40K 4X Gladius – Relics of War is free to keep for a limited time

A Lord Commissar commands soldiers of the Astra Militarum
(Image credit: Slitherine)

The annual Warhammer Skulls event is always a fiesta of good news for Warhammer tragics, whether that's announcements of whole new games like Mechanicus 2, expansions like Forges of Corruption for Boltgun, or additional details like the separate co-op campaign for Space Marine 2. But there's usually a freebie to go along with it, and this year it's Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War, which will be free to keep on Steam and Epic for the next week.

I wasn't too hot on Gladius when it first launched in 2018, but the combat-focused Civ-like has seen a string of updates and expansions since then, and that's done a lot for its scope and variety. These days it's sitting on a respectable Mostly Positive user rating on Steam, and there's DLC to let you play as factions like the t'au, tyranids, and Chaos space marines, as well as smaller packs that add units to those factions. The newly released Demolition Pack adds 11 more, including arco-flagellants, wraithlords, and burna boyz. (That last one is for the orks, if the name didn't give it away.)

This year's other freebies are a digital goodies bag at GOG that contains wallpapers and discount codes, a set of dice for Blood Bowl 3 you can claim from its in-game store this week, and the announcement of a new legendary hero coming to Total War: Warhammer 3. That's Karanak the Endless Hunter, a three-headed daemon dog who serves the Chaos god Khorne, and will be part of a future update for all players.

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games. He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun, The Big Issue, GamesRadar, Zam, Glixel, Five Out of Ten Magazine, and Playboy.com, whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.