Phil Spencer wanted Gears of War 4 to go back to basics and bet more on horror.
It is without a doubt that Gears of war is one of Xbox’s workhorses and a remarkable saga. However, the evolution of the franchise took a somewhat particular path. Being that the last two installments are still great games, the general opinion of the community is that It’s not those first three masterpieces that formed the pillars of the saga. The new installments strayed further and further from the ideas the original game had. A situation that, according to Bleszinski Cliffone of those most responsible for creating the saga, was not in Phil Spencer’s plans.
Phil Spencer wanted a different Gears of War
Bleszinski Cliff appeared on the Xbox Era podcast for talk about different topics related to Gears of War and one of the most interesting reflections was on the saga’s relationship with horror video games. The author recalled that the first of the games was “very inspired” by resident Evil 4, although the tone has softened over time. As he himself reveals, it was something that should have come back after Microsoft finally bought the rights to the franchisebut ended up never coming back.
“It was one of Phil Spencer’s main suggestions when Microsoft bought the Gears of War IP. When I was talking to Rod Ferguson, he said let’s go back to the horror stuff. The first Gears of War was heavily inspired by Resident Evil 4. Those are things they are… it’s so easy to get into the action of Michael Bay. That was, I think, the problem with the Dead Space saga. That’s why the Dead Space remake was so well received, because people want that experience . People want to be afraid.” Cliff Bleszinski in the Xbox Era.
The truth is that instead of following the path suggested by Phil Spencer, the saga has doubled down on its commitment to action. Even when Gears of War 4 promised an experience much more like the first in a spectacular trailer that sometimes reminded of the legendary “Mad World” with which the original was announced. However, he gave up on this darker scenario. Similar story for a gear 5 with its semi-open world structure and much more narrative-focused approach. This was one of the few criticisms Bleszinski made of the saga: “The decision about who dies and who lives in Gears 5… I’m going to bite my tongue about that.”
An idea that didn’t make it to Gears of War 2
While the developer had good words for the latest games in the series, they too wanted to regret that some of your ideas were not implemented. A very interesting thing that could arrive in Gears of War 2 was the evolution of grasshoppers. “My idea for the Locust in the sequels was that they evolved (…) they could reach their final form. They were worms and instead they became, I don’t know… I don’t mean moths or butterflies, but they had wings. The marketing line I wanted to use was that before they came from below and now they come from above”, he explained.
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