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Gears of War Updated, New Maps Wednesday

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the new-ways-to-frag dept.

XBox (Games) 45

Microsoft's biggest seller for 2006 (2.7 million sold in eight weeks) is certain to be a series we'll see around for a long, long time. In the immediate future, though, the game is getting a much-needed update today, with new maps available this Wednesday. The new maps are multiplayer only, and are entitled 'Raven Down' and 'Old Bones'. From the update: "Fixed rare situation where players could get stuck after chainsawing in multiplayer. Reduced Grenade Tag melee distance (Z: thank you!). Enabled 'Strict' NAT check on host to prevent possible connection issues. Optimized server browser queries to return results more quickly and prevent scroll bars from hiding quality of service icons. Reduced number of possible revives in Execution to match Warzone. Removed host name from Ranked match server browser. Disabled security cameras in Ranked matches." It's great that the game is getting an update, but that innocuous looking 'removed host name from ranked match server browser' means it is now even more difficult to hook up with friends for a Ranked match. Boo, Epic. Boo.

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pc version (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17511142)

Yeah, wake me when theres a port to a real game machine.

Re:pc version (0)

EGSonikku (519478) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511426)

Define real you pompus ass.

Speaking for myself, I have a 360 and a Windows box for games. Having one does not mean excluding others. Grow up. One is no more 'real' than the other.

Re:pc version (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17513202)

Okay, just so long as you aren't all defensive or anything.

Re:pc version (3, Funny)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511434)

Yeah, I'm still waiting for the Dreamcast version.

Re:pc version (0, Flamebait)

BIZKeT (636677) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511978)

Yea, a real system where I have to hope that all my drivers work with the new game, and that I have to run a spyware scan on, and that takes 20+ minutes to install the game, and that I get to sit at a desk instead of my comfortable couch, and that I get to play on a 17" monitor instead of my 54" hi-def tv. Yea, a real system!

Re:pc version (4, Insightful)

spyder913 (448266) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512064)

As much as this guy is getting marked troll, I would prefer to play most FPS games on my PC because mouse/keyboard. Plus my wife is usually using the big TV.

However FPS games on the Wii may finally change my mind.

Re:pc version (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512334)

I would prefer to play most FPS games on my PC because mouse/keyboard.

I would prefer to play the games on my console, with mouse and keyboard. Sadly the only console I've ever actually been able to do this on was the dreamcast, and the only game I've been able to do it with is Quake, and it was a beta release so it's not very stable. I do have the DC mouse and keyboard though, and it is a wonderful and unusual experience. (Note: SmartJoy FRAG does not count - it lags.)

It's especially pathetic that we can't do that since everything since the PS2 has had USB.

Re:pc version (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17514224)

Max Shooter for the Xbox that allows mouse keyboard has no lag and works really good. Playing Halo2 right now with and I'm very satisfied.

Re:pc version (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 7 years ago | (#17520376)

If memory serves, the Dreamcast versions of both Quake III: Arena and Outtrigger support mouse/keyboard. It's not just the homebrew Quake that's open to you.

Re:pc version (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17512868)

Don't get your hopes too high. I don't think anything will ever beat a mouse and keyboard. The Wii might be nice for sniping and other fine targeting, but that's only a small part of what you need.

Gears of War isn't a FPS, and the GP *is* a troll (0)

EComni (998601) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512932)

His comment is akin to a console owner saying he doesn't care about WoW because "it ain't on a real system like the Wii/360/PS3"; it's a fanboy comment that serves nothing.

Whether or not the mouse/keyboard would work better (probably make sniping a lot more manageable) is debatable. But GoW is not a FPS, and the final game is designed (and works extremely well) with the controller.

And it's only on the 360 for the moment, so dem's the breaks...

Re:pc version (3, Insightful)

Erwos (553607) | more than 7 years ago | (#17513022)

Gears of War isn't an FPS. It's third-person shooter. Also, the control scheme doesn't really seem to lend itself so well to the KB+M, but that might just be my mis-impression.

Re:pc version (1)

PingSpike (947548) | more than 7 years ago | (#17523182)

I tend to agree. I'd actually call it a hybrid myself (leaning closer to 3rd then 1st) but wouldn't call you wrong for saying its 3rd person.

Interestingly, I just can't stand most shooters on consoles. I tried this one at my bother in laws and really enjoyed it. I usually feel hobbled by the controls in console FPS, but aside from accidentally rolling all over the place I found this one easy to pick up and play.

But then again...its not a FPS is it?

Re:pc version (1)

aplusjimages (939458) | more than 7 years ago | (#17522028)

Major Nelson has an interview [majornelson.com] with a designer for Shadow Run, which will be a cross platform game. He said they were surprised that the people on the console had more of an advantage than the people on PCs. But now they've tweaked it so that if you jump on a PC or a 360 you won't be able to tell if your playing against someone on a PC or 360.

Server Name (2, Insightful)

lantenon (867508) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511146)

"Boo, Epic. Boo." The point is so that you can't have four people in the same room on the same team in a ranked match. Boo? Cry me a fucking river. If you want to play on the same team with your friends, play an unranked match, where the lag that this scenario introduces won't allow people to artificially inflate their rank.

Re:Server Name (1)

aplusjimages (939458) | more than 7 years ago | (#17522088)

I have to agree. People act like they can never play with their friends on GoW. I'm just glad they are fixing a lot of the problems that actually cause real disadvantages, like not being able to communicate with your team or sticking someone with a grenade from 5 feet away.

I just hope they fix the glitch where you can't stop shooting. Or if you are knocked down on execution and someone kills the last enemy as you are being revived then you can't move on the next round. You can shoot, but you are stuck to the ground.

Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (1)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511150)

Its no surprise they made it harder. A lot of features around ranked matches are set up so you can't call your buddies in and pad your stats for a ranked match. No join-in-progress, invites disabled, etc. are all ways in which live games have restrictions on them that keep your friends from joining. The seriousness in which they are implemented depends on how the leaderboards and such are constructed.

This leaves to wonder if Halo 3 will have a ranked "couch" system like they did for Halo 2, and what kind of restrictions will be put on it. (Can only play a ranked game with 8 players if you have a 4 person party, for instance).

Re:Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511602)

It's unfortunate, but this is the only way to keep the ranking system fair and unbiased. Despite Zonk's complaints, this is a welcome fix, as it prevents people from 'gaming' the ranking system by setting up games with their buddies on one side and players who purposely play bad on the other to increase their ranking. In fact, it's surprising that Gears even put the host name there before, I'm pretty sure that violates some Xbox Live guidelines.

If you want to play with your friends, join unranked games. That's all there is to it.

Re:Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (1)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511616)

Don't you find it rather foolish though, that for a game that's based entirely around team based combat, you can't play ranked matches with your actual team?

Think of team based capture the flag in any professionally played PC Shooter... wouldn't you find it ridiculous if you went to a tournament and they told the members of your team that everyone would be broken up and play with random members of other teams?

I agree that they should do what they can to eliminate boosting and other ranked mode cheating tactics, but for a game who's ONLY mode of play is within a team... they should allow for professional players to partake in ranked matches AS A TEAM.

Re:Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (1)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512786)

I definately don't disagree with you, but they chose a very poor system of matchmaking for a game that is supposedly "team-based". There's no real support for matching with buddies and finding another group of people to play with. If you did have a team-matching based game, then I agree it would be silly to do something different for ranking. What you'd want to do is ensure that you and your friends always end up on the same team. You can't really do much boosting when you're on the same team, usually its done by having you kill me 300 times or something. So if you don't give the option of getting on the other team, then this should satisfy the requirements of not having friends on the opposing team. (And for a tournement play you'd probably use unranked games with different accounts in a controlled environment. Online pro-tournements are fairly dubious because of the high potential for cheating - not that gears of war is really set up for tournements. For a really great online game, its feautreset is pretty low. Maybe in another patch or GoW2...)

Re:Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17511894)

I couldn't disagree more.

Artificially inflating your rank is pretty much masturbation as far as video gaming goes. Impeding the majority of fair players who want to play as a team in order to thwart a few bad apples that just want to ruin the experience for themselves seems pretty unfair. Let 'em puff up their rank, it doesn't hurt us and it'll only cause them to get spanked and lose rank when they face people who fairly earned that level. And if they can hold their own against people who fairly earned it then don't they deserve to play at that level?

Remember, the ranking is not an absolute measure of quality of play but rather a relative one. It exists only to match equally skilled players with each other. People who unfairly pad their stats will have nothing other than unfairly padded stats to show for it.

In the meantime, the rest of us are forced to play with random teammates and opponents. No offense, but I'd rather play with my friends, especially a game like GoW with so much emphasis on teamwork and coordination. Even when it's just two of us we continue to find the same host each match during the course of a night to play the same people over and over.

Un-ranked matches are distinctly less fun for a number of reasons. Not the least of which is no trueskill matched gameplay. Carrying teams into a game hasn't affected the online play of Chromehounds at all. Dozens of PC games allow you to play with your friends all day long, and there isn't an issue there.

So why are we being punished with fewer gameplay options when we're not the ones screwing things up?

Re:Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (1)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512828)

I posted to another reply about this, but I dont' think you're entirely correct when you say it doesn't affect us when others are boosting. It does affect those who want to play the game and get thrown in with a bunch of boosters. Its another form of griefing, and you might not realize right away that's what is going on. It also hurts the community as a whole, since more hardcore players might not stick around if the leaderboards and "bragging rights" are dominated by cheaters. Keeping an online game community healthy is very hard to do, and eliminating cheaters is one of those things.

And like I said in my other post, I agree that in a team game you should play with your friends...on the same team. GoW should have a halo-style party system where you link up with your friends and then join a game. Provided you're on the same team, boosting becomes a non-issue.

Re:Friends and ranked matches are discouraged (2, Insightful)

benfinkel (1048566) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512982)

I'm the anonymous coward from earlier in this thread, figured I'd go to the effort of setting up a real account. I'm embarrassed to admit I never played Halo 2 so I'm unfamiliar with the system but a co-worker here was just describing it to me and it sounds pretty perfect. As for griefers and boosters, I can't imagine that they're that big of an issue. If you DO end up in a match against them, you'll whomp on them, they'll lose rank, little of of your time will be wasted and you won't lose any rank for beating them. As far as ladders and other absolute rankings go, there are way to combine Trueskill with win/loss and a little bit of booster monitoring to avoid anyone cheating the system at the upper tiers. "Bragging Rights" can't really be discounted by cheaters. If you feel your accomplishments mean less because a cheater achieved them via shortcut then you are only doing yourself a disservice and giving the cheater exactly what he wants. I think my biggest problem is that setting up blind matches like this really punishes the majority of us who want to play fairly and cleanly with our friends. They're making the game less fun (and really, this ain't The Olympics, it's a game) especially for the regular players and I doubt they're going to influence the boosters much in any way.

Sarcasm (3, Insightful)

earnest murderer (888716) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511158)

It's great that the game is getting an update, but that innocuous looking 'removed host name from ranked match server browser' means it is now even more difficult to hook up with friends for a Ranked match. Boo, Epic. Boo.

Well, I suppose that leaves little doubt of what kind of player [gamerandy.com] Zonk is.

Re:Sarcasm (1)

crabpeople (720852) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512564)

I dont really know anything about this game, but I read your link. Why is it bad to have all of a clan play on the same team? isn't that the point of having a clan? I've never heard of a multiplayer game that forced you onto a random server, and people thought that was desireable. The guy obviously cheating for the other team is a different matter, but I find it hard to believe MS would care the slightest about that! I guess I just don't get this whiney console mentality of the article. If someones griefing or cheating, why don't you just find another server? Maybe I've played CS for too long, but you cant expect some company to solve your private server related issues (unless of course they are legitimatly hacking, not just griefing).

Re:Sarcasm (1)

earnest murderer (888716) | more than 7 years ago | (#17519820)

I've nothing against forming a clan for a ranked game (or ideally ranked games for clans) they just didn't design this particular game to support that kind of game play in ranked games.

There is no such thing as a "private" server, all games are played over Microsoft's Live service.

When the system is exploited this easily, finding a "clean" game can be difficult or impossible and is incredibly time consuming.
Once you join a channel you're committed for 5-6 minutes. If you leave the game you get negative comments on your profile.
Some of the exploits are not immediately obvious if you notice at all.
Microsoft/Epic do care because they spent a tremendous amount of time and money on a game that has a reputation for a lame ranked game system. Valve too has spent a lot of time and effort resolving exploits and other problems with private CS servers. But as you said, you could always move to a different CS server if you didn't like they way someone ran theirs.

Hooking up with friends for ranked matches? (0)

Buzz_Litebeer (539463) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511162)

Thats good btw, you do not want friends playing ranked matches unless randomly seeded against each other.

What GOOD reason is there for two friends to play against each other in a ranked match?

Re:Hooking up with friends for ranked matches? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17512412)

There are plenty of good reasons for friends to play against each other in a ranked match, but that's not what this is about.

This is about not letting friends play WITH EACH OTHER in a ranked match, for which there are many good reasons.

Friends? (0, Troll)

ThinkWeak (958195) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511306)

The most discussed item of this update is the "Removal of host name from Ranked Matches." The game still has the option to create a Player Match, in which you can invite your friends and play with them to your hearts content. However, for whatever reason this is of no consequence and people are demanding they be able to play Ranked! matches with their friends. The difference between the two game types?

Currently they are as follows:
1) Ranked matches list you on a leaderboard for your individual contribution (not as a team)
2) Player matches allow you to invite your friends, but do not track your statistics
3) Ranked matches usually consist of 1 team of friends led by the host, with the other team being a random selection of people

After the update, things will change as follows:
1) Ranked matches list you on a leaderboard for your individual contribution (not as a team)
2) Player matches allow you to invite your friends, but do not track your statistics
3) Ranked matches will consist of 2 teams of random people

So I'm not sure why everyone is all up in arms about it. If you want to get your precious ranked points, you'll have to be able to communicate with people outside of your circle of friends. I know it may be scary, but if it is too nerve-racking - you can go back to your player matches to work up the courage to do it again.

Re:Friends? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17512186)

There are bigger issues.

Playing un-ranked matches does not match Trueskill ratings of the players. That means incredibly unbalanced games, which is not any fun no matter which side of the balance you fall on.

Playing un-ranked matches introduces a lot of people that aren't really interested in playing. They'll run around, do stupid shit, rap into the microphone, etc... Ranked play still has these issues sometimes, but generally a lot less since people are a little more serious about it. Unless you've got seven other friends to fill up a private room, you need to rely on at least some random internet people.

I want my trueskill rating to increase or decrease and reflect my actual gameplay. There is no reason this should be separate from playing with my friends. In fact, as a team-based game if me and my friends perform better individually when we work as a team I'd like to enjoy that and take advantage of it. Sometimes random teammates are fun too, but I'm not friends with these people for no reason. They're my FRIENDS and I want to PLAY with them.

Really, we're all missing the big picture. Go play R6: Vegas. It's ten times the game that GoW is anyways.

Missed one! (4, Informative)

meta-monkey (321000) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511516)

You missed the most important update!

Fixed voice issue with new players joining Player Match games in progress

This was the most annoying bug of all time. When you joined an existing match in progress, about 85% of the time your team couldn't hear you. You could hear them, but they couldn't hear you. So after joining a match with your friends, you pretty much had to quit the map and reform the game. ABOUT TIME, EPIC.

Re:Missed one! (1)

mingot (665080) | more than 7 years ago | (#17511606)

Amen. This was the huge one for me.

What? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17511554)

If I can't join a friends game anymore, then give us a party system so we can join a game as a team.

Advertising, on MY Slashdot? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17511630)

What is this doing here? An update for gears of war story? Honestly? ::sigh::
That's nasty.

Gears of War - Not Very Good (1, Interesting)

RexRhino (769423) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512030)

Despite the update - Gears of War and the Multiplayer especially are not very good. Not terrible, mind you, but not nearly deserving of all the hype and buzz the game had.

Re:Gears of War - Not Very Good (1)

CK2004PA (827615) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512402)

Pretty funny, 3 comments ago on a seperate threas you said "Achievements are too tough to get for most players" , I'm summarizing your statement. So basically you are a Sony fanboy, or you can't finish GoW on hardcore difficulty, or playing online you get your butt kicked ? Pick one.

Re:Gears of War - Not Very Good (1)

benfinkel (1048566) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512510)

I agree with him, GoW is a pretty "un-fleshed-out" game. Particularly the MP. And I DID finish the game on Insane :) R6: Vegas FTW!

Re:Gears of War - Not Very Good (1)

RexRhino (769423) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512752)

Pretty funny, 3 comments ago on a seperate threas you said "Achievements are too tough to get for most players" , I'm summarizing your statement. So basically you are a Sony fanboy, or you can't finish GoW on hardcore difficulty, or playing online you get your butt kicked ? Pick one.

Or maybe Gears of War just wasn't much fun. I much prefer to play Rainbow 6: Vegas.

You seem to be getting a bit over emotional and sensitive about something as trivial as videogames. I must be a Sony fanboy if I don't like a 360 game I purchased? You are insulting my video game abilities, as if I would find that some sort of insult? Dude, lighten up! Gears of War just wasn't the fantastic game it was hyped up to be, and people would be better off spending their money on a different game... don't freak out like I just told you there was no Santa Claus.

Re:Gears of War - Not Very Good (1)

JebusIsLord (566856) | more than 7 years ago | (#17513586)

I think gears is a great game, and i've had a ton of fun playing it through on each difficulty level (I'm not done yet though - just not that good!).

However, I agree that it isn't "fully fleshed out". It feels more episodic. The plot and single-player campaign both feel unfinished... but I'm okay with this. It means sequels, and leaves me wanting more, but with a sense of accomplishment. Compare that with a game you got bored with and never finished... I think short, polished games are the way to go.

Re:Gears of War - Not Very Good (1)

KillaBeave (1037250) | more than 7 years ago | (#17524348)

I really liked the game in CO-OP mode on the harder difficulty levels. By yourself it really wasn't all that special. Like many games, it revolves around the multiplayer experience. Your multiplayer expereince is pretty well determined by the people you're playing with. So if you're a "lone wolf" always searching for random games, I imagine it's not that great because most of the time you'll be paired with 12-17 year olds screaming/singing/incessantly talking into the mic. Myself, I've got a close group of friends that I play games with. We generally all buy the same game at about the same time so we never have to worry about running into the random brats that you find online. That's why I really LOVE GoW multiplayer. Me and my 3 friends will start a room and stay on the same team. If more of our friends are online we'll play where we're on both teams and if there's someone particularly annoying, the boot button is a cell phone call away :) So we ALWAYS have a great online expereince, because we only surround ourselves with like-minded individuals. I guess it's very YMMV in that regard.

Re:Gears of War - Not Very Good (1)

PaganRitual (551879) | more than 7 years ago | (#17516764)

You speak the (subjective, but I share your opinion) truth, but you will go down for it. In fact, you already have. I'll do my best to give you some company on your descent.

The game is overhyped to the point where it comes very close to eclipsing the most overrated game of all time. The only people that don't know what that game is are the total fanboys for it.

I couldn't finish the game single player in GoW because I got bored witless by the end of chapter 3, and thinking co-op would save it I bought a second controller, invited a friend over, and we were sick of it by the start of chapter 4. We did start from the beginning, I'm not saying that a single fight had him bored. He was much like me, he thought it was impressive to begin with, then mid chapter 2 we were starting to wonder if it was every going to change the environment or maybe even the gameplay. Then there was the incredibly boring underground section. I'm past finishing games that I'm not enjoying. If I'm three chapters in out of five and I'm already starting to drift off, then the game goes back on the shelf.

Thankfully we got more enjoyment out of co-op Assault Heroes, and the wired 360 controller works perfectly in my PC.

It's just kill.switch with a graphics patch, and appeals to the crowd that think the main meathead characters are cool, and that like to describe people as 'total badasses', or something. Character depth isn't something important.

I'd be more pissed off, but I picked up the collectors edition with the polo-shirt and dogtag bonuses, and after selling those to the sucker fanboys on ebay for AUS$50 and AUS$25 respectively I only paid AUS$25 for the game, which is like taking a chance on a budget title and finding out it's actually pretty crap; you just put it aside and figure you might give it a go again sometime later when you're bored.

Security Cameras (1)

nefiga (1048570) | more than 7 years ago | (#17512734)

What does this mean in the patch noes? "Disabled security cameras in Ranked matches" I've only played the game a few times, so I wasn't sure what security cameras was in reference to.

Re:Security Cameras (1)

ThinkWeak (958195) | more than 7 years ago | (#17513008)

When you die, you are able to view the action through one of your teammate's viewpoint, or you can cycle through static cameras throughout the level.

I'm guessing that they're removing this option from the ranked matches so that you can not spy on your opponents strategy between rounds.

Re:Security Cameras (1)

aplusjimages (939458) | more than 7 years ago | (#17522108)

Exactly what ThinkWeak has said. The problem is that people are getting together on private chats or at each others house and getting on ranked games that way. When one person dies, they can cycle through the security cameras and tell his/her teammates where the enemy is. Any form of spectating should definitely be removed from ranked games. I think private chat should be disabled during a ranked game to prevent any form of cheating.
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