Top 10 Free to Play MMORPG Games 2015~2016

Top-10-Free-to-Play-MMORPG-Games-2015~2016_600

So, there we were, wondering – maybe it’s that time of the year, the time when we clean all the crap off our desks and begin mulling over what are the best free MMORPGs out there or just around the corner. The end of the year is coming and there are plenty of news every week, so don’t be surprised if in a few days we’re already regretting having this or that game in this particular spot, but that’s just how these top 10 work.

Anyway, here are some of the best MMORPGs for you to play right now, with one or two likely exceptions. Some are new games, others are games that launched a while ago but have stood the test of time or aged so well that they earned the right to become references. Here is our Top 10 Free to Play MMORPG Games 2015~2016.

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10 – DRAGOMON HUNTER

dragomon hunter 4

We’ll begin with a fresh little MMORPG from the makers of Aura Kingdom. Dragomon Hunter aka Dragon Slayer is this kind of anime monster hunter game that is more unusual to find than we could usually think. It goes the Dragon’s Prophet way in that you have to find, battle and mount the creatures available, more than 100 at the time of the open beta. It looks really good in its chibi anime style and while the combat isn’t of the true action kind – but then again, in which MMO is it? –, it feels fast, fluid and compelling. The user interface can be a bit too cluttered so be prepared to mess with it and the gameplay may feel a bit overly familiar, but it still ranks as a nice little distraction that anime fans will probably enjoy. Having the original Japanese voiceover cast is a great option, as these fine folk lent their voices to names such as Naruto, Bleach, Sword Art Online and more high-profile shows.

9 – ALBION ONLINE

albion online

We’re going on a limb here and we know that Albion Online is in alpha at the time of this top, but what we’ve already played was enough to make it into this list. This is probably the best alternative to RuneScape for players who don’t like RuneScape, as it looks great and is shaping up to have this huge depth and a living and breeding player-driven economy. It also has quite a bit of ArcheAge in it, hopefully with a lot less problems and controversy when it actually releases. And since we’re going with inspiration sources, we couldn’t leave Diablo out, as it looks a lot like Blizzard’s epic saga and combat can be quite exciting too. Albion Online is first and foremost a PvP focused experience, so make sure that you enter the game knowing where it will eventually lead – you can even PvP with your in-game wallet, as you’re able to compete for spots of land with other players and make them curse you when they lose this magnificent place to build a home.

8 – ARCHEAGE

archeage 3

So, ArcheAge. We all know just how messy the western launch was and how unforgivable this experience can be, especially with the continued controversy involving the server merges and the latest update. However, this is a beast of a game that is probably a nightmare for any studio to maintain and you can spend quite a lot of time creating your virtual adventures in this world. There’s a lot to do and most of it requires some kind of grind, so be warned that this is the kind of game where paying players get some clear advantage over free players – however, this is mostly a problem if you’re the impatient type and play your games only with a competitive focus in mind. Keep this in mind, as well as the fact that ArcheAge isn’t a game for casual players, and you should have some good old crafting and building fun with it.

7 – MARVEL HEROES

marvelheroes3

It’s impressive just how much Marvel Heroes has evolved since it launched a while ago to a lukewarm reception. Now it’s a completely different beast, one of the best superhero games that is finally exploring its Diablo inheritance in the right way. With a very respectable roster to choose from, plenty to do and loot as well as regular updates that significantly add to the available content, Marvel Heroes is a very good game in its 2015 iteration and hopefully will become even better during 2016. Fun, easy to pick up and with plenty of cool moves from our favorite Marvel characters, it has steadily grown into one of the best free-to-play action RPGs available.

6 – PATH OF EXILE

path of exile 3

Now it’s time to talk a bit about the best free-to-play alternative to Diablo: Path of Exile. Although there’s some competition coming in the shape of Devilian, it’s not until Lost Ark releases that we’ll probably see how Path of Exile is able to handle it. Coming from a humble studio composed of Diablo fans, Path of Exile is an action online RPG more than a proper MMORPG, but it surely is a multiplayer game to remember. It’s dark, gloomy, quite depressing at times and that is one of its biggest strengths – the accomplished environment, the gritty world and the loot, loot and more loot. It plays really nicely and is widely considered as one of the best examples of a fair and successful use of the free-to-play business model – as in it doesn’t rip you off and you won’t have to open your wallet to keep up with other players if you’re skilled enough. But do buy some cosmetics now and then as that’s the way to keep this game running for a long time.

5 – SKYFORGE

skyforge

Skyforge is one of the most ambitious MMO games of recent years and as always seems to be the case, it’s getting love from some players and hate from others. We understand how the weekly limit can be a pain in the butt for those who like to speedrun through their MMOs, but on the other hand this is helpful for those who are only able to play for a few hours every week. The class system is also very unusual and we really appreciate the ability to switch between classes on the fly, as we can choose the one which is more suited to each specific situation. Sure, not everyone likes having to play for quite a while to unlock other classes, but see that as a goal and as something that you can show around in game – for now there’s no option to buy advanced classes as we were told and actually, we hope that the developers don’t go down that route. Skyforge also has this sci-fi fantasy theme that is fairly original and some of the dungeons and bosses are quite a sight – this one can be a looker. The future has plenty more coming to Skyforge, the devs have revealed.

4 – TERA

tera

TERA is a big boy now. This game has grown so much during the last year or so and is now a massive beast with a lot of content to go through, plenty of classes to choose from – with more coming really soon, most specifically the Brawler – and overall still one of the best action combat experiences available in MMO games. There’s plenty of fan service if you like that sort of thing and by this we mean fan service for both men, women, loli lovers and cuddly panda fans, so everyone should be catered for. TERA can be quite a grind, of course, but nowadays saying that an MMORPG is grindy is like saying that Katy Perry is hot – it’s obvious, guys, no need to detail if any further. Overall, TERA has plenty of content, looks gorgeous, combat is extremely fun and you can even brag to your friends if you ever become the lucky owner of a Skycastle. That’s not an easy feat, we have to warn you.

3 – WILDSTAR: RELOADED

Wildstar

Another fugitive from the subscription business model, WildStar is a great game and one that was acclaimed at launch for being a great evolution of the World of Warcraft template. However, good looks and fine-tuned mechanics will only take you so far, as months pass and players are ready to move on to the next big thing. Turning WildStar into a free-to-play game was the logical move and it didn’t stop there – Carbine Studios revamped quite a few things, from the character creation to the Arkship as well as other tiny details that you probably won’t notice but that will make your experience just that little bit better. If you like crazy characters in a somewhat sci-fi Pixar look and some classic gameplay to go along, then WildStar is just the game for you.

2 – BLADE & SOUL

blade and soul

Even if it’s a couple of years late, Blade & Soul is still completely ahead of most of the competition. Go ahead, we’ll make a small break for the “hype has died” or “it looks sooooo bad now” hate comments, so this is your time…! With that out of the way, we’ll go ahead and say that Blade & Soul looks just as good as it did a few years ago. It’s not just the unique art style that makes it so… well, unique, or the way that the combat makes martial arts look so fun and crazy in the best anime style, or the character creation where we can spend hours adjusting every little detail until your fingertips bleed – it’s a combination of these things and more. The storyline is just so cool and filled with cutscenes to make it look like you’re actually inside the story, something that in most other MMOs is just a succession of go there, do this, come back. If there’s a game with both style and substance, Blade & Soul is the one.

And our number one is… Black Desert Online! Oh wait, this one actually turned out buy to play, so scratch that. The real number one is…

1 – GUILD WARS 2

guild wars 2 3

This one caught us completely off guard. We weren’t expecting this free-to-play move from ArenaNet, especially considering that Guild Wars 2 isn’t exactly a game with a low population and that the first Guild Wars is still pretty much buy to play as in the first day that it launched. On the other hand, we appreciate the generosity, as good free-to-play MMORPGs aren’t exactly a dime a dozen. So we get one of the best games in the genre for free except for a few restrictions such as character slots and other things that won’t properly impact the gameplay. The trick is that to repay the kindness, we have to – and should – buy the expansions to keep up with the game and fully enjoy it. It’s more than a fair price for such a game and the first expansion, Heart of Thorns, launched in October 2015. With plenty of classes with very diversified lore, great PvP and an action feel to combat thanks to the continued work with the camera, Guild Wars 2 is a big, bold MMORPG that deserves everyone’s attention.

There it is, our choice of some of the best free-to-play MMORPGs available right now, with a couple of exceptions that you may have already played or not. Of course, as with every other top, we would like to leave a few suggestions that could also make the list but didn’t: Trove, Rift, Star Wars: The Old Republic or the upcoming Landmark and H1Z1, two games that are in early access but will be free on release. We’re also betting that Tree of Savior is going to be a badass old-school MMORPG, but we want to see it grow a little more before praising it as we hope to. And don’t get us started on Lost Ark… no, really, don’t get us started as that game is probably only launching in 2017, if we’re lucky.

As always, leave us your opinion on which other games should have made it to this top 10, but most of all, enjoy playing them and support the games that you like!

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  • Grey

    I love RuneScape but it kinda felt finished to me, i had just a little to go before i was max but it would still take a ton of leveling and it would be 95% less fun the rest of the way but i’ll check Albion out for sure since it’s a fresh game to enter

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    • Martin Ivanov

      i would not buy BD and dont waste ur time with skyforge and tera :) but albion, b&s and gw2 are totally worth :) even wildstar if u can accept the childish art

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      • Grey

        Black Desert Online looked fun on the trailer

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        • Martin Ivanov

          dont judge the book by the cover, bd is failing incredibly hard in asia.

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          • Grey

            Depends on the price

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      • freak7500

        lol black besert online is the new shit all other mmos sucks dicks if black desert come out so much new features and the story like a single rpg or the graphic tho for mmo this just mindblow

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  • Allef Garug

    tree of savior.

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  • Rasputin

    ELOA & Tree of Savior

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  • Andrew H

    I don’t understand this logic: “The trick is that to repay the kindness, we have to – and should – buy the expansions to keep up with the game and fully enjoy it.” – but you’re considering it a f2p game…. Calling it a f2p game, endorsing buying it and then saying you need to buy it to fully enjoy the game, kind of tells me that it isn’t a f2p game…

    To each their own I suppose.

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    • http://www.freemmostation.com/ FreeMMOStation

      F2P games usually have some limitations. It’s not a new thing to have a f2p game with paid expansions – Star Wars The Old Republic is doing it. And if someone buys in-game items in a reasonable value to support a game they like, what is the problem in buying an expansion that comes out every 2 years or so?

      F2P games need to make money too, or else they’ll be gone. It’s completely fair to ask for a paid expansion when you’re giving a game such as Guild Wars 2 for free. A HUGE game, with content that most retail games won’t rival.

      Seems pretty logic, but that’s my opinion.

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      • Andrew H

        That’s not really the point, the point of the list is to say that “the full game is enjoyable free”; you’re suggesting that to fully enjoy the game, you have to pay. That does not make it free to play. F2P often includes iap, but that is not the same as purchasing content; not in the slightest.

        I think you’re misunderstanding my point. I understand how businesses work and I don’t really fall under the ‘businesses are too greedy category’ (which is a terrible argument, since the purpose of business is to make profits).

        The logic of your post and even in this reply is not logical. You are drawing a line between F2P and B2P games. You then suggest that it’s OK for GW2 to be B2P and include it under the F2P category. Having content, that you (or whoever wrote the article) admit to being necessary to purchase, is the opposite of the meaning of F2P. I never even alluded to the problem of buying in video games or paying for certain things. My main problem falls under your inclusion of a game you believe “you have to and should” purchase content. You’re making purchasing content a necessity, which is really no different than B2P. Makes me think that there is no real difference between GW2 and Black Desert, that’s the logic that you’re using (and there is very clearly a difference).

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        • boolbo

          But by your definition there is no such thing as a free to play game, because every game no matter how free charges you money for something. Weather its to play the game in general or just buy a couple items in the cash shop, they still charge you money for something. Games like SWTOR are absurd with there free to play models. While it gives you access to the game if you were playing it like a single player rpg it still hits you in the face with please buy so and so to use such and such (i still love the game as a single player game though, its a great story). Games like Dragon nest, where they charge you for costumes, xp, and the occasional item jelly are better because they dont restrict you as much. There is a way to get super cool items without paying a penny, but it still jams its deal down your throat. NO GAME IS F2P but that doesn’t mean they’re pay to play.

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          • Andrew H

            There is a clear distinction between freemium and buying to play. In fact, you even agreed with this in your post, but somehow missed my intention. Free to play means, you can play the game for free. There are plenty of games like this. Simply having purchasable items within the base game that you received/can play for free is the distinction. Having expansions or content gated behind pay walls is a little bit more blurry and depends on what content is gated behind the pay wall.

            You’re making the same distinction I have, then clarifying that my definition is accurate? I’m not sure what your purpose is here 😛

            Also, a free game does not ‘charge’ you something, you intentional incur the cost of your own accord. You want that outfit or skin? you pay for it. You get the base game for free, which is the obvious difference between F2P and B2P.

            I mean…you literally said “you could play the game for free” then said the game isn’t free to play, but you don’t need to pay to play. That makes literally no sense T_T Enjoying extras in a video game is not the same as playing the actual game 😛

            You could also take Blade and Soul as an example here..you can literally purchase almost everything in the game for free, you just need to invest time into it. The base game, as well as all of the classes are available, 100% for free. You can even have access to the large majority (if not all) of premium content by completing content at max level.

            I’m not sure how you made the jump in my reply from “no such thing as a free game” (and I don’t make this claim) Blade and Soul doesn’t charge you anything. You make the decision to purchase, which is fundamentally different from purchasing a game that comes with a box price. Your idea of “charging” is significantly different from my concept of it 😛

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      • Kenneth Moen

        Star Wars The Old Republic isn’t a F2P game like the majority of these games, though. SW:TOR is using the Freemium business model, which to be honest, is a hundred times better than the standard F2P model in the sense that you can select whether you want to subscribe and have everything unlocked with added account bonuses, or go the F2P route with content locked behind paywalls.

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        • skullCOMPANY

          – S.W.t.o.r is
          one of the worst P2P ever !
          The free economic model give’s you choice ..
          ok … not really ! Paid 3 times the price for a limited usage, simply horrible. The game is good but if you want to manage a guild be ready to invest TON’s of money !

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          • Kenneth Moen

            No, it does give players a choice. Pay a subscription fee and gain all the benefits that comes along with a sub, or play for free with paywalls.
            These companies need to make money after all.
            Freemium is where it’s at right now and more and more mmorpgs are using this business model.
            There’s no such thing as a truly free mmorpg. It cost a fortune to keep these mmorpgs running.
            Is SWTOR the worst? Not really. The pure F2P mmorpgs are the worst ones, because they hide everything behind a giant paywall and doesn’t give you a choice to set up a subscription etc. They just hit you with “This content is locked, please buy x amounts of tickets to unlock this content”, or “You need x item to do y dungeon”.
            SWTOR offers players a choice. That was my point.

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  • Jules Anthony

    Rift, which seems to be missing for some reason!

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  • Lex

    Hilarious, Fallout loading screen :) nice touch
    I.
    In view of restrictions id rate them from best to worst in examples:

    ~~~Path of Exile /Tera /Gw2 /Wildstar /Archeage /SWToR ~~~

    -with emphasis that there are rummors of Albion being seriously cash shop dependant.

    II.Grindy ehh? lemme tell you a story

    Archeage doesnt need to be grindy, at all ,in aspect of gameplay ,you can play it 1h or 20h/day dependant of what you focus on. Cash or Life
    (but i hear there are more and more of those that play it 1h ,or less 😉

    Path of exile – well, dont take it wrong, but the game design is to grind, only in this case its implemented in story, dungeons(maps) and leveling and the game itself is based on it, rare examples when grind in games is good.

    Tera – fun to play, for a time, than its dailies.. , dungeons and pvp is fun and doesnt need to be grindy, getting gear is fairly easy, but enchanting, damn,
    $$$ or go home,
    +14>+15 in that game =50-100k gold aka months of grind for one item enchant

    Guild Wars 2 – Equalised PvP, that is all, that is my point
    No grind, casual, no time consumption, only pure fun :)

    Excellent review on every game listed, though, some were skipped like Jules mentioned Rift&Aion might still be titles to check, after all its not which mmorpg is best one (I mean it is in one way :) but its more of which one suits your playtime and gamestyle.

    Bye!

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    • http://www.freemmostation.com/ FreeMMOStation

      Thank you for the feedback. Can’t disagree with anything you said. :)

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  • Erik Deville

    I would say “Lost Ark” but it isnt coming for a while it seems, so Ill have to say Tree of Savior and Eloa.

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  • skullCOMPANY

    A REAL FREE TO PLAY IS A GAME WITHOUT CASH SHOP ADVANTAGE !
    No attribute armor (BDO)
    No super potion to survive bosses and raise your team (Vindictus)
    No pvp advantage over other player (list is so long!)
    No player in jail to use credit card (Skyforge, SWTOR)

    A REAL MMO is a game with surprise, adventure, huge land free to grind, discover quest behind a bush, instance with playerS not alone a take player in pickup only when needed! Be amazed by monsters and story (GW2, LINEAGE II, B&S, … )

    – If Skyforge is an MMo i am bird with purple eyes and yellow feathers in my a.. ! this game is simply the worst grinder ever. Playing a LOT and bellieve me it is shiny, but take out all the graphics and you have absolutly NOTHING interesting. And by the way free to play ‘hum hum’ pay to advance is a lot better definition.
    They know when players need to use credit cards, limitation in game is simply done for that. 90% of the maps are NOT OPEN WORLD. So NO MMO AT ALL !, and you can farm open world ONLY 1 TIMES after you get crap drop at loosy rate. Horrible game.

    – Archage A.A ok… 10% of the interest of guildwars2 … 10 times more expensive. This game in europe is a mess and pay to “real” play that’s all, it’s a fact. Same a swtor if you want manage something serious PAY ton’s of money!

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    • Mohammad Kurniawan

      Thats why they call it “Free to Play” instead of just “Free” m8,Its free to play but pay to win :v

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  • refriedfood

    Guild Wars isn’t free to play. What the hell… Releasing an expansion
    pack every 6-7 months at $59.99 equals how much a month each
    expansion?… You bought your months in advance, genius.

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    • Mr. Ethical

      it is free to play, download free, register free, play free.
      with A LOT of restrictions….

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  • Σαπιοκοιλιάς_1990

    Albion is not f2p….

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  • Lex

    Has there been any change on the scene? Many players would appreciate to know what are the most populated, polished games now, mid 2016, since we still have not many news of good titles, so depending on established ones is the logical choice.

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