As all this is going on the Derrick is still rolling through the canyon, crushing any trees in its path. There's another Derrick travelling alongside, but there's a problem - the Locust have managed to hijack it, accessing the driver's cabin and deck using their grappling hooks. Following a fierce shootout across the bows of both vehicles, the Locust start attempting to take over the Derrick Bleszinski's on. He battles back by shooting their hooks off the bow before they've had a chance to climb up, and when that fails, by blasting them in the chest as they leap onto the deck. Turning his attention back to the successfully hijacked Derrick, Blesinski aims at the Locust in the driver's cabin and fires a perfect shot. With no one behind the wheel it tumbles into the chasm ahead and explodes, while the other Derrick continues over the bridge.
Time for the final act of the level. A Corpser bursts out of the ground right next to the Derrick, and Bleszinski despatches it with a few furious bursts of gunfire. He turns his attentions to the Brumak throwing its body weight against the Derrick in a bid to tip it over, attacking its guns first before shooting it in the face. A splatter of blood hits the camera, the Brumak gives out a great groan and comes crashing to the ground. The Derrick has reached its destination, Landown. "And that's level two," says Bleszinski.
There's just time for a few questions, starting with one about how the Achievements system will work this time around. "I don't want to get into too much of the multiplayer right now, but one thing I can confirm is we are doing Achievement progress," he says. "So players can track how far they're getting with each Achievement in whatever mode.
"We're also going to be throttling the amount of Achievements players can get at any given point." For example, if you're going for headshots, only the first headshot will count when you're in multiplayer mode. "The others won't count, so players won't be able to rock the system and play at getting headshots the entire round just to get their Achievement," explains Bleszinski, before adding that you'll be able to get all Achievements whether in single-player, multiplayer or co-op.
The next person to pipe up wants to know how they've managed to knock out a sequel to Gears of War so quickly. "Because we started working on it the moment the first one shipped," says Bleszinski. "When we saw how the pre-orders were for the first game, when we saw the reviews coming in, we were like, 'We have to do a sequel to this, because it's clearly going to be a success.'" Now the foundation of the series has been established, he continues, the team is able to focus on "having some fun" rather than working out the game's core mechanics.
That fun will include duelling, of which not much was shown in the demo. Bleszinski is happy to talk about it, however. "The chainsaw duelling is just a B-button press mini-game because, I don't know how you guys feel, but if I play another Quick Time Event thing I think I'm going to stab somebody in the neck. I think that trend just needs to die," he says, before outlining a feature we didn't get to see in today's demo but wish we had. "If you come up from behind someone, you'll take the chainsaw up between their legs and behind them and... You know." There's a titter from the audience. "Yeah."
Of course, there's lots more we didn't see in today's demo - for example, enemies and environments other than what was featured in the trailer (Bleszinski promises locations will range "from the deepest depths of the underground to the highest snow-capped peaks"). But it's still a thrill to see Gears of War 2 in action. "I know I've been saying bigger, better, more badass, but I hope you guys agree that's what we're delivering here," says Bleszinski. It certainly looks that way.