Franchise custodians The Coalition overhauled Tour of Duty progression in Gears 5 for its third Operation (Gridiron). In this guide, we break down a few different approaches that can significantly increase the speed you level up.
The conversation surrounding the emphasis on skip ahead micro-transactions versus excessive grind may continue to rage on across the industry at large, but thankfully, The Coalition have been keeping their ears to the ground.
Operation 3: Gridiron tweaks the manner in which daily objectives are handled, offering broader opportunities to make meaningful Tour of Duty progress regardless of your game mode of choice.
The exclusive (and eventually locked) nature of certain items once a season ends remains a disappointing choice, especially as these items could simply be rotated into the loot pool or made available for direct purchase with Iron.
Regardless, there has never been a better time to dive in and unlock some interesting customisation, and by following our guide, and keeping an open mind with regards to subtle adjustments to your play style, you could find yourself levelling up to that sweet execution in no time at all.
Embrace the Arcade
Although many Gears purists find the more frivolous, headshot laden mode a throwaway distraction, working through the current Tour of Duty is made significantly easier thanks to Arcade's reduced emphasis on shotguns, and its class based shenanigans.
Whether you're looking to complete weapon specific challenges (give me that "Hangtime" Execution!), or you're seeking some easy stars for rank progression, it's definitely the way to go.
They key benefit of Arcade to Tour of Duty is being able to choose a class with the appropriate purchasable weapon, which makes securing explosive or heavy challenges a breeze.
These big boy toys are typically much harder to snag in the standard competitive modes, with random spawning and the often lone wolf "team players" ensuring that you'll rarely nab what you need.
You can rack up significant progress just by sticking with a single class in Arcade; keeping your distance, and securing quick kills above all else, will see you earning stars with reckless abandon.
The zone based objective modes throw a spanner in the works, but if you've got a half decent team by your side, you can leave them to capture the ring whilst you support.
At least two of the four daily challenges, which grant stars toward your progression for completing specific tasks, are applicable across all game modes. This means you're now not necessarily limited to Arcade if the notion of diminished Gnasher opportunities really grinds your gears (sorry).
If, like me, you're also not bothered about dropping Iron in the Store because excessively priced bundle packs aren't your jam, it's worth making use of it to give yourself some fresh objectives.
Yes the cost of re-rolling increases each time, but since this resets daily, you can put this in game currency to better use and keep making progress (especially if its just sitting there burning a hole next to your Lancer).
Plus, levelling up your Tour of Duty grants several additional drops of 100 Iron, so you'll always have a healthy supply to level up to that emote or execution faster without needing to spend any real world money.
If you've disregarded the value of Iron up to this point, now is the time to rethink your position without dropping any actual dollar.
Play to Win
It can be difficult at times to retain your sanity when you witness xXMILFLover69Xx cover bounce into battle, guns a blazing, and promptly throw away your precious shared lives in the hunt for glory.
So much of Gears 5 is tooled to reward supporting your team and playing the objective; ignoring this fact is a huge mistake, and acknowledging the potential of a more collaborative approach will pay dividends for your Tour of Duty progression.
In the haste to skip the post game stats, you might have missed the cumulative bonus for playing matches in direct succession without dropping back to the main menu, or the star rewarding challenge completed for reviving team mates. Even denying a score in the new Gridiron mode counts toward a specific reward path.
While the temptation indulged by a lot of players is to simply farm for kills and ignore the win conditions, the slightest of tweaks to your mindset will make a tangible difference.