME ADD KILLZONE2 JUMPING SO U CANT SHOOT UR GUN AND JUMP AT THE SAMETIME THEN FAGGOTS WONT COMPLAIN ABOUT BUNNYHOPPING/SHOOTING. I WANT A JUMP TO GET AROUND LEVELS MOTHER FUCKERS PLUS IT HURTS LEVEL DESIGN I PLAYED EPICGAMES'S GAMES SINCE FUCKIN UNREAL 1998 ON PC SHUT THE FUCK UP NOOBS I KNOW MORE ABOUT GAMEPLAY

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