While Nintendo may only have a prepared video and with PlayStation skipping E3 altogether, Microsoft is still holding down E3 2019 with its usual press conference. There’s a lot that we expect going into what should be a two to three hour slog of new announcements, trailers, and more. Few are as certain as a release date announcement and new information on Gears 5. Which is what we’re calling it these days since The Coalition and Microsoft have officially stopped calling the series Gears of War. It’s just Gears now, baby.
At E3 2019, we got lots of new details including a release date, some tidbits on multiplayer, and pre-order bonuses.
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In what is a departure for Microsoft, Gears 5 will release on both PC and Xbox One as part of the Xbox Play Anywhere program. It’ll also be a part of both the Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass PC at launch. If you’re not a fan of Microsoft’s platform, you’ll also be able to purchase the game via Steam.
Gears 5 Details at E3 2019
Gears 5 is the second installment in the new Gears of War trilogy which takes place 25 years after the conclusion of the first. The trio of J.D. Fenix, son of Marcus Fenix, Del Walker, and Kait Diaz will return. Though instead of J.D. being the focus, Kait is the main character this time around.
This makes sense considering the events of Gears of War 4 where it’s heavily implied that Kati’s grandmother was the Locust Queen Myrrah. The story will presumably continue on as the survivors attempt to uncover more information about the origins of the Locust/Swarm and Kait’s family. The announcement trailer showed Kait’s struggles with nightmares featuring the Locust, her mother, and it’s seemingly pushed her to a breaking point where she needs to know the truth.
But what else do we know about Gears 5? It’ll have three-player split-screen and online co-op and presumably the multiplayer component will make a return. Microsoft has also boasted about every game mode supporting 4K Ultra HD resolution with HDR at 60 frames per second.
Release Date and Pre-order Info
Gears of War 5 releases on September 10, 2019. If you upgrade to the Ultimate Edition OR have Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, you’ll get access to the game four days early. The Ultimate Edition also comes with “30 days of boost” and a character pack.
Announced during the press briefing, Escape is a new three-player co-op mode where a squad attempts to take out an enemy hive from within. We don’t know how the gameplay will actually function, but we got a trailer for it during the presentation.
You’ll also be able to create your own maps with the new map builder. These can be shared with friends!
Though details were light, Studio Head Rod Fergusson announced a Tech Test will take place sometime in July. Around then, the studio will shed light on the new game type called Arcade, and talk about the Escalation 2.0 competitive mode. Access is included in most pre-orders and for all Xbox Game Pass subscribers.
We won’t hear about what’s up with Horde Mode until gamescom in August though The Coalition promises “new character abilities.”
Terminator Character Pack
While we can’t say it’s the weirdest crossover announced today – looking at you LEGO in Forza Horizon – Terminator is coming to Gears 5. The Terminator Dark Fate Character Pack includes Sarah Connor and the Terminator T-800 Endoskeleton. It’s available to all Xbox Game Pass members who download and play the game before September 16, though you can also get it by pre-ordering.