Microsoft has gone to great lengths to declare 2019 as "The Year of Gears", with three separate Gears of War games on the way over the next few months, headlined by Gears 5 (opens in new tab), but beginning with Gears Pop as of today, which has released for free on Windows PC, Android, and iOS.
The free to play strategy-lite game, which plays essentially like a Gear themed Clash of Clans title, is a collaboration between Microsoft, Funko Pop, The Coalition, and developer Media Tonic, and uses Gears' real life Funko toys as the in-game models for top-down, PvP focused warfare.
Gamescom 2019 drops the first Gears 5 campaign trailer in over a year (opens in new tab)
Be warned, Gears Pop has loot boxes, micro-transactions, and all the other hallmarks of an iffy free-to-play mobile title, but it does include Xbox Live Achievements, allowing you to sign in to your Microsoft account to make sure everything is cross-saved with your main Xbox Live profile.
You can fight online with other players, or against AI enemies, and build a specialised Gears squad the way you want, though don't go in expecting anything like your average Gears game.
On top of Pop and Gears 5, Gears Tactics will be the third title in the Gears universe on the way this year, though Microsoft has been staying fairly quiet on the progress of that strategy game since E3 2018, leaving a question mark hanging over its state of health. In any case, you can download Gears Pop on the Android (opens in new tab) and Apple Store (opens in new tab) right now, without taking a single hit to your wallet.
For more, check out the best upcoming Xbox One games (opens in new tab) to still look forward to, or watch the Release Radar video below for a guide to everything else out this week.