Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Reinforcement Pack makes valuable, tactical changes

Extra units along with a new, nasty enemy.

Not too long ago, I reviewed the excellent Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War by Proxy Studios and Slitherine. Recently, they have released their first DLC called the Reinforcement Pack. This addition provides us with five new units to help fill in some of the missing parts of the Warhammer armies. There is one new unit for each faction, plus a new Neutral.

To make it easier, I’ll simply go in the same order as my review, which means the Space Marines are first up. Their new addition is the Land Raider — all the way down at the end of the research tree. Once you obtain one though, it is well worth the effort. These are massively armored monsters that use ‘incandescent energy’ to obliterate enemy tank protection. They can run through walls and over just about anything in their way. They have bolt shells to lob at the (now puny) infantry-type units — which make the baddies pop like a blood-filled balloon. One of the best parts, as if that wasn’t enough, they can lower a ramp to let out their Adeptus Astartes soldiers to aid in the fray. These guys aren’t dickin’ around, man. They are seriously badass.

Next in the Reinforcement Pack are the Necrons’ Immortals. Now metallic, these top-tier soldiers of the Necrontyr are really quite the opposite of their inferior, fragile Necron Warriors brothers-in-arms. Like the Space Marines’ Land Raiders, Immortals are both massively armored and heavily armed. By comparison though, the Immortals won’t sit back and merely lob projectiles — these are front-line shock troops, ready to tear apart whatever is thrown at their direction. The best part? They’re available early — in the second tier.

In staying with the rich tradition of Orks’ general nastiness, they have been given the bandit-like thugs known as the Flash Gitz. Way meaner and tougher than the simple-by-comparison Boyz, they’re packing as much dakka (rapid fire capability) as they possibly can. The result is an unparalleled barrage of both bullets and energy bolts. Whatever pieces of opponents (or their guts, limbs, etc.) remain, the Flash Gitz will unabashedly just trudge through it — although after all of the gunfire, there won’t be much left. I forgot how odd it is to go from playing as the Necrons, and their wienie-ish Warriors, to playing as the nasty, tough Orks. Have to adjust playstyles much?

Gladius Reinforcement
That’ll teach ya. We’re flashy and Bad.

Finally, we get the Tempestus Scions for the Astra Militarum. They are the elite shock infantry of the Astra Militarum. They carry both frag and frak grenades, as well as a Medi-Pack. Best of all (for me anyway) is that the penalties for moving through forests and Imperial Ruins is negated. These are quick-strike troops that view themselves as nobility of the Imperium. I see them as  like playing as ‘lawful good’ or as most Paladins are in RPGs — like I need to insert righteous bugle sounds when they enter the battlefield. <doot, dootle, do!>

Of course, I’m still plagued by hordes of Kroot Hounds (see my other review… plus grrr) and the loathed Enslavers, but the Reinforcement Pack has added something much worse than my hated, doggy-headed friends. Neophyte Hybrids are the new Neutral that roams the land. Talk about having to change my playstyle!

Gladius Reinforcement
New. Nasty. Neutral.

First, there a lot of them — and they appear from everywhere in the Gladius Prime land. Mostly though, like some other units in-game, they have an automatic, two-space overwatch capability. Generally, you move next to an enemy and engage it. Not with these guys. You accidentally run into one, they shoot you. You pass within two hexes, they shoot you. Now, all of a sudden, there’s a little pause when you come across a set of bad guys — because if it’s them, now you know… they’ll shoot you… first.

They’re not using little pop-guns either. Their automatic weapons generally deal three to six damage at a time. In groups, they can take down some of your baddest crews. These are roaming, nasty, sneaky bastards.

Although relatively small by DLC standards, the Reinforcement Pack is an awesome addition to an already outstanding game. It not only enhances the various tech trees, but the new Neophyte Hybrids made me change the way I approach and execute each game. They are genuinely a pain in the ass. At only five dollars, it’s also a steal as far as DLCs go.

Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Reinforcement Pack was released Oct. 19th and is available on PC and Linux.

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