Gears of War 4
's third title update is scheduled to start rolling out tomorrow morning. The update adds two new maps and more cards, as well as takes aim to combat leavers in ranked, improve spectator mode and fix a cornucopia of other bugs, glitches, exploits and more.
While the update is going to be adding two new maps as well as new Gear Pack content, The Coalition is staying hush-hush on this information until tomorrow when the update is actually live. This is a new take on the map addition system, as in the past we were able to get a peek at the monthly maps
several weeks in advance of their addition to the game. Presumably, the Developer Playlist will once again be returning with the new maps.
Glory, one of December's maps
For players interested in the new Gear Pack content, which The Coalition is calling "Season 2," they have a warning. While the update will be going live in the morning (PDT time zone), and new cards will be craftable, they won't be available in packs until a few hours following the update. So if you're waiting to drop all your new credits on packs to get a chance at these new cards, keep an eye on social media for the developers to confirm they have gone live in Gear Packs:
IMPORTANT NOTE: Series 2 content will be Craftable once you download the Title Update, but will not be available in Gear Packs for a few hours following the update. If you are looking to acquire new Series 2 content, please withhold from buying Gear Packs until we confirm the Cards are available in the pool.
In an effort to improve the ranked playlist, new penalties will be in effect for leavers. The new system attempts to avoid punishing players who quit unintentionally, due to something like a drop in their Internet connection or a frozen game, and gives players an opportunity to rejoin the game for five minutes after they leave.
- Players leaving a Core/Competitive game early will now be suspended from matchmaking
- Players can rejoin a Core/Competitive match within 5 minutes of being dropped or quitting from an option in the main Versus menu
- Rejoining and completing a match will remove the matchmaking suspension time
- Added functionality to display matchmaking suspension time (including to your Squad Leader). You will not be able to matchmake if your Squad contains a suspended user until their suspension has completed.
Will tomorrow's maps be reimaginings of old maps, like with Checkout and Drydock, or completely new?
There are a host of new features and fixes available for those who use spectator mode. These seem be put into place mainly to improve spectating for Gears of War 4
- Player Cards have been re-designed to take up less visual space
- Player ammo and reloads are now visible in the Spectator Mode UI
- Crosshairs are now visible to Spectators
- Respawn timers are now displayed on Player Cards
- Weapons holstered onto a player’s back can now be seen in Spectator Mode
- ‘K’ keyboard button now removes spectator inputs UI and/or the black bar altogether
- ‘L’ keyboard button toggles Player Cards to the far edges of the screen or normal positioning
- ‘V’, ‘B’ and ‘N’ keyboard buttons now jump to specific Escalation hill battle cameras
- Fixed an issue with X-Ray vision not rendering as intended
- Made X-Ray a ‘toggle’ rather than ‘Press-And-Hold’
- Fixed the ordering of players in Competitive UI to match the Lobby Order
- Pressing B while holding Jump Cam now cancels a pending Jump Cam
- Added new mapping for specific face buttons for specific camera modes, listed below:
- Gamepad ‘A’, Keyboard ‘Z’ -> Switches to Player or Follow Cam. If already in Player Cam, switch to Follow Cam and vice versa. Last used mode is saved as your preference when switching back to Player/Follow Cam from other modes and when using the Jump Cam
- Gamepad ‘X’, Keyboard ‘X’ -> Switch to Ghost Cam
- Gamepad ‘Y’, Keyboard ‘C’ -> Switch to Battle Cam
What would Hoffman think about you using the energy exploit?
Last but not least, we come to the "Other Fixes" section. Notable from this fix list is the removal of an exploit players had been using to make energy come to them in Horde mode as opposed to having to go around collecting it. Also take note of the Hammer of Dawn Strike's energy cost increase, which was a preferred method of quickly running through Horde for many players. There is also the slight tuning of bounties, various UI improvements and more.
- Skill ranking will now be visible again at the end of match scoreboard
- Added ‘Spawns Swapped’ UI when spawns flip in Versus
- Increased the Energy cost of the Hammer of Dawn Strike in Horde
- Increased Escalation Win and Loss bonuses
- Increased Escalation Win Bounty Rewards
- Tuned criteria and rewards for King of the Hill Bounties
- Fixed an exploit that allowed players to teleport Energy to their position in Horde
- Squad Members can immediately see when they have been removed from a Squad
- The ‘Horde Skills’ UI Notification alerting you to new skills now works correctly
- Horde Skill cards can now be equipped and unequipped in the Horde Skills inventory
- Added UI notification to show new Cards in your collection when opening Gear Packs
- Improved UI on Turret Heat bar
- Improved performance when switching tabs in Card view menus
- Added slider to control how long text chat remains visible after a message
- The Longshot can no longer shoot through walls if positioned through a 90 degree corner
- Added a Duplicates Only filter to the Inventory Menu
- Fixed an issue where audio slowly cut out in Horde
- Fixed an issue allowing grenade effects to continue into the next round in Versus
- Removed an exploit allowing users to break the map boundaries in Horde on Foundation
- Fixed an issue that allowed players to respawn out of the map boundaries in Horde
- Fixed an issue where offline customization would reset if user changed characters
- Miscellaneous fixes and improvements
The update, which will be available January 10th around 10 a.m. PDT, is estimated to be about 7 GB on Xbox One and 9 GB in size on Windows 10. While this is all the information The Coalition is giving for the time being — you can check out their official post here
— the rest of the information, including the new maps and card details, will be divulged closer to the time the update goes live. They've also advised that their may be a disturbance in connectivity starting about 9 a.m. PDT due to the transition to the new update, so don't plan to do any serious playing during that time.