I was already getting pretty excited for this. I heard it looked good when press saw it, I find the changes to XCOM (vs how most games have aped it so much) looked interesting, and I think Gears look really lends itself to a strategy overhead look, but then I just checked out this piece on RPS (my trusted source for strategy reviews) and apparently its a great game that is on the level of or even surpasses XCOM.
This “GO, GO, GO” mentality is written through the whole of the combat system, too. At its heart is the execution mechanic, which you can see in the screenshot above. Here, a locust trooper has been escorted to the threshold of death by a number of bullets, and I’m about to send one of my squad charging round the bus to finish the job. At that point, the game will cut to a close-up execution vignette full of grand-guignol revving and splattering. And then, when the deed is done, everyone else on my squad will gain a fresh action point, allowing them to squeeze off another shot, get into cover or – if I’m lucky – run forward to conduct an execution of their own and expand the wealth.
This simple mechanic leads into wild, snowballing chains of opportunity, and if you judge your initial risk right, ugly deadlocks can blossom into routs. But getting too carried away can leave you dangerously overextended, as your luck finally runs dry in the middle of a horde of snarling grey muscle lizards. It’s all very finessed, all very finely balanced: objectives and level designs give you every motivation to play aggressively, but unthinking recklessness will be punished. Your constant challenge is to be cleverly hyperagressive, and you soon begin to develop a stockbroker’s instinct for calculating risk and reward.
Kind of sounds like the killing strategies of DOOM meets tactics lol.
Also there is no strategy layer to the game, which isn't shocking. I like the mix up in most games but in some it just is a shitty part or something that overall really you just need to learn by failing once, causing you to restart the game, and I am cool with a focused product. I loved Silent Storm and that didn't have management either.
I have Xbox Game Pass so it's already pre loaded and now I am super hyped to play it. If it comes out at midnight I should be playing right then even.
I'll give more impressions when I do but for now just wanted to share that hype and get excited for some more tactical strategy to sink my teeth into.
EDIT: Also was reviewed on PC Gamer - 83 "A fantastic tactical combat system translates Gears of War into a strategy game worthy of the PC."
8.5 on Game Informer - Smart mechanics, aggressive battles, and tight storytelling make this a strong new contender in the genre, even if the campaign's pacing sometimes misses the mark.