Gamer’s Guide To Gears Of War 3 Horde Mode On Insane
Ask any gamer, any real gamer.
Okay old The Fast And The Furious references aside, any gamer who has played the Gears of War series will attest that the Insane difficulty lives up to its name.
It is brutal, and if you’re going to go up against the locust hordes then doing so on Insane is something you only do if you have a penchant for masochism and a deep-seeded (see what I did there?) love for the crimson omen screen of death and fail.
So with that in mind, of course I had to go in with a few friends and attempt Gears of War 3′s Horde mode on the infamous Insane difficulty.
For those who are unfamiliar with the Horde mode in Gears of War 3, you are tasked with surviving fifty waves of ever-increasing difficulty, with a team of up to five COG soldiers.
The first order of business is setting up a Command Post, which should ideally be at a point that can be held, usually a choke point (300-style) or some place with as few entrances as possible but a means to escape if the shit hits the fan, which it inevitably will. Building the first Command Post is free, but every subsequent one (there are up to four available on most maps) will cost you. The Command Posts allow the building of fortifications within the vicinity at preselected points, to which you may or may not opt to invest money in those fortifications. On the higher difficulties a decoy is essential to your survival, and so are the red-laser barriers. At least until a Berserker runs right through them…
In Gears of War 3, locust hordes attack in waves of ten, starting with simple drones and tickers and going up to boomers and grinders, with every tenth wave also featuring a certain boss type, such as Berserkers, Corpsers, Reavers, Brumaks or, heaven forbid, a Lambent Berserker.
Also allowed in Gears of War 3 are mutators which allow players either further difficulty or a bit of leeway, depending on the mutator. These range from turning on friendly fire, to insta-gib melee. You’re going to need a few of those helpful ones if you wish to survive Insane difficulty.
As we began, we opted for a Horde mode favourite map called Azura, which is based on the campaign’s act five area. We then enabled the insta-gib melee, super-reload and big head (I mean why not?) mutators to aid in our survival, and finally we strategised with group placements and ensured that at least one character always had enough money — acquired from killing locust or through other teammates — to build a Command Center which had a “Press X to pwn” function, far less impressive than you might think since on Insane difficulty in the latter waves, most things survive even Hammer of Dawn strikes to the face. Phoreals.
It got tough and many waves were restarted but by the end of it we came out victorious, the fiftieth wave proving the fastest ever after insta-bashing some Berserkers, a far cry from wave forty which we restarted probably ten times after Lambent Berserkers had us for dinner. “Pray for Reavers, pray for Reavers,” went the chant prior to each boss wave.
And that was Gears of War 3′s Horde mode on Insane, completed in just a few hours of masochistic mayhem, Onyx medal unlocked and another of those gaming achievements to be proud of. Unfortunately there was no actual Achievement for it. But I digress.
I live my life one Horde mode at a time. For those 50 waves; I’m free.