Gears of War and Halo are fantastic multiplayer shooters. But there’s one thing that irks me. There’s always ‘that person’ who runs towards the power weapon and grabs it every round. If you’re good with it, fine. Go for it. More times than not though, you hear shot after shot with no kill to follow.

You might go several games without getting your hands on a power weapon. The Coalition is changing that with one new multiplayer mode in Gears of War 4. It’s called Arms Race. Think team-based Gun Game with power weapons included and you’re on the right track.

Two teams of five face off in your typical multiplayer match. And that’s where it stops being typical. All ten players start off the match with the same power weapon. In the first match, it’s the Boomshot.

Once a team scores three kills, they advance to the next weapon.

Arms Race shines as the match progresses. The match might start tentatively as both teams peek around with their powerful Boomshots. But as the rounds continue, teams find themselves with weapons that push a different playstyle. One team might be on shotguns while the other finds themselves armed with rifles.

Each Arms Race lasts 15 minutes, or the first team to score three kills with 13 different weapons. Here’s the weapon progression shown during yesterday’s live stream:

Round 1 – Boomshot
Round 2 – Torque Bow
Round 3 – Dropshot
Round 4 – Overkill
Round 5 – Markza
Round 6 – Lancer
Round 7 – Retro Lancer
Round 8 – Hammerburst
Round 9 – Enforcer
Round 10 – Gnasher
Round 11 – Longshot
Round 12 – EMBAR
Round 13 – Boltok

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Man, The Coalition should add Frag Grenades in there just for the sheer chaos. Imagine 10 players throwing frags everywhere. Or 10 grenades stuck on random corners. Maybe nixing frags was a good idea…

Arms Race looks like a blast. Placing power weapons in the hands of everyone is a brilliant game mode. Throw balance out the window and just let everyone have a good time. I can see myself losing track of countless nights with my friends in this mode.

I’m hoping the developers take some steps to keep the mode fresh. Maybe randomize the order of the weapons from match to match. Or have special weekends with throwables (frags, incendiaries, gas) and the Hammer of Dawn mixed in. Or even tweak weapon parameters. Full-auto Boomshots anyone?

For a game that prides itself on being hyper-competitive, it’s great to see The Coalition put some love into a game mode that’s fun for everyone. And if you do get kicked around, at least you can fire a few Boomshots before it happens.

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