For several weeks, the Epic Games Store distributed leading games for free. These include Borderlands 3, BioShock: The Collection, Prey, and more. While no gamer would say no to a free game, one wonders why the Epic Games Store offers these titles so generously.
This question is all the more important now, after the barrage of popular games that were free for a limited time under the Epic Games Store. The answer is multiple and concerns the place of Epic Games in the video game industry.
The Epic Games Store and its free games
Every week, the Epic Games Store offers a free game that anyone can download with an Epic Games Store account. It can be anything from an independent title like The disappearance of Ethan Carter to AAA games like the Tomb Raider Trilogy. These titles will only be available for a few days before the store moves on to the next free game in its queue, but if a player acquires the game within the specified time, it is up to them without payment or additional microtransactions.
Constantly offering games is an expensive business. In a document from last year, it was revealed that Epic Games had spent millions on free games for the store. Subnautical alone cost the company $1.4 million, while Batman: Arkham the series topped that at $1.5 million. The document also details how many new Epic Games Store users each game brought in, which explains the company’s rationale behind the weekly free games.
To put it simply, it’s a great marketing strategy. There are many online video game stores, Steam being by far the most popular. In order to compete with them, the Epic Games Store offers games every week, which even the big game stores don’t – or at least, not as often. It’s a great way to convince users to download the company’s game client, and it’s often a hard sell because most PC gamers probably already have Steam installed.
Once the client is set up, a person is at least slightly more likely to purchase something from the Epic Games Store, and any purchase is a win for the company. Apart from that, giving away games is also great for advertising. This goes for both Epic Games and the company behind the free-to-play title, because any time a news outlet publishes an article about Epic Games free-to-play titles – like this – it’s advertising. free.
Other than that, there are other ways the Epic Games Store tries to differentiate itself from competing platforms. For example, the company said it was “open” to hosting games using blockchain technology and cryptocurrency, as long as they follow applicable laws. This came right after Steam banned these titles. This opens the company up to more exclusive deals with people in the blockchain gaming industry, but could alienate users who are against blockchain technology. Either way, the Epic Games Store may one day offer a crypto-based or NFT-based game for free.
Until then, players can enjoy the brand new free game on the Epic Games Store — Wolfenstein: The New Order. The game will be free until June 9, then the company will reveal its next mystery game. The steady stream of freebies from popular games has put the platform in the spotlight, causing many users to theorize what free game might come next. No matter how accurate these theories are, it’s still publicity for the company. It seems that the Epic Games StoreThe marketing tactics work pretty well.
MORE: Epic Games Store Making Borderlands 3 Free Could Be A Good Sign Of Things To Come