PC gamers can gain access to a weekly rotation of free titles when they sign up for the Epic Games Store, a game launcher that, like Steam, is also totally free to download. The online gaming platform has offered gamers free copies of heavy-hitting titles like Grand Theft Auto V and Sid Meier's Civilization VI in the past, and this week, it's letting members step into the shoes of gaming's most deadly assassin.
Anyone with an active Epic Games account can redeem a digital copy of the third-person stealth game and keep it even after this deal expires. Don't sleep on it too long though, because if you don't claim Hitman before September 4, it'll return to its $59.99 base price tag.
Hitman was a soft reboot of the long-standing stealth series developed by IO Interactive that aimed to transition away from the franchise's action roots and position it as more of an open-ended assassination puzzle. In most stealth games, particularly games focused on assassinations, blowing your cover just leads to more action-oriented combat. While that's still possible in Hitman, several game mechanics reinforce the need to commit to the stealth aspects of the experience instead.
In other stealth-heavy franchises like Assassin's Creed, The Last of Us, or Elder Scrolls, stealth feels like one of several options you have for progressing forward in the game. In Hitman, it is always the single best route and, more often than not, the only one for a successful mission.
Players take on the role of a genetically enhanced executioner — Agent 47 — as he travels around the world taking on seemingly unrelated hit jobs that are set in six distinct maps. He's employed by the International Contract Agency (ICA), a shadowy organization that eventually leads Agent 47 back to the entity that is responsible for imbuing him with his deadly set of skills.
Each location players travel to is designed as a sandbox that needs to be investigated and explored to determine how Agent 47 can eliminate his target. In the end, there's no single right answer about how to go about finishing your jobs.
Players can choose to take out their prey from distance using a sniper rifle or infiltrate an enemy compound with a disguise to eliminate their mark in close quarters with a garrote wire. Taking a creative, stealthy approach is oftentimes the best option when Agent 47 is almost always at a disadvantage during large firefights.
There are countless options for how to kill enemies as you close in on your final target. Agent 47 can push people off ledges to make deaths seem accidental, poison their food, or even drown them in a toilet if the opportunity presents itself. Killing enemies in conventional ways and taking the time to explore each map in detail are rewarded when you discover unique items and weapons that enable you to unlock new areas in the game.
So while you might be tempted to pull out Agent 47's iconic set of handguns to quickly finish a job, take a moment to sneak around and see how else you can tackle each of Hitman's missions.
Hitman is free for PC on the Epic Games Store until September 4 at 11 a.m. Eastern.