All gamers know that the only thing better than an awesome MMORPG is a free awesome MMORPG.
MMORPGs have always been a mainstay of the gaming industry. They have captured audiences for years and allowed players the world over to connect and display their love of a genre along with some creative flair.
MMORPGs are now widely available across a variety of platforms, and free-to-play MMOs are ever-increasing in their popularity. They also come in a variety of sub-genres, from warcraft games to space games to shooters.
Many regular MMO games also offer extended trials, which allow players plenty of time to decide if a game is perfect for them. Here are our picks for the best free MMORPGs currently available.
The Best Free MMORPGs
World of Tanks
World of Tanks is one of the most massive military-style games on the market. With over 100 million players, there is no shortage of battles. It showcases several hundred tanks and military weapons. The campaigns revolve around tanks and allow players to control multiple tanks. The battles focus on heavy back and forth between individual players. There are six modes for gamers to choose from: team-training, tank-company, team, stronghold, special, and random battles. Players also get to play in platoons and small teams of two or three players.
The game doesn't require tons of work into strategizing about armor and vehicle formatting. World of Tanks gives players the addictive, fast-paced gameplay that players find in arcade games. The rate of play and ease of use make it one of the most popular war games out there.
World of Warships
World of Warships takes World of Tanks and gives it a more realistic approach. The warships are large, slow, and extremely powerful. The fact that the ships are large and slow alters gameplay, making World of Warships a game of technical strategy. Gamers get to play in P vs. P or P vs. E challenges. There are also two seasonal competitive modes.
The gameplay is dynamic and highly strategic. Players can choose between four different types of ships: aircraft carriers, cruisers, destroyers, and battleships. On the plus side, it also gives players ample time to enjoy their lovely graphics.
The game is available for play on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
War of Warplanes
So far, we've covered land and sea war games, and now we move onto the air. War of Warplanes gives players the ability to make all of their Top Gun fantasies come to life if Top Gun took place in World War 2. Choose between multirole fighters, heavy fighters, bomber, fighters, and ground attack planes. There are tonnes of upgrades and over 4600 aircraft configurations, which can be combined with other customization options. War of Warplanes also does not have caps on ammo. Instead, players must make sure that they don't overheat their weapons so that they don't lose accuracy.
The war play is all about scrappy adrenaline-pumping combat. It also doesn't hurt that the skies are gorgeous and that flying, in general, is lots of fun.
Planes, tanks, and warships, oh my! War Thunder is a war game that combines all others. Realism is the name of War Thunder's game. Players get three modes: simulator, arcade, and realistic. Arcade is the least realistic mode of War Thunder, and simulator is the most realistic, with a first-person shooter perspective. Aircraft can be found in all battles- air, land, and sea- but in air battles, no ground support or naval support is possible. Players can focus on P vs. P or P vs. E battles, but may also create custom battles, which can be made private.
The gameplay is as real as it gets, with a focus on ballistics and armor that reacts in-game, like their real-world counterparts.
Vikings: World of Clans
Vikings: World Of Clans is a game of strategy and cooperation. Players must band together to achieve victory in this game: The gamer requires gamers to join together and form a clan. Clans must have a hierarchy, and each player must adhere to their place in the clan structure.
Players must then try to capture other clans' sources of power, which are located in the center of each clan's territory. Players increase their levels by developing their settlement and tribe and conquering other territories.
Kingdom Under Fire II
Kingdom Under Fire II is, in my opinion, a war game. It is rather unlike the other games in this portion of our list, as it feels more like a combination between a traditional MMORPG and an RTS.
Kingdom Under Fire II allows players to be a hero who commands an army. The purpose is to wander the continent Bersia and battle your way through wars between three factions, Dark Legion, the Human Alliance, and Encablossians.
Space & Sci-Fi Games
Dreadnought is precisely what we've come to expect from space games, as in you look cool while flying in your own highly customized space ship. Much like the name implies, Dreadnought features large, powerful ships, and regardless of which class of ship you select, you will have to remember that you're a commander of a fleet, not Han Solo on the Millenium Falcon.
The best part is, there is no need to spend hours of grinding to master the five vs. five combat system with a specialized fleet of vessels. Dreadnought still requires strategy, but it is by no means a grind-heavy game.
If Dreadnought is classic space-age gameplay, then Fractured Space is its tactically strategic cousin. The game offers multiple modes, from a solo P vs. E and a Conquest mode. Fractured Space really comes into its own with its stunning fight scenes and tactical awareness.
Fractured Space gave fans of Dreadnought a chance to be both space pirate/treasure hunter and fleet commander. Players could band together to take over and defend bases. Fractured Space was an immensely fun game, and if you can play it, I recommend that you do.
Note: Featured Space is no longer officially supported; however, thanks to diligent Reddit users, you can still play Fractured Space on private servers.
Star Conflict is the fleet builder free MMORPG that takes Dreadnought to a new level. The thing that truly separates this game from Dreadnought is that pilots get to hunt down treasures throughout the galaxy.
This game is a wildly fun open-world space game, which means it's massive since the open world is space itself. Players have the option of exploring this open world in traditional P vs. P or P vs. E modes. As a bonus, players can also choose to complete missions, conquer sectors as a team, and even create their own custom battles against NPC or each other.
As a bonus, Star Conflict is one of the few MMOs that can be played in VR.
Traditional MMOs and RPGs
Neverwinter is one of the oldest online MMORPGs, its been around since 1991. Its early combat is often compared to Diablo, and it is set in the lore of the wildly popular Dungeons and Dragons. This means that gamers can choose between different Dungeons & Dragons. The thing that really sets Neverwinter apart, however, is its storyline. It is so heavy on the storyline that one of the game designers, Jack Emmert, said that Neverwinter was meant to be played more like a story-based game (think Dragon Age), than a traditional MMO.
Newer versions of Neverwinter have a combat style more reminiscent of Darksiders. It is a hallmark of free MMORPGs and is available for PC, PS4, and Xbox One. The only downside is that in-game purchases are incredibly expensive.
Defiance is a classic MMORPG, which was initially released on Xbox 360, PS3, and PC. Defiance is most well-known for its relation to the Destiny franchise and the companion show, which aired on Syfy. Much like the show, characters are either humans or humanoid species of aliens that have inhabited the recently terraformed Earth after a prolonged human and alien war.
The combat is the traditional third-person shooter. Newer versions of Defiance 2050 have since been released on the Xbox One, PS4, and PC.
Lord of The Rings Online
This one is an oldie but goodie. Everyone and their mother has heard of the Lord of the Rings, and while the Shadow of Mordor was fun, this is less gritty orc battles and more like a traditional MMO. Characters get to own homes and mounts, and complete quests all across Middle Earth.
Players get to choose a race and class straight from the world of J.R.R. Tolkien. That's right folks; you can be a hobbit, dwarf, man or elf, and explore all the things that the Jackson movies didn't.
Star Wars: The Old Republic
One cannot talk about free MMORPGs without referencing Star War: The Old Republic. It is a truly iconic game, and it is what all other MMOs are compared to, which isn't surprising given how expansive the gameplay and world-building are in the game.
The setting of this MMO right after the Sith Empire and the Galactic Republic made peace. Players get to choose between the Republic and the Sith while choosing a morality on the light to dark scale. Star Wars: The Old Republic is one of the biggest MMOs ever.
BioWare has outdone itself with this comprehensive MMO.
Star Trek Online
Star Trek Online is a pretty solid alternative to Star Wars The Old Republic. Players get to revive their Star Trek nostalgia since the challenges play out as though they're actual episodes. Players get to engage in both space and planet-side run and shoot combat. Planet-side combat is affected by player class.
Crafting in Star Tek Online is definitely easier than in most games. You get to set up a project and then initiate it. Once initiated, the project will be completed after a set amount of time. No actual crafting needed.
The character creation is similar to Dragon Age, meaning you can fully customize your character's features.
DC Universe Online
DC Universe Online started as a paid MMO but has since gone the free-to-play route with in-game purchases still available, of course.
Players do not get to be actual comic book characters, like Wonder Woman or Batman, but they do get to base their characters and powers off of them. There are plenty of quests, and while it's not an open-world MMORPG, it's still pretty expansive. Players get to choose a hero- Wonder Woman, Batman, or Superman- or villain- Cersei, Joker, or Lex Luthor- to be their mentor. Their mentor gives them missions in either Metropolis or Gotham.
A fun feature in this game is getting to customize a lair and take side missions with other gamers.
Final Fantasy XIV
Final Fantasy has been around forever, and it goes without saying that the franchise is popular despite some issues with some of the franchise's launches. True to form, the first version of this MMO was rough, and then they redid it, and now it's amazing. Players have a lot of options with this game. Characters come from five different races, and each race has its own deity, which gives gamers unique abilities. There are two kinds of quests Levelquests and Story Quests, both of which are vital for players to unlock new abilities and gain favor with different factions.
In other words, it's normal Square Enix stuff. It offers a unique combat and skill tree system and allows for cross-play with Playstation.
Secret World Legends
Secret World Legends is one of the few free MMORPGs that is set in the real world. This game gives people a real-world look at MMOs.
Gone are the ways of magic and spellcasting, and instead, you get to fight supernatural monsters with real-world fighting tools. Secret World Legends uses a variety of myths, legends, and lore as a supply for their monsters and challenges. Gamers get to trot across the globe as either a Templar, an Illuminati, a Dragon faction member. Secret World Legends is definitely less a fantasy MMO and more a supernatural horror one.
Runescape is a veteran in the MMO sphere. It has a massive player base with millions of registered players. Runescape holds the world record as the most extensive free MMORPG, ever. It is also one of the few free MMORPGs known for having a friendly atmosphere.
Runescape is a truly magnificent example of everything that gamers love about MMORPGs. It is an open world, with classic MMO lore, crafting, and combat capabilities. The game is truly fantastic.
Runescape offers a free version with plenty of content and a paid version for further exploration.
Dungeons and Dragons Online
Dungeons & Dragons has had a difficult time breaking out from its tabletop origins. It launched back in 2006, and it definitely left room for improvement. However, the game has come a long way since its initial launch, and fans of the tabletop icon cannot help but be charmed by both the familiar D&D lore and the setting of Stormreach.
This game has some unique features, which definitely adds to the allure. D&D Online is one of the few games that allows players to toggle between third and first-person angles. It also has a unique leveling up system. Players don't raise their levels through combat, but through the completion of quests. Players are also discouraged from taking quests that are too far above or below their characters, which is a nice way to keep challenges available for players of all levels.
Tera is another free MMORPG giant and with good reason. Tera is fantastic and is one of the most action-heavy RPGs ever. The open-world setting is nothing short of gigantic, and every inch of it is full of questing and crafting options.
The really interesting thing about Tera is its lore. It is entirely unique and super cool. Essentially, the entire world is based on the dreams of two titan-esque creatures. The land itself is the bodies of the two titans, and both the world on which Tera takes place and the creatures native to it are actual manifestations of the titan's dreams. The lore alone makes this game worth playing, in my opinion, and I'm always excited to see where each update of Tera will lead us.
Players get to enjoy a heavy dose of action MMO that is unlike anything other games available.
Game of Thrones: Winter Is Coming
Game of Thrones: Winter is Coming feels nostalgic, and even though players don't get to be one of the beloved characters from Game of Thrones, they do get to ally and command them during the course of the game. Conquest is the purpose of this MMO, and gamers are meant to raise a castle and army to conquer the land and claim the iron throne.
This game is pretty good, and the combat is interesting, especially if you have any Game of Thrones characters under your command. Characters from the show have special abilities which you can unlock in certain situations, like combat.
League Of Legends
League of Legends is a significant player in MMOs, although it really is more of a freemium than a genuinely free MMORPG. There have been plenty of expansions on this already expansive platform, and it is definitely a fun game to play.
League of Legends is an arena-based MMO, which means that there is minimal grinding and a lot of combat. Players can form teams and battle one another to gain experience points, level up, and make money.
World Of Warcraft
World of Warcraft is another freemium, although it caps you at level 20. The game is so big; however, I think the free option is worth mentioning.
WoW is famous for a reason, and it is evident in the gameplay why. The combat is fun, and it embodies the things we all love about classic RPGs. World of Warcraft is well-known for its expansion packs and massive open world. Gamers level up the traditional way, by clearing dungeons and fight monsters, other players, and in battles.
NosTale is an engaging free MMORPG. It features an anime graphic style and 3-D graphics. An exciting feature in this game is that characters don't choose a class until they reach level 20. After that, the characters may choose a specialist class.
There is also an extensive pet system. Characters get to explore a forest full of monsters, magic crystals, and capture pets. Pets can be trained and used in battle, and there is no limit to how many you can find and capture.
NosTale also allows players to enter special dungeons inside of crystals. These crystals vary from timed missions, raids, and server-wide fights.
Eudemons Online is another free MMORPG that focuses on pets called, you guessed it, eudemons. Unlike NosTale, players don't travel around to capture the pets. Instead, they hatch them, raise, train, and evolve them and then use them in battle.
Experience is easy to gain in this game, and raising your levels by grinding through enemies is a snap. There are over 100 different eudemons, so players will always have something new to train. Players can enjoy P vs. P duels and tournaments, open-world battle royale style events, and group dungeons.
Eternal Fury is not a traditional MMO by any means. This game is one part turn-based RPG and another part strategy. Players must create a character, build a castle, hire mercenaries to raise an army, study technological advancements, upgrade equipment, and summon heroes to fight demons on your behalf.
Luckily, this MMORPG doesn't make that list boring or tedious. Eternal Fury will keep you entertained for hours with its cross-server P vs. P and its dynamic P vs. E modes.
Skyforge is one of the most beautiful free MMORPGs I've ever seen. The graphics are complete eye-candy. Players get to be immortals with mindblowing celestial powers.
The only thing better than Skyforge's graphics is its combat mechanics. Skyforge does not offer a leveling system; instead, players must gain prestige. This system means characters advance based on the total of their stats and progress. The top-level of progression turns players into gods, where they can access a second progression system.
Players can master multiple combat styles and skills and switch between them effortlessly amid battle. It is an MMO that I never get tired of exploring.
Archeage is one of the only ship-based MMOs. Traverse the seas as a pirate and relive all of the fun from games like Assassin's Creed Black Flag, just, you know, for free. Crafting is a major part of ArcheAge because players must craft their own ships and raise their pets from babies. ArcheAge also contains a judicial system, which is unlike anything I've seen in any other game. Players run the courts, summon juries, and determine sentences for crimes.
A bonus is that Archeage also provides dragons for players to ride, and need I say more about how awesome the game is than that?
Smite is an excellent alternative to League of Legends, and unlike League of Legends, Smite is entirely free. Smite is pretty big in esports circles with several tournaments and the yearly Smite World Championship that's worth one million dollars.
This game features a slightly different take on third-person shooters, and the altered angle is kind of refreshing. Smite is an arena-based MMO and showcases a combat style similar to that of Dota 2. Players control either a god/goddess or a mythical creature, which grants the user and the user's team powers. These gods/goddesses come from a variety of mythoi like Norse, Japanese, Arthurian, Hindu, Chinese, Mayan, Celtic, Polynesian, Greek, Slavic, Egyptian, Yoruba, Roman, and Voodoo.
Albion Online is similar to Runescape and is heavy on grinding, which makes it unusual in today's landscape of less grind-heavy free MMORPGs. The unique thing about Albion Online is the fact that there are true character classes. Meaning players can choose to be warriors, farmers, merchants, or even craftsmen.
It makes for customizable gameplay, but it means that players have to build their characters from the ground up completely.
Guild Wars 2
Guild Wars 2 is one of the most highly ranked games available. It essentially works as a combat fluid, less teamwork required version World of Warcraft. Gamers have the option of in-game purchases, but it's not required for game mastery or leveling up. Guild Wars 2 is unique in that the storyline is effected by players' actions, which is something unusual for multiplayer RPGs.
Players get to choose between five races and eight professions. The professions determine your armor class; professions range from scholar to soldiers.
The challenges are dynamic, which is a challenge unto itself. The best part is that the game doesn't require a monthly subscription fee like WoW; instead, it's completely free.
Life Is Feudal
Life is Feudal is a unique MMO because it is not combat-focused. Instead, players need to develop the area around them. Everyone needs to work the land and tailor it to their needs.
Characters can band together to own more land and control it by forming a guild. Gamers will have to cooperate to make commerce and resource distribution work.
Crossout completes our list and deservedly so. It is a completely unique RPG. Crossout is the game that fulfills all of our collective Mad Max fantasies. This game is set in the same universe as Ex Machina. The gameplay is slightly realistic, meaning players must take into consideration the weight, center of gravity, and recoil of their weapons. Battles involve two teams, and battles are won when a team is eliminated, and their base is captured.
Customizable apocalypse-ready vehicles, a desert landscape, and looting for everyone. This game is loads of fun, and everyone should try it at least once.
The Bottom Line
Video games are so much fun, every time I play them, I'm reminded of how creative people are and how cool it is to share an interest with so many people across the world.
Thanks for reading, and don't forget to play the games and drop a line to the developers to tell them how amazing a job they did.
Michael launched Your Money Geek to make personal finance fun. He has worked in personal finance for over 20 years, helping families reduce taxes, increase their income, and save for retirement. Michael is passionate about personal finance, side hustles, and all things geeky.