, Gears Tactics, Gears Pop, and managing other projects to seriously consider developing a battle royale mode.
However, if The Coalition were to do a Gears battle royale, Fergusson said they’d want to get it right and be authentic not only to Gears, but also to be a great entry in the genre. He’s also aware of the way popular gaming trends work, and Fergusson doesn’t want to jump on board the battle royale train just because it’s the hot new thing.
“You know we saw this in other things. We saw this in MMOs when people were chasing World of Warcraft. It was just like everybody was making an MMO and eventually settled down to like there’s a top one, and a top two, and maybe a third,” Fergusson said. “And then we saw it with MOBAs, and like, okay, everybody’s going to chase League [of Legends], and we got League and Dota and then some other stuff. Right? And so you kinda had your Coke and Pepsi and then other stuff, right? Nobody wants to be a generic store brand cola.”
There is internal interest in what a Gears battle royale would look like from designers like Gears 5’s Multiplayer Design Director Ryan Clevens, but he also acknowledges the challenges Gears would face in the genre.
“Now as a fan of the genre I would love to see it, but bringing the intimate combat of Gears to the open kind of organic encounters of a battle royale is difficult,” Clevens said. “They’re two very different modes of combat. It’s not that it’s impossible. It’s just to do it right would require really focusing on it.”
The general lack of mobility was another issue Fergusson pointed to, but still agreed that Gears’ cover-based combat could be especially interesting in the battle royale space if they had the time to figure it out. If that time comes, Fergusson has set standards for it.
“So to me, it has to be: Does it come from an authentic place? Is it something that’s compelling and unique? Is it something that’s going to be top of class? And maybe there’s that design out there that has that,” Fergusson said. “We’ve been focused on the five things we’re putting into Gears 5 right now. So that’s not part of what we’re offering in Gears 5. But that’s not to say we won’t ever do it. There’s a lot going on with three games and a movie and a comic and a novel and licensing and action figures. And yeah, we’re full at the moment. We’re full.”
For more on Gears of War, including what’s confirmed for the series next mainline game, be sure to read the IGN First preview of Gears 5’s new Escape mode. Stay tuned all July for even more on Gears 5.
Miranda Sanchez is an executive editor at IGN. You can chat with her about games and anime on Twitter.