Gears of War 4 Celebrates Valentine’s Day with Torque Bow Tag and New Maps

February 10th marks the beginning of over a week of Valentine’s Day celebrations, new Gear Packs to earn, daily Valentine’s themed bounties, another Craftable Character to collect, and the much-requested return of Torque Bow Tag.

New Maps

After the release of Gears of War 4, the multiplayer design team had the opportunity to look at our launch lineup of maps and wonder – how could we have made those maps play entirely different? Those discussions birthed a new type of map design that all begins with ‘Impact Dark’, a remixed version of Impact that completely re-imagines the combat dynamics of the original.

For the first time in Gears of War Versus, visibility is permanently reduced by smoke that has settled over the battlefield, forcing you closer to the action. Every weapon swap has been changed to alter the flow of the map – Snipers are now replaced with Boltoks, Dropshot replaces Torque/EMBAR and the Overkill now sits where Incendiaries used to.

The result is a new version of Impact that plays completely differently to the original. The combination of close range weapon swaps and reduced visibility ups the pace for a more intense version of Impact, where players need to stay on their toes to win.

War Machine

Loved by Gears of War veterans everywhere, the classic War Machine, is back with a drastic new take on the setting. Moving away from the old abandoned train station locale, War Machine is now set in a new COG Settlement, standing out with its pristine appearance and gleaming features. Compared to the original, signs of life are everywhere – from the active DeeBee security bay, to the train sitting at the end of the platform ready to depart.

Both maps are available to play today in the Developer Playlist for Season Pass Holders, featuring TDM, Guardian and King of the Hill gametypes with Double XP and 20% Bonus Credits!

Guardian Improvements

Based on fan feedback, we’ve changed the spawning system from the original spawn swap solution to something entirely new – Leader Spawns. Now, you’ll respawn in a location close to your Leader adding a new tactical edge – Leaders now need to position themselves in beneficial areas of the map, while other players will have more opportunity to get back to their leader and come to their aid.

This new update to Guardian is perfectly suited to the intense low visibility combat of Impact Dark – try it out for yourself in the Developer Playlist this week.

Looking Forward

Back in November, we announced we were working on a new feature based on fan feedback – a pre-game lobby system for Core and Competitive playlists to improve the ranked experience in Gears of War 4. Today, we announce that Core and Competitive lobbies will arrive next month in the March update. We will share more details, news and first looks at this new system closer to release.

Following on from Dizzy, we are hard at work bringing back more Legacy Characters by updating their voice work and character fidelity to make them right at home in Gears 4. Beginning next month, this work will turn into a steady flow of Legacy Characters for our fans – from iconic heroes of the past to the hotly demanded return of Locust Characters.

We also have some huge updates coming this summer to Horde!

• New “Inconceivable” Difficulty (Campaign & Horde)
• IronMan Mode (Campaign & Horde)
• Level 6 skills for all class skills
• More skills for existing classes
• New achievements
• And much more!

About no1phil

PR Manager & Editor for XLC Gaming Network. I have been gaming since the ZX Spectrum days growing up through many generations of consoles. A bit of a jack of all trades when it comes to gaming genres. When I'm not either being shot at, dancing, scoring for the other team or racing I am trying to become a guitar God with Rocksmith 2014.