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I Need a New F2P MMO Short-Term

The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
edited April 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
Hey all. I've been playing MMOs for years (I started around age 8 or so with NWN on AOL) and have never looked back.

I'm planning on picking up Star Wars: The Old Republic when it releases or I get into the beta, and will probably play the living hell out of that game. In the meantime I've cancelled my WoW subscription as of a few months ago (Cata wasn't my bag, after awhile) and have been jumping from F2P to F2P games since then. I've started getting a bit antsy, and I guess I'm looking if anyone has any suggestions or advice for finding the right game for me. I currently play:

Battlestar Galactica Online - I was a beta tester and while I enjoy the game, it lacks the depth of a full-blown MMO. It's good for a few hours here and there, but falls short on my "I could play this for hours!"-meter.

LotR Online - I tried this when it went F2P awhile back and just picked it up again. The "pay-to-win/pay-to-ride/pay-to-actually-play" bugs me, as I don't want to spend a lot of cash without at-least short-term dedication. This seems the best of the F2Ps that I've seen, though.

DDO - Level progression is slow as snails (thanks 3.5!) and the content has already gotten repetitive by level 3. I've been playing on-and-off for a few years, now, and can't seem to get into the game.

Maplestory - Yeah. Not my thing.

Anarchy Online - Rolled a character, but can't seem to get too into it. It may just be too old.

In short, I don't want a monthly subscription, but I don't mind spending a touch of cash here and there in-game if I stick with it (mount in LotORO is an example). I'm more interested in progression, soloing (or playing with a friend) and story than end-game or anything like that. This really needs to last me, I hope, only 6-9 months until SW:TOR is released (okay, maybe it'll be longer).

I've never tried Guild Wars, might that work? Shelling out $20 for the game is a cost I'd be happy to pay. My understanding is that it's more PvP focused, which isn't really what I want. Runes of Magic seems interesting, but I have yet to try it out.

Any suggestions? I'm looking most heavily at LotRO as it seems the most fully-featured of the various F2P games out there, but I'm hesitant to drop cash on in-game stuffs without becoming more involved in the game.

The Crowing One on
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Posts

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    My advice is to evaluate whether you have an addiction problem, if you're getting "antsy" from not having one to play. You might want to try seeing if you can go from now till your next game comes out without an MMO, to see how removing that specific internet dependency affects your life.

    "Well, look at this. Appears we got here just in the nick of time. What's that make us?"
    "Big Damn Heroes, Sir."
    "Ain't we just."
  • ThroThro Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Darkewolfe wrote: »
    My advice is to evaluate whether you have an addiction problem, if you're getting "antsy" from not having one to play. You might want to try seeing if you can go from now till your next game comes out without an MMO, to see how removing that specific internet dependency affects your life.

    Booooring

    Try Vindictus! It's Free (cash purchases for looks/ minor stat items, not a game breaker). It's instanced like Guild Wars is but is more about hit combos and dodging. Nexon has some other unique kind of MMOs that aren't Maple Story.

    Guild Wars itself is yes, very cheap for the whole thing. If you're used to the 'Massive' part of the MMO this will be different, all fighting is instanced; the only large crowds will be the town. It's got enough of a player base (plus you can hire NPCs if you can't find anyone else to group) to be worth a try. It's similar to Wow. (No jumping though. This was surprisingly jarring for me at first.)

  • ArtereisArtereis Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Vindictus is pretty great for F2P. People also seem to be enjoying Spiral Knights.

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  • The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Thro wrote: »
    Try Vindictus! It's Free (cash purchases for looks/ minor stat items, not a game breaker). It's instanced like Guild Wars is but is more about hit combos and dodging. Nexon has some other unique kind of MMOs that aren't Maple Story.

    Guild Wars itself is yes, very cheap for the whole thing. If you're used to the 'Massive' part of the MMO this will be different, all fighting is instanced; the only large crowds will be the town. It's got enough of a player base (plus you can hire NPCs if you can't find anyone else to group) to be worth a try. It's similar to Wow. (No jumping though. This was surprisingly jarring for me at first.)

    I've never tried Vindictus. I'll give it a shot!

    Runes of Magic (right?) seems interesting, has anyone played it?

    I'm hesitant about Guild Wars because it does seem to have the "instanced" approach. To an extent DDO does this and I tend to both enjoy the model and pine for something more open. I'd try Guild Wars after I've run through a few other games, first.

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  • mightyjongyomightyjongyo Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    I actually really liked guild wars. There's a lot of different ways to play each of the classes and the henchmen make soloing much easier. I find that a lot of the F2P MMOs have a tendency to consist of "level up and buy better equipment," and guild wars at least does not have this approach. I can't make any comparisons to WoW since I never played it, so I don't know how much of that is different.

    I would suggest looking at mmorpg.com, I believe they have a database of MMO's that you can sort based on price, etc.

  • The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    I actually really liked guild wars. There's a lot of different ways to play each of the classes and the henchmen make soloing much easier. I find that a lot of the F2P MMOs have a tendency to consist of "level up and buy better equipment," and guild wars at least does not have this approach. I can't make any comparisons to WoW since I never played it, so I don't know how much of that is different.

    I would suggest looking at mmorpg.com, I believe they have a database of MMO's that you can sort based on price, etc.

    The mmorpg database is pretty good, and the list over in G&T has been useful over the years!

    Hm... Perhaps Guild Wars would be a good "off-season" game overall. I know there are bunches of expansions, etc.. Out of curiosity, is there a certain "retail package" that works better?

    I'm hesitant until I try more F2P games, and I don't think GW has a demo period, right? (If they do I'll be on it in a heartbeat).

    I hear you on the grind for most of the F2P offerings. It doesn't bother me as much if it's interspersed with good story (like LotORO seems to be), but I've played enough to know that most F2P games, until recently, were pretty much equip and grind, over and over.

    Anyone played Champions Online since it went F2P (right?)?

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  • EntriechEntriech Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Guild Wars does have a free trial here. There are the 3 main campaigns, and one expansion. The easiest way to purchase everything is to acquire 'Guild Wars Trilogy', which contains the campaigns and retails for 30$ on Steam. The expansion, 'Eye of the North', can be had from Amazon or Newegg for like 8$.

    Think of it as a cooperative RPG. The actual exploration and dungeoneering is limited to you and your party (4 - 12 members depending), but the towns allow hundreds of folks to intermix. There are NPC henchment as well as customizable NPC heroes to help you fill out a party. Switching your skill bar and specialization is as easy as visiting any town or outpost.

    As well if you've any interest in Guild Wars 2 (which is more MMOish yet maintains no monthly fee) playing the original will allow you to earn various rewards in that game, via the Hall of Monuments.

    It's eaten my past three months of time, so I can vouch for its ability to entertain.

    Gamecenter/Gamertag/Steam ID/PSN: Entriech
    Guild Wars 2: Entriech.3507 | Scythe Gearsnap, Phlork, Irenic
  • The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Hm. I have Runes of Magic, Vindictus and Champions Online downloading now. Guild Wars seems a good bet if I can't find what I want in the traditional F2P model. That Trilogy pack has always struck me as the best bet, and steam isn't a bad means of distribution, either.

    Really, I'll download and play any suggestions (I've got nothing to lack in trying!), so keep 'em coming if you've got 'em!

    And thanks to everyone (other than Darkewolfe: that was kind of offensive, you silly goose).

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  • DivideByZeroDivideByZero Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    I hear you on the grind for most of the F2P offerings. It doesn't bother me as much if it's interspersed with good story (like LotORO seems to be), but I've played enough to know that most F2P games, until recently, were pretty much equip and grind, over and over.

    I play(ed) LOTRO a hell of a lot, before & after they added the F2P option. Maintained a paid account and rolled up a new Free account for giggles, just to see how far I could get without spending a dime. The answer is: pretty damn far. When I stopped that character was at level 41 out of 65, with enough content areas unlocked to get to 50-55 easily.

    This is without using the "grind new character, delete & re-roll, repeat" method of farming points to unlock things. Because while I enjoy the game I do not enjoy deed grinding ad nauseum. Granted, I had extensive experience having played through the game many, many times on a series of alts; I knew where to go and what to do at which levels, which areas to pay points for and which to skip, which perks I could do without (hint: all of them) and which ones were required (none yet).

    I can attest to the story being one of the best aspects of LOTRO, and you DO get access to all of the "main" story for free; you only have to level up to the point where the story missions are survivable. And since grinding mobs endlessly for XP is horribly inefficient compared to questing, the preferred method is to open enough quest packs to carry you through the levels between story quests. Once you get to the upper 40s, early 50s you can complete the Volume I storyline (IMO, the best story the game has to offer).

    One of the good parts of the F2P payment option is that, if you're unsure of which class you want to play, you can roll one of each on different servers, play them up to the point where the free, included content runs out (upper 20s, early 30s) and then decide which character(s) you like enough to focus on. By that point you will have accumulated enough points just through completing incidental deeds to open at least one additional zone of quests.

  • The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    I hear you on the grind for most of the F2P offerings. It doesn't bother me as much if it's interspersed with good story (like LotORO seems to be), but I've played enough to know that most F2P games, until recently, were pretty much equip and grind, over and over.

    I play(ed) LOTRO a hell of a lot, before & after they added the F2P option. Maintained a paid account and rolled up a new Free account for giggles, just to see how far I could get without spending a dime. The answer is: pretty damn far. When I stopped that character was at level 41 out of 65, with enough content areas unlocked to get to 50-55 easily.

    LotORO seems the top of my pile, at the moment.

    Here's a specific question, then: A mount is pretty much necessary for any MMO in this style. I know the 33% speed boost initial mount is about $8, but what if the only things I paid for were mounts? What's my cash-sink into that?

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  • DivideByZeroDivideByZero Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    I wouldn't call the mount necessary, for a couple of reasons.

    1. The world is big, but not *that* big. There's no place that's so far away that you NEED a mount to get there in a reasonable amount of time. There are stables with slow travel available (slow travel is still faster than the fastest player mount) and unlockable swift travel routes.

    2. The vast majority of quest hubs are laid out in a manner that minimizes the amount of travel you have to do, especially at lower levels. You get a bunch of quests, go out and do them, loop back and turn them in. Repeat until you're pointed to a new hub. Only rarely are you asked to go to a whole different zone and back (this does go out the window during the later books in the Epic story, which do have you running all the hell over the place).

    3. If you roll a Hunter you get a 15% out of combat run speed buff that's always up, relatively early on. Wardens also get one but you have to pay to unlock that class. Hunters and Wardens also get wayfaring skills which are essentially teleports to most major cities and towns, periodically as they're leveling. There is also a racial teleport to the capital city for each race.

    4. If you run yourself around on foot all the time, you will finish slayer deeds faster, which earn you more points to buy content/perks. If you're on a mount you're less likely to stop, dismount, kill it, and mount up again.

    The Riding skill is character-based, not account-based, so you'd need to purchase it (and the actual mount) for each character. My advice is to skip it until you're sure you want to play "this character." But then my plan on that Free account was: "Content First, Perks Later." Each zone you open grants you access to not only that zone's quests, but also its deeds, which let you earn more points. I was putting off unlocking perks like riding, trait slots, and inventory bags until I'd opened the majority of questing zones (haven't gotten there yet).

  • SpawnbrokerSpawnbroker Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Spiral Knights is a really good new F2P MMO by the people who made Phantasy Star Online. There's a bunch of PAers who play it, there's a thread in the MMO forum. You are limited to how many dungeon levels you can run through per day, but the in game currency is pretty easy to change into more of those points. The gameplay is a mix between Zelda: Four Swords and Diablo.

    3DS: 5043-2471-1061
    Battle.net: Spawnbroker#1471
    Nintendo Network ID: Spawnbroker
  • RyeRye Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Final Fantasy 14 is F2P

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Hm. I have Runes of Magic, Vindictus and Champions Online downloading now. Guild Wars seems a good bet if I can't find what I want in the traditional F2P model. That Trilogy pack has always struck me as the best bet, and steam isn't a bad means of distribution, either.

    Really, I'll download and play any suggestions (I've got nothing to lack in trying!), so keep 'em coming if you've got 'em!

    And thanks to everyone (other than Darkewolfe: that was kind of offensive, you silly goose).

    Look, mate. You have posted in H/A about depression and needing to get your life in order. MMO's, as much as I also love them, are pretty much the opposite of improving one's lifestyle and mental health, and like any good escapism are best when used by someone who leads an otherwise healthy and happy lifestyle. I don't mean to be offensive, but I do mean to be honest, and that was my advice.

    "Well, look at this. Appears we got here just in the nick of time. What's that make us?"
    "Big Damn Heroes, Sir."
    "Ain't we just."
  • KyanilisKyanilis Registered User regular
    edited April 2011
    Darkewolfe wrote: »
    Hm. I have Runes of Magic, Vindictus and Champions Online downloading now. Guild Wars seems a good bet if I can't find what I want in the traditional F2P model. That Trilogy pack has always struck me as the best bet, and steam isn't a bad means of distribution, either.

    Really, I'll download and play any suggestions (I've got nothing to lack in trying!), so keep 'em coming if you've got 'em!

    And thanks to everyone (other than Darkewolfe: that was kind of offensive, you silly goose).

    Look, mate. You have posted in H/A about depression and needing to get your life in order. MMO's, as much as I also love them, are pretty much the opposite of improving one's lifestyle and mental health, and like any good escapism are best when used by someone who leads an otherwise healthy and happy lifestyle. I don't mean to be offensive, but I do mean to be honest, and that was my advice.

    This topic is a completely different issue. The OP wants to know about any good F2P games he can try, not about whether or not you think his habit is healthy, so in a way your comments aren't really fitting to this post. If you feel that his gaming habits are unhealthy, bring it to the topic where he is concerned about that.

    It was already mentioned but Spiral Knights is a great time sink, it's a lot of fun and doesn't require all of your time to be fairly competitive. You can basically buy your way to the top if you really want to use money, or just work for it. It's pretty decent, I'd recommend it.

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