Let’s look a little more in depth at the great new method for unlocking free in game content TC has hyped up. As of now the only way to get the free content in Gears 5 is by getting stars to rank up in tour of duty. Stars only come from completing limited daily challenges or completing medal challenges that last the tour length (3 months) after which the content becomes unobtainable. Playing campaign, earning xp, using boost, and leveling up will not earn you any stars and therefore do not contribute to getting content on the ToD at all. The total rewards are:
-4 blood sprays
-6 expressions (2 of which are usable for one character only)
-11 (dare I say boring?) reskins of already available characters
-4 skins for the Gnasher only (not complete sets)
-5$ aka 500 iron total (not even enough to buy your favorite country’s flag)
Let’s run some numbers.
First what it takes to get to general. Each rank has 3 tiers and goes up a star after. I’m sure there’s a formula for it but I’m not that smart, so it looks like (3×5) + (3×6) + (3×7) + (3×8)… + (3×18). Meaning there is a total of 483 stars to be earned to get you to general. Your reward… a skin for one weapon.
Next let’s look at daily challenges/objectives. You have 90 days. If you played every single day you would need to average roughly 6 stars a day to reach general. Keep in mind this is with taking no days off. However, even that quota is totally unrealistic when your random challenges for the day look like this:
2 problems here:
- the stars earnable in a day are limited by number. So when you get days like mine, making quota is impossible from the start. Best case I could earn 4. At that rate I would be at 360 stars when the 90 days are up. Making me 123 stars shy of general and forcing me to play game types I would rather not, which brings me to the next problem…
- The stars earnable are limited by game type. I personally only stick to versus, so the 30 assists for 2 stars is the only one I will get playing normally. You get one free re-roll… I used it already, it was kill 30 elite drones for one star (another one I would never get from just playing mp). Naturally I could pay $ to get more, but that kind of undermines the idea of “free” content. So, this cuts my daily total in half. Meaning at that rate I would realistically receive 180 stars after playing 90 days straight. Leaving me 303 stars shy of general. Whack
Finally let’s look at medals, or what I like to refer to as “mini seriously 5.0’s you’ll need to complete every 3 months.” There are a total of 262 stars available from medals:
-31 from basics
-30 from weapons
-24 from enemies
-33 from escape
-27 from hivebusters
-23 from horde
-30 from heroes
-34 from versus
-24 from ranked
2 problems here as well:
just as with daily challenges, many medals are tied to game types you probably would have zero interest in playing otherwise. Even worse, this means certain rewards (such as character skins) are only obtainable by getting all the medals in a specific game type you might have zero interest in playing otherwise. This makes them either unobtainable or turns them into a virtual chore.
many medals also take considerable amounts of time and effort to complete. Safe to say unreasonable amounts of time for people who don’t live in their parent’s basement like I do.
So let’s look at how feasible this is for me specifically. Playing mostly my preferred game modes I will optimistically get 10 stars from basic, all 34 from versus, and all 30 from ranked (and that includes 15 wins in torturous arcade mode). Realistically giving me 74 stars from medals. Add that to my above total of daily challenges it still leaves me 229 stars short of general after 90 days. So even playing an ungodly amount of gears there will be a serious limit to the amount of free content I can earn. And tbh none of the stuff offered is really all that great to begin with imho. I’m curious how many people working for TC actually play the game and would honestly admit this is a great system, let alone intend to actually compete a tour of duty…
As illustrated by the above math, the ToD system as it currently stands is mad whack.