The Evil Within (and its sequel) are free for Halloween — here's how to claim them

The Evil Within screenshot
(Image credit: Bethesda)

The only thing better than playing some seriously scary horror games during the Halloween season is being able to play the best spooky games without spending a single penny. And, right now, over on the Epic Games Store, two of the best survival horror games of the last decade are completely free to claim and keep. 

Right now, The Evil Within is free to download and keep via Epic Games Store. This offer will last until Thursday, October. 26. After this, The Evil Within 2, will take its place and be free until November 2. So, whether you’ve played them before or not, be sure to claim these games now. Once added to your library they're yours to keep. 

Meanwhile, if you’re a console player, both games are included in the PlayStation Store Halloween sale for a combined $13. Granted, that's not quite as good as free, but it’s still a bargain price for two seriously enjoyable horror experiences. And, not to be left out, Xbox owners can play via Xbox Game Pass or pick them up for cheap in the Shocktober Sale.  

The Evil Within games are perfect for Halloween

The Evil Within screenshot

(Image credit: Bethesda)

From the twisted mind of Shinji Mikami, one of the founding fathers of the modern survival horror genre, The Evil Within is a nerve-shredding trip through hell. You play Sebastian Castellanos: a police detective who must fight to survive against numerous nightmarish foes after being transported to a strange world while investigating the scene of a mass murder. 

Pitched as something of a spiritual sequel to Resident Evil 4 (Mikami was the director of that legendary game), The Evil Within quickens your pulse by throwing you into claustrophobic situations and forcing you to fend off a range of deformed enemies. You may have an arsenal of firearms at your disposal, but you’ll always feel underpowered as your antagonists hit hard and without mercy. You’ll need to use your limited resources strategically in order to survive.

The game’s story is a little half-baked, but its sense of atmosphere and tension is almost unrivaled. From sinister asylums to crumbling deserted cities, The Evil Within transports you to loads of highly haunting locations. It’s just a shame its bland core cast isn’t quite so noteworthy. However, if you’re looking for a very frightening experience you won’t be disappointed. 

The Evil Within 2 screenshot

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Released in 2017, three years after its predecessor, The Evil Within 2 takes all the best bits from the first game — the atmosphere, strong visual design and tight gameplay — and throws them into a semi-open-world structure. Considered by many critics to be a significant improvement, The Evil Within 2 drops the difficulty level in favor of a slightly more accessible experience. 

This follow-up is still pretty spooky, but the palm-sweating tension of the first Evil Within is somewhat lost. And sadly the story and characters are still pretty flimsy. However, it’s nevertheless a highly enjoyable horror experience with some big set-piece moments that combine fun scares with blockbuster thrills. Both The Evil Within and The Evil Within 2 are well worth playing this Halloween, especially now they are both available completely free on PC.  

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Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.