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Gears of War 3 beta Live stream HD.

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Looks excellent! The dedicated servers appear to be doing their job. I didn't see a single instance of the bullet lag that makes Gears 2 unplayable.

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I just downloaded it. I'll post some impressions shortly. I didn't realize it was going up today, thought they were just giving out the codes.

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I just downloaded it. I'll post some impressions shortly. I didn't realize it was going up today, thought they were just giving out the codes.

How did you already download it and how are people already playing it?

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How did you already download it and how are people already playing it?

I just played 2 matches, still playing so no impressions but Microsoft Expert Zone gave out beta codes today for people who took a Gears e-learning and have a verified employment status.

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Saw some fantastic footage today. This game looks amazing graphically.

Epic definitely seems to work their engine better than anyone. And of course they are always privy to the newest updates to it before anyone.

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I just played 2 matches, still playing so no impressions but Microsoft Expert Zone gave out beta codes today for people who took a Gears e-learning and have a verified employment status.

Thanks for the reply. Damn, that would have been sweet.

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I hope it is better than the second one. I think they took a step backwards in that one. The shootouts were just more fun and challenging in the original to me. I thought they really got away from what made the first one fun in the sequel.

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I'm liking what I'm seeing so far. No noticeable lag and the game is about using the rifles and shotguns and cover when appropriate, not rolling in with a shotgun and rushing for power weapons.

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I just played 2 matches, still playing so no impressions but Microsoft Expert Zone gave out beta codes today for people who took a Gears e-learning and have a verified employment status.

Dammet. I can't verify (besides it taking 5 days...I don't actually work for any of these companies :P)

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wtf, I thought it started on the 18 for early access. I guess Ill get on tonight.

Edit: Just read, sucks. Well Ill get on it on the 18th.

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So these are some quick impressions from a pretty big Gears 1 fan. I played Gears 1 online every Friday night with a group of people until Gears 2 came out. We played Gears 2 for a little while but no one really felt it like we did Gears 1 so we went back to that for a while until it fizzled off.

So far this feels pretty much like what they said - something inbetween Gears 1 and Gears 2 while different at the same time.

Leaning more towards Gears 2 with the additional weapons and items and tactical changes that they bring, but leaning more towards Gears 1 with the actual feel of it (to me so far) and the map layouts and such. Which is great.

The graphics look more improved than I thought before. The lighting is a huge step forward. The textures are much smoother with more depth and everything looks nicely rounded and high poly. Its has a silky look that reminds me more of Gears 1 than Gears 2. The effects are stepped up aswell - in the map Trenches (I think) for example when the dust storm rolls in just after an overwhelming bullhorn and the sunlight is bouncing around through the dust.

As far as actual gameplay I'm really happy to say that so far it feels like the entire cover mechanic is more refined that it ever was before. I haven't had any issues sliding in or out of cover, snaping to the wrong spot, or getting stuck anywhere. The roady run speed is more like the first Gears than the sluggish feel of the second. Over all it feels faster and more responsive in your movement, more like the first.

The shotgun is a big thing that a lot of hard core people in the first one thought was ruined in the second. This is another thing that kinda feels like it's in a middle ground again. You still can't really blind fire it like you could in Gears 1, but you can aim in and get a shot off much quicker and more reliably that in Gears 2. So closer shotgun battles actually do feel fun again so far, and it is evident as everyone is using it and I haven't heard anyone complain about it yet. The improvement of this weapon might go hand in hand with how much better the game feels online as far as responsiveness from lag.

Now there are only like 400-500 people playing right now, and I only played about 6 or 7 matches, but I haven't run into one hop, skip or jump as far as lag is concerned. This is in stark contrast to playing Gears 2 just last night when I played 5 matches and in 4 of them I was having issues. I have yet to come across a single instance where I had an issue with cover or movement or gunplay due to lag or connection. It is all very smooth. And another biggy - it has put me in a game everytime in about 2 seconds.

Overall it feels more polished in most every way than Gears ever has online. Sure some issues could pop up but the refinements are obvious.

That said there are still a couple negatives.

I have had a situation with being spawn camped on two of the three maps I have played so far in the Team Deathmatch mode. It hasn't happened everytime, but 3 of the 7 or so matches I played ended with my team cornered in the spawn. This is something they might end up addressing more as it isn't something you've ever really had to deal with when you are playing Last Man Standing which is what Gears typically is. Team Deathmatch suits the game better than I thought it would though, having a set number of lives for the team makes it still feel like Gears. The problem being if one or two people on your team really suck and keep running out and getting killed, then they are really screwing the whole team over.

The last quick thing I'm gonna say is about the weapons (this isn't all part of the negatives). All the loadout weapons feel really good overall (though the sawed off shotgun seems pretty useless as you have to be standing ontop of someone to kill them - I may just need to experiment with it more though). There is a serious lack of sniper rifles and good places to use them, which was my favorite weapon in gears 1, I hope that is just something I'm overlooking. The flame thrower might need to be dialed back a hair as on Trenches it was one of the main things that was keeping my team cornered in the spawn.

Might post more later, wanna get back to playing.

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I saw a guy using a meat shield, somebody charged him with the pendulum lancer, he threw his meat shield into his lancer, and while that guy was killing his teammate, the guy went around to the side and blew him to bits.

Awesome!

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