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Gotta go fast: Sonic Mania is free on the Epic Games Store

Sonic Mania, the best Sonic game in years, is free to keep on PC courtesy of the Epic Game Store. Happy Birthday, Sonic!

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Sonic 30th anniversary free epic games store
Sega / Thumbsticks

Celebrate the Blue Blur’s 30th anniversary with the best Sonic game in years.

Sonic the Hedgehog is now the same age Danny Tanner was at the start of Full House. Danny had three children to show for it and meaningful male friendships. Sonic has many mediocre video games. [And some meaningful male friendships, be fair; Sonic and Tails are tight – Ed.]

Unlike children, you’re allowed to pick favorites with video games. And Sonic Mania is the golden child. The 2D platformer began life as a fan game before the development team was given Sega money to complete the project. The result was the best Sonic game in a long time. And now, that game is free to keep on the Epic Games Store.

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Additionally, you can grab the Encore DLC pass for an extra $4.99, which upgrades the game to include all the content from Sonic Mania Plus. The DLC adds Mighty the Armadillo and Ray the Flying Squirrel as playable characters. It also adds Encore Mode which remixes areas from the main game.

If you don’t want to wish Sonic a happy birthday, Epic is also offering Horizon Chase Turbo. The arcade racer launched in 2018 and includes couch co-op now that you and your friends may be allowed on the same couch once again.

Both games are free for a week. Next Thursday, sci-fi adventure The Spectrum Retreat will be up for grabs. It’s a first-person puzzler in the vein of Portal, Superliminal, and The Turing Test set in an art-deco hotel. The game initially launched in 2018 and didn’t make much of a splash, but as we like to say around here, you can’t beat free.

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Andrew King is a journalist, critic, poet, stand-up comedian and museum caretaker living in Illinois.

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