Gears 5 Arcade Mode Is For Everyone Who Hates Shotguns

Gears and shotguns are synonymous with each other. If you don’t like the Gnasher (or aren’t good with it), you probably don’t like Gears. With Gears 5, The Coalition crafted a game mode that doesn’t lean so hard on the trademark in-your-face shotgun action the franchise is known for.

Gears 5 Arcade mode is the developer’s take on a hero shooter. You get five heroes to choose from, each with a unique Passive ability, Bounty, Loadout, and Upgrades. Bounties award extra skulls for particular kills (headshots, executions, multi-kills, etc.) Skulls (earned via bounties and regular kills) are used to unlock upgrade weapons during the match. You can see that in action in the trailer below when Del unlocks the Mulcher.

Folks who aren’t the biggest fans of Gears’ shotgun-centric gameplay will like what they see when looking at the Loadouts. No hero spawns with a shotgun. That’s not to say you won’t ever see them though. Marcus/Swarm Grenadier do get the Gnasher as the second upgrade. But you won’t see ten people bouncing around with shotguns during the race to 50 kills.

The hero-focused gameplay isn’t the only significant change coming to Arcade. Everyone loves a Gears headshot, and the developers want them to happen often. Headshot damage is being bumped up across the board. It doesn’t matter what weapon you’re using, it can pop a head off in Arcade.

The Coalition also opted to increase the cooldown slide cancels in Arcade to rein in wall bouncing. It’ll still be there for the rest of the Versus modes. “Without wall bouncing in Arcade, cover to cover action truly shines,” says the devs.

It sounds like The Coalition has big plans for Arcade well after release too. In a blog post talking up the mode, they say there will be more heroes at launch and more coming after. 

I can’t wait to take Gears 5 for a spin this weekend. It’s nice seeing a shooter that leans back into the pre-Battle Royale multiplayer experience. I like my BRs as much as the next person, but I also miss playing Deathmatch, Escalation, King of the Hill – stuff like that.

Gears 5’s Versus Tech Test kicks off its first weekend starting July 19 (a second test is coming the following weekend). Starting tomorrow, you can preload the Tech Test (15GB) on Xbox One and PC. To get in, you’ll need either an Xbox Game Pass Subscription or pre-order the Gears 5 from participating retailers.

We’ll get three modes to test out this weekend – Arcade, Escalation, and King of the Hill. And if you need your Gears 5 fix now, check out the last day of ELEAGUE’s Gears Summer Series Invitational from this past weekend.