Gears maps to cost in future

Mark Rein defends decision.

Epic Games' Mark Rein says that a new Gears of War map pack featuring four battlegrounds will be coming soon, and you'll be expected to pay for it.

That wasn't the developer's first-choice strategy though, as Rein explained. "Epic thinks the way to maximise the return on Gears of War is to give the maps away for free and Microsoft thinks the way to maximise the return on Gears of War is to sell the maps," Epic's vice president told forumites at EvilAvatar.com after it became clear that the maps would cost.

"So what we've agreed to do is to put these maps on sale at a reasonable price then make them free a few months later," he wrote. "[Microsoft] did this with the original Halo 2 map pack and it was a huge success. Lots of people bought the maps and lots of people downloaded them when they became free.

"That's what is going to happen and it seems like a fair compromise for both companies and a win-win for Gears players."

In the meantime, Epic has released a Gears patch introducing the Annex multiplayer mode for free, and you should find your Xbox 360 downloads that automatically when you next load up Gears.

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