Gears of War 4 was the first game created by The Coalition—the new Microsoft studio dedicated to the franchise. While the title received good reviews from critics, series creator Cliff Bleszinski expressed mixed feelings towards the latest entry in the long-running franchise. Bleszinski wanted Rod Fergusson and his team at The Coalition to take more risks.
In an interview with GameSpot, the legendary developer clarified, “What The Coalition did was give the people what that want. He did the J.J. Abrams Episode VII. I’ve watched Episode VII five times. I still get misty-eyed and get all excited but when I think objectively about it, I’m like, ‘There wasn’t a lot of risk there.’ So I’m hoping they take a little bit more risk in the future.”
Gears of War 4 played it safe in terms of story and mechanics. The plot played out like a contained mystery, and while it was tense and engaging, it didn’t provide anything new to gamers. Rather than having the Locust return in some form, adding a new threat would’ve made Gears of War 4 more exciting.
The majority of Gears of War 4 also forces players down tight environments and forces them to find cover behind every object. Only towards the end did gamers get to experience new gameplay mechanics in the form of Transformers-like machines. Taking those types of risks early on in the game would’ve also elevated the experience. Here’s hoping Microsoft Studios and The Coalition take Bleszinski’s advice to heart in Gears of War 5. Long-time fans are at the point where they want to be blown away by new experiences.