Massively multiplayer online role-playing games are a great genre for a lot of reasons. Whether you want to enjoy a game with your friends, explore a new world, or just kill some enemies; MMORPGs have been the best place to go for years. Sometimes it’s not worth a subscription or buying a full game just to get that experience, which has led to exponential growth in the genre's free offerings.
The most difficult thing to figure out when it comes to free MMORPGs is which one to pick. While money may not be required, they all require the user to spend a significant amount of time on and its important these hours aren’t wasted. Here are the top 10 free MMORPGs out right now.
10 Blade & Soul
Blade & Soul is a Korean MMORPG developed by NCSOFT's Team Bloodlust that released in Korea in 2012 before coming to Europe and America in early 2016. Some may recognize the games title from its anime of the same name that aired for a brief 13 episodes on TBS. This strategy is something many games and shows attempt to do in order to adopt a larger audience.
This game's fighting focuses on forming combos and players can fight both the environment and, in higher levels, other players as well. Blade & Soul is also renowned for its customizable characters. It has also given NPCs access to this flushed out character screen, leading to some interesting looking quest givers.
9 DC Universe Online
DC Universe Online is an MMORPG with a focus on combat between heroes in the DC Universe and various enemies from the same world. Its greatest attribute is the ability to create your own custom hero in the DC Universe and finally see if your hypothetical superhero is up to par against some of the biggest heroes or villains around.
The story is fun and engaging and, if you are a comic book lover, it expands on a beloved universe. Another fun aspect is, at the end of the tutorial, you are able to choose if your character is a hero or a villain. This is a refreshing take on character creation as you would usually be a protagonist, or hero, by default.
Neverwinter is a popular MMORPG set in the same universe as Dungeons and Dragons. It has a classic RPG plot throughout and really brings out all the best parts of the D&D lore. There are eight classes to choose from and, like all Dungeons and Dragons games, it is designed to be taken on with a couple of friends.
Developed by Cryptic Games and released in 2013 for PC, and later for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, this game is perfect for any lovers of Dungeons & Dragons, whether through other video games, books, or the tabletop game. With a fun combat system and immersive world Neverwinter should scratch any D&D itch you may have.
Skyforge is another MMORPG that is worth mentioning just for its aesthetic choices alone. Allods Team and Obsidian teamed up to create a beautiful planet called Aelion. It’s a healthy mashup of science fiction with fantasy elements and is sure to please fans of both genres. The world the developers created is both interesting and probably the best looking on the list, in terms of graphics.
Using a prestige system in lieu of a traditional leveling, progressing in the game feels like much less of a grind. With a recent update and a solid story behind fun gameplay, this game is definitely worth checking out.
Rift is one of the most popular MMORPGs in the world and for good reason. The game centers around (you guessed it) rifts that open and let enemies pour out into the world of Telara. The game’s strongest point is its dynamic class system and the accompanying “soul” system, that allow dynamic combinations and builds.
Rift’s character customization is second to none in terms of free games. Not only do you have full customization of your character’s appearance but also choose their powers and abilities throughout. There are also an insane amount of weapons to be picked up along the way.
5 Eve Online
Eve Online is world famous for large scale battles that feature ships that cost thousands of dollars. Thankfully, there is a free version of Eve that takes no money to play but lets you enjoy all aspects of the space-based MMORPG.
From building ships to flying around space and forming factions, Eve Online can be as immersive and deep as you make it. The most common criticism of the game is the time sink required in order to fully enjoy the game. Eve came out in 2003 and some players have had quite the head start and it can take a good amount of time to catch up.
4 MapleStory 2
The original MapleStory was a hugely popular 2D side-scrolling game that came out around the world in the early 2000s. MapleStory 2 came out last year and replicated the iconic world as a 3D MMORPG complete with old NPCs and locations from the original.
This game is a refreshing take on the MMO universe with friendly characters and animation that really puts a smile on the players face. Like other games, Maplestory has a variety of classes to choose from and is a blast to enjoy with your friends.
3 Star Wars: The Old Republic
Star Wars: The Old Republic had one of the biggest releases in video game history, hitting a million subscription in three days, but lost a lot of their player base in the following months. Since then EA has adopted a free-to-play model for the game and it receives regular updates throughout the year.
This game has the ultimate perk of letting you be a Jedi Knight that gets to choose between being a Sith or a member of the Republic. Regardless of the chosen faction, there is a separate dynamic of morality that is affected by the choices you make throughout the game.
2 Guild Wars 2
Guild Wars 2 is a prolific MMORPG for a variety of reasons, the main one being the choices the player selects throughout the game create a ripple effect that effects missions and NPC interactions down the line.
Another reason is the unique and interactive combat system. With a good combination of skill and interaction with the environment, the way you fight enemies is unparalleled in quality in terms of free games. With a massive amount of content to expand on the base game and widespread critical acclaim Guild Wars 2 continues its popularity in the MMO genre.
1 RuneScape (RuneScape 3)
Runescape used to be the most popular MMORPG game in the world. There are so many skills to level, quests to complete, and players to kill that this game has retained its player base through three different iterations of the game.
While a subscription is required for some content, there is no reason to ever worry about running out of free content in the world of RuneScape. With iconic cities like Lumbridge and Varrock, this game continues to reign supreme over the MMORPG world. The only problem you will have when playing RuneScape is figuring out what you should do next.