The emergence of both the PS4 and Xbox One as equivalents to mid-tier PC gaming rigs, as well PC like architectures has offered both platforms the ability to embrace aspects of PC gaming that really are cool. Since the launch of the PS4 there have been several free-to-play titles like “Warframe“, “Blacklight Retribution“, “DC Universe Online” and others. Games that are generally aimed at a PC audience that do not ask for money upfront, but rather instead offer in game microtransactions which ask players to purchase items that make their gaming experience better. This could be in the form of upgraded armor, weapons, vehicles, or rare items. In some cases both platforms have the ability to allow wannabe developers who create mods for PC games to have those mods migrate over to their console counterpart. Obviously it’s up to how developer create Free-to-play games that make them that or Pay-to-play games. The great thing is that there are many examples of games using this business model that really push gaming forward & deserve a place at our console tables. Yes, we can talk about mods being one controversial, but cool aspect to PC games, at the same time caveats. The slower adoption of that particular aspect of PC gaming due to sometimes the extreme nature of mods is real since some can literally make a PC game unplayable. Most times we see mods that make use of increasing a games attributes like graphics, sound, or specific in game features that transform the games experience. Fallout 4 on the Xbox One is a recent example where Microsoft and Bethesda have put together the best PC mods for the title out there, and made them available on the Xbox One. It’s a fantastic curation idea that actually extends the life play of Fallout 4 and it’s brand association for the Xbox One. Free-To-Play MMORPGS come in many forms, and genres. Yes, there are very particular formulaic reasons for calling a game MMORPG, but it’s mainly the elements of depth in a game. The most important is developer interaction and willingness to continue developing a title in the model. This suits console gaming’s current state of game content. Where major publishers are releasing titles that are trying to get the free-to-play formula right, but are still heavily pay-to-play-free-without-enough-play-content. In fact “Warframe” by Digital Extremes benefits from having its title grow on the PS4 where most the features of the game today were allowed to flourish and grow as the game grew. Now the Xbox One version is a very mature product as “Warframe”has established itself as really good title. We’ve decided to create a top five list of MMORPG‘s that we believe are worth bringing to the PS4 and Xbox One. Here is the top five free-to-play MMORPGS that should come to PS4 & Xbox One.
Planet Calypso is a free to play title which labels itself as a 3D Sci-Fi adventure. The gameplay is a sandbox MMORPG where player use real in game economy with social features to make the experience more engaging. You play as a human colonist on an alien planet where exploration, and excavation along with trade yield profits. You explore a fast open virtual world that is huge in size. What’s fascinating is the fact that you still get to follow a story path that allows you to customize your play, at the same time it coincides with the story of other players. Add even more novelty to Planet Calypso is the fact that the in game currency of PED can net you some real world cash. PED currency has an exchange rate that says every 10 PED is = to $1 USD. You can deposit, and withdraw real world cash money on your adventures playing Calypso. This would be the first of it’s kind on console in terms of the gameplay, and in game currency that doesn’t just ask for microtransactions from you, but you can make money to. The game does need to be overhauled in some ways; such as offering gamers more in game assets that don’t make you have to grind for measly items. PED should be much more prevalent, better missions, more robust skills that don’t suck money out of you, and more work on the overall story. Right now, the game is truly a pay-to-play title with some strong free-to-play aspects. The game needs to remove much of it’s blood suck so that the reward of cash is much more of a reward. I’m not sure if the community will love it, but again it’s a title with tons of promise on console. Obviously both Microsoft, and Sony would have to investigate ways to keep players safe from fraud, or manipulating the game to the point where a rigged system doesn’t emerge from players or others looking to scam the game. Nonetheless this type of game has some huge potential as it is a highly playable and fun experience for a free-to-play title. Mindark needs to get in there and really dig out the experience so that the game isn’t a time, and wallet suck because there is a huge potential console audience they can have with Planet Calypso if they find the sweet spot for gamers.
This is a free-to-play title that has a good identity crisis going on. I mean it is a total mash up of fantasy and high sci-fi that merges so many different types of gameplay together. It’s like a buffet restaurant where they already have a plate of everything loaded up for you to have. You are an immortal whose goal is to use the “Ascension Atlas” in order for you to become a God. Three color nodes that are split up given different attributes make up the Ascension Atlas. Green is for defense, while Red signifies damage, the color blue dictates your stats, and talent tree. Like any good RPG you choose from a class, the more experience you get via the quests you embark on, then the more talents you earn for the two levels which open up. At the higher level you get new classes. All of this is tied to a progress system in Skyforge that is based on prestige; which can be gained in PvE, and PvP play. It’s basically a reward system underneath that asks players to revisit quests to gain different things as they grow in prestige. There is a matchmaking system attached to to the instanced events, areas, and specific story arc’s. The fighting mechanics is an active-targeting action-based combat system similar to what you see in Asian MMORPGS. The game is co developed by Allods Team a group of Russian developers, veteran developers Obsidian Entertainment, and My.com. My.com is like the Steam of MMORPG’s. The game is not typical in any real way, and for consoles such as the PS4 and Xbox One without a pedigree of titles like this it is a fresh experience. The game has been in beta for while, so similar to the other titles like this there is some refinement that has made the game come along really well. One can see this title make it’s way to Xbox One, and PS4 in the fall/winter of 2016 in a much more robust state. Not that it can’t come out today and do great, but because of high different an experience this game is current players are still exploring its rich nature. Graphically Skyforge is a gorgeous game that you get to play from a 3rd person perspective, and superbly polished with really good action game play that is fluid. You get a real sense of the world, its environment, giving you more sense of adventure to absorb making the game journey a unique experience. The fact that you get to change your character class at any given time with thirteen in total constantly keeps things fresh. You can sign up and play the Skyforge now to get your experience up on the game.
This game is actually now truly free-to-play, and could benefit from a partnership on console with Microsoft’s Azure cloud as there are different servers used for different aspects of this title which could work for the Xbox One. There are different tiers, and I think it’s something that should be more focused on for consoles so that getting into the game early is fun. The game is similar to Skyforge in the sense that it is a very different MMORPG that bucks many norms. The fact that Tera has been out for quite a while, worked through many of its quirks, and growing pains. This title also works really well with Sony’s policies on the PS4 which I believe are bit more lenient than Microsoft’s . The combat and gameplay is very dynamic with some deep social gameplay aspects that would be engaged on PSN and Xbox Live. For instance, there is an intricate political system, where players in a guild can vote on different aspects of the community which allows a whole zone to vote on a player to become matriarch. The tighter your guild community is, the more influence there is. You can sort of become a mayor of sorts where you can do things like set tax prices on vendors. There’s a ton of stuff to do in this game that it is right now perfectly built for where console online gaming is going. Questing with other players, and strategic combat is really the bread & butter of Tera. The questing in the game does need to be better, because of it’s quirky ness you don’t feel as satisfied from the missions at times. Here’s some gameplay footage of Tera: Rising from MMOBOMB which can give you some sense of the game.
Allods Online has been around for quite a while going through some tender growth spurts, changing developer/publisher hands over the years. It is now at an impressive place. This is they type of free to play fantasy MMORPG with some Sci-Fi elements that PS4 & Xbox One gamers can get into. Graphics are similar to “WOW” and MOBA “Smite”. I think there is room for graphical improvements, but overall this is a polished game that you can rank it up there with some of the genre’s most successful titles. Allods Online is the perfect example of how you get rich questing, intense player-versus-player combat, tons of area to explore, a rich and in-depth character development system, while offering up plenty of social engagement. This is another game that on Xbox Live would really thrive with an engaging community. Not to say this wouldn’t be the case on PS4, just that Xbox Live has feature sets that really can enhance what is already in Allods Online. You choose from 28 classes, but you must decide on which one of two factions you want to join that are at war with each other. The story is very deep. You have over 1500 quests, from raiding castles, dungeons, and temples. Add in the fact that you can have Player vs Environment, Ship v Ship like the upcoming “Sea of Thieves” title from Rare, and Faction vs Faction. This is a highly underrated, and below the radar title that deserves some push. It’s a sneaky title that just has players come back constantly to play because of how well done the overall game play is. Add in the Astral aspect of the game, and you get another great layer where players a choose out of 6 races, and eight characters. Then they choose from two warring factions called The League and The Empire. This game is the type of time suck that you really enjoy that is not in your average MMORPG.
Arena: Cyber Evolution (ACE) is meant to be a MOBA that is a physics-based sports game. The game is so not similar to any MOBA you’d associate with the genre in a pure form. Everyday the developers Spearhead do a live stream. The level of engagement and commitment by them to entertain feedback, then implement what the community feels is worth the game makes it worth the time to watch. The best way to think of this game is less as an MMORPG like I stated in this article. It does offer RPG elements, new characters, and a story in a gameplay style similar to Ice-Hockey. So ACE pits two teams of three super-powered sports figures against each other in a quest to score goals for their team. Instead of war combat it’s sports based. Each hero can pass, shoot, intercept and juke with the puck using intuitive controls and special abilities. Characters in ACE have their own stats, and two main abilities. Think of creating your team with a rock-paper-scissor mentality. Some characters are great at speeding across the map, others great in support roles, others at team disruption which can alter the momentum of an opponent, and just like in Hockey you can force the goalie to loose hold of the puck, catch incoming pucks with defensive abilities, and not to mention each map is dynamic allowing for events that trigger the games physics. So, you’ll get obstacles like reflective walls, pits, wind currents that change direction of play forcefully, and even ice on ice making things extra awkward in play. Spearhead Games is a small indie studio out of Montreal Canada so for a team like this to deliver something fresh in the MOBA genre is pretty ambitious, and similar to Rocket League is a very catchy style game that’s quick to pick up, and hard to master. The game’s graphics are super stylized, very much similar to Sega’s “Jet Grind Radio” which is heavily Anime influenced.
- The Best PC Games of 2016(pcmag.com)
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- I Wish Making An MMORPG Was That Simple(keenandgraev.com)