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Gears 5's multiplayer reveal looks fluid, still all about shotguns

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Gears 5's multiplayer is making its big debut this weekend during the Gears Summer Series Invitational. It's not always clear what's going on, but Gears 5 is looking fast, fluid, and still full of instant shotgun kills.

Shotguns have always been a big part of Gears multiplayer, but watching pros use them is something else. They bounce around cover at high speeds and only peek for the briefest moments to take a shot. When the opportunity arises, they close the distance to get a close-up shotgun blast that shreds enemies into a pile of meat.

Gears of War multiplayer is best known for its classic deathmatch and objective modes, but the Summer Series is showing off Gears' marque esports mode, the new and improved Escalation. Escalation is essentially an objective capture mode with limited respawns.

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Gears 5 adds new twists that deepens Escalation's meta, like weapon placement lockouts between rounds and the possibility of an instant win if the enemy team is dead all at once.

I imagine that Escalation will be a satisfying mode for more serious players, but as a viewer it's kinda confusing. The on-screen UI makes it difficult to parse some important details of the match, like how many respawns a player has left and where the power weapons are placed.

The Summer Series continues today with more Gears 5 Escalation on the Eleague Twitch channel.

Morgan has been writing for PC Gamer since 2018, first as a freelancer and currently as a staff writer. He has also appeared on Polygon, Kotaku, Fanbyte, and PCGamesN. Before freelancing, he spent most of high school and all of college writing at small gaming sites that didn't pay him. He's very happy to have a real job now. Morgan is a beat writer following the latest and greatest shooters and the communities that play them. He also writes general news, reviews, features, the occasional guide, and bad jokes in Slack. Twist his arm, and he'll even write about a boring strategy game. Please don't, though.