Seven must-try MMORPGs that don’t require a subscription
Many gamers want to get into MMORPGs but are concerned about some games’ subscription fees. Not everyone can afford to pay upfront for a title and pay over $100 annually to keep playing the game. However, that doesn’t mean gamers have to forgo what the genre has to offer.
There are many titles that are free to play or full price games with no additional cost. While subscription-based games are excluded from the list, some games are like Final Fantasy XV offer trial or starter packages that you can try for free. Here are seven MMORPGs you can play with no subscription fees.
Just a note here: some of the titles on this list have optional subscriptions, but nothing that would stop you from enjoying the MMO. Also, subscription-free doesn’t always mean freehence, you will find some buy-to-play titles on this list.
Guild Wars 2
Guild Wars 2 is a free-to-play title with paid extensions and no subscription costs. The game has just received its latest expansion and is revamping the new player experience with content from Season 1 coming to the game.
ArenaNet will release the game on Steam later this year and has promised another expansion to come in a couple of years. The game has been around since 2012 and it’s still alive and well with a ton of content available for the price you’re paying.
During Lost Ark has been around for years, the game only recently hit the global market. I love the fact that the game offers a complete experience with solid endgame activities.
The storytelling of Lost Ark takes place through dungeons and events and the gameplay stands out from other MMORPGs thanks to the isometric ARPG combat system. There are over a dozen continents to explore and the world feels very much alive wherever you go thanks to integration with their online systems. From the Chaos Dungeons to PVP, there’s a ton of content to indulge in without spending a penny.
New world has one of the most memorable MMORPG environments out there. The sound design and graphics stand out from any other MMORPG I’ve played so far. When it comes to the positives, Expeditions are absolutely amazing and the Tradeskill mechanic is something that’s easy to get excited about. New world has its fair share of issues, starting with the repetitive quests and boring storyline, to the progression system that feels pretty boring at times.
While the game might not be perfect, it’s significantly cheaper than your usual $60 AAA title, and you might consider giving the game a shot when it’s on sale. If Amazon can address some of the issues plaguing the game, New World is an easy recommendation of mine.
Before anything else I would like to clarify whether destiny 2 is an MMO or not. While the popular live-service action game may not limit its activities to a maximum of six players, Bungie still markets the game as an “action MMO.” It’s an FPS title that shares MMO-like progression systems. Its dungeons and raids are quite a lot of fun and offer some of the best moment-to-moment action you could ask for.
The free version of the game doesn’t offer all that much, but if you do, grab the new one witch queen Expansion, it has a very memorable campaign, one of the coolest raids Bungie has ever created, a bunch of exotic quests, as well as three new dungeons expected to be released by the end of 2022.
Elder Scrolls Online
The Elder Scrolls Online has been around since 2014 and continues to be updated black wood is the fifth chapter of the saga. The game recently tweaked its new gameplay experience to make it more inviting for fans who haven’t played all of the older expansions. One of the best things about IT is that you don’t need to max out your character to enjoy the expansion content.
Some games make story progression a slogfest, and thanks to the game’s lack of level gating, it continues to be a very enjoyable experience. While difficult activities like trials still require you to invest in your character, you can still enjoy most of the game as a casual player. There is an optional premium subscription for additional benefits, but it is not necessary to enjoy the game as purchasing the expansions is more than enough.
Albion Online (mobile)
Albion Online and Albion Online Mobile are both solid games that anyone can try with no subscription costs of any kind. The game relies heavily on its PvP content, and if you enjoy taking on other players using the best builds you can create, it’s a solid game to invest your time in.
Gameplay in the PC version of the game resembles old-school MMORPGs, while the mobile version of the game is optimized for touch controls and the low-poly graphics hold up quite well even on modern smartphones with high-resolution displays. There are in-game purchases that can be tempting, but I recommend giving the game a try for free and see where that takes you.
blade and soul
blade and soul has some of the best combat systems you will find in MMORPGs and the beautiful world will get you hooked. While the game’s age is showing and you’ll find that some of the PvP activity can be difficult to find, it still has a small but dedicated player base. But personally, the most fun is in the PvE activities, as the in-game PvP balancing can feel a little too biased towards players building on crowd control skills.
One of the best things about Blade and Souls is that you don’t have to go through a lengthy grind to get to the endgame. The leveling system is pretty fast and you can prepare yourself for the toughest activities in the game in a reasonable amount of time. The story is quite interesting and the narration lets you properly explore the game world and interact with other characters.
There are other solid MMORPGs like the old school ones out there Runescape and Dungeons & Dragons Online which are also very convenient and do not require a subscription fee every month. It’s great that these options exist as they are accessible to players who cannot afford to spend hundreds of dollars on a single game every year.
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