How do you put a price tag on pure fun? How do you reckon the cost of time spent with friends online, laughing and trash-talking into the night (and even into the next morning)? How do I love thee, Gears of War 3, and how can I get thee - er, you - into my Xbox and into my life?
Well, I guess it isn't that difficult to put a price on fun. After all, Gears costs pretty much the same wherever you try to buy it this week. But that isn't good enough for us. Notice that the initial question was about "pure fun." And while bisecting Locust soldiers with a rusty Lancer is a great time, doing it for free might be just a touch better, and the fun even more pure. And it wouldn't hurt to pick up some extra swag along the way. So those of you that can't quite justify a video game purchase this month, or those who have the standard edition and are dreaming of all the extras that come with the pricier packages, listen up.
The Next Level wants you to have the best, so we are awarding three prizes that can help you get more out of Gears of War 3:
First Prize - Gears of War 3 Epic Edition (retail value: $149.99)
- Gears of War 3 (Xbox 360 game)
- Limited-edition Marcus Fenix PVC statue (11.2" high, 8.9" in diameter, 3.7 lbs.)
- The Art and Design of Gears of War, by Tom Bissell (96 pages of interviews, history, images, and more; foreword by the human lambent, Adam Sessler)
- Octus service medal, as awarded to Dr. Adam Fenix (3" in diameter, 0.4" thick, engraved)
- Selected personal belongings of Dr. Fenix, including his will, photographs, a letter, a certificate, and Hammer of Dawn schematics
- Octus award box for displaying the service medal and storing Dr. Fenix's personal effects
- COG flag
- Adam Fenix multiplayer character
- Infected Omen Weapon Pack - custom weapon skins for multiplayer
- Savage Kantus multiplayer skin (TNL extra)
Second Prize - Gears of War 3 Limited Edition (retail value: $79.99)
- Gears of War 3 (see above for descriptions of all items)
- Octus service medal
- Personal effects of Dr. Fenix
- Octus award box
- COG flag
- Adam Fenix multiplayer character
Third Prize - Gears of War 3 Special Swag Bundle (retail value: $52.99)
- Gears of War 3 comprehensive strategy guide by BradyGames, including bonus PDF, soundtrack, video, and comic book content
- Gears of War 3 "Blood Omen" baseball cap by NECA
Pretty good, eh? So how do you get your shot?
There are several ways to obtain an entry in the contest:
1) First, every single entrant must send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org between now and 11:59 PM Pacific Time on September 30, 2011. The subject line must refer to the contest.
2) If you are a member of our forums who is not banned and has at least one publicly visible post, you may include your user name in the body of your e-mail. This will net you one extra entry, and it will change how we will notify you in the event you are a winner. Entrants using a forum name will be notified via the forums' private message system, while those who do not provide a user name will be notified via e-mail.
3) If you are a member of the "TNL Legends" user group, you will be given one extra contest entry. You may check your status on your Permission Groups page. Entry into this group is automated, based on your user activity.
4) You are given two additional entries for each of the following TNL achievements you have earned at the time of your e-mail entry: "Level 1 Star," "Level 2 Star," "Level 3 Star."
5) You may purchase up to five additional entries for $1 apiece via PayPal to email@example.com. You must either send the funds using the same e-mail address as your base (first) entry or you must reference that e-mail address in the PayPal transaction so we can keep all your entries straight. No payment can be refunded after the winning names are announced.
The winners will be selected via a random-number drawing on October 1, 2011, and announced on this site. The first eligible entry selected will win first prize, the second eligible name will win second prize, and the third eligible name will win third prize. There is a limit of one prize per entrant. As noted above, winners that include their forum user name and meet the other requirements will be notified via private message. If there is no forum name provided, that winner will be contacted via e-mail. Winners must provide a valid U.S. shipping address to claim a prize. Any prizes not claimed by 11:59 PM, October 31, 2011, will be lost.
The Next Level reserves the right to change any aspect of this contest at any time, including substituting prizes of approximately equal value in the event that the above items are unavailable. Any significant changes will be announced on this page and in the forums. We are not responsible for any loss or damage once an item is shipped, nor are we responsible for any entry or other correspondence that is not received in time in the designated inbox. We will only ship to addresses in the United States.