[Editor's note: Milling around the PC game isle offering barter handjobs for Guild Wars will probably result in the most rewarding free MMO experience, but you might get herpes. Kudos to Huskyhog for discovering some killer free games many of us have never heard of. -Niero]
Every one of us has come across an MMORPG we wanted to play. However, the demons in our pockets seem to be eating the supply of gold needed support such habits. Why is it we have to continue to pay for a video game we already purchased once? We shouldn't be forced to pay ridiculous fees every month in order to support our socially crippling habits.
Here are the top five solutions for the penniless gamer.
Number Five - WURM Online
Scraping in at number five is WURM Online. I use the word scraping because that's just about all you can do as a free citizen. Your levels are capped, however I have yet to reach the caps myself.WURM Online presents a MASSIVE sandbox to use as your new home. You can run for hours (literally) until you find a spot to cut down trees and start to build your home. However you can't build a new society all on your own, you must band together with fellow players, which makes the game even more community based. Personally I found a village already in progress and joined up, but you're more than welcome to take on a village of your own. This game isn't based on slaying monsters, it's just about building your town. Everything you build comes from nature, having certain items allows you to produce different goods, which can be used to produce more useful items. The endless possibilities are what this game's strengths are, and if you can get passed the level cap it's worth your time to take a break from your sword, and pick up a hammer.
Number four - Habbo Hotel
I don't understand this game enough to spend hours playing it, but I can't help to join up every once and a while. Habbo Hotel is another one of those second life type games, in which people go online for the soul purpose of chatting with their fellow pale comrades. Purely community based,Habbo Hotel relies on people's own insecurity of real life to in order to lead them into their second, more pixelated life. I did, however, play this game for some time, and it holds a place in my heart. The ability to play it without installing a client is also a huge plus. So if you're bored in class, give it a click.
Number three - MU Online
I'm not going to lie, I played this game. It presents the base of any MMORPG with it's simple, yet intriguing design. You get to pick a race, start out at level one, and continue your never ending quest to the current level cap. The game is still free, for those who don't want the extra features, and relatively simple to download. However don't expect to get too caught up in it. There aren't nearly as many quests or things to do other than grinding and trying to figure out what your party leader is yelling at you for. Overall it's a good game to try out if you want a free game to play, but there's a reason it's at number three spot.
Number two - Voyage Century
Voyage Century takes on the open ocean. You take charge of a ship as a privateer, merchant, or even a pirate. Aside from all that jazz, how's the play? Having played it for roughly... three weeks, I can confidently tell you it matches that of a freeMMORPG about to go P2P. Nothing about it strikes me as absolutely amazing, but it's defiantly worth a download on a boring Sunday afternoon. The game play itself can be a tad choppy, but the community makes up for a lack of natural cooperation. Give it a try for yourself.
Number one - Space Cowboy
With a name from the end of a popular anime cartoon, Space Cowboy has a lot of room to fall before it hits rock bottom. You get to chose one of four types of planes, and take it to the skies. You can gear up your atmospheric-proof ride with several different weapons, and take on the rest of the galaxy while you level up. It's grinding based, however thePVP is amazing, and makes up for any boring downtime you may spend grinding. There are two factions (sound familiar?) except you can chose which one you join after a certain level, so it makes the decision more educated. This one makes the list because of it's unique style of game play, I personally am tired of having to pick up a bow and arrow instead of a gun, and having to ride animals instead of drive vehicles. A major disadvantage, however, is the fact you can spend real life money to give your in game character a boost. As a poor gamer, it's always sad to see your rich neighbor pass you up.
I challenge you all to take on any of the games from this list. Post your comments, recommendations to other MMORPG's, rants, raves, even complaints. Just keep it clean, and remember that private servers DO NOT count as a free MMORPG (though they are technically free). I'm trying to list ways of playing on a global server that doesn't involve some form of piracy.