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Cheap tricks (and treats) don't come cheaper than free.


With the time of spooks and ghouls nearly upon us, there are plenty of games out there celebrating the season in their own little ways. Sure, World Of Warcraft has its Darkmoon Faire, and some console franchises such as Animal Crossing have been tracking holidays since their inception, but for those players hoping to get their money for nothing and their treats for free, there are plenty of Halloween options on the free-to-play front as well.

Atlus' Pandora Saga features new, orange-tinted Halloween Ghosts infesting the Eastern Soplar Highway at nighttime. Killing them for pumpkins and turning those gourds in to the NPC Pumpkin Jack can net you pumpkin cookies, fireworks, or a pumpkin hat. The store's pay shop has Pumpkin and Nosferatu wands, Trick Hats, and Trick Cloaks, with bundles centered around each wand (which include the Trick Hat and Cloak). Conveniently, these Halloween Ghosts are also fairly low-level, giving new players just joining in as much of a chance to participate as those who've been around Pandora Saga for some time.

Dungeon Fighter Online has thrown in a whole Halloween party mode, dropping special doors that have a random chance to appear in dungeons that lead to fights with mobs of classic, Halloween monsters. There are also trios of new purchasable outfits in the shop, and pumpkin drops that are exchangable for treats and an avatar cloak, if you've a bit of spending money. And if all that weren't enough, they're holding bonus experience periods off and on for the rest of the month, and handing out a free pet, the Baby Bakal!

As seems to be the trend with pay-to-pretty titles, Mabinogi is offering up some rather flattering costume selections to fit the time of year, as well as Baby Ghost and Skeleton pets to complete your ensemble.

Riot Games have announced their Halloween plans for Halloweening in League Of Legends, but Destructoid's own Aiayla already did a full writeup on the forthcoming new champion, some spooky new skins, and potential map redecoration, so I see no need to repeat what's already been put so well.

While MapleStory hasn't started up their typical, yearly Halloween event, they've already made jack-o-lantern styled Halloween Surprise Boxes available in the item store, which can hold all sorts of handy or spooky items, including a Reaper Jr. or Weird Alien pet.

Paid costumes are also on the menu over at Elsword, which is nothing new, but this latest batch is seasonally appropriate. Even if you can't afford to scrounge together some K-ching for a costume of your own, the busy nature of the various in-game towns makes it likely you'll at least see the entire gamut of options running around, and perhaps in action as well if you find some bigger spenders with whom to party up.

Multiplayer throwdown Brawl Busters is holding a "Nightmare On Sunset Street" event, which features a new map called Ghostly Graveyard. Their item-dispensing Capsule Machine has been stocked with a Wukong costume and several Dragon- and Pumpkin-themed items as well, and the popular zombie mode has seen a simultaneous player max upgrade to six.

The irreverent fire-fest Offensive Combat joins in the fall festivities with a slew of updates, including a Pumpkin Jack head, full skins in the form of a Zombie, Mucko The Clown, an Alien, a Mummy, and Super Ultra-Guy. The weapons department has seen a little love as well, with Halloween skins for several firearms, Pumpkin Bomb grenades, and new melee weapons. The Bad Apple weapon resembles a caramel apple hell-bent on convincing someone to lay off the sweets, the Lollipopper seems lighter on the mouth while sporting more surface area with which to smack the rest of the face, and the Sparkle Whacker would be a perfect match for the hyperviolent princess in anyone.

If you're not afraid of pay-to-win afficionados, or are one yourself, the long-running, browser-based Battlefield Heroes has thrown demonically-styled new skins for both factions up on their storefront, along with new supply drop items styled after portals to a sinister otherworld.

The toys in MicroVolts also have a new stage to roam this Samhain, with the PVC Factory level getting a dark, night-themed overhaul. New, armor-clad outfits for Naomi and Pandora are available, hence the "Knights Of The Night" name this in-game celebration has been given.

Multiplayer, top-down hack-and-slash Spiral Knights is having a full-fledged festival by the name of Dark Harvest, with special encounter rooms featuring the festival's celebrated Punkin King as a potential guest enemy littered throughout tunnel levels. If you prefer your chances to visit the Punkin King to be a little more secure, there's also a new Prestige Mission that guarantees you'll visit his court. Candy tokens can be acquired either way, which can subsequently be swapped for Prize Boxes bearing all sorts of Halloween-themed goodies and equipment, or monstrous masks of Paper, Replica (both lasting two weeks), or Authentic (permanent) quality.

Already well-stocked in the demon department, Shin Megami Tensei: IMAGINE wasn't content to just ride its dark thematics out this Halloween. Pieces of unique equipment sets for guys and girls, the R's and Elegant Sorceress sets, respectively, can be obtained by collecting Pyro Jack varieties and talking to DB Saien by the Shinjuku Docks. If you remember to ask for a Treat, there's a chance you'll get one of the set items, as well as three colors of Pyro Jack hats, a Drill COMP unit, and some fall-themed snacks. DB Saien also offers a Trick option, which can result in somewhat unpleasant surprises.

And, finally, newcomer Bullet Run isn't being left out of the festivities, at least not entirely. While the male side of the character spread has little to look forward to besides a new, leather-daddy Domination set (which has its own ladies' variant) and some masks in the Style section, those of a more feminine persuasion can snag a cute, tiny, purple witch's hat, or a more sinister-looking evil witch mask.

With all these options, and likely a few more that I may have overlooked, there's no reason even the cash-strapped gamer can't find someplace to get a little dressed up and pretend the someone else they're already pretending to be is pretending to be yet someone else entirely this October. May your questing, deathmatching, or whatever other playstyle fits your taste be filled more with treats and less with tricks, devils, and skeletons. Unless, of course, you're supposed to be killing devils and skeletons. In which case, more power to you.
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About nekobunone of us since 5:17 PM on 06.29.2007

Hi, I'm Chris, though I've been going by nekobun and variants thereof for so long, I kind of answer to both anymore.

While I've kind of got my own thing going in the realm of indie coverage, at least in the form of playing through (and streaming) (and writing about) the huge backlog I'm developing of games gleaned from various indie bundles, I try to keep my more mainstream, game-related features here, as well as opinion pieces on the industry at large, out of mad love for the 'toid. When I'm not rambling here or trying to be clever in comments threads, you can catch me rambling on Facebook and my Twitter, and trying to be clever in the Dtoid.tv chat.

Now Playing:
360: Halo 4
PC: F.E.A.R.
SNES: Secret Of Mana

I suck at games: PEW PEW LASERS
Improving game communities: Collective consciousness
Nothing is sacred: These walls have torn my world apart
The wrong thing: Only cream and bastards catch them all.
Love/Hate: I love to hate -you-
Love/Hate: B(u)y the book
The Future: Is still what it used to be
My Expertise: Playing the race kart
Something about sex: Sex sells, but who's buying?
E3 Approaches: It's oh so quiet
Freedom: Together, we'll break the chains of HUDs
East vs West: We've got the empire
Handhelds: Graduating as 2000's Catchemaledictorian
Relaxation: Cheesy double Chief burrito
Online Passes: A spoonful of sugar
Peripherals: Many tentacles pimpin' on the keys
This is what MAGfest is all about
Beginnings: Put it on the pizza
Disappointment: Bad(vent) timing

Recap Topsauce:
It's Thinking: Could you quit playing with that radio, love?
Do the wrong thing: And do it right, for once.
Afraid to shoot strangers.
Not if you were the last junkie on Pandora
Is Jim Sterling servicing the video games industry?
Something About Sex: Unsafe at any speed.
Doing DLC right
Congress passes sweeping Elfcare reform bill
Bottom five healthcare systems in videogames.
Pushing my love over the quarter line.
When my life would depend on an eight point none.
Remember the heroes.
Every Journey begins with a single step.
It's all over now, bomber blue.
Being Social: We'll always have Rainbow Road
Labor Day: Of course you realize, this means wark.
Please, aim it higher.
There Would've Been Brawl: Show me 'round your eggplantcage.
Integration: A place for everything
Zelda Week: I guess this is growing up.
MAGfest: the (don't be an) idiot's guide
Promotions: The bees are alright
Now is the winter of on-disc content
This was supposed to be a dozen items about nekobun.
Without Slenderness, there's something missing.
Cheap tricks (and treats) don't come cheaper than free.
The legacy of the (unlikely) wizard.
Cheap Tricks II: Sugar rush boogaloo
Thank you, for bringing me here, for showing me Home.
Burnt flowers fallen: the tragic bitchotry of Lilly Caul
Red and blue, resolving into purple.
Xbox LIVE:nekobun
PSN ID:strictmachine
Steam ID:nekobun
Mii code:2610 8366 7890 1412


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