There are several things that Epic Games‘ Gears of War franchise has added to the video game landscape, from its creative weapons to its reinvention of the cover-based shooter, but none are as recognizable as the cast of enemies they have created. While the lancer will go down in history as one of video games’ most iconic weapons, the Locust will forever be burned into our minds as the antagonists we loved to chew through with chainsaw blades.
But what about the Locust that never were, the Locust that failed to get past the play testing stage? While we are sure there were plenty of Locust variations that just couldn’t fit in across the franchise’s epic trilogy, there was one breed that got far enough along that Epic Games saw fit to show it during their Gears of War retrospective at Comic-Con.
That breed in question is a variation on a form of enemy we’ve already seen in Gears of War, the ticker, but this version was sure to be even more of a nuisance than the traditional one. Dubbed the ‘Armored Ticker,’ these devious little monsters would require a healthy dose of gunfire before finally revealing their actual skin.
Essentially, as was shown in a video featured during the panel (which can also be found over on Kotaku), the player would have to continuously fire to keep the Armored Ticker at bay until they conveniently popped open their covering — then all hell could break loose. Or they could watch them roll close enough, wait for them to ignite, and then jump out of the way. It’s an enemy variant we’ve seen before, although not in the context of the Gears of War universe.
Cliff Bleszinski and team didn’t go into specifics as to why the Armored Ticker failed to make the cut, but our guess is the repetitive nature of the combat required to eliminate the enemy played a part. As was said before, Gears of War‘s epic cast of characters, heroes and enemies alike, is part of the very DNA of the franchise — so regurgitating a simply designed character might have infringed on that.
Maybe in Gears of War: Judgment, the developer’s newly announced prequel, the Armored Ticker will get his day. But for now he’s just some drawing on a board and a video on the Internet.
What do you think of the Armored Ticker? Would you like to have encountered one in any of the Gears of War games?