5 best games that went free to play

Free to play games are some of the most fun online multiplayer experiences players can get their hands on, free of cost. These titles generally offer up the base game and some customization options as a free experience while locking away the battle pass or other extra loot and cosmetic items behind a paywall.

While many games are free to play at launch itself, a few are available to play for free but were once a paid venture. Among these, a select few are some of the best out there, whose move to a free-to-play model was cause for joy.

These titles changed their model for various reasons, either to bring in more users to their dwindling gamer base or simply because it is not financially viable for the publisher to make it free to play.

Note: This article reflects the writer’s opinions.


Five amazing video games which switched to free to play model

1) Team Fortress 2

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From developer Valve came Team Fortress 2, a multiplayer first-person shooter initially released in October 2007 for Windows and Xbox 360. The game was changed to a free-to-play outing in 2011, which saw its large fan base grow to a monumental status.

This title was a sequel to the original mod for Quake and the 1999 remake, Team Fortress Classic. This fan-favorite saw players being segregated into teams of RED and BLU as they competed against each other in various game modes such as Capture the Flag and King of the Hill.

Users could play as one of nine character classes, each with its own specialty. They were also categorized based on strengths, like The Scout, The Soldier, and The Pyro being categorized as Offense.

Similarly, Defense and Support designations also existed, letting gamers pick from three classes in each.


2) PUBG: Battlegrounds

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The first battle royale video game was a paid-for title for a long time, with PUBG: Battlegrounds being available for a small price on PC and consoles. Its mobile counterpart, however, was entirely free to play, which might have gone on to influence its move to the same model on consoles.

Developed by PUBG Studios and published by Krafton, this video game was first released on December 20, 2017, for Windows and the following year for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. However, on January 1, 2022, it went entirely free to play, making it one of the most popular offerings on Steam.

The premise is simple: upto a 100 players compete to be the final member alive and claim the Chicken Dinner. They are let loose on an uninhabited island, where they are required to find weapons and ammunition and remain within the shrinking play zone to stay alive.


3) Fall Guys

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Known as a platform battle-royale game, Fall Guys was developed by Mediatonic and is currently published by Epic Games. It is an online multiplayer that sees many people compete in various types of events through numerous rounds until all except one are eliminated, who is given the crown as a sign of their winner status.

This title was first released on August 4, 2020, for the PS4 and Windows and was later ported to the Nintendo Switch and Next Generation Consoles. At this time, it was a paid game, with a small charge to access it, although as of June 21, 2022, it became entirely free to play.

This meant the new battle pass system was unlocked for existing users, while newbies needed to pay for this feature. A fun 3D platformer, Fall Guys is hugely popular for some lighthearted multiplayer fun.

After all, even if someone loses, it’s hard to get angry when they’re playing as sentient bean persons.


4) Rocket League

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Developed and published by Psyonix, Rocket League is termed a vehicular soccer game that sees players take control of various four-wheel drives as they compete in a giant soccer stadium. The goal is simple, to ‘dribble’ the giant soccer ball into the opponent’s goal post to score points.

Originally released on July 7, 2015, for Windows and PS4, it was later ported to the Xbox One and Nintendo Switch in June 2016. It was a priced game until September 2020, when it was made free to play across all platforms.

This also removed the requirement for a PS Plus and Nintendo Switch Online membership to access the free game.

Gamers who had previously purchased the title were given “Legacy” status and related cosmetic customizations. However, it was not a part of the Steam store after its free-to-play venture, instead moving to Epic Games Store.


5) Destiny 2

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It might be hard to believe, but Destiny 2 wasn’t always free to play. This multiplayer first-person shooter was developed by Bungie and originally published by Activision on September 6, 2017, for PS4 and Xbox One.

At this time, it was a paid game with access to all of its content and had a large fan following too.

However, once Bungie acquired the publishing rights to this title in December 2018, change was on the horizon. On October 1, 2019, rebranded as Destiny 2: New Light, it became free to play across all platforms.

This saw a large influx of new players, making it one of the industry’s most successful live service titles.

In Destiny, users take on the role of a Guardian, a futuristic space-faring soldier working under the Traveler. They may team up with others and go out on missions pertaining to the story or just venture out into the various worlds available.

This title also includes numerous expansion packs and DLCs constantly being added to expand the story.

Note: This article is subjective and reflects the author’s opinion.


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