Eurogamer Expo 2010: Gears of War 3 Hands-On Impressions

by on October 5, 2010

So the Eurogamer Expo took place over the weekend of October 1st to the 3rd and the entire GodisaGeek team were there at some point or another.  One of the games on display was Epic Games highly anticipated, Gears of War 3.

As with most events, only Beast mode was on display.  If you don’t know what that is, well, basically it’s the standard Gears of War Horde mode flipped on it’s head.  You play as the Locust and have to kill hordes of COG soldiers and stranded, varying in difficulty. For example some COG soldiers will have mech suits or they might have security lasers protecting their “base”.

The build on show seemed to be the standard one shown at most events so far and there were 20 demo pods set up, split into 4 sections of 5 pods each.  Some of them were networked so you could play as a team, but others were all single player only, which seemed a bit strange.

The beast mode itself is a lot of fun, especially when you get a chance to try out the larger, more dangerous locusts like the berserker or the maulers.  It’s understood that when you get the game in your hands (holiday 2011 now sadly) you’ll start out as the low level locust and build your way up to the stronger ones and whilst the fun was unquestionable playing as the berserker or mauler, it was slightly less fun playing as the “beginning” locust.

Playing as a drone is just the same as playing as a COG, in horde mode…which we’ve all experienced already.  The tickers are fun, but as you’ll know from Gears of War 2, they don’t take much damage and it’s quite hard to get close enough to get a kill every time.  Playing as a Kantus seems to be a more tactical role, the ability to bring people back from the brink may be a valuable tactical device in higher levels of the beast mode, but you can’t go into cover as a Kantus, which means you are extremely open and vulnerable.

The berserker is immense fun, you feel almost invincible at times.  You can pretty much run around reaking havok with little consequence, even being able to walk through the laser defences without taking too much damage, which is useful when playing as a team.  The maulers are less invincible, but no less fun, though having experienced so much 3D gaming over the weekend, seeing a grenade on a chain being swung around and going past the players eye of the screen I did wonder how cool it might look with the 3D treatment.

A few new locust were on show also, a large locust with a new weapon that when fired burrows underground toward the target and expodes when it resurfaces.  There’s also a worm-type locust and a new variant on the Kantus with armour all over it’s back making it invulnerable from behind.

All in all, beast mode is a lot of fun and I’m certain people will enjoy it.  It was great to get hands on with Gears of War 3, especially with the release date being put back.

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