by Aaron Morales via Entertainment Weekly

Microsoft closed out its Gears of War 4 E3 presentation in June with the return of a familiar — if more wrinkled and bearded — face. The demo ended with a five-second glimpse of an older Marcus Fenix, star of the original Gears trilogy and father of Gears 4 protagonist JD. Now, EW can exclusively reveal your first in-game look at Marcus in the upcoming game.

Gears of War 4 picks up 25 years after the conclusion of the trilogy, which saw Marcus end the human versus Locust war definitively with a huge explosion. Marcus will join son JD and his friends Kait and Del as they attempt to rescue Kait’s mother Reyna from a new breed of enemies known as the Swarm over a tumultuous 24-hour journey.

Gears of War 4 is both the continuation of a legacy and a new beginning for the franchise, and as the father of our new protagonist, Marcus plays a significant role in the story,” said Chuck Osieja, creative director of developer The Coalition. “Marcus represents a key component of discovering who JD Fenix is as a character, why he’s taking up this fight and what’s propelling his motivation forward.”

EW can also reveal that Marcus, who is once again voiced by John DiMaggio (Adventure Time, Futurama), will be playable in versus multiplayer and the wave-based Horde mode, the return of which was finally confirmed by The Coalition studio head Rod Fergusson onstage at E3.

Gears of War 4 will launch globally Oct. 11 as an Xbox Play Anywhere title, which means players will be able to play on both Xbox One and Windows 10 PC at no additional cost. It’s the first game in the series that supports cross-platform multiplayer, meaning you can play on Xbox with someone playing on PC in all cooperative modes.

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