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Crusader Kings 2 is free to play this week

Crusader Kings 2

No doubt many are a little wary of the grand strategy trappings of Crusader Kings 2. I mean, just look at that map. Look how full of stuff it is. Look, there's Surrey. Why should you be expected to care about Surrey? What is it even for?*

Worry no more, as now you can try your hand at medieval politicking sans risk. The game is entirely free to play for the next week, as part of an extended Steam trial. It's also 75% off, should you happen to enjoy assassinating your uncle because he disapproves of a proposed law change and, frankly, you need his votes. His idiot son, your nephew, is much more amenable, and will likely cut ties with the dangerous faction your brother is heading. Oh yes, your brother. You've got some plans for him. Yes indeed.

Where were we? Yes, the trial runs until next Monday, 23 February. You won't get access to the frankly ludicrous amount of DLC available for the game, but if you're just starting out, that's probably for the best.

And for any CK2 experts lurking: post your learned advice in the comments. Let's help potential new players get to grips with an excellent and surprisingly manageable strategy gem.

*I'm sorry Surrey. I picked you at random. I'm sure Guildford is lovely, probably.

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.