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Top 10 Free-to-Play Steam Games of All Time

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1. Counter-Strike

This is a game that has changed a lot and only a little over the years that it has been out. It was actually created 19 years ago and has evolved into a free-to-play game. It was once a pay-to-play (that’s when I got it!) and has since become free-to-play as of 2018. There is a more battle royale feel to this in the Danger rwog_csgoZone, but you can still just go play with bots if you wish.

You start the match as either Terrorist or Counter-Terrorist and after so many rounds, you switch sides. The idea is for the Terrorist team to win by setting off the bomb, or the Counter-Terrorist team to stop them from doing this to win. I spent many hours with my friends practicing and playing this because my significant other needed to practice a lot for the super-insane group of people he played this with. There is no pay-to-win here as you can only purchase cosmetics with real money.

2. Warframe

This is a third person co-op game that has always been free-to-play, to my knowledge anyway. You are located in space and you can warframe_rwogchoose different characters to play, some of which are free, some of which you find parts to get, and others that you can buy. You go and do missions on different planets to get upgrades to your armor, pets, weapons, abilities, etc. In the past year they added a more open-world planet (possibly more than one) to go get items on as well instead of just the missions. I can say I didn’t play this much, but I did enjoy the few times that I did. You could say this game has a few pay-to-win advantages as you can buy upgrades and characters to play.

3. Path of Exile

This is an MMORPG game that has a bit of a learning curve. You have to go through the story and zones to level up, get better armor and wpoe_rwogeapons, as well as learn more skills. You can customize your character a hell of a lot in this game, but it can be overwhelming for some as the gameplay can be difficult at times. A bonus to this customization is you can choose the same type of character as your friends and still have completely different spells and play styles. I hear this is much easier (and more fun) with your friends, but can definitely be played alone. I never made it very far in this game (it updates a lot and I have shitty internet), but I know a few people who really enjoy it. Also, it is never pay-to-win as you can’t purchase advantages with real money.

4. Smite

To me, Smite seems like a very complicated game. I did try to play this a few times, but never really got into it. This is a battleground game that now has over 100 gods that you smite_rwogcan choose from to play. You can be Zeus, or Loki, or even the Monkey King.  There are multiple types of competition that you can play such as competitive mode and conquest.  This is a hugely popular game that people like to brag about where they are on the leaderboard and I would say they have good reason as I found it a bit difficult. Also, no pay-to-win here that I know of, unless you consider being able to open up all Gods with the Ultimate God Pack an advantage.

5. Team Fortress 2

This is another game that was not originally free-to-play, but has become so recently. I have not played this game, but it seems to be another battleground battle. It has a lot of maps and nine different classes that you can teamfortress2_rwogplay as. They advertise it as constantly being updated with new game modes, maps, equipment, and hats (which they say is most important! Lol). You can collect, craft, buy and trade hats and weapons in this game so that you can truly customize your character and therefore your gameplay. As that is about all you can buy.. this is not a pay-to-win game either!

6. War Thunder

This is a military game that has aircraft, naval, and ground vehicles from the 1930s all the way up into the 2000s for you to command… in the same match! They advertise it as warthunder_rwogthe most comprehensive free-to-play, cross-platform, MMO military game for Windows, Linux, Mac, and PS4. It basically lets you have a full on war with all of the vehicles you would want. And who doesn’t love a game that is cross-platform?! I’ve never played it, but my significant other has and says that it is a great time if you like free military games. There is both PvE and PvP content so that everyone can enjoy it. And definitely not a pay-to-win game.

7. DOTA 2

This is another battleground game – I think I’m seeing a pattern! – that you can play that is constantly evolving. They boast that alldota2_rwog of their heroes are free and can fill multiple roles in the game allowing people to change things up in every battle. They want you to play how you want and find your favorite play style, but also be able to change it if the need arises. You can play co-op versus bots or you can go play PvP. I have never played this game, so I have no personal experience with it, but it is definitely not pay-to-win!

8. Paladins

This is one of the first battle royales that I can remember playing and came out just months after Overwatch did. This is more of a fantasy shooter where you can have guns or magic and customize your abilities to play the way you like. When I played this it was paladins_rwog5 v 5 battles, but I’m not sure if that has changed at all. There are a lot of cool skins that you can get for the characters and the battles can sometimes be really intense. They have done a few updates since it came out and currently Future’s End is the game going on. They have a new champion, Atlas, and as the others are he is free. Anything that affects gameplay is unlocked just by playing, so this is not a pay-to-win game. Although you could call it a pay-to-look good game (lol).

9. Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links

So, if you don’t know, Yu-Gi-Oh! was originally a Japanese Manga series about gaming that was written and illustrated by Kazuki Takahashi. Over the years this has morphedyugioh_rwog into animes, novels, films, and games. This game is based upon trading cards for Yu-Gi-Oh! and is basically that, but online. It allows you to do duels, and PvP, as well as create your own deck with the cards you get in-game. They have voices from the anime in-game and great 3D animations. I have not personally played it, but it looks like fun if you are into trading cards. I am not sure if any of the in-app purchases make this pay-to-win.

10. World of Warships

Another battle game! (I told you – pattern!) As you can gather by the name, this is naval combat at its finest. You can choose from Japanese, American, German, British, French, Russian, Pan Asia, Italy, Commonwealth, and Poland. Not to mention, the premium ships that can be from nations not in those tech trees. Within these tech trees you can choose from Destroyers, Cruisers, Battleships, and aircraft carriers. You will always start in a cruiser, but from there you can work your way up to tier 10 ships via the different worldofwarships_rwogbranches as you choose. You can play PvP in this game – the fastest way to level up – or you can choose to level up by playing PvE. My significant other plays this game heavily and really enjoys it (if you want to try it, I can get you an invite link that will give you free stuff! Just send me a message on our Discord!).

You can purchase ships for real money, but I’m not really considering that pay-to-win as when you play matches the ships on the other side are the same ships on your side of the battle. A fun fact about Wargaming is that they choose to use some of their proceeds to benefit real ships that are still out there. Earlier this year I actually went to the U.S.S Texas for free thanks to Wargaming. They had a scavenger hunt to give away prizes, they gave away ships in the game, and they gave away some nice take-home prizes (a gaming console and some leaves made from metal from the ship!). It was a great time and a great way for them to give back! From my knowledge they do this every year at the Texas.


That’s all for this list! But keep an eye out for many more Top Tens right here on Real Women of Gaming!

Free Game Spotlight: Viridi

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Developer: Ice Water Games
Publisher: Ice Water Games
Release Date: Aug. 19, 2015

I have no idea why in the world I kept seeing articles pop up for this game, but it seemed for awhile they were literally everywhere. I think that we even joked about it during one of our meetings. Viridi is a much more an experience than a game, in my opinion. However, I remembered seeing it and it is free, so I downloaded it and ‘played’ for a few days.

You nurture a pot of succulents (plants).

You can load up the game and you get to pick your first planting experience. You pick your pot. I picked the concrete colored one with the crosses around the border. I was prompted to pick a grouping of plants and I picked the most colorful group, with the Agave ‘Blue Glow’ in the center. I was brought to a screen where I was able to pull the weeds from my plant (which is a bit confusing for an indoor plant) and watered my growing plants. I named the snail that moves around the lip of my pot Bubba, after my dog, and I have fun spraying him with water. I have no idea why. You can pull plants out and plant new ones. I obtained my ‘weekly free seed’ of Senecio roweyanus, which I promptly planted at the edge, because it looked cool.

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Upon returning to the game, you can pull more weeds and water your plants. They grow; faster than a normal plant, but still fairly slowly. So I checked out the nursery, which is just their ‘Main Menu’. You can purchase (with real money) a number of different types of seeds (at least .09 cents, at most .39 each) that you can add to your pot. Dig up any plants you don’t want and purchase more locations to place more pots. For $3 you can purchase the key to the Cat House (another pot location) and $5 gets you The Key to the Apartment (another pot location) thus giving you 3 pots of plants to look after.

It is very much a meditative experience. It is beautifully designed and the music is soothing. I do love that each plant is explained. It’s official name, common name, native location and subtle details of each plant are listed. It’s adorable and probably amazing for someone who knows far more about plants than I do. I sat down fairly stressed today as I was looking back in on my plants and do find myself much calmer and more relaxed. If you want to relax and love plants or pretty things, this is the game for you.

You can find it here.

Free Game Spotlight: Neverwinter

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Dev: Cryptic Studios
Pub: Perfect World
Original Release Date: June 20, 2013
Platforms: PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4

While Neverwinter has been available on the PC for three years, it came to consoles far more recently. With the Xbox One release last year and the PlayStation 4 release just last month, the Dungeons and Dragons MMORPG has blown up in popularity. All of a sudden, everyone was asking me if I play it and highly recommending it when my answer was no.

Well, I have played a little bit of it and, I have to say, it’s on par with hugely popular paid MMORPGs such as World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV. The best part is: it’s completely free!

Based on lore from the popular tabletop franchise Dungeons and DragonsNeverwinter takes place in the Forgotten Realms. Gamplay pulls from 4th edition D&D rules, which includes the use of dailies when it comes to spell casting and abilities. It may also be important to mention that this game is in no way linked to that awful Neverwinter Nights series from all those years ago.

In Neverwinter, you can be one of eight classes: wizard, cleric, fighter, ranger, paladin, warlock and rogue. You also have 12 races to choose from: Human, Drow, Dwarf, Half-Elf, Half-Orc, Hafling, Menzoberranzan Renegade (requires Hero of the North Add-on), Moon Elf (requires Knight of the Feywild Add-on), Sun Elf, Tiefling, Wood Elf and Dragonborn.

The story of the game takes place after the Gauntigrym novel, when the city of Neverwinter is plunged into chaos after the disappearance of the last Lord of Neverwinter. While the main game locations are based on the novels GauntigrymNeverwinter and Charon’s Claw, there is also the option for players to create whole new areas that may or may not conform to the lore. These areas are able to be played by other users, though there is a clear distinction between user-created and original content.

Neverwinter‘s reception in the gaming world has been mostly positive. With scores hovering around 74% positive, it’s most popular on the PlayStation 4.

The game can be found on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. It is completely free and and an absolute blast to play.

Free Game Spotlight: Magic The Gathering Puzzle Quest

Free Game Spotlight: Magic The Gathering Puzzle Quest

Dev: Hibernum
Platform(s): iOS, Android
Release Date: December 15, 2015

Guest Post by: Michael Wells

Welcome to the July Free Game spotlight! This month we’re talking about Poke– wait, we’re not talking about Pokemon Go? No we’re not. If ever in the history of games there was something that didn’t need a spotlight, it’s Pokemon Go. No, this month’s game is Magic the Gathering Puzzle Quest.

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Pictured: Not Pokemon Go

First thing’s first, Magic the Gathering Puzzle Quest is a free-to-play game. It’s a free download with options for micro-transactions. Most of the micro-transactions require the game’s premium currency, but some exclusive cards or characters can only be purchased with real money. It’s got daily rewards, event rewards, and PvP ranking rewards to keep you coming back in the hopes of convincing you to open your wallet. If you’ve played any free-to-play game since Farmville, you know what to expect. That being said, the game is worth trying for two reasons. First: the game respects your time. Micro-transactions are available, but aren’t necessary to engage with the game and get a real sense of progress. Second: the game is fun to play.

The Puzzle Quest series began back in March of 2007 as the first successful attempt to take the match three gameplay of Bejeweled and match it up with RPG combat and character progression. It was a surprising two-great-tastes-that-taste-great-together moment and has inspired a whole sub-genre of puzzle RPGs. The first game was a modest hit but its more ambitious sequel failed to find an audience. Puzzle Quest 2 languished on various app stores for several years before publisher, D3, quietly made the game to free-to-play. Since then, D3 has used the basic match three plus combat gameplay as a platform for licensed properties like Adventure Time, Marvel, and, most recently, Magic the Gathering. While the previous licences were odd fits for the formula, Magic the Gathering gets the game back to the strengths that made the first game such a surprise and also provides its own welcome twist.

Read the rest of this entry

Free Game Spotlight: Warframe

Free Game Spotlight: Warframe

Dev/Pub: Digital Extremes
Platform(s): PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release Date: Mar. 25, 2013

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Warframe, according to the website, is a free-to-play, co-op action sci-fi game set in an ever-evolving open world. You are a Tenno, a warrior who is able to master the Warframe armor, and you are summoned to save the solar system from the Grineer, who are using their armies to take control.

One thing that makes this game so great is the fact that you have several Warframes to choose from. The Warframe is a suit of armor that protects you from enemies and provides you with unique abilities. It basically makes you the type of character you would like to play. A few examples include: Ash, a stealthy suit with lethal abilities; Atlas, the brawler suit, which can altar the environment with incredible force; Ember, a magic user type suit that uses fire to conquer enemies; and many more.

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There are three factions within the game: the Tenno, the Grineer and the Corpus. The Tenno have been cryogenically frozen for centuries and awake to find that their solar system has been taken over by their sworn enemies, the Grineer. The Grineer are militarized humans who are driven by fear and seek to eliminate the Tenno. Finally, the Corpus are a reclusive faction who seek old and ancient technology in order to build new weapons with which to fight both the Tenno and the Grineer.

When you log in for the first time, you see that the graphics are amazing and the gameplay is smooth. The tutorial mission ends when you find your ship, but, to get there, you have to learn how to fight in both melee and ranged situations, loot, and hardcore parkour. This is definitely an MMO that’s worth checking out.

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You can download it from the Warframe website, Steam, the PlayStation Store (site currently down) and the Xbox Store.

Free Game Spotlight: Star Trek Timelines

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Free Game Spotlight: Star Trek Timelines

Dev: Disruptor Beam
Platform: Android, iOS, Browser
Release Date: January, 2016

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Credit: Disruptor Beam                                                                                                 

The free-to-play strategy mobile game, Star Trek Timelines, centers around the idea that a strange anomaly has caused different timelines and realities of Star Trek to merge together, obviously causing conflicts that the player must resolve while they explore the galaxy.

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Credit: Disruptor Beam                                           

The player resolves these conflicts by constructing an away team with the relevant skills and traits to solve the problem in different ways. You can choose characters that will try to resolve conflict diplomatically or you can choose characters that use weapons to gain control over a situation. The game is full of choices which align you towards different characters and groups as you agree or disagree with them. The player gets to level up these characters as they complete missions and collect new crew members with different specialties as the game goes on. The game is made up of these away missions, space battles, and faction missions. All in all, there is a lot of game play to be had in Star Trek Timelines.

Star Trek Timelines is visually impressive with beautiful cutscenes and an interactive, colorful, and detailed galaxy map. One of the most immediate things I remarked on the game was just how well produced it was. Every time I enter the game, I’m greeted by the treat that is John de Lancie’s voice acting as the character Q. There is so much polish on the production and interface of the game that it is understandable why I keep hearing about it.

I do feel however that though the game is well produced in many areas that the mechanics are not as rewarding as the external aspects of the game. And though the game can be a lot of fun, there are some downsides. Read the rest of this entry

Free Game Spotlight: Grim Fandango

Dev: Double Fine Productions
Platform: PS4, PC, Mobile
Release Date: Jan. 27, 2015

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Much like Xbox Gold, The Playstation Network gives free games each month to its subscribers. Currently, one of these games is Grim Fandango Remastered. This game is an RPG adventure game originally released by LucasArts in 1998. Sony announced that the game would be remastered and re-released during E3 2014. It was finally available for public consumption on January 27, 2015.

In the game, you play as Manny Calavera, who must repay his debt to the Underworld by collecting souls.

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The story is divided into four parts, each taking place on Nov. 2, four years in a row. In the beginning, Manny is a travel agent for the Department of Death, working off his debt to the Underworld. He grows more and more frustrated by the fact that he is always assigned low-class clients who cannot afford the Number Nine Luxury Express to their final destination, which puts his job in jeopardy.

Upon learning that his system has been rigged by his boss, Manny teams up with his driver – Glottis – and rushes to rescue his latest client, Meche Colomar, who was pure of heart during her life and should have been on the Number Nine train.

2860770-trailer_grimfandango_launch_20150505Grim Fandango received universal acclaim and was praised by many critics. The artistic design and overall direction of the game allowed for it to be selected for several gaming awards in the late ’90s. Unfortunately, the game was a commercial failure, which ultimately lead to LucasArts to discontinue their adventure game development.

The remastered version was able to be released after Disney acquired LucasArts. Double Fine Productions improved the character graphics, added an orchestrated score and included director’s commentary. The game is currently available for free on the PS4 for those subscribed to The Playstation Network. It is also available on Steam and on your mobile device.