September 20 will be a great day to many a video gaming fan. Not just because kids everywhere will be in school and parents will be able to roll around naked (sorry, bad image), but also these parents will be able to play Gears of War 3. Naked.
Yes, the sequel to a game I put way too much time into is coming out September 20 and I couldn't be more excited. I should be playing it right now, and my excursions into the world of Sera could make for entertaining blog fodder; but big-bad Microsoft had to delay the game "for marketing purposes". The company originally cited developmental issues, which was a complete lie.
What Dude Huge himself called "the worst kept secret in the industry", everyone knew the game was geared (see what I did there?) to come out on November 7, as the previous two games did. Now pushed back twice, one question hasn't be answered: Why change the release date? I'm not complaining - quite thankful actually - that the game is coming out sooner than later. And we all know consistency is not one of the industry's strong suits (unless you work for Blizzard or Bioware, where all of their releases are stellar).
Alongside the news of a release date, some multiplayer details came out as well. Four maps were simply named - Overpass, Mercy, Checkout, and my favourite, Thrashball - and another caught my eye. One map called Trenches, in what will probably play out like Nowhere, where a brewing sandstorm will limit visibility. Nowhere was one of the better-received maps in the All Fronts Collection and it's good to see it getting a sequel so to speak.
A slew of new weapons have been announced, as is expected with any sequel, and the batch of new toys sounds painful. "The Bayonet Charge", gruesomely shown to full effect at E3, the retro Lancer (also known as the Pendulum Lancer) and sawed-off shotgun have all been showcased before. We may see some wastelands of rubble with the new OneShot, a powerful sniper rifle able to tear apart cover. And, as suggested by the Epic forums, an incendiary grenade, the Digger Launcher (a ground-pound version of the Mortar), and small tweaks to the Hammerburst and iconic Lancer. Each weapon, as also expected, will have its own execution move.
The Game Developers Conference is next week, and we should hear some more to follow the current news. Personally I'd like to see more footage, and new information on what us gamers should expect in the beta. Although we do know that a deathmatch mode will be playable, as well as the new Beast mode and Anya as a playable character will all be included. The best source of new and speculated tidbits is (my blog, obviously) the Epic forums. So head over there and discuss! Or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what you think. Set your calendars for September. I'll be doing that now.