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Ark: Survival Evolved and Gloomhaven are this week's free Epic Store games

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A fresh batch of freebies has arrived on the Epic Games Store, with this week’s offerings coming in the form of dinosaur survival adventure Ark: Survival Evolved and the video game adaptation of acclaimed board game Gloomhaven.

This isn’t Ark: Survival Evolved’s first outing as an Epic freebie – it was given away in June 2020 – but if you’re a survival fan who hasn’t yet given it a look, it’s still probably worth checking out.

Released back in August 2017 after several years in early access, Ark’s base game offers a broadly compelling (if rather rickety) blend of dinosaur taming and breeding, base building, and survival meter management, all in service of massive-scale tribal warfare – unless you opt to join a PvE server, in which case your most terrifying foe is usually a pillar. Subsequent expansions, not included with Epic’s freebie, have upped the sci-fi and fantasy factor, which, if you enjoy the base game’s rhythms, you might find more to your taste.

Ark: Survival Evolved – Official Launch Trailer.
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As for Gloomhaven, it’s an excellent adaptation of designer Isaac Childres’ sprawling, turn-based tactical dungeon crawler. The original board game iteration serves up a persistent fantasy world that’s packed with characters, items, and scenarios, all gradually unlocking over the course of a 100+ hour campaign. It’s a thrilling, richly designed, and all-round fantastic RPG experience, and one that also happens to come in a very big box.

That fact developer Flaming Fowl Studios’ digital version won’t fall off a shelf and kill you is probalby reason enough to give it a look, but it’s also a cheaper, more manageable version of Gloomhaven that – with 4-player online co-op support – ends up being faithful to the original while making the most of the change in medium.

Gloomhaven – Gameplay Overview Trailer.
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Both Ark: Survival Evolved and Gloomhaven are free to add to your Epic Games Store library right now and will remain so until next Thursday, 29th September – at which point Drone Racing League Simulator and Runbow take over.

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