|Gears of War 2|
|Publisher:||Microsoft Game Studios|
|Game modes:||Campaign Mode (Co-op), Multi-player (Xbox Live)|
|ESRB rating:||Mature (M)|
Gears of War 2, the sequel to the popular best-seller Gears of War, was released November 7th 2008 in North America. The game will continue the story of Marcus Fenix, Dominic Santiago and the rest of the Delta Squad in their ongoing struggle against the Locust threat.
The plot of Gears of War 2 picks up 6 months after the Lightmass Bomb was detonated inside Hollow, the Locust stronghold, at the end of Gears of War. Peace has returned to the surface of Sera, but not for long. The Lightmass bomb didn't succeed in completely wiping out the Locust Horde, and now they are back with more destructive power. The Locust Horde now wields a powerful weapon capable of sinking entire cities. One by one the cities of Sera are falling to the Locust army, and hope is quickly falling along with it. However, the Delta Squad, which consists of Marcus Fenix, Dominic Santiago, Augustus Cole, and Damon Baird, return to stop the Locust in their tracks. Their mission, defend the last remaining human stronghold, Jacinto Plateau, from the Locust onslaught. The game starts off with Marcus and Dom entering a hospital looking for a woman who apparently resembles Maria, Dom's wife.There Marcus reunites with his old friend Tai Kaliso, who was a friend with him during the Pendulum Wars. After fending off a Locust raid on a hospital, Dominic finds out that Jane Doe, who was the woman who matched his wife Maria's appearance, was released from that hospital a few days ago, and is angry and depressed that his wife is gone again. Delta Squad and hundred of other Gears then head to Landown, where the Coalition of Ordered Governments is planning to drill into the Hollow and the Gears will lead an assault on the Locust. After several (futile) Locust attempts at stopping the advancing Gears, the surviving Gears drill into the Hollow, but not before another Locust siege, where the new Locust leader Skorge makes his first appearance and attacks Tai and Dizzy Wallin, Delta Squad's pilot. Before Marcus and Dom can aid them however, the Grindlift carrying them drills into the ground. In the Hollow, after reuniting with Ben, Baird, and Cole, the team find a Torture Barge and find Tai inside, who promptly commits suicide with a shotgun. The team then find out that the true cause of all the cities sinking is a gigantic Riftworm, which then sinks a city. They then return to the surface and then after fighting through several waves of Locust, a King Raven comes and evacuates them. However while they leave, the Riftworm appears and swallows the helicopter.
Inside the Riftworm, after dodging through several obstacles, they find Benjamin Carmine, who was swallowed by the Riftworm seconds before the others and then dying of grievous injuries from insect-like creatures in the Riftworm's stomach. Afterward, a large avalanche of rubble appears. After escaping the rubble the team sever the arteries of the Riftworm's three hearts and cut their way through it's dead body. Later, Command drops off a Centaur Tank and provides Delta Squad with a new objective (much to their disdain). They are to investigate an abandoned COG outpost which may contain info on the location of the Locust Queen.
After arriving to the outpost, it appears that the "outpost" is much more than it seems, with the place being monitored by an AI named "Niles" and several rooms in the place filled with cryogenic tubes. The tubes are later broken and mysterious creatures called Sires emerge from them. After killing through them Marcus and Dom get the data and exit. However the Locust attack and the team barely escape and head to the location pinpointed on the data: Mount Kadar.
After arriving and traveling through the tunnels in Mount Kadar and entering the Hollow yet again (being attacked along the way) Delta Squad come across several Stranded, one of them being Chap from Gears of War, and the Stranded are then evacuated out of the Hollow through Baird and Cole. Before that however, Chap tells Dom he saw a woman who resembled Maria (after being shown her picture) in another Stranded group, but that the group was captured and taken to the prisoner work camps.
After advancing into the Inner Hollow and defeating the Leviathan, a large monster dwelling within the waters of the underground lakes, Marcus and Dom find the prisoner work camps and eventually find Maria, who has been horribly tortured and malnourished. Marcus, aware of Dom's plight, leaves Dom with Maria. A gunshot then echoes from behind Marcus, signaling Dom removed Maria of her pain. Marcus and Dom later activate a beacon through Jack, which signals Gears to the location of the Nexus, or the Inner Hollow, and another assault against the Locust begins. They later reunite with Baird and Cole and enter the Palace.
In the Palace, Delta Squad comes across the Locust's plan to sink Jacinto, and destroy the Lambent with the humans. They also find a recording of Marcus' father's voice, which states that the quickest way to end the Locust War is to sink Jacinto. They then formulate a plan to sink Jacinto after evacuating the humans, which would destroy the Locusts and flood the Hollow.
After fighting through the Palace and eventually to the Queen's Chamber, Delta Squad come face-to-face with the Locust Queen, who informs them that a large army is headed towards Jacinto to prevent the COG plan to sink Jacinto, and leaves, ordering Skorge to kill them. Marcus sends Baird and Cole after the Queen and then battle Skorge. After a brief battle Skorge retreats and the squad reunite. Baird then tells Marcus and Dom that the Queen has escaped, and the team then escape back to Jacinto on Reavers to assist Jacinto with the attack. (Presumably) Killing Skorge in an aerial battle along the way.
After arriving to Jacinto and fending off multiple Locust attacks, Marcus and Dom are sent to clear the designated area where the Lightmass Bomb will be planted which will sink Jacinto, also known as the Sinkhole.
Marcus and Dom then hijack a Brumak and clear the area. However, after breaking the columns which proceeds to give an opening for King Ravens to enter, the Brumak they ride in starts to go Lambent and they narrowly escape onto a King Raven, where they are informed by Baird that the Lightmass Bomb has been lost. Baird then brings up the fact that Lambent explode when killed, which Marcus proceeds to do with the Hammer of Dawn.
As the Lambent Brumak explodes, sinking Jacinto and successfully destroying the Hollow, all the humans escape and the Queen gives an ending speech.
At the end of the credits, Adam Fenix, Marcus' father can be heard saying:"Hello...This is Adam Fenix...Is anyone there?...What have you done?" Suggesting sinking Jacinto may have caused more problems then benefit.
There will be quite a number of old faces coming to Gears of War 2, including all the members of the Delta Squad and most of their Locust enemies. Additionally, there will also be quite a number of new faces coming to the game from both sides of the ongoing struggle for humanity.
 Coalition of Ordered Governments (COG)
Main article: COG
Main article: Marcus Fenix
Main article: Dominic Santiago
Main article: Augustus Cole
Main article: Damon Baird
Main article: Anthony Carmine
 Chairman Prescott
Main article: Chairman Prescott
The leader of the COG, he played a very important part in keeping humanity alive during and after Emergence Day. In Gears of War 2, he will be the one to give a motivational speech before sending troops to fight the Locust Horde in a final stand for the survival of mankind.
 Tai Kaliso
Main article: Tai Kaliso:
He's known as a spiritual and meditative warrior and serves a tradition as honor fighters. Further details about this character will be revealed on Gears of War 2.
Main article: Dizzy
Formerly a Stranded, he joined the COG so that its benefits would take care of his family.
 Maria Santiago
Main article: Maria Santiago
Dominic's wife who went missing shortly after Emergence Day in Gears of War. Dom is currently searching for her, which will play an important part in the plot of this game.
 Locust Horde
Main article: Locust
As you travel deeper within a maze of tunnels and caves that make up the Locust stronghold, you will be sure to revisit some of your old Locust enemies. However, this time they are accompanied by a few new Locust faces ready to mow you down at a moment's notice.
Main article: Kantus
These prophet-like creatures pulsate low droning chants that can be focused into sonic attacks. They usually lurk in the backdrop of enemy ranks, carrying weapons such as the Gorgon Pistol and Poison Grenades. The real threat with these demons is that they can revive fallen comrades, which makes advancing through enemy lines an even more difficult task. They have also been seen to "summon" tickers.
 Locust Rock Worms
Main article: Rock Worms
These massive worms will emerge from the cavern walls during combat guided by the chants of the Kantus. However, their large size makes it easy to hide behind them as they slither about.
The Gears of War 2 game play overall will not differ much from the first game. Most of the controls in Gears of War are still applied to Gears of War 2. However, from an interview with the game's lead designer Cliff Bleszinski, the cover system is much smoother and the game play as a whole will function much better in online versus mode. Some Gameplay Footage
 The Chainsaw
In Gears of War 2, Epic has added a few more chainsaw animations, the most prominent one being the "Chainsaw Duel." Two players will enter this struggle animation when they attempt to chainsaw one another and are prompted to tap the "B" button rapidly to decide the victor (which means the demise of the other player). Another chainsaw animation is one similar to a scene found in the first Gears of War 2 trailer, in which Marcus Fenix chainsawed a Locust Drone in half from behind. Players will be able to do the same thing if they rev the chainsaw and approach an enemy from behind.
In versus mode, after you have died, you can enter "camera mode" and view the entire playing field for the rest of the duration of the round. In addition, you can take pictures of the action which you'll be able to share online via Xbox Live.
 Proximity Mines
Frag grenades have also been enhanced with a new feature--being able to use them as a proximity mine. In Gears of War, a player could only tag a grenade to another enemy. However, in Gears of War 2, a player can now also tag grenades to objects which will automatically detonate when an enemy approaches it. Players can also prematurely trigger the grenade manually simply by shooting it.
In Gears of War, a player was limited to only one execution animation, the "Curb Stomp." That feature has been enhanced in Gears of War 2, and now players can perform 11 different execution animations dependent on the weapon they are holding.
 Multiplayer Modes
Gears of war has improved a few multi-player aspects. For one, there will be 5v5 (ten people in total). There will be re spawning multi player modes as well, but the focus is still towards traditional non-re spawn gaming. Not to mention, the match making setup has a similar look to the one on Halo.
Submission, more affectionately know as "Meat-Flag" is a new versus game in which the flag is a CPU controlled character. Players on both teams must kill the character and drag him back to their base as a meat shield (basically a hostage) back to their base in order to win.
Known as Assassination on the previous Gears of War game, this mode altered with a slight of change. All the players can re spawned until the Leader is killed. The winner is remaining players in the team.
Instead of the usual five versus modes, this mode carries a unique buddy system. Out of five teams, there's two players in each team. Ten players in total and each team has to carry their character model.
Considering that there will still be two player co-op on campaign mode, Cliff promised a mode similar to the campaign. This mode allows five players to fight off a large amount of Locust enemies continuously.