TechSpot means tech analysis and advice you can trust. Read our ethics statement.
PC gamers will get their chance to show console gamers how it's done when Gears of War 4 trials cross-platform competitive multiplayer this weekend. While Gears of War 4 already supported cross-platform co-op, this special event is the first time PC gamers will be able to fight against those playing on Xbox One.
The trial run of cross-platform competitive multiplayer will last from December 2nd to December 5th. To try it out, head into the special Versus Playlist on either platform, where you'll play Team Deathmatch, Dodgeball, and King of the Hill game modes. As an incentive to try out cross-platform play, the amount of XP you'll gain in this playlist is significantly increased over other modes.
Microsoft and the Gears team hope to use this weekend to gather important information about how PC and console gamers interact in a competitive setting. Balance is an incredibly important aspect of multiplayer gaming, and the data gathered in this test could inform developers on how to craft multiplayer games that can be played by both PC and console gamers.
Community Manager for The Coalition stated that "conserving a fair, competitive environment remains a top priority for us."
Initially it's expected that PC gamers will hold a considerable advantage over Xbox One gamers due to the much more precise controls afforded by the keyboard and mouse. However with tools like aim assist, it's possible for the game to be balanced such that those playing on a controller aren't significantly disadvantaged.
PC gamers could also benefit from better performance compared to their console counterparts, although Gears of War 4 on Xbox One targets 1080p at 60 FPS. How these differences affect multiplayer matches will be discovered during this weekend's test.