Over the past two weekends, everyone with Xbox Live, Xbox Game Pass, or Gears 5 pre-order users got the chance to try Gears 5 in their official Tech Test. Thankfully as an owner of Xbox Game Pass for PC, I was one of those lucky people and played several hours of the test. One of our other contributors, Jason, also got the chance to play through it. You can read about his impressions of the Tech Test here. Without further adieu though, here’s what I thought of the Tech Test!

See the source imageGoing in, I gave a go at the new Bootcamp featured as a tutorial of sorts. It’s been a long time since I last got my hands on a Gears game, so I took the time to go through this. Overall it was a little bit too long for my tastes. Everything else about it though, felt really well done. The tutorial takes the form of calibrating new robot soldiers, and has a bit of humor thrown into the mix. These sort of small details help you get off on the right foot, while also giving a good laugh here and there. Along with that, the tutorial covers pretty much everything which was good for new/long returning Gears like myself.

Afterwards though, I hopped straight into the new Arcade Mode. This was easily the most unique part about the beta, and it was all featured within the classic Team Deathmatch. You essentially get a point every time you score a kill, and those points can let you buy different guns. One character can buy the Mulcher machine gun for example, while another can wield a massive hammer. For the characters I did play, all these different weapons felt really unique and enjoyable to use.

See the source imageRegardless, I went with a classic Lancer user who had access to a DMR sort of weapon. I’m more of a peek out and die mid range fighter so that class suited me the most. The fluidity of that experience felt really awesome, and hit me with a pleasant surprise out of the gate. With all this in mind, I’d say that Arcade Mode is an excellent addition to the game and I can’t wait to see how the evolve upon this come the September release.

Finally, I got the chance to hop into a few games of the Ranked Mode. This mode has you using a set host of weapons and playing on KOTH or Escalation. You complete 5 of either mode, and are placed in a rank which you can increase or decrease depending on your performance. This isn’t much different from the way Gears 4 did ranked, but it was enjoyable (and rather stressful) nonetheless. I couldn’t do much ranked since the stress hit me hard, but I still enjoyed my time with it. We’re going to go ahead and skip over where I placed because that’s not important.

Jokes aside though, I’d say this Tech Test proves very promising for the feature of Gears of War. The new Arcade Mode feels really fresh for the franchise, and the returning gameplay feels better than ever. Needless to say, I’ll be one of the people downloading Gears 5 and come the start of September. If you want to join me, you can either play through Xbox Game Pass on September 10th or pre-order the game here!