Co-op, better than sliced bread?

•January 8, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Gears of War never really managed to snag me in its hype web during the
extremely long pre-release marketing hysteria. I’m not much of an action gamer,
and randomly lasting everything in my path rarely appeals to me. I’m more of a
ICO and Shadow of the Colossus type gamer. I usually prefer Animal Crossing to
Halo. And my first hour in Gears seemed to confirm this. I never really got
into it. It looks bloody marvellous on a large HD-TV, and the action is indeed
intense. But it felt…uninspired somehow. I was just about to give up on it
when a friend invited me for some co-op action over live.

I think we spent four hours straight randomly blasting everything in our path. And
I loved every minute of it. I still play the campaign in co-op mode even though
I’ve already finished the game twice. I just can’t get enough. The thing is,
playing together is very much was gaming is all about. Fragging each other to kingdom
come does have its merits, and occasionally you can catch me death matching
with some random American teens, dodging as many bullets as verbal assaults
from the less well behaved among them. But co-op is where the real fun begins.
The feeling of satisfaction is – to me at least – so much the greater when it
comes from saving a friends ass instead of fragging it. And from the looks of
it, co-op is here to stay. Gears of War is a great example of a well
implemented multiplayer experience, and developers the world over should sit up
and take notice.

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