The Gears of War (GoW) series of games and media have made a huge impact of the games industry since the first game was released exclusively by Epic Games and Microsoft Games Studios back in 2006. For those that haven’t played or heard of the games (and I hope no one is part of the latter group) these games are third person shooters with gameplay highly revolved around a cover system and a whole host of unique weaponry to use and enemies to overcome. A cover system is where players use objects (designated as places of cover) to form a defensive position behind and use within each level to approach and defeat their enemies. The placement of cover within a level can be one of the factors that determines the difficulty of the level.
Before this series many games relied on the player dodging attacks and running behind static environment pieces i.e. pillars to avoid damage. In GoW, the player can combine the method of dodging attacks and sprinting to safer locations but also the many props used within the level to allow the player to flank the enemy or get in closer for a more successful shot. GoW may not have been the first game that used the cover system but they were the game in my opinion that has made it highly successful.
Since the GoW series, the majority of shooter and stealth games such as Mass Effect and Splinter Cell have utilised the cover system within their gameplay and I’m sure games of the next generation of consoles will also continue to use this system.
As I have been expanding my experience with the Unreal 3 Engine Editor I wanted to use the GoW editor to produce a game level different to my multiplayer map. The GoW editor is perfect for those wanting to create a game with linear progression with co-op gameplay or utilising a cover system.
I’m a bit late to the party with this tool and I thought that I would find countless tutorials online for the Gears editor, as I had found with UT3. Sadly, this has not been the case. I’ve had to go far and wide (well maybe this is a slight exaggeration) for the knowledge that I have currently received by going onto Youtube, forums and even e-mailing friends with questions. So because of this I decided to produce a number of tutorials for anything from small tasks like spawning your co-op AI partner to larger ones such as setting up an emergence hole as and when I overcome my own challenges.
If you plan to use the GoW editor to create a level I do suggest you play the game first. This will help you to get used to the layout of the levels and the flow through them; the enemy and weapon strengths and weaknesses firsthand.
If anyone wants to know anything in particular send me an email and I’ll try and put a tutorial post together. Enjoy!