Microsoft Game Studios Gears of War 2
The must-own title of this holiday season for Xbox 360 gamers.
- Massive battles, superior graphics and sound, smooth controls, addictive multiplayer game types (especially Horde)
- Loose plot threads, more unanswered questions, some scenarios don't quite pay off
The good news is that Gears of War 2 significantly improves upon the original game in every possible way, addressing several key shortcomings that kept its predecessor from being a bona-fide classic. Gears of War 2 is a terrific action game that deservedly resides in the upper echelon of console shooters, and is the best shooter to hit the Xbox 360 so far this year. Action gamers, you've found your next obsession.
Price$ 99.95 (AUD)
Best Deals (Selling at 1 store)
Overall, I was most impressed by the game's grand sense of scale. At certain climactic moments, I battled what seemed like hundreds of enemy Locust creatures using gatling guns, tanks and a walking behemoth called the Brumak (and yes, this particular battle is well worth the wait). Variety is definitely a strong point in Gears of War 2. Though the battles are generally several times larger than those in the original game, other moments lean more towards survival horror. The highlight here was a suspenseful romp through an eerie abandoned research base, and though the tension stayed high, the final payoff left me feeling underwhelmed and somewhat baffled. Still, scenarios such as these keep the game from being a numbing, constant assault on the senses.
Choosing my favourite moment in the game turned out to be easy. The most memorable sequence involves a show-stopping boss battle with a certain aquatic adversary that I will not name here. When you see it, you'll know and trust me, it's everything you could ask for in a boss fight.
I'm not going to beat around the bush — Gears of War 2 is a damned fine action game. It's a much longer, more satisfying experience than the original game, too, clocking in at a solid 10 to 12 hours. Though the pacing drags a bit towards the end, I still found myself glued to the controller for hours at a time.
Of course, the long-term attraction will be the game's many multiplayer modes, from online and split-screen cooperative play to five-on-five team battles over Xbox Live. The matchmaking interface and party options are vastly superior to the first game, and manage to come within striking distance of Halo 3's high water mark. After playing all the multiplayer modes extensively, I feel that the standout is definitely Horde, a cooperative mode where five players team up against endless waves of increasingly powerful Locust foes. Because there are 50 waves of enemies, and players are scored following each round, it's likely that Horde will encourage the same kind of high-score obsession not seen since Geometry Wars.
What Is It Good For?
Granted, Gears 2 isn't the smartest shooter on the market, but for now, it is probably the must-own title of this holiday season for Xbox 360 gamers. If you loved the first one, then strap in and get ready to continue the battle. Even if you missed the first chapter, there's enough guts and glory here to have you gaming long into the night. Either way, I'll see you online — I'll be the one pumping your ass full of bullets.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Is the world ready for a 4K phone?
- 2 Mazda MX-5 (2016) review: Absolute driving purity
- 3 Sony 75-inch UHD TV (X9400C) review: Sony and Android are a winning duo
- 4 LG 55EG960T OLED UHD TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera UHD TV review: good hardware, fragmented software
Best Deals on Good Gear Guide
Latest News Articles
- Film Victoria backs women in gaming with new fellowships
- Nintendo kicks off 2016 with new Zelda release and new 3DS
- Expensive gaming desktops and laptops thrive in slumping PC market
- The PS4 is the fastest selling console in Sony’s history
- Assassin's Creed Syndicate PC review impressions: This gorgeous, mostly smooth game is no Unity
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- FTDigital Marketing Specialist | Media BuyerNSW
- CCSenior Android DeveloperNSW
- CCSenior Project Manager - ComplianceVIC
- CCEnterprise ArchitectNSW
- FTUX Front-End DeveloperWA
- CCAD and FIM EngineerNSW
- FTFunctional Business Analyst - Commodities and FX DomainNSW
- CCiOS Developer - New AppNSW
- FTSenior Mobile Developer - IOSNSW
- FTSenior Business Analyst - PEXASA
- CCIT Service Deliver & Improvement ManagerACT
- FTIT Technical LeadVIC
- CCJira Administrator - Western SydneyNSW
- FTAndroid DeveloperNSW
- CCSenior Business Analyst, Enterprise Software SolutionNSW
- FT.NET DeveloperVIC
- CCInfrastructure Project ManagerNSW
- FTSystems Engineer / Administrator - Managed ServicesNSW
- CCSharePoint Web DeveloperACT
- CCOracle Business Analyst / TrainerSA
- CCSolution ArchitectNSW
- FTFront End Developer Required Working World Leading Digital TeamNSW
- CCAndroid and iOS DevelopersVIC
- FTWeb Analytics Specialist - TechnicalNSW
- CCRisk and Quality Assurance AnalystVIC