Melee combat is underwhelming in gears 5

So I find melee combat for pve in gears 5 very underwhelming, it’s just a simple unsatisfying swing with the knife. We’re fighting 300 lb thick skinned monsters I want to smack it with my gun or my fists. (I know punching swarm with my fist probably wouldn’t do much but it would be way more satisfying than knife slash) I know you can do the melee combo but the swarm can’t even counter it so it doesn’t seem like a back and forth fight. I want a satisfying melee system for gears, The swarm need to be more brutal when up close and need more melee combat animations.

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In my opinion, the melee mechanics in GOW5 is the single best thing added to the game. It’s much better than the old system. I don’t think it needs to involve a back-and-forth fight - especially given that alot of fights involve multiple enemies shooting at you at the same time. Plus in terms of the enemy countering it, well on higher difficulties at least, certain enemies (namely the Elite variants and DeeBee Shepherds) can tank the first 2 melee attacks and one-punch you back. It takes the kick in the combo to actually stagger them.

Also the melee system has opened up doors for some genuinely viable and useful melee classes like Lahni/Blademaster; and even Paduk/Nomad (when using an execution build). I doubt we would have gotten something like this based on the older melee systems. But this has really added a new dimension to PVE playstyles.


Like Pepper said, the melee combat is the best its ever been in PvE. In Gears 5, its the only game you can reliably use melee combat on the highest difficulty and succeed greatly.

I would love different melee combos that require different button timings to do more damage but take longer to happen. An actual combo with the breaker mace is something ive wanted for awhile. Maybe even a running heavy attack with the mace like wardens do but you’re able to do it as cog.


Just to add as well, I really appreciate the fact that Cole/Brawler has a totally different set of melee mechanics. I wouldn’t be against the idea of different PVE classes in future games having slightly different systems and styles. It could potentially add different dynamics to the game.

Alternatively, I wonder if a good system would involve the melee system changing depending on what weapon you’re carrying? So if you have a rifle or Boomshot, you would swing this at the enemy in a similar style to older GOW games; while carrying a pistol enables you to use fast knife slashes?


For the campaign at least, it should use the old way of meleeing, or better yet a mix between the new and old.

Swinging a knife around constantly just makes the game feel very lightweight. Kinda ruins the atmosphere for me.

Multiplayer can be whatever.

This would be awesome. Like if you had a Tbow, Retro Lancer or a Breechshot on your hand you could do the melee combo and at the end you would do a unique melee hit with the weapon you have.

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I don’t mind it but I’m thinking fighting a Scion with a knife could be different to how your character swings at a Drone or Juvie.

But at this point I would believe the COG(or just humans in general) has/have improved their knife making process or use(s) materials to make them robust enough to not break immediately when hitting a Locust or what have you with them. I mean, Reyna did cut straight through the wrist of a Speaker and severed its hand in Gears 4, albeit it was said to be a “machete”, not that I could tell, given that it looked more like a combat knife to me.

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I like that idea a lot. Unique animations based on what gun you have would make melee combat feel fresh everytime. I guess what I’d like to see is more animations and unique moves when using melee. Seeing the same melee combo is fatiguing (2 slashes with the knife and then hitting with the back of the gun into a knife execution gets kinda old) especially when the knife executions haven’t even changed From gears 4 to 5.


More variation is always welcome, so i’ll be cool with this.

I got no problem with that.

As far as gameplay mechanics go, the melee system is significantly better nowadays than it was in the past, I’d WAY rather have the Gears 5 version than what was in the old games.

You can melee combo enemies, yes. No, enemies technically can’t counter it, but in a way some enemies do by being either resistant Elite Drones), or outrught immune (Scions) to the default stagger effects. Sometimes Drones will roll away before you hit them the first time, too.

Gears 2 gave us Meatshields, Gears 3 gave us the mantle kick, Gears 4 gave us the Cover Yank and Knife execution for both, then now it has culminated in Gears 5 with adding the Melee Combo, Flashbang Grenades, and changing enemies to have a slower melee attack that you can actually react to and avoid.

I wouldn’t be opposed to adding more weapon-specific stuff (the Lancer rifle bayonets are also great for their own executions). But Melee Combos, even if they seem repetitive. are really only one essential part of a much more tactically diverse and in-depth system: Close Cover Combat.

While I don’t believe that melee is the best it’s ever been… I do like where Gears 5 pushed it. I just wish it hadn’t led to a flawed representation of knife fights vs monsters, and the final cutscene with Reyna shouldn’t have forced the characters to rely on knives (where was JACK, TC?).

Here are two possible ways the current combat might go, depending on TC’s attention to it:

  • The ‘B’ button continues to use the knife, and holding ‘B’ ends a combo with a weapon strike or kick. We have to switch to ‘Y’ to perform a knife execution, and the body can’t become a meatshield afterward.

  • Every use of ‘B’ is a weapon strike, making weapon combos possible. The third melee attack in a row is always a knife strike (this strike takes longer than a regular melee). So if you hit three times in a row with melee, you do a knife strike that transitions to an automatic knife execution. If the enemy doesn’t counter you somehow, you take them as a meatshield.

Enemies can of course just shoot you, or counter that final blow with ‘B,’ which uses their weapon to counter-strike and stun you. All allies within melee range have the ability to hit ‘B’ and counter, so melee loses utility against groups. Most melees will remain a quick one-two bop to try and down you, but the range and lock-on should be significantly reduced so it becomes a last resort.

And of course, reactionary gunfire might always stagger the melee abuser. But if you get that three-hit combo on someone who has enough health to take it… And they don’t counter… Free knife kill. Free meatshield. If you don’t want the meatshield, just swap to your preferred weapon during the knife animation.


…That’s probably never going to happen, because TC would have to rework the melee animations and knife kills. They already have great animations, btw, and people will sorely miss their most implausible and hilarious knife executions.

Still, I feel this would make melee into a riskier, yet trimmed down and streamlined mechanic. You might miss twice with melee, but then wait an extra moment and bait the enemy into an early counter; THEY miss, and your knife plunges into their neck. And if you attack with rigid timing, or pull an easy trick, that other player is going to laugh at how they bounced circles around you before blocking your wrist with their fist (now your teeth are crammed down a Gnasher barrel and you’re stunned).

This would unite all the melee mechanics, including cover-based melee, and draw the meatshield back in for those quick reloads and fake-outs. And as always, just melee with a grenade to rain on everyone’s parade.

I do love the mantle-kicks and yanks, and how counters work (gotta be paying attention and making sure you ONLY hit ‘B’ once the notification comes up). And I’m definitely not smart enough to code any of this, much less animate it, so what business is it of mine to suggest massive overhauls and upgrades? That thought bothers me.

I would say the melee system is very late in Gears franchise, but it starts to become a system in GoW 5, so it’s better than nothing.

Melee System is Underwhelming - very sure - the only combo - hit-hit-stun - Is there any flexibility to do another combo ? How about

  • Hit-Kick-Hit-Stun ?

  • Kick - Heavy kick - Final Punch ?

Let’s say some famous game on “melee system” like Soulcalibur, Yakuza series, Samurai warriors series, but how Gears can develop a whole new system in PvE? Like Destiny 2 ? But who knows what will happen in GoW 6?

The fact is that Melee system bring ups and downs, which everyone is a 100% agree on this.


  1. It develops a skill of situational awareness, which is a famous key word using in MOBA game. People in GoW 5 starts to say some professional key words in gaming, which is a development of players to know the knowledge behind how you’re going to success or how you’re going to lose with analysis.

  2. Several classes, Blademaster, Nomad, Brawler, Protector, Striker, were developed changing the whole environment of “Gun Game”. It’s not about a single gun game, but it allows you to do melee combat like Resident Evil 5 / 6 to kill the enemies with your thought / method that work.

  3. Melee system gives Brawler a specific position, which is tackle. Therefore, in GoW 5, we have 2 developed melee system. 2 different styles playing.

  4. Melee system brings the new weapon, Breaker Mace, a weapon that can stun all single enemies except Bosses. It can alsol do a AOE damage splashing the whole ground - striker / blademaster / protector are quite OP using this weapon.


  1. It develops this game to a Skill-based game because this system is testing your flexibility, your reaction, your knowledge towards damage like how many you know you can kill the enemies. Therefore, so many Elitism players are disliking players who don’t know how to play melee classes.

  2. As the above mentioned, those elitism players are somehow destroying people’s mind / thought of playing such an easy class like Demolition / Tactician / Slugger - just ask you people - Can you kill Wakaatu from 100% to 0% within 3 seconds using Demo/ Tactic? People are somehow discriminating players using an easy class always, implying they aren’t brave to get out of the comfort zone. However, a simple question, does he/she affect you playing easy class ?

I generally prefer more flexibility in melee system, but how ?

Here’s my opinion:

  • Movement values/ points (100-200 - Base value is 130 etc ) in each dimension of classes / each classes
  1. To explain more, like Gunner playing heavy weapon, so this class suppose to have lower movement speed compared to other classes like blademaster / nomad. The concept is simliar to reality. When the world is focusing on the development of 4P / 8P realistic, why they don’t focus on the realistic system happening in the game ?

  • More combos on melee system. The harder combo, the higher damage you do in that combo, which is fairly saying.
  1. Like T-bow, looking at GoW 1, the sound of melee T-bow is significantly clear, so it’s supposed to do very high damage / stunning for 1-2 seconds.

  2. Allowance of Brute-Force Attack, every classes can do it, but melee classes are more beneficial to do it

That’s my opinion of how melee combat in GoW 5 & how it would possible to change in GoW 6.


Sounds great for PvP but I don’t see it being very good or practical for PvE.

One thing that I could see being added as a detail is if characters used a knife with a serrated(?) edge or teeth, whichever one the correct term is(not the biggest knife guy in the universe) for “slashing” against an opponent while if you went for an execution stabbing them into the body, they used a knife with a sharpened edge only. Assuming they even had two knife holders on them… then again, some characters just materialize a knife out of nowhere with no holder or it being visible anywhere so that probably isn’t a concern.

At least, it makes sense in my mind as the ‘smooth’ knife would have an easier time piercing through and get pulled out more easily for a precise and faster kill while the other does more damage when striking at the skin of an enemy or on tougher stuff like a Scion(of course, both would have their utility in either case). Could be wrong though.

admittedly I’ve become one of those I think. I do think there is a certain charm to playing a non standard class like Demo or Vet. I do think it takes more skill to be effective with Nomad or Blademaster but I don’t discriminate…I’ll play with whoever but I do think certain classes are easier to play than others

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I remember when the Torque Bow actually had a stronger melee due to the blade on it.

But I like the idea of the execution at the end of the melee attack involving the weapon, so long as it is in the same timeframe as the current finishers (which I don’t mind either to be honest).


In Gears 1 through 4 having a torque bow was a must when playing the campaign on insane. It was a 1 shot body in all games to drones and a 1 shot headshot to all boomers in Gears 2 and beyond. It was also a 1 melee to wretches. Having the torque and a lancer was the best combo on insane.


Oh definitely, it’s been a loyal favourite of mine for years :joy:.

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Interesting topic.

I’d think it would be cool (although I know this is a very unlikely outcome) if when two players are close enough when/if they melee at the same time it goes into a quick time event giving you random buttons to press ((xbox) XXBXY for example) and whoever hits them first or quickest gets the kill, all the while a cool and varied little fight sequence ensues.

This would not be appreciatedsome by some as you would have to be alone with the other player in worry of one of their other teammates gibing you during it. My only solution to that is a invincibility type deal during it kinda how veteran has no damage while executing, and you would have a brief second after. The only thing players would need to learn is to not get to close to these battles in case of the 1 second of Invincibility guy winning the animation and gibbing you right after. You would have to strategically wait till you know they are able to be damaged again, which some may not like.

Anyways that’s my hot take on what I think would be cool with melee combat. The nice part about this system is it could be used in the campaign and pve as well.


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Buahha, yeah melee combat in Versus at launch was a fracking joke, with this auto homing lunging melee which pulled you into the opponent and auto centred your gnasher for the followup shot:

I remember watching DutchyLive commenting on a Ryan video where Ryan was ssying “in G5 he greatly ‘enhanced’ Versus melee combat” causing Dutch to yell out “WHY? NO ONE asked for this!”


I dont like cqb so i dont play those classes, but blademaster and protector (and to a slightly smaller extent striker) are quite effective with the mace at even the highest diff levels in Horde.

And, clearly, in Escape…

Still comes off as janky, all things considered.