Microsoft has revealed that the Gears of War 4 season pass will be priced at £39.99 ($49.99 in the US) and has outlined the DLC content planned following the game's release on 11 October 2016.

Gears fans willing to stump up the money for the pass – or those who purchase the Ultimate Edition for £79.99 – will have "permanent access" to 24 DLC multiplayer maps "for private play on dedicated servers," with two new arenas arriving on a monthly basis for a year following the sequel's release.

Additionally, pass holders will be part of an exclusive 'Developer Playlist' giving early access to maps, modes and features for the Xbox One exclusive.

A 'Vintage VIP Pack' featuring a skin for lead character JD Fenix and two weapon skins, as well as six extra Packs with further character/weapon skins, emblems, equipment and boosts, rounds out the comprehensive, but pricey package for the upcoming Gears sequel.

Non-season pass players will be able to sample the 24 additional DLC maps free of charge, however developer The Coalition plans to rotate them in and out of playlists each month.

Reported by VideoGamer, the price of the pass may cause some consternation with the Gears community considering it is twice the cost of the Gears of War 3 season pass for the recently retired Xbox 360. It is also almost triple the price of the season pass for Gears of War: Judgment - the last instalment in the uber-masculine third-person shooter series and the final Gears title to be released before Microsoft's acquisition of the franchise from Epic Games in 2014.

The just-shy-of-£40 price point appears to be something of a growing trend for additional content. Bethesda recently revised the cost price of the Fallout 4 season pass to £34.99, while EA's £39.99 Star Wars: Battlefront expansion plans drew a fair amount of ire for its premium price-tag.

Microsoft's official announcement coincided with the public release of the Gears of War 4 multiplayer open beta test for all Xbox Live Gold members, which is set to conclude on 1 May. IBTimes UK recently took to cover behind chest-high-walls in the beta and rounded-up our early impressions of the return of the chainsaw-bayonet-wielding COGs.

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