Gears of War 3
|Gears of War 3|
Gears of War 3 cover artwork
|Series||Gears of War|
|Engine||Modified Unreal Engine 3|
|Release date(s)||September 20, 2011
|Mode(s)||Single-player, co-op, multiplayer|
Gears of War 3 is a third-person shooter video game developed by Epic Games and published by Microsoft Studios exclusively for the Xbox 360. Originally due for release in April 2011, the game was delayed and eventually released on September 20, 2011.
Gears of War 3, like its predecessors, is a third-person shooter that emphasizes the use of cover and squad tactics in order to survive combat situations. The player's character can carry four weapons: one pistol, one set of grenades, and two other weapons. Firearms can be swapped with other weapons dropped by fallen foes or at stockpiles throughout the game, along with ammunition. When the player reloads a weapons ammunition, they have an opportunity for an "active reload", shown by a small cursor moving over a line with a marked section on the player's heads-up display (HUD). If the player hits a control button when the cursor is in the marked section, they will reload faster with the resulting reload being slightly more powerful than normal bullets, causing more damage to opponents. If they press the button outside this section, this temporarily jams the weapon, leaving the player vulnerable and taking longer to reload. Alternatively, the player can opt to not try to for the active reload, reloading the weapon at normal speed, but with no added damage.
When in combat, the player can take some damage from enemy fire, filling a blood-colored "crimson omen" on the HUD as a measure of the player's health, unlike the traditional health bar in other shooters. By staying out of the line of fire, this will dissipate, but by taking too much damage, the player will become downed or killed, and must be brought to their feet by an ally within a short "bleed-out" period, or else the player will die, unless playing the game on Insane difficultly level in which case a player will die immediately after taking too much damage without the bleed-out. The player can also be killed during the bleed-out by the use of the game's signature execution moves by the enemy. Some types of damage, such as explosives or head shots, can kill the player immediately without the bleed-out period. Similarly, the player can also cause enemies to fall into bleed-out in the same manner. The player and their allies and enemies can use nearly any structure as cover, firing blind from behind it or leaning out to take aimed shots while usually exposing their head more. Players can quickly switch between nearby covering walls or jump over lower cover to rush forward. Within Gears of War 3, some cover can be destroyed after taking some amount of damage, which can be used to a tactical advantage to draw out enemies from cover.
New to Gears of War 3 is the ability to tag enemy opponents; computer-controller allies will then concentrate fire on these marked enemies, while human allies will be alerted to their location on their HUD. Players can now also swap weapons and ammunition (and money during Horde Mode) with other allies in the course of battle.
The player maintains an experience level that persists across all game modes. The player earns experience through kills, performing special types of kills and executions, reviving and aiding teammates, and through general process of the campaign or competitive modes. Players can call gain experience points by winning medals and ribbons, which are awarded for defeating enemies with certain weapons or winning several matches. Earning levels unlocks the use of special character skins and weapons within the game's multiplayer mode.
|This section may need to be rewritten entirely to comply with Wikipedia's quality standards. (May 2013)|
Gears of War 3 takes place two years after Jacinto, humanity's last stronghold, is destroyed in an effort to completely eradicate the Locust Horde. The Coalition of Ordered Governments (COG) remnants relocate to Vectes, a secluded island, in order to rebuild their civilization. The COG then disbands after Chairman Prescott mysteriously disappears and seemingly abandons his forces. A new foe, the Lambent, are threatening humanity's dwindling numbers. As the Lambent begin to invade Vectes, Marcus Fenix and his comrades retreat to the CNV Sovereign, a helicopter carrier, and take refuge at sea.
Gears of War 3 begins as Chairman Prescott unexpectedly arrives on the Sovereign. Prescott informs Marcus Fenix he needs to relay important information to the ship's senior officer, Captain Michaelson. The Lambent then launch a surprise attack on the ship during which Michaelson is killed and Prescott is mortally wounded. Before dying, Prescott gives Marcus an encrypted data disc and reveals that his father, Adam Fenix, is still alive but captive on Azura, a secret COG base. Marcus, Dom, Cole, and Baird fight their way to the Anvil Gate Fortress, where Colonel Hoffman possesses the necessary equipment to decrypt Prescott's disc. Upon arriving at Anvil Gate, Marcus and his comrades assist Hoffman's soldiers in repelling a combined Lambent and Locust assault.
Upon further analysis of the disc's content, Marcus learns that Azura is protected by man-made hurricane generators, making the island only accessible by submarine. Marcus and his comrades successfully find a submarine but require Imulsion to fuel it. Dom suggests they first venture to an abandoned town called Mercy, where they discover that humans are becoming Lambent. Shortly upon arrival, the Gears are overrun by the Lambent. Dom sacrifices himself to create an explosion that wipes out the hostile forces. Demoralized, they are forced to continue their search for fuel in the city of Char after their truck runs out of fuel. The ruined city is inhabited by several Stranded civilians who are led by Griffin (voiced by Ice-T). Despite his dislike for the Coalition of Ordered Governments, Griffin reluctantly tasks Marcus to recover a supply of Imulsion. After acquiring the fuel they are attacked by the Locust Horde, led by Queen Myrrah. Griffin's forces sustain heavy casualties in the ensuing battle, but the Gears are ultimately able to escape and fuel their submarine.
Marcus finally arrives at Azura, discovering that it is a sanctuary and resort for Sera's most elite and powerful individuals. Adam contacts the Gears and reveals he is being held captive atop a hotel in Azura. Marcus's group battles through waves of hostiles before finding his father. Adam quickly explains that he has created a neutron bomb-like device capable of eradicating all Lambent and Locust life forms on Sera. Adam had worked with Myrrah before to try to tune the wave so that only Lambent would be affected, but with the Imulsion now infecting humans, Adam ran out of time, infuriating Myrrah. Marcus and his comrades defend Adam from the Locust and Lambent, including an attack by Myrrah. Adam reveals that he had to infect himself with Imulsion cells in order to test his machine. As the machine begins to pulsate with energy, Adam bids his son farewell before the Imulsion injection kills him. Myrrah rises from the rubble and begins insulting Adam. Marcus fatally stabs Myrrah with Dom's commando knife. Shortly afterwards, the machine emits a blue wave of energy that sweeps across Sera, destroying the Locust, Lambent, and the Imulsion. The scene transitions back to Marcus, who is mournfully wondering what humanity has left. He is comforted by Anya, who assures Marcus that the sacrifices of Adam, Dom, and their comrades have guaranteed humanity a future.
Stereoscopic 3D 
Gears of War 3 includes a stereoscopic mode for 3DTV sets. It uses TriOviz for Games Technology, which is integrated with Unreal Engine 3, for stereoscopic 3D support. All "Gears of War 3" gameplay and cinematics have S3D support, and this extends to split-screen play as well.
Multiplayer beta 
On December 17, 2010, Epic Games confirmed that the Epic Edition of Bulletstorm for the Xbox 360 included early access to the multiplayer beta of Gears of War 3 and access to exclusive content. It was later announced that pre-ordering Gears of War 3 in any edition at GameStop in the United States or GAME in the United Kingdom would grant access to the public beta. The Gears of War 3 exclusive beta began on April 18, 2011, a week before the GameStop pre-order beta which began on April 25, 2011. There was in-game content unlockable exclusively for beta testers that included characters and weapon skins. All players that participated in the beta received a medal to identify themselves as beta testers upon the release of the final game. The beta concluded on May 15, 2011.
|This section requires expansion. (January 2011)|
The soundtrack for Gears of War 3 was released on September 20, 2011, under the record label Sumthing Else Music Works. The music was composed by Steve Jablonsky. Also, an extract from Gary Jules' Mad World is used within the game and in the entering trailer.
Gears of War 3 was officially unveiled on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon by Cliff Bleszinski, with a teaser trailer featuring the song "Heron Blue" by Sun Kil Moon. Prior to the official reveal, an advert for the game was accidentally displayed on the Xbox 360 Dashboard.
Retail versions 
The game was available for pre-order in three retail versions: Standard, Limited, and Epic. The game also has special character variants based on where the game was pre-ordered. Confirmed variants include Mechanic Baird, Commando Dom, Savage Grenadier Elite, and Savage Kantus. On May 23, 2011, Epic Games confirmed that an exclusive replica Retro Lancer designed by NECA will be available exclusively at GameStop, while a gold version of the replica Retro Lancer is also available exclusively at Play.com.
- The Standard Edition contains the game, a cut-down manual, and a sheet of Gears of War 3 themed decals.
- The Limited Edition contains an Octus Award Box with the Octus Service Medal awarded to Dr. Adam Fenix, exclusive Adam Fenix playable character for multiplayer, fabric COG flag, and the personal effects of Dr. Adam Fenix such as his Last Will and Testament, Hammer of Dawn schematics and Fenix family mementos.
- The Epic Edition includes everything from the Limited Edition as well as a Marcus Fenix statue, a 96 page book about the game's art and design, and the Infected Omen Weapon Pack that includes skins for the Lancer, Hammerburst, Retro Lancer, Sawed Off Shotgun and Gnasher Shotgun.
- The game can also come bundled with a limited edition Gears of War 3 console. The console will also include a headset, two wireless controllers, a 320GB hard drive, and two tokens to unlock Adam Fenix and the Infected Omen Weapon Pack.
Fate of Carmine voting campaign 
Clayton Carmine, brother of Anthony and Benjamin, of the previous two games, appears in Gears of War 3. Carmine is more competent, witty, and muscular in the third game, with tattoos of his brothers and the reasons they died on his arms (Keep your head down! and Practice reloading!). He was shown wielding a Mulcher machine gun in several released pictures from the game. A vote was held between July 29, 2010 and September 6, 2010 to determine whether Carmine would live or die based on sales of Xbox avatar T-Shirts available for purchase on Xbox live; Epic had developed endings reflecting either choice prior to the conclusion of the vote. Additionally, actual T-shirts were available from San Diego Comic-Con with all purchases. The voting campaign raised over $150,000, which was all donated to Child's Play.
Collaboration with Ice-T 
Ice-T voices the character of Griffin. It was announced during E3 2011 that Ice-T's band, Body Count, would be reuniting to make a song titled "The Gears of War", which was featured in the Horde 2.0 trailer.
Announced via Twitter from Cliff Bleszinski, Gears of War 3 will have unlockables just like Gears of War 2.
- On April 1, 2011, Bleszinski announced as an April Fools' joke via Twitter that Gears of War 3 will have a new unlockable weapon in the form of a 6 barrelled shotgun that has a special ability to shoot nukes. The beta had exclusive unlockables, such as a Golden Retro Lancer by completing 90 matches in any game type, and earning 100 kills with it will unlock it for use in the full game. Players who purchased the Bulletstorm Epic Edition unlocked an exclusive Flaming Hammerburst for use in the beta and the full game.
- Epic announced that players must hold on to their beta saved file for their unlockables to appear in the full game. It was also confirmed on June 24, 2011 that completing required achievements from Gears of War and Gears of War 2 will earn the player new weapon skins and medals in Gears of War 3.
- The Gold Lancer and Hammerburst have been confirmed as returning from Gears of War 2 to Gears of War 3. Rod Fergusson announced that players with the Veteran Gear achievement from Gears of War 2 will earn an in-game Old Guard medal and callsign as well as gold variants of all five starting weapons. There was a method to obtain all five gold weapons without the achievement, but after listening to negative fan feed back, they have since made the golden Gnasher shotgun exclusive to Veteran Gear players.
- Chrome weapon skins for the five starting weapons have also been confirmed to be unlockable by playing the Xbox 360 or PC version of Gears of War and Gears of War 2.
- It was confirmed by Rod Fergusson that the player will earn the green liquid metal skin in a special marketing promotion for Jack in the Box.
- People who watch the Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol trailer on Xbox Live and then complete Gears of War 3 on Insane Difficulty by December 25, 2011 either in single or multiplayer mode will unlock an exclusive Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol Weapon Skin Pack. This pack comes with weapon skins for the Lancer, Retro Lancer, Hammerburst, Gnasher and Sawed-off Shotgun. Those that have already completed the game on Insane will automatically receive the pack on December 31.
Downloadable content 
On 29 August 2011, Microsoft and Epic Games announced a Gears of War 3 Season Pass that entitles gamers to the first four installments of downloadable content (at a discount) that will roll out over the course of the next year, with the first releasing in November 2011. Previous characters in the series, including Tai and RAAM, will be future downloadable content characters. It has also been confirmed that Story DLC will be available after launch, and that the regular cast of Gears of War will not be in future DLC.
The first downloadable content is the "Horde Command Pack", which was released on November 1, 2011. In addition to new character and weapon skins, it provides three new maps for use in Versus and Horde mode and three new fortifications that the players can build.
The second downloadable content is called "Versus Booster Map Pack". It was released on November 24, 2011 and is available for free. The pack contains five multiplayer maps which includes Blood Drive, Azura, and Rustlung, which were originally made available through the Horde Command Pack; and Bullet Marsh and Clocktower, which will be new to Gears of War 3.
The third downloadable content is "RAAM's Shadow". The expansion was released on December 13, 2011. It includes four new multiplayer characters, a new weapon set named "Chocolate", new achievements, and over 3 hours of singleplayer gameplay. The story takes place before the first Gears of War, set in Sera post-emergence day. Zeta Squad is enlisted to evacuate Ilima City and protect the citizens against a Locust Kryll storm. The player will be in the role of General RAAM, the main antagonist from the first Gears of War. Zeta is led by Michael Barrick (from “Gears of War” comics fame) and composed of returning characters such as Lt. Minh Young Kim, from the first Gears of War and Tai Kaliso from Gears of War 2, and also includes a new female character, Alicia Valera.
The fourth downloadable content is entitled: "Fenix Rising", and it was released on January 17, 2012. The DLC includes five new multiplayer maps and also introduced four new character skins and a new system that allows players to rank up through level 100 multiple times.
The fifth and final downloadable content, entitled "Forces of Nature" was released on March 27, 2012. The map pack is based around weather and natural disasters and consists of three new multiplayer maps (Aftermath, Artillery, and Cove), as well as remade versions of Jacinto and Raven Down. On top of the new maps, the DLC also includes four new character models, five weapon skins ready to use immediately, and two unlockable weapon skins. New Easter-egg type weapons, Elemental Cleavers, are introduced.
Gears of War 3 trike 
At the San Diego Comic-Con International Convention, Paul Jr. Designs aka "PJD", the company of Paul Teutul, Jr. from the Discovery series American Chopper, revealed their commissioned Gears of War trike. Discovery episodes chronicled their efforts to build the trike, visits to Epic and them interpreting various merchandising and promotional material into the bike. The team from Epic was impressed and even mentioned the possibility of adding the trike to a future game in the series, should they continue it.
Critical reception 
|Official Xbox Magazine||10/10|
Upon release, Gears of War 3 received universal acclaim, garnering an aggregate score of 91.49% on GameRankings and 91/100 on Metacritic. Jeff Gerstmann of Giant Bomb gave Gears of War 3 a review of 5 out of 5 stars; stating "Gears of War 3 is a fantastic follow-up that answers important questions about the nature of the Gears universe while backing it all up with an even bigger, better multiplayer suite." IGN called it "the spectacular conclusion to one of the most memorable and celebrated sagas in video games." Game Informer gave it a 9.5/10, saying that "Gears 3 is a fantastic idea polished to near perfection by an enormous crew of talented developers and a bottomless budget," with "a constantly shuffling deck of threats that encourage players to experiment with new weapons and tactics," "hilariously over-the-top set piece moments," and a "smart approach to network play."
After Eurogamer published an 8/10 review for the game, Epic Games' Cliff Bleszinski reported, saying "When people rated Gears 2 higher than Gears 3, it kind of upset me because I know Gears 3 is a better game on every level." His comments were criticized by Destructoid and GamePro. In GamePro, McKinley Noble argued that "slamming a 'bad' review that's actually pretty favorable does come off as selfish".
Gears of War 3 sold more than 3 million copies during its first week—higher than the previous two Gears entries.
The Gears of War franchise as of September 27, 2011, has grossed over $1 billion.
- IGN: Best Action and Shooter Game (2011)
- G4: Best Xbox 360 Game and Shooter (2011)
- Game Informer: Best Cooperative Mode (2011)
- "GameSpot": Best Shooter (2011)
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- Winner: Best Shooter of 2011 on YouTube