Bleszinski: Gears Became a Negative Stereotype

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Bleszinski: Gears Became a Negative Stereotype

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Cliff Bleszinski reckons a little bit of Gears of War's heart got lost in the design process, something he hopes to avoid in the future.

Gears of War, for those of you who live under rocks, is a game about gargantuan hunchbacks shooting aliens, pausing only to shout angrily at each other and grimace. As far as modern video game narratives go, it really doesn't get more clichéd than that. According to Gears designer, Cliff Bleszinski, some of the game's more intellectual themes got lost during the design process.

"Gears was always meant to be a lot more Band of Brothers than Predator, and that's one of the things that, in hindsight, if I could go back and change I would," he told Penny Arcade. "The characters didn't need to be huge, although it turned out to be an iconic thing. I never stood in front of the company and said I wanted to see the biggest, most macho motherfuckers you could ever see, that never happened. [The character design] happened completely organically."

"[Gears] became a negative stereotype in this generation. I want to be smarter about that in the future," he continued.

While some of you may have set your scoff beams to maximum in response to the idea that Gears was ever supposed to be anything other than a violent, machismo-drenched, teenager-appeasing romp, the series does occasionally hint at a more philosophical underpinning. From the subdued but effective ad-spots, to the way the games themselves juxtapose juvenile violence against architecturally beautiful environments, it's clear that Gears had something to say, it was just mostly drowned out by the constant gunfire.

"If I were to pass Gears off to another studio, and they came back with a pitch of having a double-edged chainsaw, and the characters are more buff, and now you can pull off someone's head and shit down their neck, and they had a character that makes Cole look tame... I would look at them and say no, you're going in the exact wrong direction," he said. "Gears is always some of that, but I would want to further evolve it in more of a Christopher Nolan way."

The first person to not post the obvious "we have to go deeper" reference wins my respect.

Source: Penny Arcade

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I would definitely play any sort of Band of Brothers style videogame done right. Cliffy B, you have my money!

I kind of do wish it went in that direction. I loved gears regardless but it would have been interesting to see the ideas of a destroyed world with more emotion than just anger or sadistic glee. On another note cue the cliffy b hate because he's totally a manchild and all that jazz

A little advice Bleszinski: If you want your game and it's characters to be taken seriously, then don't make the signature weapon a fucking chainsaw. And don't give the armor hubcaps for nipples.

Could have reversed direction for gears 2, decided to MAKE ALL THE MONEY instead.

Hm...I got that from the books. They were trying to do something more than the video games were. And I don't care what you say, that scene in Gears 2 is heartbreaking. That struck a cord with me, so there were moments in the series where I saw deeper emotions.
Unfortunately, reading the books ruined the final game for me. There were so many plotlines that were left hanging in the last book that should have been answered in Gears 3, but weren't. They were even still raising questions MINUTES before the final battle. That's not right, not for a game that's supposed to be a conclusion.
Knowing that this is how Cliff Bleszinski wanted to run the series, I'm forced to wonder if his original version tried to force it's way back into the games and ended up making them lose focus.

So basically not even Cliffy B likes the Gears characters. Wow I wish I still knew that fanboy from high school so I could slap him in the face with that little bit of info. Well whatever he likes Gears I don't.

You're waiting for a giant worm. You don't know where it'll take you, but you know it will be okay because we'll be GRAAAAAAAAAAAAGH!

I actually did see this at points. It's not as if the characters aren't likeable, they're just cliched, it's kinda hard as an average person to relate to someone with arms like construction girders.

Sometimes it worked well, and sometimes, not so much. For example, dom's wife missing-Annoying.

.

Cliffy B going artsy on us though? I dunno...it could go well, but considering epic's past games, I wonder whether he should just stick to popcorn action.

Wait CliffyB wants his games to be taken seriously...and yet he follows up with a game like BulletStorm.
This guy is a walking embodiment of a frat guy.
You want to be taken seriously but when people criticize your game your first reaction is basically akin to "you're all haters!"
Sorry Cliffy but when you conduct yourself as a Dbag and piss all over the PC market don't expect people to take you seriously and look at your with adoring eyes.

Sorry, couldn't stop laughing the whole time I was reading this.

So, so sad.

Meh, I have no trouble believing that. Of course I am one of the 7 people in the world who bothered to read the Gears books which is where most of the series heart is located. So I have a vastly different outlook on the series than most. But unfortunately shit just don't work that way. You can't expect everyone to read the accompanying books/comics/whatevers. So maybe he should have focused a little more on turning even just some of the book content into episodic content to be released between the games. If he were to do that and release all 3 games with episodic content in one big pack then it would portray the entire series in a whole new light.
Too bad Cliffy B is a moronic wanker and is all talk.

Rednog:
Wait CliffyB wants his games to be taken seriously...and yet he follows up with a game like BulletStorm.
This guy is a walking embodiment of a frat guy.
You want to be taken seriously but when people criticize your game your first reaction is basically akin to "you're all haters!"
Sorry Cliffy but when you conduct yourself as a Dbag and piss all over the PC market don't expect people to take you seriously and look at your with adoring eyes.

People Can Fly made Bulletstorm - which was effing awesome, by the way - Blezinski's company just published it, then swiftly buried the IP when it didn't meet sales expectations.

I liked Gears 1, when they weren`t even trying to set up deeper characters and emotions.
Gears 2 big emotional scene just made me shaking my head in disbelief and then burst out in laughter.

minor Spoiler:

I mean i use the same gun for gushy locust head explosions. Besides there are better ways to get the same result. The way Epic handled it felt stupid. They took the "horse with a broken leg"routine.

In regards to a Band of Brothers style game, the Brothers In Arms series has come the closest in getting a similar feeling, while the gameplay still being fun and a bit realistic.

CliffyB is the king of butthurt amongst developers.

"Gears was always meant to be a lot more Band of Brothers than Predator"

Shame it ended up like neither, almost as if caught between the two.

Predator was a great movie because it embraced what it was, cheesy, melodramatic and awesome rather than sombre, deep and profound. Gears floundered because it wanted to have both but got neither.

Still a good game even if meh narrative/characterisation.

Grey Carter:

"If I were to pass Gears off to another studio, and they came back with a pitch of having a double-edged chainsaw, and the characters are more buff, and now you can pull off someone's head and shit down their neck, and they had a character that makes Cole look tame... I would look at them and say no, you're going in the exact wrong direction,"

...did he describe Warhammer 40K on purpose?

He thinks that " a Christopher Nolan way" would make things more sensitive and thoughtful?

[insert sarcastic laughter]

Rednog:
Wait CliffyB wants his games to be taken seriously...and yet he follows up with a game like BulletStorm.
This guy is a walking embodiment of a frat guy.
You want to be taken seriously but when people criticize your game your first reaction is basically akin to "you're all haters!"
Sorry Cliffy but when you conduct yourself as a Dbag and piss all over the PC market don't expect people to take you seriously and look at your with adoring eyes.

mightybozz:
He thinks that " a Christopher Nolan way" would make things more sensitive and thoughtful?

[insert sarcastic laughter]

Well that didn't take long, did it? Both rage and elitism on the first page.

OT: Well I would care for this bit of news if gears 2 and 3 were released on pc.
But it's cool that he thinks that way, and is not the type of guy who only wants simple minded action games.

I always thought their was more to Gears than its general image showcased. I certainly felt something when Dom died. It would have been nice if its narrative and writing was closer to that of Uncharted's complexity but eh I enjoyed playing the 3 games enough I didn't think the series suffered immensely for it. Will be cool if Epics next franchise is more mature in the traditional sense.

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Some people really don't understand what they read.

I was howling with laughter over "some of the game's more intellectual themes got lost during the design process." though.

Yeah, and someone missed the subtle romance of Blue Velvet.

"the game's more intellectual themes..." Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaaa....heheheheh. I really have nothing much more to add than mocking laughter. I liked the first game because you could ruin peoples days BY USING A CHAINSAW GUN! If you want "Intellectual themes" and have 80 hours to spare, play MGS.

Sniper Team 4:
Hm...I got that from the books. They were trying to do something more than the video games were. And I don't care what you say, that scene in Gears 2 is heartbreaking. That struck a cord with me, so there were moments in the series where I saw deeper emotions.
Unfortunately, reading the books ruined the final game for me. There were so many plotlines that were left hanging in the last book that should have been answered in Gears 3, but weren't. They were even still raising questions MINUTES before the final battle. That's not right, not for a game that's supposed to be a conclusion.
Knowing that this is how Cliff Bleszinski wanted to run the series, I'm forced to wonder if his original version tried to force it's way back into the games and ended up making them lose focus.

Well alot is answered in the comics and hopefully the next and final book will square everything off, that's what's been promised.

According to Gears designer, Cliff Bleszinski, some of the game's more intellectual themes got lost during the design process.

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So were these intellectual themes lost before or after they strapped a chainsaw onto a machine gun?

Thank you Grey, you've just brightened up my afternoon.

Loving all the people being sarcastic because its a violent game. Plenty of games can be violent but strive to also make the player think.

Hell, i'm pretty sure in dragon age I was covered in blood for 90% of the game.

There was always more going on in the Gears world than the games ever conveyed. Don't need to read the books to know that.

Good on Cliffy for acknowledging his failures and missteps. Too many big game-makers these days are way too content smelling their own farts.

Hopefully he'll keep this in mind, going into the future.

Gears of War was as intellectual as Bulletstorm.

Except Bulletstorm was a parody.

...What does GoW make it, a self-parodying parody?

Of course, according to Cliffy, giving Gears of War 3 an 8/10 is a sign of sheer burning hatred for it.

Cliff, you can't claim that Gears was the most awesomest game ever and then start talking about how you were disappointed with it. That's Peter Molyneux's thing.

Hey Cliffy, if you ever make another game in the series, totally make it be like that. Don't wish you could make your older games could be different. I would really like to see this happen if it doesn't get buried again.

Everyone has the power of hindsight, Cliff. It doesn't make your work any less retarded. I'm sure in hindsight Zack Snyder wanted Sucker Punch to more like Brazil and Clockwork Orange, too.

Maybe if you had this hindsight after the first Gears, you could've put those ideas to good use. But you didn't, did ya?

I can kinda see where he's coming from. Throughout all 3 Gears games I felt that there was something else there other than shooty fun.

Actually I found that they're best played as co-op campaign since you get more of the "Band of Brothers" feel if you're actually playing with someone else. That helps you kina see what Cliff is getting at but it's still buried under a pile of macho bullet spraying washing machines.

Primary response: Well, DUH! (to title)

Secondary response: You mean the heart of it wasn't a gay space marine bromance with the substance of rice cakes?

80Maxwell08:
So basically not even Cliffy B likes the Gears characters. Wow I wish I still knew that fanboy from high school so I could slap him in the face with that little bit of info. Well whatever he likes Gears I don't.

Cliff never said he hate gears, he just said he would have preferred a different direction.

I like it the way it is personally.

Well I would say to Cliffy, now you have everyone's attention, make something that might be less appeasing.

The Gears trilogy has ended now right? Time to move on, I liked
Gears, but after 3 games, you really have milked it in my opinion.

Oh well, better luck next time eh? I still thought Gears 2 and 3 were really great games. Also, don't you dare let Microsoft cash in on this franchise like they are with Halo. That would be really shallow.

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