Gears 5: Pre-Load, Start Times, Launch Maps, And More Revealed

Gears 5 is launching soon, and now developer The Coalition has shared a lot of important details pertaining to the release around pre-loading, server start times, launch maps, and more.


Pre-loading for Gears 5 is available right now on Xbox One and PC. Those who pre-ordered a digital copy of the shooter can pre-load the game now so they can start playing exactly when the servers go live.

Server Start Times

Gears 5’s servers go live at 9 PM on September 5 in whatever time zone you live in. If you live in a region with multiple time zones, the game unlocks at the earliest one.

This applies to both digital copies and physical copies bought at retail. However, this is only the “Early Access” period for Gears 5, so you need to buy the Ultimate edition ($80 USD) to start playing early. Alternatively, Gears 5 unlocks on September 5 for Xbox Game Pass subscribers because the Ultimate edition is included with Game Pass.

Launch Maps

Gears 5 is launching with 7 multiplayer maps for the standard Arena mode and four of the “Hive-style” maps for the Escape mode. The 11 maps at launch include:


  • Asylum
  • Bunker
  • District
  • Exhibit
  • Icebound
  • Training Grounds
  • Vasgar


  • The Hive
  • The Descent
  • The Mines
  • The Gauntlet

Extra Maps For Private Play Only

There will be five additional maps from Gears of War 4 brought forward to Gears 5–however, they are limited to “Private Play.” The maps will not show up in any public matchmaking playlists. The maps feature the same art as in Gears 4.

  • Dam
  • Forge Blitz (now just known as Forge)
  • Foundation
  • Harbor
  • Reclaimed

Post-Launch Maps And More

The Coalition is promising that Gears 5 will have the “biggest and most extensive” post-release support ever for Gears franchise. Over time, the studio plans to deliver more arena-style maps, in addition to new features like Map Builder support for Versus and Horde modes. As announced previously, all of Gears 5’s post-release maps will be free; the game has no Season Pass.

For more on Gears 5, check out GameSpot’s Gears 5 pre-order guide.

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