Gears of War 4 Debuts New December Maps and Update

Out with the old, in with new! Since today is the first of December, and the second month of Gears of War 4’s new cycling map rotation, The Coalition has revealed the two new maps that will be joining the battlegrounds next week. They’ve been announced alongside more general changes to the game and additions to the season pass in an attempt to add more value to it.

While last month’s maps weren’t really new — Checkout and Drydock — we’ll actually get to see two brand new The Coalition creations this time around. Fly-through videos have been released for both the new maps for players to get a glimpse of the new areas or who are looking to begin planning their approach and strategy.

The first map, Speyer, was evacuated long ago and was therefore able to avoid the heavy damage most cities took during the Locust War. It offers a glimpse at pre-War life, with areas suited for both close and long-range combat. According to The Coalition, it will also be the first Versus map that contains the Salvo weapon.

Appropriately named “Glory,” the second map is a secret military fortress and a testament to the COG’s former might. There are many strategic points to hold, one of which contains a mounted turret that overlooks the courtyard below.

As promised, the release of two new maps means players will have to say bye-bye to two older ones for the time being, including perhaps the most-played Gears of War map of all time, Gridlock. Gridlock and Relic will both be removed from public playlists when Speyer and Glory are added on December 13th. This will continue on a monthly basis — when two more maps are added, two others will be removed.

Along with the new maps, The Coalition is releasing a general update. While they haven’t documented the full patch notes yet, some tidbits have been provided:

  • A Daily Rewards system
  • Improved visual feedback for damage dealt with the Gnasher
  • Vertical Split-Screen for Windows 10 players
  • Improvements to footstep audio balance, audio/video settingsA whole lot more!

Some additions will also be made to the season pass, which has been criticized for not providing enough value since the maps can eventually all be played on rotation. More credits and XP will be available in the special Developer Playlist, which is where season pass holders get early access to the maps before everyone else. The Coalition also says they are “continuing to look at adding even more benefits and value for our Season Pass holders in the future.”

With this update, Season Pass holders will earn additional XP and Credit rewards when playing the Developer Playlist during the week it’s available. Season Pass holders will continue to get early access to new maps December 6 for Speyer and Glory), and have access to all DLC maps permanently for use in Versus and Horde Private Matches.

The devs have also confirmed the return of the popular “Gearsmas” event this holiday season, which will come with new content, holiday heads and “a new Special Event featuring a wintery twist on a classic Gears of War weapon.” In celebration, Gears of War 4 will also be 33% off on the Xbox Live Marketplace for almost the entire month of December, from today until December 28th.

The new Glory and Speyer maps will be available for season pass holders on Tuesday, December 6th. December 6th is also the date to look out for Title Update 2, which will be available to everyone. Glory and Speyer will be available to non-season pass holders on Tuesday, December 13th, which is when Gridlock and Relic will be removed from the rotation.

If you missed it, you can also earn bonus XP for participating in the Crossplay Weekend Event that starts tomorrow and will pit PC and Xbox players against each other for the first time.

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I’m a little skeptical that crossplay is going to work. Hopefully the lower price will bring in more players. I know from last night that the group we have are all long time fans of the series and the thought of private GrG only matches is something I’d definitely look forward to.

I think aside from early access ,season ticket holders who spent $100 on the game should get permanent dbl credits and or a weekly elite pack full of exclusive customization gear.