Rise of the Horde Official Gameplay Trailer

Prepare for the biggest ever update in the history of Gears of War 4 – and all for free - with the Rise of the Horde arriving on June 6th!  And, if you haven’t dived into the next chapter in the epic saga of Gears of War yet, you can try it for free beginning next week with our Game Trial!

Check out the trailer above for the first footage of Avalanche and the new Skills in Rise of the Horde, then read on all the info!

Horde Update Overview

Horde is getting a massive shakeup with the arrival of Rise of the Horde, with 15 brand new Horde Skills (3 per Class) to collect, Level 6 skills, Loot Drops, tuning changes and new difficulty levels!

New Skills

Both the new and existing Skills can now be taken to Level 6, making them even stronger than ever before! The new 15 skills arriving in Rise of the Horde focus on providing new ways to specialize the way you play your Class.


Flow – Take reduced damage while repairing fortifications

Overclock – Increase the rate which Weapon Lockers replenish ammo

Salvage – Enemies killed by your sentries have a chance of dropping ammo magazines


Thick Skin – Take reduced damage from explosions

Berserker – While carrying a heavy weapon you deal more damage as your health gets lower

Last Stand – While carrying a heavy weapon you take less damage as your health gets lower


Dodge – Take reduced damage while roadie running

Speed Loader – Roadie running will reload your equipped weapon automatically with Active Reload rounds

Cloak – Being stationary and in cover for seconds will cloak you from enemies – leaving the cover or shooting will remove the cloak. Shoot enemies from Cloak for a small damage boost.


Steady Hand – Take less damage and have reduced camera shake (when being attacked) while aiming or scoping

Magic Bullet – Critical hits with precision rifles (Longshot, Markza, EMBAR) penetrate through enemies and increase the damage of the next shot

Called Shot – Targets you mark take increased damage from all sources


Siphon – Planted grenade kills cause enemies to drop more Power

Resupply – Regenerates one grenade every [X] seconds (up to starting loadout number)

Assault Rifle Accuracy – Assault Rifles become more accurate the longer they are fired while in cover

Boss loot drops AND MORE

Take those new Skills out into the field and defeat Bosses in Horde Matchmaking for new rewards – each Boss Wave you defeat at Wave 30, 40 and 50 will drop a singular random Horde Skill. Harder difficulties increase the likelihood of a rare drop, so challenge yourself for the best chance at an awesome drop.

We've also now added a new UI feature that now shows how many Power drops - and how much they are worth - are left on the field. While this benefits the whole team, Scouts can now rest safely at the end of the round knowing they cleaned up every possible Power drop out going into the next Wave.

Try Gears of War 4 Free

We also have some exciting news to share for Xbox One and Windows 10 gamers who haven’t jumped in to the Gears of War 4 experience yet. Beginning on June 9th and running until June 15th, we’re offering a limited time trial version of Gears of War 4 to download for free!

This full game trial will offer 10 hours of free play in Gears of War 4, including the entire first Act of the Campaign plus full  - yes, full! - access to the Horde and Versus experiences. That means you can try out Rise of the Horde on top of all the great content that exists in Gears of War 4 today! And, if you don't complete the Trial during it's availability period, you can still play to your 10 hour time limit anytime afterwards.

For our new players, we’ll be offering special bonuses to earn as you level up including guaranteed characters, weapon skins and new Horde Skills to try. Here's a rundown of all the rewards on offer:


Level 2: Trainee Pack (Contains 3 Cards - Horde Skills, Bounties or Weapon Skins)

Level 3: Trainee Pack

Level 4: Trainee Pack

Level 5: Trainee Pack

Level 7: Trainee Pack

Level 10: Second Wave COG Gear Pack containing a guaranteed character for Versus and Horde (UIR Male or Female) + Trainee Pack

Level 15: Second Wave Swarm Gear Pack: containing a guaranteed Swarm character for Versus and Horde (Onyx Gold Swarm Drone, Grenadier or Hunter) + Trainee Pack

Level 20: Trainee Pack

Level 25: Trainee Pack

Level 30: Trainee Pack

And, so you can put those Horde Skills to good use, we’ll also be turning on Double Class XP throughout June and 20% Bonus XP in Horde Matchmaking – the more you level your Class, the more Skills you can use on the battlefield!

Everything you earn in the Trial is yours forever – including achievements, Cards and Campaign progression. Mark your calendar and prepare to download the trial on Xbox One or Windows 10 - grab it while you can, it’s only available for download between June 9th and 15th! Head over to our official Game Trial page for full information on all the content on offer along with FAQs.

New Difficulty Levels: Inconceivable and Ironman

With new and improved skills also comes tougher challenges. Prepare to take on the toughest fight in Gears of War history with the new Inconceivable difficulty level, coming to both Campaign and Horde.

In Horde, Inconceivable is a direct step up from Insane – you’ll be even weaker, and your enemies will be even stronger. Level up your skills to their new Level 6 peak and maximize the bonuses of your classes if you want to get through all 50 Waves of Inconceivable. Unlock Inconceivable Difficulty for Horde by beating 50 consecutive waves of Insane.

In Campaign, Inconceivable takes a more Survival based twist, giving you less health than Insane difficulty but also less health to your enemies. That’s because surviving on Inconceivable is all about effectiveness - weapons and crates drop significantly less ammunition, so you’ll have to make every shot count with whatever pickups you can find on the battlefield. Unlock Inconceivable Difficulty for Campaign by beating the Campaign on Insane.

In addition, Ironman Mode comes to both Horde and Campaign with Rise of the Horde. Ironman means one simple thing – don’t die. In Campaign, one death will restart your game back to square one. In Horde, no COG tags will be dropped when you die and one failed wave spells the end of your run to Wave 50. You can toggle Ironman on any difficulty that suits you, and there’s some achievements out there to chase for fans willing to take on the ultimate high risk challenge! Plus, exclusive to Horde, Ironman adds a 5% XP bonus for all XP earned and XP Bounties completed during the match.

Earn 500G of New Achievements

20 new achievements are set to arrive with Rise of the Horde, offering an extra 500G total Gamerscore to collect in Gears of War 4!

Inconceivable!: Complete all Campaign Acts on Inconceivable Difficulty (20G)

Pumping Iron: Complete all Campaign Acts on Ironman (Hardcore, Insane, or Inconceivable Difficulty (50G)

Legends of Sera: Complete all Campaign Acts on Ironman in Co-op on Hardcore or higher difficulty (50G)

Six is the New Five: Upgrade a Skill Card to level 6 (10G)

Winning Hand: Upgrade 5 Skill Cards to level 6 (10G)

Classy!: Upgrade all Skill Cards for one Horde class to level 6 (50G)

Crafty: Crafted a Craft Only card (20G)

Scrap Happy: Destroy a card (5G)

New Horizons: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde in a squad on any Post Launch map (10G)

Around The World: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde in a squad on five Post Launch maps (50G)

Mind Blown: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Sniper on Inconceivable in a squad (any map) (25G)

A Scout Always Pays Their Debts: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Scout on Inconceivable in a squad (any map) (25G)

I’ve Got You In My Sights: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Soldier on Inconceivable in a squad (any map) (25G)

You. Shall Not. Pass!: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Engineer on Inconceivable in a squad (any map) (25G)

Nothing Is Over!: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Heavy on Inconceivable in a squad (any map) (25G)

Never Know What Hit ‘em: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Sniper on Ironman (Hardcore or higher) in a squad (any map) (20G)

You Win Or You Die: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Scout on Ironman (Hardcore or higher) in a squad (any map) (20G)

Tactical Necessity: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Soldier on Ironman (Hardcore or higher) in a squad (any map) (20G)

The Great Battle of our Time: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Engineer on Ironman (Hardcore or higher) in a squad (any map) (20G)

To Survive a War, You Gotta Become War: Complete 50 consecutive waves of Horde as Heavy on Ironman (Hardcore or higher) in a squad (any map) (20G)

New Maps: Avalanche and Rust Lung

This month brings the highly demanded return of Avalanche, along with the close quarters combat of Rust Lung!


The Gears of War 2 map you know and love is back. Set in a mountainside resort, this village sits below a mountain with an unstable build-up of snow at its peak. During the match, the snow avalanches onto the battlefield, killing anything in its path and changing the entire middle of the map. Prepare to fight for the Boomshot the moment the snow falls.


This returning map from Gears of War 3 brings an intense close-quarters flavor to this month’s map drop. Cover in the middle of the map can be dropped or raised with the press of a button – sneak around your opponents flank to give them a nasty surprise as their cover disappears from right in front of them!

Season Pass Holders can play both of these maps beginning June 6th in the Developer Playlist, with Double XP and 20% Bonus Credits. Everyone can play both of these maps beginning on June 13th when they arrive in Public Matchmaking.

Crossplay Comes To Ranked

Xbox One and Windows 10 unite! We’re incredibly excited to enable Crossplay in Ranked Play beginning on June 6th, bringing Xbox and Windows players together in the battle to earn the highest rank possible.

For players who want to preserve the competitive spirit of console play, where all opponents run on similar hardware with similar equipment, we’ve added a Crossplay Toggle to enable Xbox One players to choose whether or not to match with players on Windows 10.

The Return of Wings

Gears of War has always been home to some of the most hardcore gamers out there, and Gears of War 4 has proved no different. More and more players have hit Re-Up 10 over the last few months, so we wanted to add even more for players to earn as they play Gears 4.

Today, we’re announcing that Wings – the iconic symbols of the ultimate dedication to Gears of War – are making a comeback with Rise of the Horde!

Five new Wings levels await once you crest the initial 10 Re-Ups, with each Wings Level taking longer than the one before it. Exclusively for Wings 1-5, we’ve added a Black Gold Starting Weapon Skin set to collect as you rank up. If you reach the ultimate Wings 5, you’ll collect the Wings Custom Lancer  – the only Custom Lancer skin in the game! Check it out in the image above.

Player Rewards

To celebrate the upcoming June Update, we're also giving away more content as a thank you to our existing users!


Login from today at 10am until June 8th 2017 at 10am PDT to instantly claim two free Second Wave Packs!

These Packs contain one COG and one Swarm Character from the following pool:

Second Wave COG Gear Pack: UIR Male or Female

Second Wave Swarm Gear Pack: Onyx Gold Swarm Drone, Onyx Gold Swarm Grenadier or Onyx Gold Swarm Hunter

If you're away from your console or Windows 10 PC during this period, you can log in with your Gamertag to our Card Companion on GearsofWar.com to claim your Packs.

Season pass rewards

On June 6th, we're also adding more rewards for our Season Pass Holders. Whether you're already a member or you pick up the Season Pass after June 6th, you'll also be granted the following:

Rise of the Horde Pack: An exclusive Season Pass reward featuring 5 of the new Horde Skills - 3 Epic and 2 Rares

Horde Expert Pack: Contains 10 Horde Skills and a bonus Horde Bounty, including a guaranteed Epic Horde Skill!

The Gear With The Golden Gun

There’s even more reason to play this June with the debut of a brand new Versus Special Event: Golden Gun. This custom-built mode arms you with one bullet and a hip-fire only Boltok – land your bullet to instantly return it to the gun, otherwise prepare for the longest reload of your life. It’s the ultimate game of Gears chicken, and we can’t wait to see fans get hands on this month.

There's even more to come throughout June, so stay tuned to @GearsofWar on Twitter and GearsofWar.com for all the latest announcements. Whether you're joining us for the first time, coming back after a haitus, or still playing every day, we can't wait to take on the Rise of the Horde with you this month.

Update Notes

Gnasher Tuning Update
After running our Gnasher Tuning Test Week in May, based on your feedback, we’ve decided to proceed with implementing the Gib range changes. In addition, Rise of the Horde also introduces other behind the scenes mechanical changes that should also contribute to creating a more consistent Gnasher up close. Thanks to everyone who participated and provided their feedback!

Horde Balance Update
As part of our major update to Horde this month, we’ve spent some time analyzing the dynamics of Horde to deliver new Skills that provide more successful strategies for your Classes to use than ever before. In addition, we’re also beefing up players with the ability to take their Skills to the next level with Level 6 Skills.

With all these new options for players, we felt now was the time to address the manned turret centric nature of Horde that has become a staple of many-a-Horde-Base. Currently, setups rely too heavily on getting 2-4 Turrets to Level 4 as quickly as possible given the incredible bang for buck they give you comparative to other fortification options. We want Classes, Skills and variety to shine in Horde, and turrets were limiting that by being too effective for too little cost.

In this Update, we’re making high level Turrets a serious investment – both in initial cost and how much it costs to keep them filled with ammo. We also found the damage output of Level 3 and 4 Turrets was on the high side, so we’ve slightly reduced their base damage.

As always, you can use Skills to reduce these costs significantly or make the turrets more efficient with damage boosts. This should result in more varied base building, more opportunities for Class Skills to shine, and for the very best Horde teams to really stand out from the crowd.

  • Reduced Level 3 and Level 4 Turret Damage by 12%
  • Increased costs of Turrets above Level 1
    • Level 2 Base Cost: 20000 (from 15000)
    • Level 3 Base Cost: 40000 (from 25000)
    • Level 4 Base Cost: 80000 (from 40000)
  • Increased cost of Ammo Refill based on Turret Level
    • Level 2: 25% cost increase
    • Level 3: 75% cost increase
    • Level 4: 100% cost increase
  • Salvo Damage reduced by 12%
  • Hammer of Dawn Strike Power Cost increased to 13000 (from 11000)

Update Notes

  • Implemented Gnasher tuning changes tested in last month’s Test Week
  • Behind the scenes improvements to the Gnasher to further improve consistency
  • Updated all Zombie Characters to use standard character dialogue
  • Zombie Characters will now only say “Braaaaaains!” when landing a headshot
  • Fixed an issue that caused headshot character dialogue to fire more rarely than intended
  • Majorly reduced ‘killstreak’ dialogue. Increased frequency of original character dialogue for 3 and 4 kills in a row.
  • Resolved a rare issue where being removed from a Competitive Lobby for reasons outside player control could result in a matchmaking penalty
  • Removed an exploit in Horde that allowed players to kill friendly team members
  • Fixed issues with Security that could cause the lasers to be shown as permanently on
  • Spectator: Added team colors to X-Ray vision in Spectator Mode
  • Spectator: Reduced explosion screen-shake when spectating
  • Windows 10: Resolved a bug where – in rare instances – single-shot projectiles could misfire at high framerates
  • Windows 10: Further improvements to mGPU
  • Miscellaneous fixes and improvements