'Gears 3' Gets The 'Fenix Rising' Map Pack January 17th

New maps, skins, and Prestige-style functionality coming to the next chunk of Gears DLC.

Of all of the major releases from the past three months, I think Gears of War 3 has been getting some of the most consistent support—which it kind of needs given its not great performance in the Xbox Live rankings. While it hung on in the top 5 for the first couple of weeks after its release, the game has experienced a precipitous drop since as Modern Warfare 3, Skyrim, and the like have crowded the top spots.

That doesn't mean no one is playing Gears, it just means everyone is spending a lot more time playing other stuff that isn't Gears. Anyway, it'll be great if the Fenix Rising Map Pack and the updates included in it might help the game.

Along with the usual new/updated maps and skins, the big news this time around is that Gears is getting a Prestige-like mode, allowing players to level up to 100 multiple times to unlock new in-game content. Curiously, this feature is only available to users who purchase the DLC (it seems like the kind of thing that would just be part of a regular title update for the multiplayer), so you'll have to buy this to get that.

Below you can find details of the new maps, and I'd like to direct you to Epic's page for more info on this DLC.

  • Academy –The lineage of the Fenix family can be traced back along a distinguished line of military officers. Officer training at the Oracle Academy was simply the expected path for Marcus, and he had visited the grounds many times in expectation that he would walk the same path as his ancestors. But it was not to be, and Marcus broke with tradition to be with his best friends Dom and Carlos. Like any number of fine Seran traditions, the Academy is now lost to the invasion of the Locust Horde.
  • Anvil – The fortress of Anvegad was called Anvil Gate because its impenetrable walls were forged in the fires of war. Huge cannons sat atop battlements that guarded sprawling walls running the line of the UIR borders. Marcus went there to find Hoffman, and they both thought that Anvil Gate would offer protection from the incoming forces of Locust and Lambent. They were wrong, and little remains other than the ruined shell of a once mighty fortress.
  • Depths – The excessive opulence of Azura defied all normal reasoning. But Adam Fenix could see the cracks in the veneer of splendor from the moment he arrived at this underwater processing center. And all that beauty mattered not at all once he was held captive by the Locust. Out of options, he had to find a way to contact Marcus, and finally reveal the truths he’d been keeping to himself for all these many years.
  • Escalation – Haldane Hall has been the home of the Fenix family for countless generations. But the only history that matters to Marcus’s are his memories of warm summer evenings spent with his mother, Elain, relaxing in the estate’s gardens. Sadly, all the estate’s history and beauty was lost when the Locust destroyed it in an attempt to kidnap his father.
  • The Slab – Convicted for insubordination and treason, Marcus was incarcerated in Jacinto Maximum Security Prison. Known as “The Slab”, this prison is not a correctional facility – it’s a place where Sera’s worst offenders are locked up and forgotten. The inmates are brutal, parole is not an option, and the average life expectancy is about two years. But that was before the Locust showed up, and what couldn’t get worse, suddenly did. Now your life expectancy there is around 2 minutes.

The Fenix Rising map pack will be available January 17th on Xbox Live for 800 MS Points.

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