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What's Up – April 16th 2020

A Swarm Team roar while holding the flag

Welcome to What’s Up, our weekly blog where we’ll recap everything that’s happened in the past week and talk a little about future developments. In What’s Up this week:

  • Gears Tactics Launch Trailer
  • Tuning Update: Lancer and Gnasher
  • Ranked Gridiron
  • Hotfix Title Update Out Now

Gears Tactics Is Almost Here!

We’re just under two weeks to go until the release of Gears Tactics for PC on Steam, Windows Store and via Xbox Game Pass for PC (Beta). We’re so excited!

The hype train has been on a roll this week with the debut of our big launch trailer for the game, pre-downloads becoming available and the announcement of our 15% pre-order discount for existing Gears 5 owners.

If you’re planning to pick up Tactics, and own Gears 5, you can nab that 15% pre-order discount by pre-ordering Tactics via the same Store (e.g. if you own Gears 5 on Steam, you can only get the discount if you pre-order on Steam). Don’t forget, if you’re an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate owner on Xbox, you can also download Gears Tactics via Xbox Game Pass for PC!

Gears Tactics. Play it on PC April 28th and coming to Xbox Consoles later this year.

Speaking of Xbox, we know a lot of you are huge fans but may not be able to play Gears Tactics on PC right now. Tactics was designed from the ground up specifically for PC – from a mouse and keyboard-based gameplay and UI to incredible optimization that allows Gears Tactics to run on a variety of machines.

Now that we’ve delivered a PC-first experience for Gears Tactics, we are hard at work on delivering a custom quality experience on console. We want Gears Tactics for consoles feels right at home on your Xbox and not like a port. This will take some time so expect Gears Tactics to be playable on your Xbox console later this year.

New Tuning Update

As of today, we have released a first round of tuning updates based on your feedback since the launch of Operation 3 – focused on the Lancer and Gnasher.

  • Reduce the power of the Lancer: Increase Accuracy bloom (reduced accuracy per-shot) to 28% to match the classic Lancer (Gears 3 and 4).
    • Note: It takes 0.84 seconds to reach maximum inaccuracy with sustained fire under normal circumstance (active reload increases the rate of fire).
  • Improve the ‘feel’ of the Gnasher: Bullet magnetism range reverted to TU4.2 at 8m of effectiveness (was 6m).
  • Addressing Gnasher gib range: Temporarily disabled the new gib-range calculation system due to a newly discovered bug, which should bring the gib range down to intended levels.

You can read about the changes in full with detailed insight here. We’ll be closely monitoring your feedback to determine if further changes are needed. If you’ve played the new tuning, reach out and let us know what you think!

Ranked Gridiron Reset

COG Soldier stands with the Gridiron Flag

Ranked Gridiron launched on Tuesday this week earlier than initially intended, and we are super excited to have it out there.

On Tuesday, it quickly became apparent that something was up. Over the course of the day, we saw numerous cases of users being placed into Masters erroneously, regardless of their behind the scenes Skill Rating.

Upon investigation, we identified a bug related to the deployment of the new Ranked Gridiron Playlist. With any Ranked playlist, it’s critical we protect the integrity of what it means to be at a certain Rank  and, with the volume of players who placed in this window of opportunity, we didn’t want the Ranks in Gridiron to be compromised for the rest of the season.

As of today, everyone who has achieved a Rank in Gridiron placed will be reset to Bronze Tier. We understand for some of you this may be frustrating, but the good news is your behind the scenes Skill Rating has been retained – which is the key to ending up in the proper Tier.

As you play Gridiron, you will quickly move through the Tiers to get to the Tier that aligns with your Skill Rating. This solution, while not ideal, means everyone will end up in the proper Tier – and most importantly, for those of you chasing Masters this protects the integrity of that rank and small amount of places up for grabs in the mode.

As part of that protection of integrity, we will be ensuring end of season Ranked Placement Rewards for Gridiron will be calculated from beyond this point rather than the beginning of the season.

Hotfix TU Launching Today

As you read this, we are launching a small hotfix Title Update in order to address a few emergent issues that were critical to resolve since the release of Operation 3. Feast your eyes on the hotfix notes below!

  • Fixed a crash caused by Clayton’s Reflective Armor card when hit by certain projectiles
  • Fixed an issue causing players to be in a broken state when the Silverback is destroyed after using the Ultimate while rolling
  • Resolved UI issues causing Tour of Duty to display incorrect information on completed Medal Groups
  • Gridiron now appears in the Stats screen
  • Gridiron announcers will now have reactions to possession victories
  • Setting Trigger option to ‘Left Handed’ will no longer prevent the use of the chainsaw with most control schemes
  • Map Builder: Fixed an issue that prevented user created maps from loading into the lobby correctly when selecting Host Map directly from Map Builder
  • PC: Changing custom keybinding for reload no longer blocks secondary weapon actions (e.g. chainsaw)

This Week In Gears 5

Thrashball Cole

This week in Gears 5, Thrashball Cole has smashed onto the scene earnable in Gridiron! Speaking of Gridiron, Ranked Play is now available for our brand-new mode and we’ve dropped a new Escape Hive called The Choke.

For all the information on everything Gears 5 this week, head here.

That’s it from us this week. Don’t miss this week’s Gears Developer Stream with Jamie MacTaggart (Lead Gameplay Designer) to talk through this week’s tuning changes and where we’re headed with Gears 5 next. We’ll be live at live.gearsofwar.com on Friday at 3pm PT.

See you there!

TC