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Operation 4: PvE Update

Two COG soldiers shooting at a Brumak

Here we are with the last feature blog before Operation 4 drops next Tuesday, July 14.

Giving players more freedom has been our guiding philosophy in our approach to PvE. Earlier this week, we revealed that in Operation 5 you’ll be able choose whatever character and class you want.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, the changes to PvE in Operation 4 are enough to weigh down a Derrick. Let’s get into it!

Skill Cards

All those duplicate Skill Cards you’ve been sitting on? Get ready for Level 6 Skill Cards. And believe us these are a serious upgrade.

We’re aware that many of the Skill Cards were previously tuned as a steep ramp with what felt like diminishing returns. In Operation 4, many of the Skill Cards have been rebalanced to soften this curve which will means every Level 6 version is a significant upgrade. And before you ask…it takes 20 duplicates to upgrade a Skill Card to Level 6.

The team is working on a solution to sell any unusable duplicate Skill Cards for Gears Coins in a future update.

Custom Horde Frenzy

Custom lobbies. Unique stats and Leaderboards. ‘Nuff said.

PvE Playlist Optimization

With over 40 playlist options, PvE matchmaking could be a lengthy and potentially unsatisfying experience. In Operation 4, we have streamlined the amount of difficulties from seven to three (Beginner, Advanced and Inconceivable) to improve the quality of matchmaking. All seven difficulty options will continue to be available in the Custom Lobby.

New Hivebusters

Let’s go!!! Kait, JD, Del and Fahz are making the Escape debut. In order to make this work, we have tuned some Ultimates differently depending on which mode you are playing. For example, we’ve shortened Kait and Fahz’s abilities in Escape.

Hivebuster Venom Skills in Horde

With the unique gameplay in Escape, we gave Lahni, Keegan and Mac select skills that only worked in venom. We know how powerful skills like Venom Blade and Explosive Resupply are; so we’re bringing them to Horde as perks on their respective classes.

Fabricator Freedom

As a first step to giving players more freedom in PVE, we have removed restrictions around the Fabricator in Horde. All Classes can now purchase all weapons and fortifications as well as upgrade fortifications. With this change, it’s now way easier to get what you want when you need it.

Energy Taps

Energy Taps have been a valuable addition to Horde in Gears 5. The challenge is that it’s always been difficult to justify defending Energy Taps – especially as the difficulty rises and for taps in vulnerable locations.

We’re adding a new perk to owning an Energy Tap – global team health. That’s right, now your entire team (including AI) will get a global health bonus per level of the tap – this benefit stacks with every added. The progression per Level of the Energy Tap is: +15% HP > +20% HP > +25% HP > +30% HP. We’ve also boosted the amount of energy you gain from Taps by 50%, roughly doubled their health and made them much faster to capture and interact with.

Looks like power taps just got a lot more valuable!

Balance Update

Operation 4 features a significant balance update for PVE. Gears is a cooperative game, and PvE is at its best and most fun when every player feels they are a making a significant contribution. In Operation 4, we’ve done a lot of work to balance the Classes. Here’s what you can expect:

  • 13 new Skill Cards
  • Seven new perks
  • Rebalanced perks and passives for most classes
  • Buffed weaker classes to make them more viable

We’ll provide the full details in the full patch notes on Monday. We can’t wait to hear your feedback.

Stop by our Developer Stream today as Michael Shannon, Lead PvE Designer, will go over PvE in more detail.

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