Gears of War was one of the top shooter franchises of last generation. It managed to climb to the top of the genre thanks in part to its memorable campaigns, filled with plenty of over-the-top moments.
These were the Gears scenes that stuck with us for years and turned us into faithful Gears of War fans:
Be Afraid Of The Dark - Gears Of War 1The most inventive part of Gears of War's campaign was Delta Squad's encounter with the Kryll. Like the monsters from Pitch Black, these flying creatures would swarm and instantly kill anything that strayed outside of the light. On top of having to deal with Locust soldiers, Marcus and Dom had to be careful not to stray into darkness. They had to look out for propane tanks that they could shoot to light up their path through the city. These monsters turned the shooter into a sort of puzzle/horror hybrid if only for a few scenes.
Battling The Leviathan - Gears Of War 2In Gears of War 3, players strap on a mech suit and fight a massive sea creature called a Leviathan that's trying to capsize their aircraft carrier. As fun as that fight was, it doesn't compare to the Leviathan's horrifying first appearance in Gears of War 2. While traveling across an underground lake in a rickety little boat, Dom and Marcus are attacked by the beast and forced to defend themselves with just their regular rifles and grenades. The Leviathan knocked the boat to and fro and eventually swallowed it altogether. This gave Dom and Marcus the opening they needed, as they tossed grenades down the beast's throat to kill it.. The fight was really Gears at its best: crafty soldiers facing down grotesque monsters and just barely escaping with their lives.
Inside The Riftworm - Gears Of War 2The Leviathan wasn't the only monster to swallow Delta Squad. In Gears 2, the squad is also gobbled up by a giant Riftworm. There's an entire level devoted to them traveling through its innards, fighting the parasites that live inside as well while trying not to be torn apart by its digestive tract. In a series filled with unique battlegrounds, the Riftworm might have been the most interesting.
Cole Train Reliving His Glory Days - Gears Of War 3There were some very poignant scenes throughout the Gears of War series, like Dom finally finding his wife or Adam Fenix saying goodbye to his son. I considered putting these moments on the list but then remembered that Cole Train is a lot cooler than a bunch of dead people. Cole's best moment was in Gears of War 3 when he visits his former Thrashball stadium. Clutching a bomb like a Thrashball, he jukes past several Lambent soldiers and plants the explosive on their stalk. He then does an end-zone dance while the stalk explodes behind him, stopping the Lambent invasion on his former stomping grounds. Cole had plenty of great scenes throughout the series but this was his zenith.
Riding the Brumak - Gears Of War 2Gears Of War 2's ending is hard to top. Delta Squad commandeers a Brumak, an enormous beast loaded with heavy artillery, and rampages through an underground tunnel system filled with Locust armies. After the Brumak starts to mutate into a Lambent, the soldiers leap to a helicopter. While the helicopter circles the tentacle-sprouting monstrosity, Marcus uses an orbital laser to take it apart. The Brumak explodes, flooding the caverns and apparently killing the rest of the Locust Horde left. It's a thrilling conclusion to arguably the best game in the series.