Friday, May 04, 2007

Game Review ( Gears of War: Map Pack 2 )

The new Gears of War (GoW) map pack was just released on May 4th. The pack includes 4 brand new maps, for 800 MSP, which is $10.


Bullet Marsh: 5/5 The best new map. Bullet Marsh basically takes place in a swamp with a narrow river and a bridge. Still, there is more to the map than you'd think. You can flank around to the enemies spawn from under the central bridge, but beware of Kryll - get to far into the darker areas and Kryll will injure you, so have a teammate near-by. Also, there is a generator on this map that either team can use to turn out the lights on different areas on the map, so again, watch for Kryll. Bullet Marsh is a fantastic map - definitely the best of the four. The weapons on this map are the Boomshot ( Located on the bridge ), the Sniper ( Located by each spawn behind a sand bag ), and the Torque Bow.

Garden: 4.5/5 Fun map. The biggest thing that makes this map different than the rest is the green house gas that can kill you if you're futsing around in the greenhouse when an enemy, or possibly even a person on your team, turns the switches on. In the greenhouse is the sniper. The other weapons on this map are the Hammer of Dawn, which is on the far side of the map in the middle, and the Boomshot is also on this map, on the far side in the middle. Garden looks great, and it's a lot of fun. One of my favorite new maps.

Process: 4.25/5 A little above average. If you've played the story mode, the map takes place in the Locust's "city", with the cave and the bright yellowish lava. I always wished there would be a map like this in online play, but it doesn't turn out to be as fun as I thought it'd be. It's still a fun map, though. The Sniper, Torque Bow, and Boomshot can be found on this map, all opposite of eachother. Where the Sniper is, the Boomshot is directly in front of it on the other side of the map.

Subway: 4.75/5 A great map, albeit a cheap one. This map throws you in a city with an abandoned subway. This map has Grenades, a Sniper, a Torque Bow, and a Boomshot. Depending on what spawn you get, the one by the Sniper is freakishly cheap. If you get to it in time, you can easily camp around it without ever worrying about being flanked. Grenades can be thrown into your little hang-out, but if you have good reflexes, you should be able to move with no damage done. The Sniper overlooks into a blown up wall down into the subway, where the Boomshot is, as well as stairs to get outside the building - this is where just about all the action is at the beginning of the round. There is also an underground passage ( Underground railroad, essentially ) that you can take to walk to the opposing team's spawn. Subway is a great map, but the only real flaw is the rain. It downpours in this map, and it's sometimes hard to tell exactly where you're going.


The new map pack for Gears of War isn't free like the previous pack was, but this is all worth it. Being 800 MSP/$10 is a pretty reasonable price. If you do the math, it only costs $2.50 per map, which is a great deal, because all four are a blast to play. Many people may be frustrated at the fact that the maps weren't available for free, but it's Microsoft... what do you want? Epic wanted to make the maps free, but Microsoft wouldn't let them. You should know though if you aren't willing to fork over the cash for the new maps, that in about 3-6 months the maps will be completely free. An exact date is unknown, but it will likely be at least 3 months. But why would you wait 3+ months for something as good as this? It's not even expensive! Any GoW fan would love these maps - definitely worth the price.


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