Rest in piece(s)
Gears of War at its most Gears of War-ness is easy to put your thumb on. For a series that revels in violence, it’s the moments that are truly violent that feel the most Gears of War. Shooting enemies from behind cover? Not that violent, really.
Sawing them in half with a chainsaw affixed to your gun? Curb-stomping a guy who’s seconds away from death anyway? Now that’s violent. Now that’s Gears of War.
That is to say, executions are a staple of Gears of War. Xbox recently released this short clip showing off how the Dropshot’s works. Kait dutifully attaches a baddie to her gun before flinging him across the environment. It’s wonderfully form over function, style over substance. It’s positively ridiculous because the easier action would’ve been none at all. Again, that’s Gears of War.
What’s ironic is the very naming of this weapon and, by association, its execution. Video game terminology aside, a drop shot in tennis or badminton is a technique where you barely hit the ball or birdie over the net, causing it to land softly in the front court. It’s a subtle shot that requires finesse and touch instead of strength and power.
For all the things that Gears of War is (and we’ve mentioned a lot of them in this post), subtle is not one of them. Hurling a corpse through the sky is not subtle. It’s absurd and over-the-top, and, on some level, it’s Gears of War in its commitment to those other qualities. But, it’s not subtle.