I expected Gears of War 4 to be a lot of things.

I expected it to be visually stunning.

I expected the main character s neck to be thicker than a granite milkshake.

Gears of War has always been decent at what it does, and although I would argue it s never been an exceptional action game, the roadie-running, cover-shooting, chainsaw-bayoneting madness of it all has always held the capacity to entertain.

This is a series which heretofore has taken itself extremely seriously, to the point where its own severity comes full circle, and utterly deadpan exclamations of, 'It s a giant worm!'

What new developer The Coaliton has done is taken the essence of Gears of War and strained it through an Uncharted filter, resulting in a game that is more colourful both aesthetically and narratively, while also oiling the cogs in the ageing combat system, and offering a very tentative sprinkling of new ideas.

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