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Gears of War creator Cliffy B says ‘woke’ claims “p*** me off”

Gears of War creator Cliffy B says he’s sick of claims that the Xbox co-op shooter “went woke,” pointing to the diversity of the GoW3 cast.

Gears of War creator Cliffy B says 'woke' claims "p*** me off" - Series lead Marcus Fenix, a wide-faced man with a greying beard and wearing a bandana.

Gears of War creator Cliff Bleszinski, best known as ‘Cliffy B,’ says he’s frustrated by claims the long-running Xbox shooter series went ‘woke.’ Bleszinski, who worked as a lead designer on the first three Gears of War games, before moving on from Epic Games to form new studio Boss Key Productions, points to the cast of its third game and says it would face similar claims were it to launch today.

The Gears of War series holds a special place in my heart, as I’m sure it does for many who grew up around the same time as me. Along with bringing us the wonderful chainsaw-equipped Lancer rifle, the cover-based third-person shooters pioneered the ‘stop and pop’ style of gameplay and gave us a memorable cast of characters, and having played through the entire series in the last few years I can say they remain among the best co-op games you’ll find anywhere.

After being bought by Microsoft, the series was put in the hands of The Coalition, who has developed Gears of War 4 and Gears 5, led by former protagonist Marcus Fenix’s son JD and his friend Kait Diaz, who took the leading role in the latter game – a decision that felt like a very natural step after the events of GoW4. While we await news on a potential Gears 6, something I desperately need after the relative cliffhanger ending of the last entry, its former lead shares thoughts on the newer games.

Gears of War - Message from former series lead Cliff Bleszkinski - "Pisses me off that people say Gears went "wOkE". These culture wars are out of control. If Gears 3 came out today they'd say the same thing about it - the cast was diverse AF and we had strong non-sexualized female soldiers. GTFO with that stuff."

“Pisses me off that people say Gears went ‘woke,’” Bleszinski writes in a post to social media platform X (formerly Twitter). “These culture wars are out of control. If Gears 3 came out today they’d say the same thing about it – the cast was diverse AF and we had strong, non-sexualized female soldiers.” Asked what sparked the message, he responds, “Dude I get tweets about it every single day.”

As a huge fan of Gears of War 3, it certainly does a good job of giving all its many cast members their time to shine, including new character Sam Byrne and the returning Anya Stroud. Personally, I was always partial to playing as grizzled veteran sniper Bernie, voiced by Australian actor Tess Masters, for her fantastic callouts during multiplayer matches.

I’ll always advocate for any reason to celebrate its success, then – and to once again call for both Gears of War 2 and 3 to come to PC in an official capacity. Currently, the only way to play them, and spin-off Judgement, on a PC is to use Microsoft’s cloud streaming service available to Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. You can join players on Xbox 360 in co-op if you do, however, and I did just that when I replayed the entire series recently.

Quite when we can expect to see word of Gears of War 6 remains to be seen, although Bleszinski has repeatedly affirmed that he’d be interested in making a return to the series as a consultant, saying most recently that Microsoft would take him up on the offer “if they were smart.” However Microsoft chooses to go about it, I really hope that it does rear its head sooner rather than later – I’m in the mood to rev up my Lancer once again.

Until such an announcement arrives, the best free Steam games should give you plenty to keep you busy while we await Gears 6 and other big upcoming PC games.

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