This year’s Gears of War 4 marks a historic first for the franchise- it is the first entry in the series that will have absolutely no involvement whatsoever from Epic Games, the studio that originally created the franchise, before selling it to Microsoft. Microsoft instead has a brand new studio, The Coalition, created for the purpose of handling Gears of War, working on this new game.
There are shades in this of Microsoft’s other big name series- Halo was similarly created by Bungie, before the studio went on to do other things, and Microsoft ended up creating 343 Industries to handle their premier series. That transition has not been the smoothest, as Halo games created after Bungie moved on from the franchise have not achieved the kind of success that the original trilogy did. There is always, then, the fear that Gears of War may see a similar decline too.
However, series creator Cliff Bleszinski, now no longer working with Epic nor Microsoft, hopes that this is not the case- in a candid interview with VideoGamer, he expressed his hope that Microsoft will do right by the series.
“Now [the Gears of War franchise] is at Microsoft and I hope they don’t screw it up. My fingers are crossed,” Bleszinski told VideoGamer.com at a press event for his next game, LawBreakers.
For Blelszinski, there is a special vested investment in seeing the games do well- after all, Gears is more his baby than anybody else’s- though that is not the analogy he used when describing the situation.
“It’s kind of like breaking up with an ex and wanting to see them get re-married but not to somebody who is better-looking than you,” he said.
So far, Bleszinski seems to be happy with what The Coalition are doing- he responded favorably to one of the trailers for Gears 4, and in general seems to be excited at the prospect of playing the game. Let us hope that he is not disappointed when Gears of War 4 launches exclusively on the Xbox One on October 12.