When Epic Games' Xbox 360 exclusive Gears of War was unveiled for Xbox it blew us away. This was the next-gen game that we'd been waiting for and the first to really show off how powerful the Xbox 360 was.

Approaching two years on from the game's winter 2006 release, Gears is still able to hold its own with the best graphical showcases on either the Xbox 360 or PS3, but we're now preparing for the next leap is visual fidelity with the impending release of Gears of War 2.

We've all seen the early look at a stage from the campaign, but now MS has released a bunch of screen shots which directly compare Gears with Gears 2 using the popular multiplayer map, Gridlock

Sure the lighting is hugely different, but look harder and you'll see heaps more detail and effects that make Gears 2 look almost a generation better than its predecessor. We don't need to tell you that though; decide for yourselves by pouring your eyes over the five comparison shots we've presented for you over the next few pages.

Head to page 2 for more comparison images.

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User Comments

TURBO_RAD's Avatar


I can see a big improvement between the two GOW had the best graphic i had seen until GOW2 came out same basic graphics but GOW2 had alot smoother and more textured graphics for instance in the first GOW several times i would start the game and marcus would be just a blur of diff colors unil finally all at once his features would just pop out...and in the GOW2 that has never happended and everything just looks smoother and more sleek overall the rain looks better and enemies have a more realistic look
Posted 03:28 on 12 January 2009
L33TSP3AK's Avatar
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The only differences from Gears 1 is that Gears 2 has a better color-pallette and has brighter, more vibrant-looking graphics. Although personally, I liked the 'dark' theme of Gears 1, as it fit the setting and mood.
Posted 02:54 on 12 January 2009
Johnny's Avatar
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When you see a huge list of people all syaing the exact same thing, and calling everyone XBOTs, you just know they are all pathetcally in love with Sony.

I own this game, and its predecessor, it makes the first Gears look awful.

I a a big fan of MGS4 by the way ;).
Posted 14:01 on 13 November 2008
Gears Of War 2's Avatar
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Gears Of War 2

Definatly the ruler of Xbox 360, and PS3. I'd love to see what other games can do if they all look like this.
Posted 20:08 on 15 October 2008
RROD's Avatar
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Looks like gears 1.1

lol look how bad the draw distance is in gears 1.1 compared, downgrade!
Posted 00:19 on 10 October 2008
jz's Avatar
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gears 2 I think uses to much fog but still goty
Posted 03:08 on 27 September 2008
N/A's Avatar
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There really isn't much improvement here.

Basically they have added some new texture layers, and added more texture details to the main player. However, they have also taken out some models/assets and reduced model detail of some buildings.
Lighting ..... I don't know whether to its improved or not, if you happen to like ue3's horrible over-blown, over-saturated, pasty lighting then i guess you can say more is better. More post-processing blur than before resulting in less draw distance - fail attempt at creating depth of field. However i guess you could say they have given the map more mood and atmosphere which is great.

However in general UE3 is a completely overrated engine, even running on max settings on a PC it still looks terrible.
Posted 03:15 on 28 July 2008
unbyazz's Avatar
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True artist can tell the difference between the two. If you are not an artist (or just a ps3 fanboy) you will find it difficult to tell the difference. You do not have a artist eye. The first GOW looks great, but GOW2 is a big improvement. GOW2 has better textures (don't listen to the ps3 fanboy), more precise and controlled lighting, more color, and far more detailed environments and characters... if you guys don't see that, then i suggest you take some art classes and study, study hard! As for MGS4 or uncharted looking better... no! Granted uncharted has better character animation, but detail and lighting effects clearly belongs to GOW2... MGS4 is not in the same category as GOW2 in terms of graphics... in fact it's laughable to think so! get off of PS3's nuts... and stop lying to yourselfs... give GOW2 it's props...it will out sell MGS4 and uncharted combined. When PS3 comes out with a incredible game, i will definitely give it its credit when credit is due! True gamers respect great games, no matter what console or system it came out on!
Posted 14:30 on 08 July 2008
Rohan's Avatar
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I dont care if gow 2 turns out crap !!!!!
Videogamer.com just dont forget to compare crysis and crysis warhead
Posted 16:19 on 01 July 2008
PS3 MUGS's Avatar
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Just accept the fact that you bought the new Saturn. You PS3 owners are just the pit of the earth. YOUR PLATFORM WAS A WASTE OF MONEY. MUGS!
Posted 19:47 on 30 June 2008
Gears2's Avatar
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Do you think MGS3 looks better than MGS4 too ehutch? I prefer better visuals and fancier effects myself.

Some fantastic new HD footage of Gears 2 multi-player here:

All of those new atmospheric effects like dust particles and mist are easier to appreciate in motion (they move). Some of you guys seem to think that more is less when it comes to Xbox 360 games. Be fair.
Posted 07:10 on 29 June 2008
ehutch's Avatar
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i like the old ones better actually
Posted 23:17 on 28 June 2008
Leeroy64's Avatar


WE all know that this is bulls**t. The graphics aren't that much better. I would like to bring up something else though, and maybe its just me being picky. But if you notice in the first picture the mountain in GoW2 is FREAKING HUGE compared to GoW. And in the second to last picture you can clearly tell the clock tower is different. You can also see it in the last picture. In the last picture the building that used to hold the statue is different. And if you look a little bit closer to some of these pictures things are just different. I know there suppose to be worn and torn down from there original state. But some of the things that are changed are just weird. Like the clock tower. Its different but its still old enough to be rotting...
Posted 22:43 on 28 June 2008
warbo's Avatar
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Dwrote: "U3 is really a poor console engine, lack of AA, everything is blurry in the background, dreary colours. Perhaps the most overrated game engine ever, I hate u3 engine in games."

I disagree that it's overrated. It's still packed full of the latest tech, and Gears 2 will no doubt be one of the most visually impressive titles released in 2008.

Also FYI there is some AA in the 360 version of Gears, and in these Gears of War 2 images. It's not present on every surface, but stationary bacground objects have what looks like 2xAA.
See the roof of the building to the upper right of the first set of images. That's 2xAA.

Some of you guys are far too negative. The game looks stunning.
Posted 10:47 on 28 June 2008
daniel's Avatar
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For those failing to see past similarities in style and location (it's an old map retouched for the sequel), here are some of the more obvious differences:

Draw distance looks exactly the same here in Gears 2 (you can see detail to the same distance). The difference is with added atmospheric effects. Notice how there are things floating about in the distance that aren't floating about in gears 1? This, fog, and the improved DoF costs more GPU time to do than to not do. It's a big upgrade!

We've got some proper looking trees here. Foliage was sh*t throughout the first game. Another big improvement.

Lighting: Do you see the back of the Marcus model in shade? You can't in Gears 1.
They may have added the AO filter shown off in the UE3.5 demo too. Higher resolution shadow maps and more/better dynamic shadows is also good.

The Marcus and weapon models are much more detailed. Alot of the detail in textures from the first game is now properly modeled.

Textures: They're more varied and detailed allround, with much fancier shaders on top.

I like the new overgrown look for this map.

The differences are pretty significant here, but it is just a remake of a small multiplayer map.
The final game is said to have upwards of 100 enemies of various shapes and sized on screen at once. That's an improvement of about 90 over the original.

If you're comment contains the word "Xbot" I think it's probably safe to assume that you have more interest in "teh console wars" than in Gears of War 2.
Posted 10:02 on 28 June 2008

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Release Date: 07/11/2008
Developer: Epic Games
Publisher: Microsoft
Genre: Action
No. Players: 1-10
Rating: BBFC 18
Site Rank: 766 52
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