The Gelatinous Cube writes: "Gears 2 picks up where the first game left off. If you didn't play the first game, it won't be much of a problem, although some story elements may seem confusing to you. I recommend playing the first game before this one for a couple of reasons: it's great, and if you play it after this one, it won't be so great. That's because Gears 2 tops the first game in literally every way.
The core gameplay involves you (and a buddy over Live or split-screen, or an AI with very little I) taking on the Locust horde before they conquer the planet for their own mysterious reasons. You wield a pretty wide assortment of weapons this time, including newcomers like the mortar and flame thrower. Aside from the cooperative play, the real hook is the cover system. The game is structured so that unless you routinely take cover upon entering an encounter, you WILL die. You go in and out of cover by pressing the A button. I personally prefer the cover system of Rainbow Six Vegas, but this one works fine."