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"Brothers to the end"
—Gears of War 3 slogan

Gears of War 3 is the final game in the trilogy, and was announced by Cliff Bleszinski on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on NBC. It was originally going to be released in April 2011, but was pushed back to Holiday 2011. It was officially released on September 20, 2011. Set 2 years after Gears of War 2 and the fourth Gears of War novel, the game has 4 Player Co-Op. The story for the game was written by Karen Traviss.


Epic Games continued to refine the cover system in Gears 3, making it the best in the industry.

Some other gameplay elements have been added, including the ability to kill enemies whilst jumping over cover. The mech gameplay, as well as the new enemies, changes how the game flows as well.

Expanded cover artwork


"Let's finish this."
—Marcus Fenix

In Gears of War 2, Marcus Fenix and the COG forces were forced to destroy the Jacinto plateau, the last major city on the planet Sera since the appearance of the Locust on Emergence Day 15 years prior, to flood the Locust tunnels and slow the spread of Lambent - Locust creatures mutated by their exposure to the volatile liquid known as Imulsion. In the eighteen months after the flooding of Jacinto, the human survivors have moved to the island of Vectes and have started to rebuild. After a generally quiet period, the Lambent began to emerge from underground. Hiding something, the COG head of state, Chairman Prescott, abandoned the COG. Now leaderless and being forced off the island, the COG disbands and separates to the safest places left. Victor Hoffman takes some survivors to Anvil Gate while Delta squad sets off on a Raven's Nest Class carrier, the CNV Sovereign, with the remaining humans to avoid further Lambent incursion.

While Augustus Cole and his squad look for supplies from the ruins of his hometown, former Chairman Prescott arrives on the Sovereign, providing Marcus with a data disc that shows his father, the scientist Adam Fenix, is still alive. The ship is soon attacked by a Lambent Leviathan; Marcus and his team try to defend the ship, luring the creature into a trap set by Baird at a nearby bridge. Though the Leviathan is destroyed, the ship is also lost. Prescott is among the mortally wounded, but before dying, Prescott provides Marcus with an encrypted key with the location of a secret base known as Azura where Adam is being held. Leaving some of his Gears to help the survivors, Marcus, Cole, Dom, and Baird take off towards Anvil Gate, where they have the equipment to decode the key, while Anya and the rest care for the wounded.

The Gears are forced to travel across Locust-controlled bases, and the Locust Queen, Myrrah, alerts all her troops in their path to the Gears' approach. Marcus and his team eventually hijack a Locust gas barge to travel by air, stopping to help and rescue Dizzy, a skilled mechanic and driver. They arrive at Anvil Gate and help Hoffman defend against a Locust onslaught. Afterwards, they review the encrypted key to find the location of Azura but discover it is protected by a man-made Maelstorm, preventing arrival by air or on sea. Hoffman notes the location of a submarine in the ruins of Char, a nearby city, but they will need fuel. Dom suggests traveling to Mercy, where an Imulsion filling station is located, but also the home of his dead wife Maria.

At Mercy, the Gears discover humans that have become Lambent from Imulsion poisoning, and fear the infection may spread. As they are surrounded by Lambent forces, Dom sacrifices himself by ramming a large truck into the tanker which explodes and allows the rest of Delta to leave for Char.

When they arrive in Char they come up against surviving humans that have come to resent the COG for what they did to their world. In an effort to gain the needed fuel for the submarine, Marcus and his squad run an "errand" for a former wealthy imulsion executive named Aaron Griffin. Dizzy is held hostage by Griffin and was only released when Marcus and his squad traveled to another tower in Char to find a lost cable car loaded with fuel. When they look back at the tower where Griffin is holding Dizzy, they see Queen Myrrah attacking and rush to help. After fighting through some of the Queen's guards, they rescue Dizzy, but lose the fuel. They then set off for the Endeavor Shipyards, where the submarine is located. After repairing and refueling it, they set off for Azura.

After slipping under the Maelstorm, they find Azura is fashioned as a large resort. As they fight off the Locust that are also trying to get to Adam, and discover that Prescott had knowledge that Emergence Day was coming, as he had ordered the construction of Azura and brought the world's elite to it prior to the appearance of the Locust. Adam is able to contact the team via the security cameras on the island, and explains he has a cure to stop the Lambent but needs their help to execute it. Marcus and his team fight through the Locust to shut down the Maelstorm generator with Adam's instructions, allowing the remaining Gears and the Gorasni to arrive to provide air and ground support. As Lambent forces start appearing on the island, Marcus and his squad make their way to a hotel where Adam is being kept. En route, they face Myrrah, who reveals that Adam had been working with her for twenty years and refuses to let them help him complete his plan because it would result not only in the death of the Lambent, but the Locust as well. After dispatching Myrrah, the squad reaches Adam's room. After a brief reunion and hearing news about the death of Dom, Adam explains that Imulsion is a living organism, adapting itself to both Locust and human bodies to create the Lambent, and it is evolving quickly. Adam has developed an energy wave that, like a neutron bomb, will only destroy any cell infected by Imulsion. Adam had been in contact with Myrrah to try to stave off the effects on the Locust and to discover a cure that would not harm them, but could not find it in time.

Marcus and his squad escort Adam to the roof of the hotel where the energy generator for his cure sits. The Gears defend against Myrrah's attack as the machine powers up. Adam reveals that he will die shortly as well, having infused himself with Imulsion to study the lifecycle of immulsion and to test his cure. He tells Marcus to go live for him and then the machine begins to reach full power causing his cells to break down, killing him and leaving his son devastated. As Marcus agonizes over the loss of his father, Myrrah, still alive from the last attack, blames Marcus for what Adam failed to do. Marcus stabs and kills Myrrah with Dom's knife. As the machine gives off waves of its energy, the Lambent and Locust begin to die en masse all over the planet. As the Gears celebrate the end of the war, Marcus continues to mourn Dom and Adam's death, but Anya reminds him of his father's last words and that now, thanks to them, they have a tomorrow.


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Limited and Epic Editions

Limited Edition

The Limited Edition contains:

  • An Octus Award Box and Octus Service Medal – Replicas of the honors bestowed on Adam Fenix, Marcus’s father, for his work on the Hammer of Dawn.
  • Exclusive Unlockable Adam Fenix Multiplayer Character – Each Octus Service Medal replica is engraved with a unique Xbox LIVE code that is the only way to unlock Adam Fenix in multiplayer.
  • A fabric COG Flag – Proud colors that once flew above the House of Sovereigns.
  • The personal effects of Adam Fenix, including his “Last Will and Testament,” the initial Hammer of Dawn schematic, and other Fenix family mementos.[4]

The Epic Edition.

Epic Edition

The Epic Edition is the second collectors edition of the game. It contains all of the content that was in the "Limited Collectors Edition", as well as more additional content that is exclusive to the "Epic Edition". The Epic Edition contains:

  • A Limited Edition Marcus Fenix Statue – Designed by Epic Games Art Director Chris Perna and expertly crafted by the artisans at Triforce, this fine PVC statue collectible makes the ultimate living room centerpiece for any true "Gears" fan.
  • The Art and Design of Gears of War by Tom Bissell – Through unprecedented access to the Epic Games team, acclaimed author Tom Bissell (Extra Lives) gives readers an incisive behind-the-scenes glimpse into one of the most celebrated sagas in video game history with 96 pages of interviews, photos, concept artwork and more.
  • Infected Omen Weapon Pack — Custom multiplayer skins for the game’s five starting weapons; Lancer, Retro Lancer, Hammerburst, Sawed-off Shotgun, and Gnasher Shotgun.
  • All of the contents of the "Gears of War 3" Limited Edition.[4]


There are also several multiplayer improvements. Bleszinski promised Gears of War 3 will include better region filtering to allow for less laggy games. Fans also saw the return of Gridlock. The biggest addition to multiplayer is 4-player online co-op in the story mode.

Gears of War 3 includes a mode called Beast. It is the opposite of Horde Mode. In Horde Mode, you are the COG combating the Locust, but in Beast, you are the Locust combating the COG. In Beast mode, you earn money for killing your enemies. Once you get enough money, you are able to upgrade your character to a specific class, such as Boomers, Corpsers and even Berserkers.

A new Multiplayer mode called "Capture The Leader" is a combination of Guardian and Submission. The Leader has an improved TAC-Com which can see their enemies no matter where they are. There are no capture points in this new game, just hold the enemy's leader as the timer counts down. There is a "newbie" playlist where if you have no Gears achievements or little XP, you will play in a playlist with other "newbies". After a little while of playing you cannot play in this playlist anymore.

Gears of War 3 also features unlockables by achievements similar to Gears of War 2. Achievement unlocks include completing Gears 1 campaign and Gears 2 campaign and reaching level 100 in multiplayer.[5]

Multiplayer Characters



    • Savage Grenadier Elite (Limited Edition) (Downloadable Content)
  • Savage Kantus (Pre-order from Amazon)

Weapon Skins

Main article: Weapon Skins

Downloadable Content

Main article: Downloadable Content

Ashes to Ashes Trailer

On April 12, 2010, Epic Games Design Director Cliff Bleszinski released a trailer on the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon show titled Ashes to Ashes. It depicts Dominic Santiago running in an abandoned city decimated by the Hammer of Dawn strike. After tripping over an ash "statue", Dom is almost killed when a Drone attempts to shoot him. He is rescued by Marcus Fenix, Anya Stroud and the rest of Delta Squad. The rest of the trailer shows Delta Squad fighting a massive amount of Locust reinforcements. Both forces are startled when Lambent enter the battle via Lambent Stalks, who kill off the Locust on the battlefield. The trailer ends with Delta fighting overwhelming odds as they are attacked by the Lambent and nearly overrun. It fades to black with Brothers, to the end.

Demo at E3 2010

A demo was unveiled by Cliff Bleszinski at E3 2010, showing some gameplay changes such as the ability to exchange weapons with a comrade, firing reticule expands as the weapon fires, new executions, faster running speed, ability to kick the person behind a cover if the player jumps over in the right place, and substitution of the Lancer firing sound back to Gears of War 1.

A new Lambent Locust made its appearance in the demo, the Lambent Berserker. Much like the "not infected" counterpart, it charges at the player recklessly, and has greater health and speed.

Beast mode was also showed off at E3. Where you play as the locusts you also get more than one life. You have some of the Locust's powers, such as the Kantus remote heal/revival, or Grenadier's ability to regenerate grenades.[6]

Public Beta

Gears of War 3 was delayed so Epic could release a Public Beta. This was the first public beta for the Gears of War Series.

Beta Details

One could get into the Beta by pre-ordering Gears of War 3. The Beta began April 25 and ended May 15. Those who purchased the Bulletstorm Epic Edition (on Xbox 360 only) got early access to the Beta beginning April 18.

Three new multiplayer modes and four exclusive maps were be rolled out during the Beta period, all running on dedicated servers. In the Beta Team Deathmatch was playable on the four Beta maps (Thrashball, Checkout, Trenches, and Old Town); Capture the Leader and King of the Hill gameplay modes were added later in the Beta period. During Easter and several other days the character models heads were replace by rabbit heads.[7]

Exclusive Beta Unlockables

These unlockables were available to those who participated in the Beta:

  • Flaming Hammerburst: Complete one match by Sunday, April 24 to permanently unlock.
  • Flaming Lancer: Complete one match during the week of April 25 to permanently unlock.
  • Flaming Sawed-Off Shotgun: Complete one match during the week of May 2 to permanently unlock.
  • Flaming Gnasher Shotgun: Complete one match during the week of May 9 to permanently unlock.
  • Beta Tester Medal: Complete one match in the Beta to permanently unlock.
  • Thrashball Cole: Complete 50 matches in any game type to unlock for the Beta period. To permanently unlock, complete 10 matches as Thrashball Cole during the Beta period.
  • Gold-Plated Retro Lancer: Complete 90 matches in any game type to unlock for the Beta period. To permanently unlock, score 100 kills with the Gold-Plated Retro Lancer during the Beta period.

E-mails sent to the players

  • An e-mail was sent to all the original beta players with a free token to invite other players to the beta during the last week.
  • The week following the end of the beta, 3 new e-mails were sent to the same players including more information on the beta, as well as download links to desktop images and a printable poster.

Xbox One Backward Compatibility & Xbox One X Enhancement

Gears of War 3 is playable on Xbox One hardware, presenting the game at its original 720p resolution with a more stable 30fps. On Xbox One X, compatibility is taken a step further by an added resolution boost from 720p to a native 4K.

HeroClix Toyline

Gears of War 3 toys.png

"The Gears of war HeroClix Figures are fully compatible with all other HeroClix figures, and are available in a 24-count, gravity-feed counter display." Each figure is from Gears of War 3 whether they feature in the story or Multiplayer game mode. The figures were released on August 17, 2011.[8]

The Figures are:
Gears: Marcus Fenix, Dom, Baird, Anya, and Augustus Cole.
Locust: Drone, Skorge, RAAM, Kantus, and a Mauler.


See also

Gears of War series
Main Games: Gears of War () • Gears of War 2 () • Gears of War 3 () • Gears of War 4 () • Gears 5 ()
Other Games: RAAM's ShadowGears of War: Judgment () • Gears of War: Ultimate EditionGears Pop!Gears TacticsGears: Hivebusters
Books: Aspho FieldsJacinto's RemnantAnvil GateCoalition's EndThe SlabKilo Squad: The Survivor's LogAscendanceBloodlinesEphyra Rising
Comics: HollowBarrenA Pendulum Wars StoryDirty Little SecretsThe Rise of RAAMHivebustersStand-Alone Issues
Booklets and Guides: Destroyed BeautyBeneath the SurfaceThe Art of Gears of WarThe Art of Gears of War 3The Poster CollectionThe Art of Gears of War 4RetrospectiveThe Art of Gears 5Gears Tactics: The Art of the Game
Other Media: Gears of War (film)Gears of War: ExileGears of War: The Board GameGears of War: Tactics