When Gears Tactics was announced at E3 2018, it was coupled with Gears POP!, the Funko crossover that probably shouldn’t have been. The combined result was that many people came away underwhelmed, particularly as they were expecting something more mainline. But after some ecstatic reviews for the Windows version (including a 5/5 from TheXboxHub), it’s fair to say that we’re on board the hype (Cole)train. Gears Tactics is out now on Xbox One, fully optimised for Series X|S and via Game Pass. It’s also been out for a while on PC via Games for Windows.
For the unaware, Gears Tactics splices the gritty and bulky Gears of War universe with the turn-based tactics of X-Com. It’s a marriage made in Imulsion, as Gears has always been a cover shooter, and the strategy of where to attack and when has always been lanced into its flesh.
In story terms, Gears Tactics makes some interesting choices. This is set 12 years before the events of Gears of War, making this an origin story for the Locust, Raam and the rest. You play Gabe Diaz, a COG on the fringes of the known universe, on a planet called Sera. You’re about to get a momentous surprise, as an army of feral aliens surface and begin a war with humans that will last for decades afterwards.
If you’re like us and love the optimisation and levelling of your traditional turn-based squad game, then you’re in for a treat. There are 20 skills to work through, plenty of weapons to find and upgrade, and Supreme equipment to bolster your defences with. You’ll need them, as in traditional Gears fashion, the Locust have brought some bosses with them. Let’s hope the Hammer of Dawn was invented back then.
- – Immersive and character-driven story: Play as the defiant soldier Gabe Diaz, rescuing and building your troops in a journey of leadership, survival and sacrifice.
- – Customizable squad and equipment: Prepare your troops to face tough enemies, upgrading their skills and outfitting them with loot collected in challenging missions.
- – Aggressive gameplay: Command your squad in fast paced, turn-based battles, advancing and surviving intense and visceral encounters with the unstoppable, swarming enemy.
- – Massive boss battles: Defeat towering deadly bosses that defy your strategies and completely change the scale of the battle.
- – New content: Jack joins the fight with over 20 skills to combat new, powerful enemies. Improve your weapons and armor with Supreme equipment.
- – Optimized for Xbox Series X: Gears Tactics features Smart Delivery and plays in 4K Ultra HD at 60 frames per second.
What a future we live in, as Gears Tactics is available to play on launch on Xbox Game Pass. It’s also optimised for Xbox Series X via Smart Delivery, and plays in 4K at 60fps.
Gears Tactics is out now on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S and will cost you £54.99, or play for free on Game Pass. It’s also out on PC via Windows. Just don’t expect Marcus Fenix to pop in for a cameo.
Gears Tactics is the fast-paced, turn-based strategy game set 12 years before the first Gears of War. Cities on the planet Sera are beginning to fall to the monstrous threat rising from underground – the Locust Horde. With the government in disarray, a squad of survivors emerge as humanity’s last hope. Play as Gabe Diaz, recruiting, equipping and commanding your squads on a desperate mission to hunt down the relentless and powerful leader of the Locust army: Ukkon, the evil mastermind who makes monsters. Against all odds and fighting for survival, outsmart your enemy in uniquely brutal, turn-based tactical combat. Experience the intensity of one of the most-acclaimed video game sagas in an exciting new way.