Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War Review

A Warhammer 40k Strategy Sandbox Game

Back in November 2018, I was looking for Warhammer games to play for my Twitch stream Christmas event. I recalled Gladius had released earlier in the year, but also recalled it was a turn based, 4x game. Generally speaking, there are very few 4x or turn based games that I like, Stellaris being one of the 4x exceptions. Turn based combat turns really break up the flow of the game for me. My viewers love some strategy games though, and the Steam reviews for Gladius were great. I thought it was worth taking a chance on since it was also a Warhammer 40k game, so I contacted the publisher Slitherine games, and was able to get a key. Boy am I glad I did!

I fell in love with Gladius immediately. The things I find tedious about 4x games are non-existent, and the gameplay flows very well. Warhammer 40,000 Gladius is basically a 4x sandbox game. There is no preset campaign, but there is a questline option that nudges you in a general direction. You can toggle it off and do your own thing if you so desire, but it is a bare bones questline. I find it pretty helpful though, and enjoy following the the ‘story’ as it unfolds. Gladius is very much a play your way kind of game. The map settings are highly customizable, down to how many terrain obstacles you want. Other examples of settings include map size, wildlife density, resource density, allow/deny certain DLC, biome density (various biome choices per map), and much, much more.

Gladius is streamlined for combat, and it really shines in its presentation. The units look absolutely phenomenal, and the animations are fun to zoom in and watch. I particularly enjoy queuing up several units quickly, and watching their movements and attacks unfold without pause. The soundtrack fits really well, and adds to the grimdark ambiance. Much like the Warhammer 40,000 universe, this game is all about war. There is no diplomacy, and nothing to keep your bolters and chainswords silenced for long. The turns happen very quickly, though I imagine that is in large part because I play against AI. This means no waiting on AFK players on the enemy team! I just have to wait for AFK players on my own team…

My experience in Gladius is with both Space Marines and Tyranids. I’ve played several multiplayer games with 4-5 people, and it has been very stable. I’ve played exclusively versus the AI and find it quite adequate. To this point I’ve clocked over 20 hours in the game, and I’m still ready for more! Keep this in mind as you continue reading.

Time for some cons, and there are a few. The slider on your faction Research bar is sort of invisible. It’s the same color as the menu, so it’s really hard to find. If this bothers you too, you can just use your mouse scroll wheel. Took me an entire campaign to figure that out! A more obvious pain is the volume control. Bolter effects sound great, but don’t scale smoothly with the camera zoom. They are incredibly loud unless you zoom out to a point where you can’t appreciate the animations as much. A final complaint would be that game saves are voided with version changes. Since I don’t play a lot of large scale strategy games, this is something new for me. I’ve lost my first two Space Marine campaign attempts, only having the game for as many months. Admittedly my streaming schedule isn’t the most conducive to finishing games quickly.

The quick game pace in Warhammer 40,000 Gladius, and the truly remarkable graphics, are the big sellers for this game in my mind. The one big wishlist item I have would be a camera lock, so I can watch the enemy turn unfold in rapid succession without any mouse or keyboard work required. It’s a pretty near perfect game, and something I hope Proxy Studios, the developer, builds on. The game itself retails for $39.99 MSRP, and DLC ranges from $4.99 to $14.99 for in-game DLC. There are wallpapers and other type DLCs available as well. Gladius has completely changed my outlook on 4x and turn based strategy games. I would definitely hold it up as one of the best Warhammer 40k games available in 2019.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2018!

It’s that time again! That time where we get overly excited about seeing tons of games on sale that we don’t have enough money to buy or time to play! I pretty much just have fun predicting prices and seeing all the sales. All these sales go through Monday it looks like as well.

What I’m Looking For

Farcry 5 – I had a ton of fun with Wildlands. I’m told Farcry 5 is the same type of open world gameplay, but with FPS. It also has multiplayer so I’m in. Additionally it has a custom-map arcade, so the replayability is really high. I’m looking for something under $30 for the base game, but if I can get the DLC at a good price, I’ll buy that too.
Purchased: $29.99 off Humble with an additional 10% off for being a monthly subscriber and another 5% into my store wallet. I opted not to go for the DLC because it has bad reviews, and because I can always buy it later once I get a chance to try the game.

Warhammer 40,000: Inquisitor Martyr – WTF is an Inquisitor, exactly? I’ve had my eye on this game for a long while. I’m a big fan of the 40k universe, and this game fits my holiday channel event perfectly. I’m also a big fan of procedurally generated games, which is what makes this game so massive.

Fallout 76 – I’ve been so up and down with this game. I’m not sure I like the RPG gameplay. I’m used to crafting a hatched to hack up rocks and trees. I’m also not sure I like the $60 price point. Seems a bit much for a survival game, even with the Fallout franchise behind it. I’m not expecting much in the way of a price drop since it just game out, but who knows.
Purchased: $39 on Amazon. Humble has it even cheaper!

Origin Sale

Runs through 11/26/2018. My recommendations include Battlefield 1 & Dead Space. I cannot recommend these two games enough, and they are both only $5. I continue to have a blast with Battlefield 1, and do so much better than other shooters. Dead Space was just such an incredible experience. I don’t normally play singleplayer games, or horror games, but Dead Space was well worth it. I’ve already picked up Dead Space 2 and Dead Space 3. I’ve also got my eye on the DLC for Dead Space 3 which is just $5 right now. I plan to buy it before the end of the sale.
Purchased: $4.99 Dead Space 3 DLC.

Fanatical Black Friday Sale

There are over 1500 games on sale at Fanatical. You can also use the code BLACKFRIDAY10 to get an extra 10% off. I have  partner link which will help me out with a commission if you purchase something. Monster Hunter: World is 37% off  with the code and Fanatical is having 48 hour flash deals every day. You’ll have to check back each day to see what the new games are.

Humble Fall Sale

If you want to do your bit for charity, Humble Bundle is also having a black friday sale. I have a partner link with Humble as well, so you can help me AND your favorite charity by purchasing through this link. My recommendation from here is the Elite Dangerous. WHAT a great game! I cruised right past 100 hours in this starship simulator. If you are a humble monthly subscriber, the extra 15% could make this website your go-to for the best deals.

Steam Sale

Loads of good deals. I’m just going to list the ones I own and recommend. You may see a Warhammer heavy list, and those reasons will become apparent soon.

  • Space Hulk: Deathwing – $13.59
  • Battlefleet Gothic: Armada – $7.49
  • Dawn of War II – $4.99
  • Total War: Warhammer II – $29.99
  • Vermintide II – $14.99
  • Foxhole – $12.99
  • Jurassic World Evolution – $21.99

Halloween 2018

Planning Early for Halloween!

Halloween is my second favorite holiday. There’s just something about that spooky, suspenseful atmosphere that I’ve always enjoyed. Of course the memories of dressing up as a kid are great ones. Some costumes I remember enjoying were ghost and Batman. To get into the spirit of things, I like to play dark or scary themed games. I started this tradition last year, and I enjoyed it so I’ll continue it for as long as it lasts.

I’ve got a short list below, and I’d love to get your opinion on what game(s) you’d enjoy watching during this spooky time of year. I’ve also written on some of these games in the past if you want to know a little more:

What games would you like to watch for a Halloween stream?
  • DOOM 25%, 9 votes
    9 votes 25%
    9 votes - 25% of all votes
  • Hunt: Showdown 22%, 8 votes
    8 votes 22%
    8 votes - 22% of all votes
  • The Black Death 19%, 7 votes
    7 votes 19%
    7 votes - 19% of all votes
  • Vermintide II 14%, 5 votes
    5 votes 14%
    5 votes - 14% of all votes
  • Dead Frontier II 8%, 3 votes
    3 votes 8%
    3 votes - 8% of all votes
  • Left 4 Dead 2 8%, 3 votes
    3 votes 8%
    3 votes - 8% of all votes
  • Space Hulk: Deathwing 3%, 1 vote
    1 vote 3%
    1 vote - 3% of all votes
Total Votes: 36
Voters: 20
September 20, 2018 - November 1, 2018
Voting is closed

Some other games that I might play that aren’t on the list include:

  • Alien: Colonial Marines – One of the worst video games ever? Might find out!
  • Goatman – You must hunt down an urban legend terrorizing a modern countryside!
  • Resident Evil titles – Zombies, ’nuff said.
  • Killing Room – Twitch interactive game where I have to entertain YOU for points.
  • Some surprise VR titles!

You can leave any extra suggestions in the comments below. All this should be starting up towards the end of October. Most likely the last week in October, but I’m waiting on some vacation dates to solidify so I can nail down a good schedule.

Halloween Stream Theme Update

I’ve created all new Halloween themed bonuses for the stream! There are all new spooky alerts, a creepy new starting soon screen, an AFK screen graveyard that grows with new follows, and a background graveyard that grows with each sub during the month!

Each new Follow will add a tombstone to the AFK screen, and each Subscription allows you to customize a tombstone with your own battlefield-death themed epitaph! At the end of the month I will put up a YouTube video showcasing everyone’s creative causes of death.

 

As always, thank you guys for all your support. Be it a simple follow, leaving a lurk, chatting me up during a stream, donating bits/subscribing, or just using one of my partner links to buy a game you want. I really appreciate it. I’ve found a lot of great games so far this year, and met a lot of awesome people. I literally couldn’t do it without you.

As always, you can find me on Twitch, or catch me on Twitter if I’m offline.

Multiplay May

There’s a few games that have all managed to present an opportunity to play together. A couple are at REALLY good prices, and a couple are hitting a big release with some new content. I’ve outlined them below with some quick thoughts of my own. I’ve provided affiliate links, so I do get a commission if you buy through them. Let me know here, on stream, or Discord if you pick any of them up so I know who to look for!

Gloria Victis

This is a medieval MMORPG that is buy and play, no subscription fee. It’s $4.36 in the Humble Wargamez Bundle currently, and the cheapest price I have ever seen Gloria Victis go for. I’ve been following it since just before launch, and I’ve mentioned it several times here on my website. The graphics and sound are great, and it has crafting and PvP involved. I don’t think the player base is that big, but I think it’d be worth the money even if we only got a small group going.

Destiny 2

A Sci-Fi MMOFPS, which is an MMORPG in FPS view with an emphasis on shooting. It’s just $12 in the Humble Monthly, and is the cheapest price for Destiny 2 anywhere right now. The reviews are not great about this game, but a lot of it is due to lack of content. For $12 (plus the other games you get from the monthly) I can’t imagine there isn’t enough content. The game looks beautiful, and I’m only level 12 so it’d be really easy to catch up if you jump in now. No subscription fee, but there are two expansion DLCs out. They will cost extra, but might be worth it if you end up enjoying the game enough.

Conan Exiles

I played Conan Exiles when it launched into Early Access, the devs were awesome enough to give me a key. It is a survival game (Think ARK) set in the Conan universe. I clocked in over 100 hours in game! I really enjoyed the building aspect, and that is probably what I’ll spend most of my time doing in game. MSRP is $39.99 on most sites, but you can get Conan Exiles with a 10% Discount using the code MAY10 over on Fanatical. (Fanatical is NOT a grey market site, it is an authorized Steam key re-seller.) Conan Exiles is a great game, and I’ll also be doing a giveaway of a key or two provided by the devs on my stream Friday May 11, 2018!

Space Hulk: Deathwing

space hulk deathwing terminators

This game is a Left4Dead type horde shooter set in the Warhammer 40,000 universe. It is definitely better than the reviews let on. It had a bad launch, but has improved greatly since then. It does take a little time to find a group, but I’ve always managed a full group. MSRP is $39.99 on most sites, but the best price for Space Hulk: Deathwing is with a 10% Discount using code MAY10 over on Fanatical. I do expect more sales closer to/on release day. I really enjoy this game, and am looking forward to the extra customization features on May 22nd. The majority of the enhanced edition features are already out for PC. I’m hoping to do a full playthrough on stream with viewers.

Update: 60% off sale in the Humble Store!

One More Consideration

I’m looking really, really hard at State of Decay 2. It’s a 3rd person arcade style survival game. From the little gameplay I’ve seen, it looks a lot like the original State of Decay, but has multiplayer co-op in it! It’s only $29.99 in the Microsoft store, but no Steam unfortunately. The good news is, console and PC should be able to play together! So if you have an X-Box, you can still join me. I haven’t pre-ordered yet, but once I see more about how the co-op play is, I’ll make my decision. There’s also a free trial available if you want to try before you buy from what I’ve read.

Upcoming Warhammer 40k Games for 2018

The Emperor Requires Your Attention

I’ve become quite the 40k fanboy ever since playing Warhammer 40,000: Eternal Crusade in December of 2016. Dawn of War II and Space Hulk: Deathwing have both been good purchases since then. I also look forward to checking out Dawn of War III and Warhammer 40,000 Space Wolf, I just haven’t found the time yet. Each of these games offers something Warhammer 40k gamers have not gotten to experience before. This is really going to add to my game backlog.

The Horus Heresy: Betrayal at Calth

This title is probably one of the more exciting for me. Betrayal at Calth offers the first 40k (30k) virtual reality title. It has the potential for quite the immersive turn-based strategy experience, being able to stand next to your troops in battle. While the game is a VR title for both Vive and Oculus, it can also be played on regular PC. You play as the Ultramarines, with various weapons from flamers to power fists at your disposal. Betrayal at Calth also has multiplayer capability.

This game has already released, and I was lucky enough to get a key from the devs. Unfortunately right now I’m waiting on a patch for better Oculus support. The devs stated the next patch should fix the problems. I’m really looking forward to seeing it in action. I was able to get a small taste before the problems started. Quite promising.

Space Hulk: Tactics

Another spinoff off based on the Space Hulk board game, but this time with a twist. Space Hulk: Tactics is a turn based tactical strategy game, implemented with a card-based system of some kind. No details yet on the card system. There will be two singleplayer campaigns; In a Warhammer 40k first, you will be able to play as the genestealers. The other campaign follows a squad of Blood Angels space marines.

There will also be multiplayer that provides chooseing between Space Marine chapters (Blood Angels, Space Wolves, the Ultramarines, or Dark Angels) as well as Genestealers. And for that extra-long life, there will be a map creation tool and the ability to share with other players.

The game will release in 2018 on PS4, XBox One, and PC. I’ve had a lot of experience with card systems lately in Paladins and Star Wars: Battlefront II. This certainly looks to be an up and coming game mechanic.

Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War

I think this game will make the biggest splash of all the 40k games in 2018. Warhammer 40,000: Gladius will be the first entry into the 4x genre for the 40k universe. Play as the Astra Militarum, Space Marines, Orks or Necrons. Each race will have different stories, characters, tech trees, and playstyles.

The game will offer singleplayer, co-op, and multiplayer modes. No word on the Steam page about console release, but obviously it’ll be offered for PC.  4x has been hit or miss with me. I enjoy Stellaris, but other titles have been mostly miss. A co-op campaign might offer a little bit of incentive. The graphics look amazing.

Battlefleet Gothic: Armada II

Saving the best for last, I can’t tell you how hyped I am for this title! I really loved Battlefleet Gothic: Armada. The visuals in that game have to be some of the most incredible, even on low end systems! BFGA II offers another campaign, but this time it has drop-in/drop-out co-op! That really makes me think it’ll have some semblance of open world gameplay. There will be twelve factions available at the start, which means you likely won’t need any DLC to play your way (unless you’re a fan of one of the more obscure races).  Bigger battles, improved multiplayer, and more customization are just a few of the things in store.

The game will be released for PC only, at least so far.  This will be the first Warhammer 40,000 game that takes place during the Gathering Storm setting, which literally splits Imperium space in half.

The Emperor Wants YOU!

As you can see, there will be plenty of opportunities to serve the Imperium of Man in 2018. From VR to 4x to card-based, it is all unexplored territory for Warhammer 40k (and 30k) fans. All of this is on top of DLC for other 40k games like Dawn of War III, Space Hulk: Deathwing, and others. And if you still can’t get enough Warhammer, there’s still Total War: Warhammer II DLC on the way, as well as Vermintide II rapidly approaching. Bottom line is there’s plenty of purging to be done people, let’s get to it. For the Which game are you most excited for?