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Review

Gears of War: Ultimate Edition Review

  • First Released Nov 7, 2006
    released
  • Reviewed Aug 24, 2015
  • XONE
Robert Handlery on Google+

The long road home.

Late in the story of Gears of War: Ultimate Edition, Marcus Fenix kicks down the front door of his childhood home. He finds the wallpaper peeling, the furniture in disarray, and a fine layer of dust blanketing every surface.

This return to a dilapidated family home is an echo of the task at hand. Many members of developer The Coalition worked on the original 2006 Gears of War, and this remaster is the studio's first release before it launches Gears of War 4. And although it's created a faithful homage to the game that started it all, some of the furniture is still out of place, and the corners continue to gather dust.

Gears of War: Ultimate Edition lets us cheat time, and travel back to 2006, when we first saw Fenix emerge from that shadowy prison cell. Because of the updated visuals, Gears of War: Ultimate Edition fills in cracks and polishes edges to preserve our ever-so-fragile nostalgia.

I played Gears of War on Xbox 360 recently, and the differences here are apparent: Ultimate Edition removes the muddy textures, shiny faces, and bleak environments of the original, replacing them with detailed landscapes and brighter hues. The Coalition remade every cutscene, and even though I've seen them before, the new 1080p skin makes it feel like the first time. The developer has reversed the game's aging process, making Benjamin Buttons out of every musclebound character.

And Ultimate Edition doesn't just change things on a visual level--it includes a variety of content and design changes. For one, cooperative play is now drop-in, drop-out, and you can join in the middle of a chapter. Ultimate Edition also borrows from the trilogy's sequels, allowing separate difficulty settings for individual players.

Presenting: Marcus' soul patch, nine years later.
Presenting: Marcus' soul patch, nine years later.

There are also five late-game campaign chapters that only ever made it to PC, following Marcus and Dom in their trek toward a train station through abandoned factories, all the while evading a gigantic Brumak. This towering, bipedal monster creates a sense of tension throughout, culminating with a boss battle that out-scales any situation prior.

These chapters fit well in this modern recreation: Ultimate Edition is a reminder of how horror-driven the series was at the beginning, with haunting corridors and dim basements giving way to shrieking monsters inside every air duct. This is a story about a ragtag group of heroes, long before we saw them amidst the chaos of an all-out war. They don't have much depth to them here, and mainly serve as vehicles for masculine jokes and Gears' ubiquitous macho sense of humor. Nonetheless, this more personal campaign serves as a reminder of when we first met them.

But despite how great Ultimate Edition's campaign looks and feels, it hasn't completely erased the original version's blemishes. Throughout my time on the streets, and in the locust tunnels of Sera, my AI partner often made things difficult for me. Dom Santiago deliberately wandered into the shadows when the objective was to stay in the light; he, walked into the path of my gun, obscuring my view numerous times; and often, when my progress relied on the AI pressing a button or turning a switch, nothing happened, and I had to reload my checkpoint.

Ultimate Edition returns to the series' horror roots.
Ultimate Edition returns to the series' horror roots.

The latter was a frequent problem throughout my campaign. The first Gears isn't always obvious about where to go next, and the remaster has kept that aspect intact. I reloaded checkpoints a total of five times before I reached Act Five, all because cutscenes wouldn't trigger, or a wall wouldn't crumble on cue. It's one thing to lose progress because of death; it's another to lose it because of the AI.

Replaying the first Gears campaign has also highlighted some of its bigger design flaws. Almost all of your progress relies on simply killing every enemy, and considering it's the first entry in the franchise, there isn't a whole lot of variety in opponents. You enter a room; you clear it; you proceed.

There are rare brilliant moments--luring the berserker outside so as to pummel it with a satellite blast, for instance--but by and large, most of the campaign is a matter of killing a very specific number of Locusts. Couple this with the fact that certain opponents didn't attack until I searched extensively for them, only to find them stuck behind cover, and the later chapters became a slog.

But playing with a friend has always been my favorite way to play Gears, and in this modern version, that sentiment remains the same. My friend was more reliable than Dom's default AI, and the branching paths of the trilogy's early missions still create emergent situations where flanking is just as important as accuracy and timing--and killing waves of enemies. The Gears franchise has always catered to a cooperative experience, and the remaster is no exception.

Ultimate Edition is a reminder of how far the series has come.

These tenets ring true in Ultimate Edition's multiplayer as well, and this is where the remaster truly shines. The Coalition made the upgrade to 60fps, resulting in a much smoother, more fluid experience than I had on Xbox 360. There are also new game modes and a brand new map to play on, but these additions paled in comparison to the nostalgia trip I experienced on my favorite maps: Gridlock, Tyro Station, and Depot, to name a few.

All of my muscle memory came back in a matter of minutes. I hip-fired the gnasher shotgun, perfected active reload times, and dodged between cover as if it was nine years ago. The multiplayer still transitions between measured approaches and frantic firefights on a whim, displaying a dynamism that has aged well. Gears of War Ultimate Edition doesn't just look like my nostalgia remembers--it also feels like it, too.

In returning to the game that sparked one of Microsoft's more prevalent franchises, members of the Coalition kicked down their own proverbial childhood door. The return trip might have revealed a few more cracks than we remembered, but it also serves as a shield for our nostalgia. And as remakes go, that's worth the journey home.

Mike Mahardy on Google+
Back To Top
The Good
1080p and 60fps multiplayer make this nine-year-old game look and feel great
Horror-driven campaign creates a dark and personal tone throughout
Controls and cover mechanics are still at the apex of third-person shooters
The Bad
Frustrating AI
Campaign becomes a slog in the late-game chapters
7
Good
About GameSpot's Reviews
Other Platform Reviews for Gears of War

About the Author

Mike Mahardy still remembers the first time he chainsawed his friend, and Gears of War: Ultimate Edition helped him relive that moment.
864 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
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tomclancyhaha

no word on Horde 3.0? this review is a f****** joke

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FanboyzRtrash

@tomclancyhaha: Wrong game

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PSYCHOV3N0M

"Horror-driven campaign"???

BLAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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wookiegr

Averaging around a 2.9 on the Windows 10 App store on. This game is getting shredded apart. The only reason I know is I was going to buy it but not now.

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julianboxe

Don't know if I will get it, even now that I have a 980gtx sli and 4k monitor.

I love the whole Gears Franchise, specially the 1st one. The original gears had a very dark and grim tone, a horror survival game more than a shooter, that feeling of "guys with no necks kicking ass". A Brumack was something terrifying in Gears 1. In the others "oh, just another Brumack".

That all said, IMO this remake made them all look too "clean". Baby faces. Not the battle hardened from the original.

Avatar image for nl_skipper
NL_Skipper

@julianboxe: What do those specs have to do with anything...? It's a remaster of a game that's nearly 10 years old... you're not gonna need dual top-of-the-line GPU's lol, and I doubt the game really pops in 4K... buy something newer if you really wanna flex that rig!

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megakoresh

@nl_skipper: According to the Windows Store reviews the performance of this, supposedly "for PC", remaster is absolute shit

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julianboxe

@nl_skipper: Already have plenty of games to do that (gta, Witcher 3), just mentioned my specs to say that even although I could get the most out of this remaster, i'm still on the fence about buying it.

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HeavyGavel

@julianboxe: SLI is unsupported by Win10 Store apps. FYI

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naryanrobinson

Ah back when games designers had the skill to even pretend to be horror games.

Now it's like “Atmosphere? Who's that?”

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Mogan

@naryanrobinson: Horror game? How is Gears of War a horror game? It's a simple, linear shooter.

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santinegrete

@Mogan: chapter 2 and 3 had a horror tone with sudden change of atmosphere. It's not like they became Amnesia or Soma, they just changed the rhythm of the game to a more oppressive approach. Don't let the structure of genres dumb down your perception, you don't want to be like those asses that say Dead Space isn't horror because you can shoot, but skip Amnesia because it's 'boring'.

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naryanrobinson

@Mogan: .

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=define%3Apretend

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Mogan

@naryanrobinson: How was Gears of War even pretending to be a horror game?

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naryanrobinson

@Mogan: .

Ugh. I can't be bothered. You win. Have a cookie.

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Cherub1000

@naryanrobinson: I like cookies! My lady makes rather awesome oatmeal and chocolate chip ones!

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Mogan

@naryanrobinson: Compelling stuff. : \

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Ahiru-San

pc gamers getting the icing without the cake from console ports, as usual… didn't see that "numerous technical issues on PC" as a negative, rather play it (and I have) on consoles anytime…

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JDlok

These are the perfect games for Xboners. Hormone infused gorilla looking white dudes blowing monsters away with their guns!

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Cherub1000

@jdlok: hormone infused gorilla? You've sold me bro! I'm trading my ps4 today!

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john_price_1

better than most ps4 remasterd games

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Starshine_M2A2

@john_price_1: Better than ps4 games in general.

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wookiegr

@Starshine_M2A2: These two comments are priceless. What pure comedy gold they are.

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Starshine_M2A2

@wookiegr: We aim to please.

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tomclancyhaha

@Starshine_M2A2: aim down the sight, bitch

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Mr_Mark_Legion

playing this game made me feel like i was a 7year old. no thanks

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esqueejy

I think it's somewhat dishonest to lower a score of a port or remaster below that of the original based on flaws that were in the original but that weren't "highlighted" for you until you played the port or remaster.

I don't even have a 360 and never even played this game, but I don't like the "reasoning" that something can get nailed on port for being just like the original that was raved about.

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NL_Skipper

@esqueejy: There's no point in a review at all if you're just going to default to the original score... it should be a test of how well the game stands up to modern times as much as it is a trip down nostalgia lane.

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AmuricanPatriot

@nl_skipper: As I've stated to other users, going by the logic that the score of games should be lowered because they've been rendered obsolete by the natural, inevitable technological innovations/improvements in the industry isn't necessarily the fairest way of critiquing a game in my opinion, for a variety of reasons.

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xantufrog

@esqueejy: I think it makes sense. The score is the merits of the game, as it currently is, to current audiences. It's fully possible that a game doesn't stand up against the test of time, and if they want to sell it to current audiences then the flaws and things that don't hold up are totally relevant. Plus, of course, the reviewers are often different 10 years later...

For me, I don't care how mindblowing a game was back in the day. I care how mindblowing it will be to me right now. That's why an honest review is better than just slapping the original score some other dude gave the game back on.

(take 007 Goldeneye as a "nonpartisan example" - that game is super rough around the edges now, and if someone wanted to remaster and resell it to me they flat out could NOT do so without improving a lot of things. The fact that it was a definitive FPS back in the day and in some nostalgics' minds is irrelevant if it's being sold now as a fresh product - is it a definitive product today? If not, how good is it today? That's the question these re-reviews should ask)

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Cherub1000

@xantufrog: I'd love a update of goldeneye! Nearly forgot where I loved as kid as I was round my mates (had a n64) all the time!

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xantufrog

@cherub1000: It would be great!

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AmuricanPatriot

@xantufrog: I already responded to the previous poster in depth, but I will respond to you, as well. Remastered/re-released ported games usually aren't put on the market at full price. This game, for example, was $40, plus it came with 4 other games (3 if you wish to discount the original Gears of War), which is a pretty good deal on its own merits.

Let's examine Super Smash Bros Melee. I think that the Gamecube controller is horrendous compared to the Xbox 360 and Xbox One controllers, and even the Playstation controllers. However, given time, I can adjust to it. As for the game itself, the graphics (not that I care about graphics anyway) aren't all that impressive now, with blurry textures and such. The game also lacks the same amount of content compared to most other fighting games on the market today, and also lacks the amount of combo moves in some other fighting games.However, I wouldn't really consider these elements "flaws" in the game. I think it's best to just judge a game by its own merits and not unfairly compare it to more modern games with gameplay "improvements" that wouldn't necessarily improve the "outdated" game if they were to be implemented.

I suppose what I'm trying to say is that a person claiming that a game is outdated generally has more to do with the player not acclimating to that particular game's design style rather than that game containing objective, inherent flaws. For example, a chef can make the best sushi in the world, but if a person just doesn't like sushi, the person won't like that finely cooked sushi dish regardless.

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xantufrog

@NBAmaster33: I think these are great points. I would just argue that the cost shouldn't relate to the score (I know a lot of people are split on that). In other words, in my view, even if it's "only" $40 the review should still weigh the merits of the game as a game. I was in an argument with someone earlier who was claiming that really long games = more bang for your buck, and I was saying "no, a 20-hour game could easily be worth more to me than a 300-hour game if the quality of the experience is much better". I guess I feel similarly about the remastering/cost argument - that the price should be less relevant than the merits of the game as a game. I really liked your Smash Bros example, but I think a difference here is the flaws highlighted are more flaws (the AI in particular).

Anyway, I agree with your points, I'm just not sure I view it as a reason a game should "preserve" an earlier high score

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AmuricanPatriot

@xantufrog: If the goal as a critic is to critique games as objectively as possible, then yes, the cost of the game should not apply because determining how much a game is worth in dollars introduces much more subjectivity.

I think that correlating game duration to price is always a tricky thing. I'd obviously rather play a game that lasts only for 5 hours but is amazing, than a game that lasts for 25+ hours that is mediocre or bad. That being said, it becomes less clear when you introduce price into the equation. For example, would you rather purchase a superb/phenomenal single-player game that only takes 1 hour to complete, or a good/decent game that takes 10-15 hours to complete addition to a multiplayer mode, if both games are priced the same? Technically you could replay the amazing game several times over, but I'd wager the majority of people wouldn't do that. The lines eventually become blurred in certain scenarios.

AI issues are definitely much more inherent/objective compared to the stylistic choices by developers in terms of gameplay/mechanics/design. (although technically it is subjective as to whether AI issues are a good or a bad thing. I strain the word "technically" as an opinion theoretically cannot be wrong about whether something is good or bad unless the opinion contains factually incorrect information. This is a much different issue for another time, though) However, I cannot say that I encountered or noticed any irregular behavior by friendly or hostile AI in either the original Gears of War or the Ultimate Edition. That's just my experience, though, as glitches/bugs and other technical hiccups can vary between playthroughs.

Ultimately, I just don't believe in the idea that every game progressively (although I suppose at different rates) deteriorates in quality as time passes. Although films are somewhat different than video games, I find it amusing how the mindset in that medium is completely opposite about this subject matter - the "best films ever made" lists posted by reputable sources such as AFI are comprised almost entirely of films that are at least over 10-15 years old, of not over 50 years old.

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xantufrog

@NBAmaster33: "Ultimately, I just don't believe in the idea that every game progressively (although I suppose at different rates) deteriorates in quality as time passes."

^ I just want to clarify that I definitely don't believe this either; I hope that wasn't the message that was taken away from my posts! Some of my favorite games are very old, and they are ones I believe to this day are still the best. My argument was definitely not "blanket" - I really meant that on a case-by-case basis some games are weaker now than they were while others (e.g. Chrono Trigger) might have dated graphics but shine just as brightly.

*edit* - and it has to be acknowledged as well that what types of flaws we are willing to overlook in older games before deciding they are "just as great as they always were" likely differs from person to person. I see a lot of people on here, for example, who can't get past dated graphics. Likewise, the aged AI of this game you note isn't that big a deal to you

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AmuricanPatriot

@xantufrog:

No worries, man. Thanks for clarifying that for me. Graphics are never really all that important to me - I consider them window-dressing. I can certainly admire beautiful visuals, but only momentarily. Star Wars: Battlefront is a beautiful-looking game, but my focus is on the gameplay and game mechanics rather than scrutinizing the details of the environment. I'm in the middle of replaying the second Spyro game now, and the game is visually no stunner to say the least since its about 15 years old, but I don't care because the game is so fun to play. Performance, however, I'd consider to be a necessity. Whether the game or graphics are brilliant or anything but, it won't matter much if the game is borderline unplayable with choppy frame rates and constant slowdown. As for the AI, I simply don't recall it ever be an issue for me for either version of the game. I don't recall my teammates behaving in frustratingly illogical ways or anything of the sort. I suppose the fact that enemies occasionally rush you can be illogical, but it adds challenge to the game.

I agree with your case-by-case basis. I'm not arguing that all old games are good, because some of them certainly had objective problems like choppy frame rate, freezing, glitches, etc. All I'm trying to say is that I don't believe certain old games, like Gears of War or Resident Evil 4 or some other titles, deserve to have their scores reducing solely because of acquired taste in the sense that their acclimation curves are a bit steeper than many modern titles.

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BeefoTheBold

@esqueejy:

I think it makes perfect sense because the bar rises every year.

As an example, what qualifies as great graphics ten years ago is not the same as what qualifies as great graphics today. We expect games to advance and get better with each passing year because the technology that developers have to work with continually gets better.

So looking specifically at this game, for instance, if it suffers from the same AI or technical limitations than the original did ten years later (or however many years it's been now), and it's being compared against other modern shooter titles that don't have those limitations, then a lower rating is perfectly justified. You saw a similar criticism in the Uncharted Collection review with how the first game in the series has aged.

"Uncharted: Drake's Fortune has not aged well, making a third of the collection a slog"

It's being compared against other games of it's genre of today after all.

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AmuricanPatriot

@BeefoTheBold: I would then say that this way of critiquing the game is unreasonable. Based upon this logic, every game will eventually become outdated and bad in quality. Some games may hold up better than others, but ultimately their quality will progressively diminish as games inevitably become more technologically advanced.

In Resident Evil 4, for example, is it now a "flaw" that the player is unable to move and shoot at the same time? No, it is not, because the entire game design is structured around that mechanic. I think that adding in advanced maneuverability (an "improvement" by gaming standards) would actually be a detrimental factor because it is counter to the game style. The same applies for Halo. Would adding in sprint (another natural advancement) to the earlier games improve the overall experience? Probably not, as the levels were not designed with sprint in mind. If a player is unable or unwilling to take the time to acclimate/adjust to a specific game style, then the fault lies in the player and not the game.

It is funny because the film industry takes the opposite approach to this. Most film critics would probably say that the best films ever made were released at least more than 20 years ago. Is the original King Kong now a bad or subpar film because the effects look outdated? The same applies with the Terminator. I don't necessarily think it's fair on the game/movie to judge it based upon technological capabilities that didn't exist at the time it was produced.

Moreover, are all black and white movies inferior than those shot in color? I think not. By this logic, films such as Casablanca or Citizen Kane should be considered "outdated" because they are not shot in color and their directorial/acting/editing styles are less advanced compared to modern films. Granted, many great films rely less on technological improvements and more on strong stories, which can be timeless.

Also, remastered/re-released games generally are not released at full price. The 33%-50% price drop should compensate for any "outdatedness."

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BeefoTheBold

@NBAmaster33:

I'd say yes, that some games are still good today twenty years after they were released and others are not. But each have to be judged against modern films on their own merits.

One of the reasons why old films tend to hold up better than old games is because films are based primarily on story and characters. These things tend to age well. They aren't impacted as much by improved technology. A good story is a good story period. Shakespeare doesn't suddenly become bad writing because somebody invents Microsoft Word. It's why the RPG genre tends to age better than the shooter genre.

Goldeneye was a fantastic shooter back in the day. It's not, objectively, a good game compared to modern shooters. Conversely, Planescape: Torment holds up really, really well compared to a lot of modern RPGs because the story, the themes, the characters, etc. hold up well.

A game shouldn't automatically be penalized for being older, but let's be real here. The appeal of Gears of War was never it's deep, immersive, well written story. It was guns with chainsaws on them. It was the GAMEPLAY. If the gameplay doesn't hold up well against more modern offerings then absolutely it gets a lower mark than when was first released.

Some games show their age more than others and games where the original appeal was more graphics and gameplay driven tend to show their age more than games where the original appeal was more story and character driven.

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AmuricanPatriot

@BeefoTheBold: I would disagree with your first paragraph. If you want to judge a game or film as objectively as possible, then I believe that the evaluation should be merit-based and not comparative towards other games or movies, because then subjectivity, bias, and pre-fixed expectations are introduced. When you say that certain games aren't good after 20 years or so, I would be curious to know whether the flaws that prevent the game from being good are inborn or stylistic. In other words, games that are "outdated" may simply be a matter of acquired taste.

I wholeheartedly concur with your second paragraph. Stories, plots, and character development are all essential in making a film or television show worthwhile, whereas those same elements don't necessarily make a worthwhile game. That being said, there are certain comparisons that can be made based upon technological advancements. One example is the transition from black and white films to films shot in color. Just because films are shot in color nowadays doesn't necessarily render black and white footage inferior or bad. Films such as the original King Kong in 1933, various Godzilla films, and the first two Terminator films, rely more heavily upon special effects than other films released during those respective time periods, and of course the effects don't look believable or realistic compared to films today. Granted, those films don't solely rely on their effects, but I would conjecture that the majority of renowned film critics wouldn't criticize the special effects regardless, whereas normal moviegoers probably would. Other movies such as Rear Window, Psycho, Halloween, and The Nightmare on Elm Street, rely on certain filmmaking/editing/camera techniques to heighten and coney fear and tension in certain scenes. I think a good comparison would be between Rear Window and Disturbia (for all intents and purposes, a modern remake). Objectively, Disturbia would probably be considered by most people to be more effective in terms of evoking fear than Rear Window because the various techniques to heighten the intensity of scenes have evolved over the years, even though I would argue the opposite is true despite Rear Window's outmoded style. Again, I think the issues people would have with many old games and movies can be attitude to stylistic, acquired taste.

I've never played Goldeneye, but my point would be that the game still works well on its on terms. Once a modern player adjusts his or her mindset/expectations, and becomes acclimated to the style of how the game works, he or she should theoretically be able to enjoy it regardless of its age.

Sure, that's true about Gears of War in that it became popular because of gameplay and not story. I would argue that the gameplay of Gears of War, does, in fact, hold up quite well, though. I just played a bit of The Division beta (it's technically an RPG, but still) and I don't believe that the shooting and cover mechanics of the game are quite as good as Gears of War. Again that's just one game to compare Gears of War to, but even so, I wouldn't call it obsolete by an stretch.

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BeefoTheBold

@NBAmaster33:

My assertion that some games aren't good today that were considered good 20 years ago is based around how standards change over the years. The original "Doom" game was a trendsetter of it's time and may well have been responsible for launching the modern shooter genre.

But it is, objectively, not a good game of today. Movement is more restricted, graphics and sound quality are awful by today's standards, there's even less story than most shooters have, no multiplayer mode, etc. etc. You could go on and on. The genre that it helped launch has passed it by in innumerable ways since then. (And that's a GOOD THING!) It may well be fun, but if it was released for the first time today it wouldn't be a highly rated shooter because it's so deficient in so many areas relative to other games.

I agree with your statement that a game that still works well on it's own terms today can still be a good game. It isn't AUTOMATIC that an older game isn't as good or doesn't deserve to be rated just as highly as it did the first time around. But it's also not unreasonable to state that some games stand the test of time better than others.

Or, to put it a different way, it isn't outrageous to say that a Gears of War port with nothing but a fresh coat of paint and no additional improvements might not compare as favorably against other shooter titles that you could choose to buy and play today as it did against other shooters that you could choose to buy and play 10 years ago. 10 years ago, it was one of the best shooters around and therefore got a higher rating. Now? The reviewer is saying that there are other shooter titles out there that are better.

The game has to be compared against other shooter titles that are available to go out and buy and play RIGHT NOW, not the games that were available ten years ago. According to this reviewer at least, Gears of War Ultimate Edition is a 7/10 compared to other shooter titles that it is measured against that are also on the market today.

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AmuricanPatriot

@BeefoTheBold:

Hey, my apologies for not responding to you much earlier than this. I was meaning to get around to it, but it slipped my mind.

I think a lot of this debate stems from the fact that there are different approaches someone can take in reviewing video games, two of which I'll label "merit-based" and "comparative." I abide by the former. When I talk about or review a video game, I consider it as one individual, distinct experience. I attempt as much as possible to avoid comparing and contrasting the elements of the game in question to another, similar game in the same genre. I like to evaluate solely based upon whether a game does what it does well/effectively, and whether what it does is worthwhile to the player in itself. Variables such as the price of the game, the release date, other games available on the market, etc...these are all things I tend to sideline because they introduce layers of additional subjectivity into the equation. So, for this specific reviewing approach, I'd say that lowering a game's score based upon its age is irrelevant and unnecessary.

However, for the "comparative" approach that GameSpot as well as many other individuals and websites use, then yes, the score reduction is fair because this approach centers around the economic consume rather than solely about the experience of the product. Consumers have many different choices in terms of which games they can spend their money on, and whether they choose to invest their money in a game that's 10+ years old or a newly released game is based upon things like price, which games are available, etc. A good example to support this approach would be to use an iPhone as an example. An older iPhone works fine on its own, but probably isn't the most feasible option for a consumer since it is technologically outdated compared to the newer models. If you apply this concept to video games, then yes, reducing the game's score would be logical - I just believe the first approach is more valid in judging a game's overall quality accurately/objectively. The only thing I'd say with this is that the price discrepancy should offset the outdatedness somewhat, as most of these remastered/ported games are at least $20 cheaper than full-priced games.

With regards to your first passage, I agree, although it's important to differentiate between industry standards and individual consumer standards. The industry standard progressively and linearly increases as innovation occurs. The bar upon which to judge games is steadily raised over the years and never regresses to a lower level.

I would argue that each person has his or her own standards about video games that aren't the same and/or as clearly defined as the industry standards. Moreover, I'd say people's standards aren't rigid and can be adjusted based upon the game in question.

Second passage - I can't really comment on the game since I haven't played, but I fully understand what you're saying. If you're comparing the game to newly released games, then the new games are presumably all going to be superior by default in at least some aspects, namely the audiovisual presentation. Again, I just don't account for the time of release as being detrimental or benign in terms of its self-contained merits.

Third passage - Sure, certain games do or don't hold up better than others as time passes, and this idea fits in nicely under the "comparative" approach to reviewing things. I personally think it has more to do with acquired taste, but that's just me.

Fourth passage - I agree with everything you've said here. I think, though, that this brings up the question as to whether it's even necessary to re-review a port of an older title in the first place. The fact that its relative quality may have diminished to some extent due to its age should already be tacitly understood by the consumer - I'm not sure it's needed for a reviewer to affirm what people can logically deduce for themselves.

Fifth passage - I disagree with this part. If prefer the "comparative" approach, that's perfectly fine, by it's by no means the only way to go about reviewing video games.

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BeefoTheBold

@NBAmaster33:

No problem. A bit surprised to see a response after so long, but it's a good response.

I think we've come to agreement on most items and covered all the subject material as thoroughly as we can. I do prefer the "comparative" approach because budgets and playing time is limited so if I have to choose between two games in the same genre, it's helpful to know which one is overall better as it stands today.

But I have no problem with anyone who prefers the opposite.

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mkeezay22

@esqueejy: Agreed, the logic behind that is very flawed.

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HeavyGavel

AMD Card users - BEWARE!!

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jasonevangelho/2016/03/01/gears-of-war-ultimate-edition-on-pc-is-a-disaster-for-amd-radeon-gamers/#32d99fdd7e7e

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Alurit

@heavygavel: from the article it seems that cards with the newer GCN 1.2 architecture are affected like he fury x/nano/380/285 and card with older architecture like the 290/390/x that are using GCN 1.1 are not

Gears of War More Info

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  • First Released Nov 7, 2006
    released
    • PC
    • Xbox 360
    • Xbox One
    Gears of War is a tactical sci-fi shooter from Epic Games. As war hero Marcus Fenix, you'll fight your way through an army of enemy creatures known as the Locust Horde.
    9.1
    Average Rating56582 Rating(s)
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    Developed by:
    Epic Games, Splash Damage, The Coalition
    Published by:
    Microsoft Game Studios
    Genre(s):
    Third-Person, 3D, Action, Shooter
    Theme(s):
    Sci-Fi
    Content is generally suitable for ages 17 and up. May contain intense violence, blood and gore, sexual content and/or strong language.
    Mature
    Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language