Get ready for the phrase, “Chainsaw-bayonet to the face!” to take on a whole new meaning. With anticipation for Gears of War 3’s fall release at a boiling point, producers of the game have added yet another aspect to get excited about: The (supposedly) final chapter of Epic Games’ Gears franchise will be playable in stereoscopic 3D.
In an interview with Eurogamer, Gears of War 3 executive producer Rod Fergusson announced that the hotly anticipated title – and one of our favorites from E3 2011 – will support an option for stereoscopic play on compatible televisions. Fergusson commented:
“It felt like something we wanted to have. It was a feature we didn’t want to be deficient in. When you look at Gears 1, it was what people used to demo HD at the time.
“It’s still fledgling technology. It’s still a niche feature. But it was something we could support, so we felt, why not?”
While Rod Fergusson did not comment on the specific effects the new 3D mode would feature, he does note that, “Having that depth of character, and being able to see that separation from the reticule and the creatures in the background – it’s a different experience but it’s a really good one.”
The option for 3D play makes Gears of War 3 one of the few Xbox 360 titles to actively embrace stereoscopic technology. Unlike the PlayStation 3, the Xbox 360 does not output in the specific configuration of signal used by current 3D televisions. As a result, titles such as Crysis 2 and Batman: Arkham Asylum output using a workaround that reduces resolution and frame-rate. Fergusson admits that Gears of War 3 will face the same issue when running the 3D option, but also stresses that the reduction in resolution is not particularly significant.
Nonetheless, Fergusson assured Xbox 360 gamers that full-resolution 3D is on its way to the console in the near-future. According to his comments, 720p stereoscopic 3D will be available to Xbox owners at an unspecified date after Gears of War 3’s release.
And so yet another mode is added to the burgeoning list of options attached to Epic’s last outing with Marcus Fenix and friends thanks to the game being delayed from its original April release date to next month.
The added depth-of-field could work quite well in conjunction with Gears of War 3’s vast, impressive environments and distant waves of enemies. But is such an option even needed? Fergusson points out that the first Gears of War was used to show off the possibilities of HD televisions. However, one cannot draw an exact parallel between HD’s current ubiquity and the future of 3D televisions. Will Gears of War 3 help popularize stereoscopic television in the way Fergusson implies the first title helped HD into the general consciousness? Likely not—but hey, at least we’ll get some neat tech demos out of it.
Does the announcement of Gears of War 3’s stereoscopic mode make you break out the 3D glasses in celebration? What are your thoughts on 3D gaming as a whole? Do you even own a 3D-supportable television? Rev up your Lancers and cut into the comments below!
Gears of War 3 will be released on Xbox 360 on September 20.