Okay ladies and gents it is time for little old me to throw in my two cents on one of the big dogs. A "Halo Killer" if you will.
Many a things have been said and done about Gears 2, alot of them negative. But despite my inclination to hate Gears... I was pleasantly suprised with this. And I was also enraged.
Why am I inclined to not like Gears? Well its really childish but when I rented Gears 1 about a month after I got my 360 it was scratched to hell and back and I only ever got to load it up once, I played the tutorial mission and one online match. Then I downloaded all the maps and this made my faulty HDD decide to throw in the towel and I was without at 360 for a week or so and I lost ALL my save data, including alot of machinima footage that took forever to get
This technically isn't Gears' fault but it's still there at the beginning of the chain reaction... you cannot deny this.
Lets talk about the story of this to start off with. Gears is built to be the definition of Badass. It has testosterone seeping from it's pores and it eats it's Chuck Norris for breakfast WITHOUT MILK. Or, at least it tries to be.
The story of Gears 2 is fun and I found the campaign very enjoyable to play through. I went in expecting a bunch of dumb catchphrases and a barely coherent story and I got a coherent story with a whole lotta badassery thrown on.
Ok, I know Anthony Carmine died in Gears 1, so it is about as much as a surprise that that all of a sudden Benjamin Carmine bites the dust (50 bucks says the Carmine thats in Gears 3 has a name that starts with a C) than it is when his ^distant ^cousin^ kicks the bucket
That did not make it any less impacting though. I had grown to like this dumb little soldier without a face, all through the game he was the only COG to revive me. Whenever I was downed Dom never even looked at me, but Carmine always dropped what he was doing an ran for me
That and his last line, Carmine never got the satisfaction of having a hero's death, its just BAM! You've got one lungful of poisonous gas to say what you need to say before the shock takes over. His last line is something along the lines of "I... I Hurt, Sarge... Tell my Mom.... my brothe.... that I... lov.."
It may be a cheesy line, but its a heck of alot more touching than a three minute death scene
A basic summary of the start of Gears 2 is the Locust are getting gutsy, the humans think its because the Lightmass bomb hit them hard enough to make them desperate, and they have begun attacking Jacinto and sinking outlying cities with a as yet un-disclosed method that will make you laugh so hard when Marcus screams it out for the world to hear... trust me.
Underneath the blood and guts and guns with 'frickin chainsaws attached there is a story, not a groundbreaking one but it is fun to watch unfold and there are a couple of touching moments
Gears is one of the better TPS games i've ever played, the guns are fun and have very good results when used right (A sniper that makes a enemy's head explode when headshotted? Yes Please!)
One of the few disagreements I have with the public about Gears is the cover system.
Yes, it works, its easy, it is functional. Seeing as Gears 1 was kinda built to be one of course it delivers, but all this talk about "Best Cover in Gaming" fails to impress me, in my opinion Uncharted: Drakes Fortune has a more fluid cover system, the animations are more fluid and Nathan has fewer screw-up moments than Marcus and Dom do
I'm not saying the G2 system is lacking, I just ended up on the wrong side of pillars more times in this than I did in Uncharted
So, you've heard my thoughts on the story and gameplay of the campaign of Gears of War 2. In my opinion it ranks up there very highly in the best campaigns i've ever played
You wanna hear my thoughts about the Matchmaking? Well of course you do.
The Realm of Matchmaking
I don't really know how to say this. I had no real expectation with the multiplayer side of Gears other than the three ZILLION invites I got when the game first came out and everyone I knew that had it love to abuse the Invite All button... That many it's gotta be at least a bit fun
Well, Horde mode is, I played a couple of times and one night we spent two hours going the distance and getting to level 50. The whole rush of the experince is a little bit tapered by the fact that if everyone screws up and dies. There is no real penalty. You just re-start the round that you died on. And since the rounds will last a max of ten minutes when blood starts flying I don't see it as that much of a chore to do one more round again as opposed to the Nazi Zombies system in CoD5 where there is a HUGE penalty for dieing
The Co-Op for the campaign runs smooth, never lagged once in the two weeks I played it
As for competitive...
I think it had potential. And that potential is still there. But it is obscured by lag and bad weapon placement and way to many "No f-ing way" moments. In my first game of territories I had a lag so bad it took me two minutes to go thirty feet. On top of that Epic made what I would usually see as a good decision of not giving you the ability to quit a game unless you actually leave to the dashboard.
When you have a game as badly injured as Gears Matchmaking, having to leave the entire game and go back every time the lag gets unbearable is just too much in my opinion
The other big gripe is the fact that I have to rely on friends with higher ranks than me that can get matches faster due to their higher ranks
How am I supposed to play if they aren't on? I sit and wait for ten to twenty minutes. I have actually left, made a pizza and a root beer, came back, sat down, ate it, and chatted with friends for a while before I actually got a match
And to intercept all the "You're just a plastic rank and you don't have a good connection"
Truth be told I do not have the best connection in the world, I run on DSL, but I have a DECENT one. I have played Halo 3 and Shadowrun and Crackdown and CoD4 and so on with little to no connection issues. So using my connection as a excuse as to why I am not getting matched is a poor one that I don't buy. I was not the host of all of the matches that I experinced lag in. And all my friends did as well.
I could go on and on with excuses but in the end, my Gears 2 Adventure ended today when I mailed it back to Gamefly without finishing the campaign on Insane (and I don't wanna sound like a confrontational ass but I also found Insane to be a piece of cake compared to Call of Duty on Veteran or Left 4 Dead on Expert, not saying I pwn on those settings or find them easy but I've experinced them all)
So, after all these paragraphs of my thoughts what is my score for Gears 2? Well since I've never really liked the numerical scoring system and it's a bit overused I have decided to grade on Yes/Maybe/No
The Matchmaking is a NO but I highly HIGHLY suggest at least renting G2 for the Campaign and Horde Mode
I guess that makes this a Provisional Yes
Hope you enjoyed reading, it's certainly been a fun two hours of writing this.
Ninja Out read