Development studio The Coalition said it will remove the Gears 5 Map Builder feature from the game, as the team focuses on other projects within the studio.
The Map Builder lets you create custom levels for Gears 5’s Hive Escape game mode, which lets you and up to two other friends navigate a Swarm Hive, battle the enemies inside, and try to escape before a bomb explodes.
Using Map Builder, players were able to create their own custom hives to play solo or multiplayer. The feature offered a granular level of customization, allowing you to create entire maps by stitching together individual room tiles, ranging from simple square spaces, to large curved hallways, to massive hallways divided into different sections.
You can distribute enemies across the map, as well as change their types and combinations to change the challenge. Resource and ammo supplies could also be placed around the hive, damage multipliers applied, and the detonation time adjusted for more furious or relaxed playthroughs.
Two level builder-related achievements – I Made it All By Myself and Homegrown Hive – will now be automatically awarded to all Gears 5 players, as they will soon be ununlockable. This will appeal to all achievement hunters looking to hit that 100% completion mark.
To unlock achievements, The Coalition says you just need to install the latest Gears 5 update, which is now live, restart the game, and they’ll appear automatically. If you’ve already unlocked these achievements, you’ll receive an exclusive Gears 5 Multiplayer Banner and 10,000 coins as compensation.
The Coalition hasn’t specified what their next project will be, but it likely won’t be set in the Gears of War universe. A LinkedIn post from 2021 suggested the studio was working on a whole new IP.
PSA: We’re removing #Gears5 Map Builder and unlocking its achievements for all players as the team focuses on future projects. If you complete ‘I Did It All By Myself’ you will receive an exclusive banner and if you complete ‘Homegrown Hive’ you will receive 10,000 in-game coins. pic.twitter.com/cPX0tLKQ3sApril 26, 2022
Gears 5 fans will be disappointed to learn that its Map Builder is being removed, rather than simply “no longer supported”. It is likely that this decision by the Coalition was taken for practical reasons. As the development team moves on to other projects, it’s unlikely they’ll be able to dedicate enough resources to support user-created content in Gears 5, prompting to completely remove the feature.
Given the level of active moderation required to host user content, it is often easier for development studios to completely disable services when they can no longer run them, rather than maintaining them partially.
Even without Map Builder, the robust third-person shooter is still worth a shot. In our Gears 5 review, we said it was “the best we’ve seen in the series to date and cements Gears of War’s place as arguably the greatest shooter on the market.”
“It’s hard to find a title with sleeker shooting mechanics, more multiplayer modes, adrenaline-pumping firefights, and a campaign that keeps you hooked from start to finish.”