Gears of War designer and Epic Games co-founder Cliff Bleszinski took to Twitter on the eve of Gears‘ re-release to share some tidbits of information about the series, from its inception and inspiration to some casting information and even some of the statements he was trying to make with different parts of the game.

There are too many tweets to include here, but much of the inception of Gears of Warcame from Bleszinski’s first marriage ending. The technology was heavily inspired by Vietnam, and elements of the story were Bleszinski making statements about things in the news like torture and assisted suicide.

One of my favorites has Bleszinski explaining that he told the art department to avoid skulls in Gears. Oops. Check out the #GearsFacts hashtag for more of Bleszinski’s thoughts.

It’s rare that we get to hear such candid thoughts on a big franchise like this, but it’s a good reminder that these ideas don’t just pop up out of nowhere. Bleszinski had some clear ideas starting the series and was lucky enough to have Microsoft give him full backing to make the series the flagship that it is today.