Microsoft and The Coalition have released a new update for Gears of War 4. This latest update features a handful of improvements along with new maps and the much-requested return of Torque Bow Tag.

The update includes new maps the first one being Impact Dark, a remixed version of Impact that completely re-imagines the combat dynamics of the original. To up the challenge, visibility is permanently reduced by smoke that has settled over the battlefield, forcing players closer to the action. Every weapon swap has been changed to alter the flow of the map – Snipers are now replaced with Boltoks, Dropshot replaces Torque/EMBAR and the Overkill now sits where Incendiaries used to.

The second new map is the classic War Machine. This map is back with a drastic new take on the setting. Moving away from the old abandoned train station locale, War Machine is now set in a new COG Settlement, standing out with its pristine appearance and gleaming features. Compared to the original, signs of life are everywhere – from the active DeeBee security bay, to the train sitting at the end of the platform ready to depart.

Both maps are available to play today in the Developer Playlist for Season Pass Holders, featuring TDM, Guardian and King of the Hill gametypes with Double XP and 20% Bonus Credits.

The Coalition also made changes to the Guardian mode with Respawn points being closer to the team’s leader for a new tactical edge: Leaders now need to position themselves in beneficial areas of the map, while other players will have more opportunity to get back to their leader and come to their aid.

The developer also announced that Core and Competitive lobbies will arrive next month in the March update. Expect to get more details as we near the update’s release.

Following on from Dizzy, they plan on bringing Legacy Characters by updating their voice work and character fidelity to make them right at home in Gears 4. Starting next month, this work will turn into a steady flow of Legacy Characters: from iconic heroes of the past to the hotly demanded return of Locust Characters.

Additionally, the developer revealed what they plan to bring to Gears 4 later this summer:

  • New Inconceivable Difficulty (Campaign & Horde)
  • IronMan Mode (Campaign & Horde)
  • Level 6 skills for all class skills
  • More skills for existing classes
  • New achievements