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FEATURED VOXPOP oblivion437 Update: I was unfortunately not aware of Shamus Young's severe criticism of Fallout 3 available here to link in the original piece and I regret that.  It dovetails rather nicely with what I've written and it's much better executed than my piece.  I strongly recommend anyone...

GAMING NEWS

Gears of War Creator Cliff Bleszinski Will Not Return to Work on Gears of War 4

Posted on Tuesday, January 28 @ 13:00:00 Eastern by

Who knows what Gears of War 4 could possibly mean for the overarrching Gears narrative, the multiplayer, or even the gameplay? Certainly not Cliff Bleszinski, former employee of Epic Games and lead designer on the Gears of War franchise.

Bleszinski brought the original Gears of War to Microsoft's Xbox 360 platform and then followed that up with massive launches for Gears of War 2 and Gears of War 3. I still get punched in the emotional gut when I watche the end of the third game, so I can't blame Bleszinski for wanting to move on from the franchise.

In the blog post, Bleszinski writes that Rod Fergusson will help steer the ship through these waters as Bleszinski has no plans to return to the franchise: 

I'm not going to move to Vancouver to work on it. I'm not going to consult on it. My headspace is in the future now, not the past. I have come to realize that until you give people something new to focus on they will obsess about the past.

Bleszinski says that he hopes his new project will create the same level of fandom as Gears, but that he doesn't have anything new to announce at this time. Bleszinski says that this should put to rest any questions he receives about Gears of War appearing on PlayStation platforms, but I'm not as quick to assume the series isn't in trouble.

Clearly, focusing on cranking out more Gears of War games is not the answer. Gears of War: Judgment tried to capitalize on the lengthy console generation, but simply didn't have the creative oomph necessary to do the franchise justice. Microsoft may also have a Gears real-time strategy game in the works. I hope Microsoft gives fledling studio Black Tusk the financial backing and creative freedom to do something entertaining with Gears, but there's no shortage of concern to be had.

While Black Tusk has most likely recruited top-tier talent for major IPs under Microsoft's wing, learning to work together and communicate will take a little longer than "here's your new desk." Still, Bleszinski's endorsement goes a long way.

"Phil Spencer [VP Microsoft Studios] went out of his way to give me a phone call to informe me of the transaction last week," Bleszinski writes. "Phil, you didn't have to do that... 343 knocked it out of the park with Halo and I think Black Tusk will do a fantastic job with Gears."
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