Gears of ARGH!

When I first started playing games in the mid 1980’s, I could accept a certain amount of technical glitches considering I was only 6 years old and all of my games loaded from a Commodore Plus/4 cartridge or tape deck. But even the simple looking style of my favourites such as Treasure Island, Icicle Works or even the Perseus and Andromeda text adventure could uphold game play for hours on end without fail. Okay so saving was a pain in the backside, due to the fact that many games pretty much just wouldn’t allow you to save at all. But this was a golden age of gaming so mock all you may with your fancy 120GB hard drives; my point being that despite its simplicity, reliability was rarely called into question and when it did, it was pretty much a given.

So many hours clocked on that baby!
So many hours clocked on that baby!

Now before I get a flood of arguments for next generation gaming and the computing know-it-alls attempt to correct me on why games these days should be given a certain leeway considering the technicality of today’s titles will automatically give a higher chance of problematic gaming; I get it. Really I do. I just don’t think it should be acceptable.

A Saturday afternoon; midway through my long awaited and hard earned weekend and time at the other half’s place. Thanks to a spanking deal at my third home, Enfield’s Gamestation (cheers Raz and co yet again!) I finally decided it was time to buy my own copy of Gears of War along with Harry Potter and the Order Of The Phoenix for the bargain price of 2 games for £20 – get in! By this point I’d already clocked Gears Of War 2, and due to a dodgy disc lent to me by a mate, my attempt to get through Gears 1 had been halted three chapters into the first act! But enough time had passed, I was ready to go in guns and chainsaws blazing, and finally work my way through a game I had so much fun watching other people complete.

Three weekends down the line and me and Bal were making good time on the Insane Campaign. As he‘d already completed it what now seems like yonks ago we jumped straight into the hardest setting so, being the achievement hoarder I am, I could grab as much out of the game as possible in one run through, then enjoy going through the easier modes again, and maybe dabble in some online fun on my own during the week. After a damn annoying run through the deadly, dark roads of Burnt Rubber (which nearly ended in another dent in the wall the week before!) we innocently booted up our save to continue our quest of completion. Thankfully we survived the chapter, and thanks to our handy little Cog Guide (say what you think, I’m not spending hours hunting for little tags on my own!) we looked up which one should have been next.

The face of death for my game
The face of death for my game

To my horror, when jumping to the pause screen, my previous collected Cogs had pretty much vanished. Scrap that, there was no pretty much about it, all of the little b*ggers were gone. Call it gaming karma if you wish, I call it ridiculous! When the rest of the game loads up fine it should be safe to assume that everything you’ve collected and recorded up to that point should also be in tact. WRONG! I quickly brushed it off as a dodgy side effect of updating my gamertag name and left it at that.

Come forward to the weekend just passed. After a confusing drive to Northampton with a Sat Nav for the Insert Coin event, and with our spare spontaneous red ringing console in tow, we continued our quest while waiting for the rest of the Ready Up team to arrive. Nothing was different, little had changed other than a few levels progression, and yet a day later not only were my cogs now gone, but my entire insane campaign save.

My anger was halted due to the bombardment of ‘How?’ questions running through my head! How is it possible in this day and age, over two decades since those text adventures, that a save can lose its way? Maybe it’s taken a holiday, or been abducted by aliens. Unfortunately after scouring the Gears forums it seems that Gears saves have a nasty habit of packing up and taking off during the middle of the night, taking everything and the kitchen sink with them. No kills, no cogs, no levels complete. Well that’s not technically accurate in my case considering it some how recognises I’ve completed 1, 3 and 5. Oh for the days where games had your back; held their own! Okay okay, so it’s not a complete disaster. We all know how good a series it is when it works without its flaws. But as for my (second!) attempt to complete Gears of War and despite the developer’s name, it wasn’t so much an Epic Game as an Epic Fail.


Where next boys? Menorca?
Where next boys? Menorca?







12 responses to “Gears of ARGH!”

  1. Del Torro El Sorrow avatar
    Del Torro El Sorrow

    I’ve never heard of that happening, that’s odd!

  2. Darach avatar

    I still run three rotating Gamesaves, plus the Autosave, for big games 🙂

    You won’t catch me out again Final Fantasy!!!
    *shakes fist*
    With your magical disappearing saves of forty hours gameplay!! >:(


  3. Michael avatar

    Imagine not having the ability to save at all.. go on, do it! Horrible, isn’t it?

    You wanna rattle through it again sometime, Loz? Give us a shout if you do! 🙂 Bear in mind I’m quite crap :

  4. Laura avatar

    I also rotate my saves, I learned my lesson after quick saving instead of quick loading HL2 in the middle of a fall to the death! X)

  5. The Rook avatar
    The Rook

    I’ve not heard of that before either. Maybe if Gears is being tempamental, you might want to consider also creating a save on a memry unit, or copying your save across at the end of a session.

    I had played through the game multiple times for the different difficulties achievements and had found all but three of the cog tags. I used a guide for those too.

  6. Loz avatar

    I was very bummed to say the least, and I wasnt aware of it happening either… until it happened to me!

    I was SO close, I’m talking the train ride with Raam close. Alas I’m in need of doing it all again. Once the pain subsides for a second time, I will definately be calling on the Ready Uppers to help me in my quest!

  7. NorfolkNChance avatar

    In all my years I’ve never had a save disappear on me at all…what do you do to make it happen – I’ll add it to testing 🙂

    I haven’t played Gears in a long time, I need to go back and have a go – I’m aces at it btw, so give us a shout if you need a hand.

  8. Jonah A McDoogl avatar
    Jonah A McDoogl

    The only time I have lost a save file is due to my own incompetence. Accidentally deleted about 60 hours of gameplay for Jade Cocoon 2 when I tried to free up some space on the memory card. Argh!

    Can’t imagine what Raam would be like on insane. I struggled with casual although I was really crap at Gears when I did it :/

  9. Barry avatar

    I beat RAAM on insane with the help of a veteran, I really wouldnt have been able to do it on my own at all.

    I Torque Bowed and they sniped, when he got close I’d put in a nade close then blindfire spam the shotgun. RAAM died within minutes, which is very fast on insane 😀

  10. Michael avatar

    That (longshot/torque bow) is the best strategy really; hell, the weapon set-up beforehand is like being bludgeoned by a hint!

    RAAM is the hardest part of Insane but to be honest he’s daucy on all other difficulties. Berserkers are tougher.

  11. Lorna avatar

    “I still run three rotating Gamesaves, plus the Autosave, for big games :)”

    I also do this…am paranoid that my Oblivion saves among others will go walkies.

    Great blog, Loz 🙂

  12. t3rm3y avatar

    could be a dodgy harddrive – my 20 gig was on the way out, kept losing stuff, saves, or progress. replaced drive and all seems good so far. although gears 23 now says dirty disc when loading a king of hill or submission game but all else loads.

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