Microsoft's Gamescom 2019 presentation started with a surprising announcement. Not only will Gears 5 feature a variety of characters from the Gears of War franchise, but it will also include some characters from Halo: Reach for both Horde mode and Versus.
The Halo: Reach character pack will be available to anyone who purchases the Ultimate Edition of Gears 5 or who is signed up for Game Pass Ultimate. It includes Spartans Emile-A239 and Kat-B320, played by their original actors, along with a variety of other Halo: Reach-themed cosmetics, including a skin for the robot companion Jack. As previously mentioned, Emile and Kat will be playable in Horde, the new Escape mode, and Versus, though the characters won't show up in the campaign.
Like all the other characters in Gears 5's Horde mode, Emile and Kat both have their own unique Ultimate abilities. Emile's Ultimate is the drop shield from Halo, whereas Kat uses the hologram. These Ultimates should give the Halo: Reach DLC much more value beyond just a cosmetic one, and should lend themselves to unique strategies players can put together while trying to master Horde.
Story-wise, Halo: Reach has persisted as one of the most popular games in the Halo franchise. The game's characters remain some of the most beloved in Halo fandom, so it's definitely a crowd-pleasing moment for them to be returning. It also opens the door for more Halo characters to come to Gears 5 down the road. Whether or not that will include Master Chief remains to be seen, however. Regardless, it's still an exciting moment to see Halo Spartans utilize iconic Gears of War weaponry.
Some other DLC was confirmed for Gears 5 during Microsoft's Gamescom presentation. By purchasing the official Gears 5 clothing line, players can unlock a Black Camo Lancer skin and some other DLC. This clothing line will be available beginning August 30.
The newly announced DLC for Gears 5 joins the previously-confirmed DLC, which includes another crossover besides Halo: Reach. As some may recall, Terminator crossover DLC was announced for Gears 5 back at Microsoft's E3 2019 press conference in June.
Gears 5 launches on September 10 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.