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Anno 1800 kicks off a free week to mark the arrival of skyscrapers

Anno 1800 is really good: "A compelling, if someone idiosyncratic city-builder," we called it in our 84% review. The AI players talk too much and their barks "are often totally inane," but that's only an issue because the rest of the game is so good: "A rich and sumptuous city-builder, easily the grandest and deepest Anno to date."

If that's not sufficiently convincing, you can now blow the balance of the week, and the Labor Day weekend, playing it yourself for free. Until 4 pm local time on September 6, the base game is fully free to play on Ubisoft Connect and the Epic Store, and any progress you earn will carry over to the full game if you decide to spring for it.

The free almost-week is here to mark the launch of The High Life, the final DLC of the third season of Anno 1800, which went live today. The High Life adds skyscrapers to the game, enabling players to build upwards for the first time and providing "an aspirational new residence for your Engineers and Investors." Skyscrapers can also boost your maximum population, reduce maintenance costs, and provide bonus residents—as long as they're managed properly. A new Skyline Tower monument, elevators, and new recipes and ornaments are also included in the DLC.

Releasing at the same time is a new game update, free for all players, that will make various quality-of-life changes, a new high score screen, and a "multi-downgrade tool" to help plan your cities more effectively.

Full details on The High Life DLC can be had at anno-union.com. And for truly, deeply committed fans, here's the full scoop on everything you could possibly want to know about Anno's new skyscrapers.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.