Why Horde in Op 4 is frustrating and not fun, especially for a character reliant on perks to be most effective

This will likely be a long post, so consider yourself warned.

Horde in Op 4 is just frustrating now, something I have realized over the last 2-3 days whenever I tried playing it with a friend. We would be searching for lobbies often which then would either fail or have bad/inadequately leveled teammates and team compositions that we were not happy with and hosting a lobby ourselves often didn’t seem to do it either.

There is various things I consider as making it a frustrating experience rather than fun :

  • The lack of power without Jack and taps, as well as the new functioning of Power Drain and tap RNG spawns
  • The insistence of many lobbies to not have a Jack and/or Del/Baird/Kat, or simply many lobbies not having one of either or neither and starting without them
  • How perks are relied upon too much to make certain characters/weapons better/useful at all
  • A seeming increase in incompetent teammates
  1. The lopsided economy :

Now, yes, I’ve seen people say before you need neither Jack nor an engineer, and while this is true to an extent, I don’t see how it is a lot of fun to be playing without one of either or neither. With the new constant linear 50% build and upgrade cost price increase of Power Drain you frequently are stuck with little to no power for building and other purposes unless everyone is depositing and even then, if you don’t have Jack running a Forge you’ll maybe have some barriers and a few lockers at Level 2/3/4 by wave 10-15+.

And the taps don’t help it much either when you don’t have time nor funds to relocate to the first one’s location properly when the game’s stupid RNG decides it will spawn in a completely exposed location somewhere near the opposite spawn of the map you’re playing on. Most teams simply will not bother going for those and it only exacerbates the lack of power when you only have pickups to go by, highlighting how lopsided everything is towards some guy getting bored to pieces being a power workhorse for the team as Jack. Why do we need someone to be playing a boring role just to have more than a basic amount of power if we can’t get any taps whatsoever? It should be a bonus, NOT required.

  1. Teams playing or insisting on playing without Jack, and/or Baird/Del/Kat :

So you can have everyone building and upgrading as they please, which is great. But now that I’ve tried playing without either or without both of those team components, it does not seem enjoyable st all to be living on mere scraps and even with Del having to contest with very pricy fortifications when Power Drain is on, especially if you have a character who wants/needs perks to do well or be enjoyable(I’ll get to this in point 3). It is much worse without a Jack running a Forge however, than only missing an engineer from the team, because of the inadequate enemy power drops and tap spawns RNG that teams often don’t bother going for. And often the teams who do not want an engi or Jack or start with neither or one of both missing are often filled with bad or inexperienced players.

It also is of no help when nobody appears to want to be an engi or Jack, not that I can really blame players for not wanting to be, especially when it comes to Jack. Both characters have a comparatively minimal influence on the outcome of a match if your damage dealers are terrible, and Jack definitely is not the most entertaining of roles to play.

  1. Characters/weapons that rely on perks too much to do best or be good :

I don’t know exactly where to begin on this point because it’s a nuisance on several levels(don’t hate on me, I’m not writing a scholar essay here after all), so I’ll just go with my intended example : Lizzie. You have a choice of four perks here but to me two seem most relevant, the extra ammo capacity and damage. So let’s say you’re trying to be a Dropshot user instead of spamming Salvos, Tri-Shots or what have you, with the “The Hammer” skill. But your Dropshot only starts out with an absymal ammo count of 4 rounds which is a ridiculously excessive downgrade from the 7 rounds the weapon had as base capacity in Gears 4 when it no longer has the capability to one shot enemies with a headshot or direct hit.

So you practically run out of ammo whenever you start shooting at anything with it, while lockers are often now built later on and recharge the weapon very slowly and if you’re unlucky you start with the Imago waves for the first wave set in 1-10 and/or don’t get many Dropshot Scions so you won’t get many Dropshots until later on in the match and just having two on a far too slowly recharging locker while there is only 4 rounds in each Dropshot is not fun at all. The character simply is not fun to play as when you are so reliant on perks to make your main weapon viable for killing on the higher difficulty settings but you can’t get them properly without taps or Jack with a Forge, especially in 50 wave matches. If you can get them Lizzie is great but still relies on a Level 3/4 locker, and I’ve actually had more success doing this on lower difficulties than I have playing Master.

Simply put, a character should never be so reliant on having both a level 3/4 weapons locker and two perks at max level to be doing best or good. Kait, JD, Marcus, Fahz, even Keegan more limitedly, they all do not require perks to be very effective right from the beginning. It should be such for all characters.

  1. A seeming increase in incompetent teammates :

It may just be I’ve come across a few bad apples recently but it feels like there is either many more bad players who are attempting Master with their characters not adequately leveled for it or with them not having a clue how to handle their chosen character well enough to be doing well or at least ok on that difficulty.

Often those players will also demand or start without Jack/engi when they’re not good enough to be going without them. It just seems blatantly obvious when I see Kaits shooting a Matriarch in the armored chest with a blasted Markza and making it charge straight into the base, or COG Gears who waste their Team Revive on a single down at the end of a wave with one enemy left that has downed the player from like, the other side of the map so they’re not even in any risk of death so long as someone goes there to revive them.

So there you have it. Those are the main contributive factors I can think of right now that I personally find make Op 4 Horde a frustrating rather than fun experience despite all the positive changes made to it.

Closing notes :

  • I hear people saying, “Just play with friends”, and I would, but currently for me and my other friend that isn’t an option.
  • “Host your own lobby”… well I mentioned trying that but people never seemed to join the Horde lobbies we’d started. And I can tell you twice it’s not because of us being bad players, toxic hosts or anything alike.
  • “Just play lower difficulties”. Normally I’d be doing that but I’ve been wanting to test Lizzie’s abilities with The Hammer at Level 6 in the highest difficulty setting because what better testing grounds to a character’s potential than that is there?
  • It should be worth mentioning these are mainly experiences for 1-50 Horde on Master, seeing as I currently do not play Frenzy.

@TC_Sera @TC_MichaelAOS Please be so kind to pass this on/read this. Thank you, providing you made it to the end of this text.

Edit : Another reason why I hate the lopsided power economy is because perks need you to be selfish if you want to use them when there’s no Jack present and you have no taps, but I feel some obligation to providing power for the team to build. Yet some characters like Lizzie need them to be best so where do you draw the line? The Hammer should just provide some extra Dropshot rounds by default, or its base capacity be raised to 7 instead of the absymal 4 rounds we get.


1 and 3 are very valid complaints. Hopefully they will be addressed with the changes coming in op 5.
2 and 4 are, unfortunately, largely dependant on the behavior of others. Playing with randoms will always be hit or miss. Game mechanic may play a role in encouraging such behavior, but no matter what TC does it will never go away.
Personally, I have more fun doing an insane duo with my wife in private then I do with 4 randoms. Don’t even want to think about master in public.


I can tell you this. it’s not so much Lizzie being bad, it’s more so the dropshot just being underpowerd. It should hold at least 6 rounds I think or either give it more damage or both. As far as charecters relying on perks, I don’t think that’s too much of a thing. If you don’t have a Jack, Enginer or don’t get taps, don’t expect to get lots of power.

Well yes, it is the Dropshot but the way the weapon has been underpowered since Gears 5s launch indirectly makes that build for Lizzie un-fun to use if you can’t at least level your ammo capacity and damage perks up enough. Hence why I’m saying it’s too reliant on the perks.

And Lahni definitely would have to level the bleed and damage resistance perk to be any good in Horde because TC couldn’t figure out a way to make ths venom cards work in that mode.

You know mate this op4 has driven me more towards escape and I’m loving escape now. I always had friends that we played horde with. Always had a dedicated engineer and we all played as a team. That’s what I like about horde. It’s a team based mode that requires all to play as a team. Since this new op came out two of these friends have become unbearable to play with. Engineer is no longer needed in their minds and perks are a must ASAP. We played 5 frenzy matches last night and the first thing they kept doing is buying a locker for themselves and doing perks at the end of wave 1. We didn’t even play masters and we lost 3 out of 5 games. One of them was Fahz and he always bought a locker for himself straight up and took it to where he was gonna camp at. We had a JD who did the same. I was Marcus. I couldn’t keep my ultimate going as they refuse to skip any waves so I just kept my ultimate for boss waves only but we were being overrun before boss waves because of the lack of teamwork.
This is happening between friends who been playing together for the last 8 months. I can only imagine what nonsense is happening in public matches.
The problem is this op has given power to all and teamwork has gone out the window.

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I think it would be better if you get to choose where the taps spawn, it might need balancing but if your playing a master run and the RNG puts the first tap on the other side of the map and you lack a jack, thats not fair or fun.

The hammer would be better if it raised the ammo to 7/8 but was not effected by lizzies ammo perk.

I don’t host a lot of matches but i still feel like baird/del should be in a game for a better experience. Jack still is a great reviver/forge bonus character but for a lot of maps he’s not necessary.

People joining master lobbies with a lvl 2 fahz is a ■■■■ move and to my knowledge there is no way of seeing what level someone is if they join a match in progress, maybe thats a feature that could be added.

With respect to 1, I wonder if the forge was a bad addition due to how it messes with the power economy, which seems to be balanced around the premise that people are going to be scrapping most of the weapons on the map. Most players are going to be too busy killing to do it, and frankly I don’t understand why tedious busywork with no skill involved is a necessary mechanic in this game. If extra power is going to be rewarded for anything, it should be special kills like headshots or executions or whatever, instead of ferrying guns around. It’s boring!


Honestly I like that the taps spawn randomly because I think it makes it more difficult. As far as tap extra health I think that should go because it’s too strong.

I’ve found hosting Lobbies starting round 11 to be a great way to completely eliminate the RNG of the taps for the map you want.

Yeah you’re losing out on 3 cards, but having the taps in the place you want it is definitely worth it in my opinion.

Makes the game more enjoyable for me anyway.

I think complaint 3 definitely hits home,

Clayton is a beast with max perks, but that’s not really a viable thing at all if you’re not in a controlled environment like the lobbies I host.

I can’t upgrade my perks because I’ll be kicked if I don’t deposit, (for example anyways, I don’t join others lobbies anymore because of this post here)

(Just knowing some host with an inferiority complex can kick me at the last wave because they felt slighted. That’s a nah from me fam.)

Or if the taps can’t be held because the base doesn’t allow for it. Or I don’t have a Jack because that playstyle is so boring to so many people nobody wants to run him.

The band-aid solution of buffing a character through perks when horde power is already so limited and so scarce doesn’t work. Because of the problems listed above.

I am a fellow Clayton fan but he as well as other charecters need to be nerfed. They are way too strong compared to some of the weaker charecters. His passive needs to be changed back to the old one because the new passive is way too strong.

No way do I agree that Clayton needs to de toned down while his passive may seem broken it literally only is super effective with the mulcher and high hp enemies not to mention most times u have to buy the mulcher yourself and perk up smartly which leads to The character being kicked from lobbies due to not depositing.

This is what the community cried for. TC just gave the mob what they wanted. Everyone wanted to be able to do everything. So now we have Horde where teamwork and defined roles are almost non-existent.

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I also agree that Clayton isnt broken. Stuns, boomers, salvos, flashbangs can still drop clayton. You really have to be aware of all the angles out in the open. His so called immunity is very contextual and exagerated, and by no means common.

Also back to OP, point 4 is true, Go into a random Master lobby and if there are two or three key characters being played by “less experienced” players the game can easily wipe quite early. I dont agree with people calling for nerfs - Im sure TC have analytics that will show most Master horde games failing early. If there is an issue they will know - I just hope they dont listen to the uninformed toxic community.

Clayton at his best needs around 75,000 power,

if you have enough for all the perks to be Maxed out.

The game state, and the base are already in a great position
So Nah, Clayton doesn’t need a nerf. Considering perks are a solid amount of his character power.


1: Yeah I notice a major difference if we have an engi, a jack or good taps. More power means more forts and more perks. Some people think the engineer is obsolete now that the fabricator is open. Not to point any names. But you don’t know how valuable an engi is until you do 50 waves of Master with Kait repairing. It’s boring, takes too long, cost more and that player has to be super defensive least they want to buy another repair tool -.-

2: I have seen groups do this. I think it’s because no one wants to change and/or they have been waiting for the lobby to fill that they just want to play. It is possible but it really shows how good(or bad) those 5 really are. I will see one person spend money to buy a repair tool and I give that person props for doing what needs to be done. While I’ve played plenty of games without a Jack, I have rarely played any without an engineer. I have done it like once but it was frustrating. Baird’s repair speed perk has spoiled me.

3: Some chars do feel like they need to invest more into their in match perks to be really good. Clayton for example has a lot of great in game perks. For his ult to really be effective I feel I NEED to have ult duration because 6 seconds just isn’t a lot of time. I also need chain gun ammo regen and a lvl 3-4 locker. I like having a mulcher for dmg, a tri shot for distance, a cryo for bosses and a salvo for flyers.
Another example is Keegan. His explosive regen is crazy but as a result. Most Keegans I see don’t deposit early because they want that explosive regen early. Which makes sense but I better not hear Keegan complain he doesn’t have a locker or there’s not enough fences.

4: It’s not just you. I’ve been seeing a rise in idiots lately. Especially in Masters. Not just low lvls(though they are present too) but just flat out bad players. I’ve seen Kait’s not running bleed on their shotgun. Coles using a GL, a CoG gear without his stim card, Fahz without explosive headshot. Marcus players using their ult outside of cover when there is plenty of things in front of them to shoot. The worst was a lvl 18 Jack who wasn’t running his smelting card. When he smelted a gun and only got 20 energy it made me sick. I wanted to boot that guy right then and there but I wasn’t the host. He also spent most of the match outside the barriers zapping+hijacking people. The host threatened to boot him if he kept doing that and he took the hint. But he was more interesting in doing dmg then support. It’s like that Overwatch player who ques up as support for fast que times. Then picks Moira so they can do dmg instead of healing. Then there’s the wannabe engineers. I see a lot of people putting the fabricator in bad spots and the enemy spawns BEHIND us. Or people buying sentries instead of lockers. Planting fences horizontally instead of vertically. No one is building shock sentries or decoys. People not moving the base closer to a tap location. Flat out putting forts in exposed positions, they get destroyed and have to be rebuilt(waste of energy). If TC makes it so the fab can’t block hallways these people are going to be in for a rude awakening.
I say this about all things, not just gaming. When you lower the bar we all suffer.

Overall OP4 has introduced some issues but I feel it’s an improvement.

He doesn’t really need explosive headshot to do well, I’ve not used it with Fahz for a few Master attempts/matches and was still just as much a killing machine as normal.

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I don’t agree. I have used it with just a trishot and no cards to amplify it and it’s very very strong. It needs to go. The passive is just way too strong at the highest difficulty. A lot of the heavy weapon cards aren’t even needed to be honest. He is way too strong

Clayton isn’t Broken but he is very very strong. He as well as some of the other extremly strong charecters need to be toned down. Like I love Clayton but I can recognize his strength is just way too much. He is extremely hard to kill even on the highest difficulty. I’m informed on Clayton, I know what he is capable off and it’s a lot.

He defiantly does need to be nerfed/toned down as well as a lot of the other very strong charecters. Also you don’t need the perks on him, they defiantly make things a lot easier though but you can do without them. Like I love Clayton but I’m smart enough to recognize that he is too strong. I don’t even have him maxed so I can’t even imagine how strong he gets when maxed… gross

I’ll play with you, as Jack, to help out.