Gears of War 3 has been on store shelves for a little under a week, and Gear heads have been tearing through the game’s multiplayer modes and campaign. With a game as great as Gears of War 3 (check out our review) it’s hard to not be interested in playing it, but eventually gamers will grow a little tired of the game’s 10 multiplayer maps and beating through the campaign missions on ‘Insane’ difficulty.

That’s why Epic Games is already hard at work prepping downloadable content for Gears of War 3, and have even taken the initiative of releasing a Season Pass for fans to pre-purchase the next four pieces of content at a discounted rate. Today, we have our first hint at what some of that content will be.

Three new maps have been revealed courtesy of Gears of War 3‘s very own leaderboards, and Gears of War 2 owners may recognize a familiar name amongst the batch.

  • Azura
  • Rustlung
  • Blood Drive

Azura is a name that will ring a few bells for people who have completed the Gears 3 campaign. Rustlung is a common term used throughout the franchise’s  universe, but it doesn’t really allude to what the level may look like. The final level should be instantly recognizable to many fans of the series, as it made its debut in Gears of War 2. Blood Drive was – and still is – a fan favorite map from the second installment of Gears, and it will be nice to play through it again if it ever becomes available.

These new maps have yet to be confirmed as future DLC, nor have they been confirmed to be part of the Gears of War 3 Season Pass. That being said, the fact that these maps are listed in the leaderboards makes it seem very obvious that Epic Games and Microsoft plan on releasing the content in the near future.

While the fact that downloadable content is very much en route for Gears 3, it was unexciting to learn that all of this content is already on-disc. This means that all three of these maps are on the Gears of War 3 disc, but they currently can’t be accessed. A few videos that have hit the internet show hackers playing through each of the levels, but whether or not these were just added for testing or not has yet to be clarified — although it’s blatantly apparent that these maps will be made available soon.

The real killer is that it’s likely users will be charged for Blood Drive, a map they may already have with Gears of War 2.

With the first batch of downloadable content hitting Gears of War 3 in November, it shouldn’t be long until Epic Games reveals some more information on the new multiplayer maps.

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Source: Joystiq