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Video Games: Free to Play

What better way to pass the time on a rainy day than to pull out a video game to play? This guide aims to help gamers of any level of experience to find something new to play that's right for them.

Free to Play

With the games as a service model becoming more and more prominent in the gaming landscape and more free to play titles attempting to emulate the monetization model of mobile games, it can be hard to find a free title that is actually free. Hopefully this list provides some useful pointers towards some free to play games that aren't as predatory in their monetization practices.

What does "Free to Play" mean? - Free to play is a title that is given to games that allow you to download and start playing a game without any upfront cost. This might sound fantastic, a game that you can play without paying anything!?! But these kinds of games do come with a downside. The developers have to make money somehow, so they often charge players fees for a number of different things in the game that would normally not cost anything in a full $60 game. Below is a list of games that only really charge for cosmetic items, things that don't affect the overall gameplay so that you can pay to win. So when you see someone doing better than you in these games, you will know that they are just playing better than you, not paying more than you.

Free to Play Fun

Rocket League

This game has set the bar for free to play experiences. It is an extremely simple concept, with basically infinite replay value. The player controls a little RC car in a soccer arena. A giant ball falls in to the arena and the player has to score as many points by hitting the ball into the goal as possible. Not only is this game fun and relatively simple to grasp, it is hard to master. Learning the intricacies of jump-boosting and strategies for proper defense and offense mean you can put hundreds of hours into this game and still have room to grow. On top of all that, all the monetization is purely cosmetic. No pay to win features here.


Battle Royale

The newest game type that has taken the world by storm is the Battle Royale or "BR" for short. Some trace the origins of this game type to Hunger Games mods for the video game Minecraft, others believe it is just a natural extension of other similar genre games. The game mode involves a free for all where tons of players all drop in to a large map with one life. It is up to you to survive against other players as the map becomes smaller and smaller and the round ends when the last team is eliminated.

Apex Legends

Everyone knows that Fortnite is the king of battle royale games in terms of popularity, but if you are looking for a well-designed FPS that treats its developers ethically and provides a monetization model that is both fair and non-gameplay infringing, look no further than Apex legends. This Battle Royale puts players in squads of three that drop into an ever shrinking map. Scavenge for supplies and fend off other squads in this intense shooter.


This is the aforementioned king of Battle Royale games, it is a social movement among schools, Fortnite dances have even become a cultural touchstone. But, is Fortnite a worthwhile free to play game to play or is it pay to win? Thankfully I can say that Fornite sets the standard for how a free to play title should be monetized. All of the rewards are cosmetic and purchasable outright, either as a part of the battle pass or as an individual purchase. This lack of loot boxes is one that should be an industry standard. 

Grinding for Loot


This utterly unique looter-shooter tasks you as a space ninja fighting in a sci-fi dystopian galaxy filled with mega-corporations. With thousands of hours of content avaiable with more being added with each update, you will never run out of things to do. Whether it is tuning your mech suit or messing with your skill trees, there is a depth of complexity to this game that isn't trying to hide itself. If deep RPG progressions systems sound like a ton of fun, then Warframe is the game for you! Play either by yourself or with some friends in this fantastic free to play co op loot fest.

Path of Exile

This free to play action RPG is often compared to the defining franchise of the genre, Diablo. This is not a comparison made lightly in the Action RPG community and one that fully shows the depth and quality of this free to play offering. The great thing about this game that makes it stand apart from other free to play RPGs is the monetization is purely cosmetic, so progression in the game is not blocked behind a paywall at all and the depth of gameplay and progression is incredible.