Let's talk about the gnasher meta, and toxic players

The TL:DR gnasher meta kept this game from reaching it’s current heights and the players who defend it with frothing fervent mouths are the same ones who call you trash in ranked because you didnt play the way they wanted you to, even if you were mvp and won the match.

A long time fan: I have about 6 close friends that I’ve played gears with since it was first out, watching the game “grow” (1 and 2) and “decline” (3 and judgement) and I’ve noticed something rather silly.

1 being heralded as “still the best gears” and judgement and 5 being considered the worst, but the numbers say otherwise, infact going by player base retention all the “bad” gears games beat the breaks off the “good” ones.

A skilled combatant: as a gears veteran, I was tickled pink to see a return of the 1 stick mode for gears 5, able to resume my shenanigans from previous games, glitchy wallbouncing and crab walking, getting kills on casuals with frustrating kill cams for them to watch. Getting tagged in accusatory videos and my inbox filled with messages of anguish or wonder. I’d like to think over the decade I’ve developed a handle on the mechanics of gears. Let me tell ya. It’s never actually felt like a cover based shooter until 5. It’s never really felt all that much tactical. Just wall bounce, cover slide cancel into the fray and hope your aim is true and your fingers nimble, and I gotta say it was kind of frustrating and boring, the casual fodder easily revealing themselves and the real fight taking place between you and the other guys who know how the game works.

Any veteran can tell you, that even with no cover, the time it takes you to reveal yourself and reach lethal range, very few of the weapons could stop you unless they to were using the gnasher. Any other weapons threatening status was a fallacy.

Let’s be very honest with ourselves: the gnasher meta… isnt fun, wasnt ever fun. It was about being MORE frustrating than the other guy. I believe that frustration is why we have those toxic players in our community. Gears 5, the first time in a long time I feel like every weapon does something that matters and adds to the game (except maybe the retro lancer, tbh give players a choice between this or the lancer cuz its bad) and its REFRESHING and fun.

Let’s not get mad, and admit something to the casual players: guys, we’ve destroyed you for a decade and then some with a single weapon, but I gotta be honest. I’m not good because of it, I developed a gimmick and used a blatantly overpowered weapon to beat you and I’m so sorry, I’m sorry if I ever turned you away from the game because I was salty that this was my game that I’m good at and I really don’t enjoy it like I should, I’m held hostage by my frustration and me leaning on my skill with a busted gun and a gimmick not only means I’m not actually good, it suggests that I’m bad, I’m struggling to adapt in the new meta where the lancer and even the snub are kinda scary.

But I gotta tell ya, I feel like I’m having alot of fun for the first time. Like I married a woman I didn’t love and shes impressing me and I’m falling.

I’m glad the game is reaching out to,. let’s stop calling them casuals because alot of them are actually good, the gnasher meta is just busted and is robbing them of rightful wins. Reaching out to a wider audience of passionate gamers in a gears title they can finally enjoy.

1 more thing: I was a toxic player. I’ve said some rotten stuff over the years, so much so that I dont play competitive on my regular account. I was that guy that would upload a video of me getting 6 kills with no reloads and then tagging the players calling them out. I made the game unfun for a lot of people over the years and I’m glad my ability to do so is coming to an end.

See you in the pregame lobby (hopefully not immediately switching to a gnasher)


Numbers mean nothing in that context because of a few anomalies.

  1. Gears 1 came out in 2006, the climate of gaming was far from mainstream and online gaming was very new in both the general gaming populace as well as consoles. Gears 1 was impressive in that the game created a franchise and became popular due to the meta it created, not the one the dev’s did themselves. It also wouldn’t match the numbers Gears 2, 3, 4 or 5 had the potential to put up since gaming has grown since 2006.

Ex: even though the Xbox One has been lapped by the PS4, on a technical level, there are more people playing on an Xbox One than a Xbox 360 in the same time frame. But most would tell you the 360 was a superior experience all around.

  1. Skilled games or games that often times require a lot of skill in their meta-play will be niche in contrast to simplified games. So things like the Gnasher play, wallbouncing, those have been the bread and butter of Gears but they’ve also been heavily niche.

GoW3 introduced the SoS to allow new players to skip the meta and feel as good as regular experienced Gnasher players. This backfired. Sure, more people played the game but at the expense of the skill gap.

So when people say Gears 1 was a better game, they don’t mean because of player numbers but rather the skill gap. The skill gap has definetly been marginalized over the years, even in Gears 5 with its multiple new weapons, mechanics and all around depth. Because at the end of the day, things like magnetism and auto aim as strong as they are (in RANKED) go against any form of skill gap being established.

Edit - the Gnasher alone does not dictate toxicity, you’re just as likely to see a new meta grow with Rifle-play and have players act the same way.

Simply put, talking ■■■■ and knowing you can’t be punched in the mouth for it allows people to be toxic, not the game.

Idk maybe I’m just a different breed but I enjoy the division away from the niche, I didnt use the SoS but I understood why it was there and I wasnt upset when I was punished with it.

I didnt know there was auto aim tho

Most games, esp on console have some form of auto aim (not all) but Gears 5 is BAD with it.

I’m glad you enjoy the game and more rifle oriented meta, but imo, rifles were always viable as support weapons in Gears. The only difference was ppl wanted to use them as primaries and not secondaries.

All my friends whoever complained about the Gnasher meta always wanted to use the Lancer to kill everything and rarely wanted to pull out the shotgun-- mostly because every game out there tells you to use the rifle.

“The TL:DR gnasher meta kept this game from reaching it’s current heights”

What heights is that? The high ground in the bunker map? Sorry I couldn’t hear you over all the lancer fire.

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Most accurate forum post to date.

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I’m just tagging myself in this forum whilst my popcorn finishes! Either you’ve got a plan or your just plain stupid. Either way you’ve gone and upset the gear gods and I want to be around to see how it goes!