The best free PC games

Free PC games

Looking for the best free PC game? Whether you're broke or just frugal, free is a price point that appeals to everybody's purse. We've collated the top free PC games guaranteed to deliver a near endless stream of complementary entertainment. All you need to spend is your time.

If you're feeling a bit more specific, check out our list of free MMOs.

From military to sci-fi to fantasy, from MMOs to block-builders to card battlers, it turns out that zero can buy you quite a lot in the F2P game world – and that some classics are available at the steepest possible discount.

ArcheAge

Archeage is the closest thing we’ve got to a proper pirate MMO. You can try to master the endless sea as a notorious pirate or choose to be a humble peddler of crafted goods. Its labour system – how it gates content – may take time to get used to, but nevertheless it’s a really solid free-to-play experience. 

If you’re not into piracy, there’s plenty of classic fantasy MMO elements to keep you happy. Yes, magical swords and fancy armour are still a huge part of ArcheAge. So is levelling, which was recently made even better thanks to the Erenor Eternal update. Now you can upgrade beyond level 55 and progress through your elementally-attuned Ancestral Levels. 

With so much to do, there’s absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t give this a try.

PLAY ARCHEAGE FOR FREE

Crossout

Crossout is a vehicular combat MMO in which you craft outlandish cars and then drive them into battle alongside other players. Set to the backdrop of a post-apocalyptic wasteland, Mad Max-style, there’s an emphasis on deep customisation as well as skilfull driving and aiming. Crossout contains a variety of co-op and competitive game modes, as well as a marketplace full of tradeable goods. The sheer number of different body types, guns, cannons, and armor ensures that there are many different ways to play… although they’re all pretty deadly.

PLAY CROSSOUT FOR FREE

War Thunder

You don’t have to find a group of like-minded aviation enthusiasts on a message board and join their virtual squadron to enjoy War Thunder. You don’t have to choose between realism or accessibility. You just download it, and then you’re flying – or driving. This massively-multiplayer WW2 combat game effortlessly encompasses all of the explosions and excitement that planes and tanks are capable of generating.

PLAY WAR THUNDER FOR FREE

World of Tanks

One of the mightiest PC free-to-play games there has ever been, World of Tanks is an accessible and exciting tank simulator that hides some complex game mechanics. It pits two sets of tankers against each other in team deathmatch. There are hundreds of vehicles to unlock across ten different tiers, from speedy scouts to hulking heavies. You’ll never believe so many tanks existed.

PLAY WORLD OF TANKS FOR FREE 

World of Warships

This isn’t a sim, and it isn’t an arcade game. World of Warships is something in-between – a pastiche, but a loving one. The controls are simple and welcoming, but allow for interesting tactics. It's more fun than Total War’s pondering naval engagements, definitely more approachable than Silent Hunter, and far, far deeper than the Pirates games. Surprising depth, if you'll excuse the submariner humour.

PLAY WORLD OF WARSHIPS FOR FREE

Star Conflict

A plush, colourful space sim that takes the genre massively multiplayer, Star Conflict drops you right in the middle of an interplanetary skirmish that encompasses both PvE and PvP. Its void is as roomy as any other sector of space you might name, while its busy, man-made surface environments recall the twisty tunnels of the Descent series.

PLAY STAR CONFLICT FOR FREE

Warface

Warface is a fast-action military shooter, but less concerned with realism than its po-faced peers. Warfare wants you to do two things: cooperate with your team in urban deathmatches, and slide along on your arse while firing a machine gun.

PLAY WARFACE FOR FREE

Star Trek Online

Who wouldn’t want to take control of a starship, explore the fringes of the galaxy, battle dangerous aliens and train an elite crew of pangalactic professionals? Star Trek Online is your chance to show the internet that you’d make a much better Picard than Picard. Or, at least, than they do.

PLAY STAR TREK ONLINE FOR FREE

Neverwinter

Neverwinter comes from a long line of ambitious, multiplayer Dungeons & Dragons RPGs – following one of the first graphical MMOs, Neverwinter Nights, and the BioWare game of the same name. This is the cheapest yet, and benefits from the massively-multiplayer expertise of City of Heroes studio Cryptic. It’s also fantastic Forgotten Realms fan service: a place where you can meet both RA Salvatore’s Drizzt and Minsc from Baldur’s Gate.

PLAY NEVERWINTER FOR FREE

Rift

Rift was a phenomenal subscription-based fantasy MMO – World of Warcraft in new trousers, essentially. It made its name by updating and improving itself at a ferocious pace, with new raids, new zones, new world events appearing on a monthly basis. Now, it's entirely free-to-play: you can play it without spending a penny. That's a brilliant option: you can sink hours into it. Highly recommended.

PLAY RIFT FOR FREE

Guild Wars 2


Guild Wars 2 is one of the best MMOs available. Even better: you can play a huge chunk of it for free. There’s a lot to do, from traditional questing for NPCs to zone events where everyone can suddenly get involved and work as a massive team to bring down a boss, or help a burning village. You’ll need to pay to get into the Heart of Thorns expansion, but the base game is huge enough as it is, and the backlog of Living World stories now available to play means there’s plenty to see, explore, and get involved with.

PLAY GUILD WARS 2 FOR FREE

Warframe

Everything’s better in space, as Warframe proves with its Ninjas in space theme. It’s a co-op third-person game where teams of ninjas suited up in powerful ‘Warframe’ armours head out to slice up bad guys, or just hang out at the dojo. It blends some MMO elements with the sensibilities of a more straightforward action game, creating something slick, exciting, and very sociable. 

PLAY WARFRAME FOR FREE

Paladins

Paladins is a team-based MOBA shooter that actually predates Overwatch, but shares many of its merits as a tactical murder simulator at a fraction of the cost. You’ll play as a mecha-goblin or gigantic rolling bomb and work in conjunction with your comrades to knock the numbers out of your opponents – before destroying their base. Bonus: everyone gets their own horse.

PLAY PALADINS FOR FREE 

Smite

Following the same formula as League of Legends and Dota 2, Smite has teams of five gods trying to fight their way into their opponent’s base. Rather than giving players a top-down view of the battlefield, however, it chooses a third-person perspective, switching the focus of the game from tactics to action.

PLAY SMITE FOR FREE

Eve Online

No MMO can claim to be as player-driven as Eve Online, with the space game/lifestyle boasting mega-corporations run by legions of players and, very occasionally, gigantic space battles with upwards of 5,000 participating pilots. Eve Online’s free-to-play model lets players experience all of that space madness (bar access to some of the end-game ships and skills) without having to pay a subscription fee.

PLAY EVE ONLINE FOR FREE

Paragon

While action games have begun pilfering the best bits of MOBAs in earnest, Paragon is no hybrid – it’s an uncompromised MOBA that just happens to give you full and direct control of your hero. Built by Epic Games in their own Unreal Engine 4, it’s unusually pretty in motion, thanks in no small part to some vibrant, vertiginous maps.

PLAY PARAGON FOR FREE

League of Legends

Inspired by the original Dota, this takes the same concept but introduces a different roster of playable characters that is constantly being expanded. Many players find League of Legends is both easier and more accessible than Dota, but it’s still extremely nuanced. 12 million people play it every day. You won’t struggle to find a game.

PLAY LEAGUE OF LEGENDS FOR FREE

Want more? Read our League of Legends review.

Dota 2

Two teams of five choose their Dota 2 heroes from a selection of hundreds before taking to the battlefield to destroy the other side’s base. It’s no mean feat, as both bases spawn waves of creatures and are protected by powerful towers. Each player will need to make the best of their hero’s abilities in what is not only a game, but a sport. It’s tough, complex, and inspires fanaticism in its fans.

PLAY DOTA 2 FOR FREE

Want more? Here's our Dota 2 review.

Hearthstone

Blizzard's world-dominating card game is about as addictive as chips. Who's ever had enough chips? You've always got room for more chips, and you've always got time for another game of Hearthstone. Oh, and it looks pretty great on phones and tablets too.

PLAY HEARTHSTONE FOR FREE

Want more? Here's our Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft review.

Heroes of the Storm

It wasn’t going to be long until Blizzard entered the MOBA fray, and Heroes of the Storm is their stab at taking on Dota and League of Legends. Yet this 5v5 arena game isn’t just another Dota clone. Instead of a single map, Heroes of the Storm has many themed arenas that ask you not only to defeat the enemy but also complete side quests to help improve your chances. Not only does this provide variety, but it’s intensely fun.

PLAY HEROES OF THE STORM FOR FREE

Want more? Here's our Heroes of the Storm review.

Team Fortress 2

Valve’s class-based shooter, Team Fortress 2, has achieved legendary status thanks to its varied game modes, impeccable sense of fun, and being home to more hats than the world’s millinery stores combined. The whole game is free-to-play these days, from the standard shoot-everything-that-moves deathmatches to the fantastic Mann vs Machine co-op mode where teams fend off waves of robots.

PLAY TEAM FORTRESS 2 FOR FREE

Want more? Here's our Team Fortress 2 review.

Fractured Space

Think Battlestar Galactica meets Dota, and you’ll be somewhere close to award-winning Fractured Space. Control gigantic ships and shoot your intergalactic foes in intense battles as you use your tactical nous to capture bases.

The complexity of developer Edge Case Games’ meta has only grown deeper a year on from release - and that’s on top of the game’s time in early access, too. Lowered minimum specs mean that even ageing rigs can get in on the action and the addition of AI-powered ships help you get to know your spaceship properly. 

From solo scraps in PvE to 5v5 quickplay, there are plenty of modes to get your teeth into if you are low on time. But, if you’re looking to get into something meatier, Fractured Space has the tactical complexity to rival the best Mobas.

PLAY FRACTURED SPACE FOR FREE

Dreadnought

Normally, if you want to take charge of massive airships, you’ll need a fair amount of cash and hours of training. With Dreadnought, a team-based dogfighter from Yager Development, you can pilot massive spaceships across the skies of many different planets, for absolutely zero cost.

Dreadnought gives you access to a variety of ships equipped with massive, earth-shattering weapons that you can customise down to the last thermal exhaust port. The combat is a tactical affair, with a combination of slow methodical broadside assaults and rapid, piercing strikes. There are several game modes to choose from, and doing well in the tactical team-based warfare will reward you with an ever-growing fleet of ships.

PLAY DREADNOUGHT FOR FREE

Duelyst

Duelyst is a free PC game that offers the free-to-play card game players something a little more strategic. Instead of a standard board, Duelyst proffers a five-by-nine grid straight out of a top-down tactical game like Blood Bowl, letting players move their cards about the board at will. Keeping with the emphasis on tactics, cards in Duelyst spawn in units rather than cards, like a CCG twist on chess, except with hundreds of potential pieces to choose from. Counterplay Games Inc. have also lavished their game with a beautifully crisp 16-bit art style that’ll have you collecting cards for the art rather than their card effects.

PLAY DUELYST FOR FREE

Runescape

This golden oldie holds the record for being the largest MMORPG ever, as well as the most updated game. Runescape has an enormous player base and a massive, ever-evolving world to explore, full of challenges that you can choose according to your own interests. Want to fight, complete quests, or just to play minigames? In Runescape it’s entirely up to you.

PLAY RUNESCAPE FOR FREE

Want more? Here's our Runescape review.

Now, turn to Page 2 to find more priceless games  and please do share your own recommendations in the comments.

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VinsanityV22 avatarHtorne avatarHurdurr avatarquietly avatarXxXPlayBoyManXxX avatarEarth_Dragon avatar+51
NachoFoot Avatar
8
4 Years ago

You forgot War Thunder....

8
elvismiggell Avatar
130
elvismiggell(6 days 14 hours played)
3 Years ago

... and included World of Warplanes. Bold.

5
Tim Edwards Avatar
521
Tim Edwards(2 hours played)
3 Years ago

FIXED

3
elvismiggell Avatar
130
elvismiggell(6 days 14 hours played)
3 Years ago

Thanks! :)

2
DuoBlaze Avatar
80
3 Years ago

No Marvel Heroes!? How am I supposed to take this list seriously with these unheard of indie side scroller and tower defense games and you don't include Marvel Heroes? For that matter, is Path of Exile even on the list?

7
LidFlipper Avatar
5
2 Years ago

Marvel Heroes is garbage tho.

2
Mr Zeddam Avatar
2
1 Year ago

same for DC Online.

PAYWALL, P2W, P2Everything.

Moving requires a payment.

1
Dav Avatar
3
2 Years ago

Path of Exile is on the first page.

1
Htorne Avatar
501
4 Years ago

The Everquest 2 picture on page 10 is from Lord of the Rings Online and not EQ2.

4
quietly Avatar
5
4 Years ago

Should have included Quake Live; should be in the top 10...

4
Sayliex Avatar
4
1 Year ago

You forgot Robocraft! I mean, you are doing a giveaway for it.

4
MrJinxed Avatar
908
3 Years ago

Hmm, I wonder if you'd consider including Swtor in the MMO slots available. It's really one of the best MMOs as far as leveling up to max level. Also included should be Path of Exile. It would also be worth exploring the option of adding Heroine's Quest (available for free on steam), and The Silver Lining (King's Quest game by Phoenix Online Studios available for free on the website), and Cataclysm: Dark Days Ahead.

3
VinsanityV22 Avatar
21
4 Years ago

Okay, so mostly shooters and MMOs. That's better than what I was expecting :)

2
XxXPlayBoyManXxX Avatar
2
4 Years ago

how do you play it ?

2
huhwut Avatar
2
4 Years ago

* Requiem: Momento Mori *

2
Ukilamiback Avatar
2
3 Years ago

You missed Uncharted Waters Online, which is now be reinstated on steam as

Uncharted Waters Online: 2nd Age

2
LordWell Avatar
3
3 Years ago

Path of exiles deserves the list 100%, it's a very good free to play ARPG with absolutely NO PAY TO WIN only cosmectic changes and some house decorations can be bought with real money.

2
Borg917 Avatar
2
2 Years ago

Age of Empires Online should probably be removed since it was shut down on 1 July 2014.

2
Frenzier Avatar
2
Frenzier(28 days 12 hours played)
2 Years ago

No Warframe or Hawken!? Im disapointed.

2
Dav Avatar
3
2 Years ago

Warframe is on the first page.

2
Coolboypai Avatar
3
4 Years ago

A lot of great games in this list though the lack of flash games and cookie clicker is a bit disappointing :P

1
xprez Avatar
19
4 Years ago

Wow didnt know rift had eased up on the f2p restrictions, might give it a go again then.

1
Haggis Avatar
3
4 Years ago

QWOP rules :)

1
edithgiancola Avatar
1
3 Years ago

This comment has been deleted by a moderator.

1
Natural Deduction Avatar
1
3 Years ago

I would add http://panzergeneraldownload.com/ a place to get all the old Panzer General Games.

1
Pseudonym Avatar
35
3 Years ago

Can you distinguish between free games and pay to win freemium games please?

1
Tovias Avatar
1025
3 Years ago

No Renegade X? For shame.

1
Snipe Avatar
1
3 Years ago

So what is the name of the "free to play pirate fantasy MMORPG"?? It sounds interesting.

1
QDP2 Avatar
831
3 Years ago

ArcheAge's title seems to not show, only the picture and discription

1
Brian Evol Avatar
1
3 Years ago

No Warframe? Marvel Heroes 2015? Marvel Puzzle Quest?

1
Moonraker Avatar
1
3 Years ago

Why no Defiance?

1
Clay F Avatar
1
Clay F(1 hour played)
3 Years ago

How do u leave Ghost Recon Phantoms off this list

1
Stinkflipper Incarnate Avatar
269

These are just "free to play" games, not free.

1
(Nation)DiazElGrande® Avatar
1
(Nation)DiazElGrande®(53 minutes played)
2 Years ago

Heroes and Generals have very very good Maps but its too Lagg

#Warface is One of the Best of the Year

#Battlefield 3 its now On Free on Origin.com Too

i think NFS WORd is Lost Is a Great Game

1
xrobz1x Avatar
14
2 Years ago

the GTA 1 and 2 one can be taken off as for a long time they have been ünafailable"on the rockstar site. and System shock is free ? really now i can play it finaly :D

OHW and DC online but no Marvel heroes 2015?

1
Pseudonym Avatar
35
2 Years ago

Pretty pointless list overall.

No distinguishing between mmos and singleplayer games? Or abandonware and freeware? Or browser games and installed games?

No kind of judgement on just how free these games are? DDO, for instance, yes - "free" - but none of its players would consider it that.

1
Michaelvaanss Z Avatar
1
Michaelvaanss Z(3 days 15 hours played)
2 Years ago

Dear Pcgamesn.

How can you put Star Trek Online but not put Star Wars The Old Republic?

I'm sure Star Trek Online is a good game but just play SWTOR and I'm sure you will put it in the Top 10 this is the best MMO/RPG game i have ever played

1
Decto Avatar
1
Decto(9 hours played)
2 Years ago

NO TEAM FORTRESS 2?!NO WARFRAME?! NO UNTURNED?! THIS IS THE WORST LIST I'VE EVER SEEN

1
LidFlipper Avatar
5
2 Years ago

TF2 is on here. Warframe is on here.

1
Larkspeed Avatar
1
2 Years ago

The vast majority of these are not free. I don't know what your definition is but free to me means costing no money. more than 90% of these if you want any real chance of survival or in some cases to even progress in the game you will need to spend money.

That bt definition is not free

1
BenMcr Avatar
3
2 Years ago

Battlefield 1942 cannot be downloaded from origin or via the download link you provided -given this you might want to remove it from the list.

1
Dave The Luxon Avatar
2
Dave The Luxon(2 hours played)
2 Years ago

I don't see how this list can include ArcheAge as one of the best free MMO's. You can barely do anything if you don't have a sub, and even then you're still limited unless you dabble in the cash shop. Replace it with Aion, in my opinion.

1
Crazykid33 Avatar
1
Crazykid33(1 day 11 hours played)
2 Years ago

War Thunder is really awesome AND very realistic.

1
Bananasan Avatar
1
2 Years ago

List of my memorable free games

Quake Live http://store.steampowered.com/app/282440/

Smite http://www.smitegame.com/

Board Game Arena http://en.boardgamearena.com/

STREET FIGHTER x MEGA MAN http://www.capcom-unity.com/mega_man

Simutrans http://www.simutrans.com/

Vanguard Princess http://vanpri.wikiwiki.jp/

Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup https://crawl.develz.org/

1
jman0war Avatar
1
2 Years ago

While Battlefield 1942 is listed, there is no way to actually download it.

The webpage has a "download" button, but it just opens the Official Site with no download option.

Then you can search Origin, but it's not listed in the store directory.

1
DUCCSOUP808 Avatar
1
1 Year ago

Best free games (my all time faves)

-Blacklight Retribution

-Planetside 2

-Path of Exile

-Dirty Bomb

-Loadout

-Brawlhalla

-Team Fortress 2

-DOTA 2

add me on steam: DUCCSOUP808

1
miverso3 Avatar
1
1 Year ago

Age of Empires Online was closed on July 1, 2014. -http://www.ageofempires.com/games

1
JFTravis Avatar
8
1 Year ago

SWTOR? No. It's a "pester the hell out of you til you subscribe" game. Not enough power trays? Buy them. Money cap? Too bad. The list is practically endless.

Until you subscribe; then it's pretty good. Or until you get fed up and leave forever.

1
Bloo Avatar
1
1 Year ago

I have a few recommendations for people on here, if people want them: Ib, Misao, Mad Father, Wonderland Online, and Narcissu (1 and 2).

1
MrJinxed Avatar
908
1 Year ago

Some of these games aren't legally free, like Ground control and System Shock, police quest 3, sensible soccer, and others. Just because they're being offered at an abandonware site, doesn't mean they aren't still published.

Also, still no Heroine's Quest :/ What a shame..

And can I suggest Tales of Maj'Eyal while I'm at it. One of the very best roguelikes in my opinion. And there's of course also still Cataclysm: Dark Days Ahead, though it might be too complex for the average gamer, I don't know.

1
ネルガル | Trade.tf Avatar
1

Where is TF2?, And Replace LoL, please.

I'm Totally dissapointed.*

1
My Nan Has Aids Avatar
1
1 Year ago

Nevermind i'm just a complete mong

1
0V3RKILL Avatar
293
1 Year ago

I was posting in another article and it goes in here?

1
starfallzone Avatar
1
1 Year ago

Always a fan of GTA and Need for Speed, but for a different experience I am always open for more war games...

1
Fnaf_Addictz202 Avatar
1
6 Months ago

i mean trove is ok but alot of these are just cheap crappy games

1
clara.ho4 Avatar
1
4 Months ago

Um, and Yandere Simulator is where?

1
itdonlymoe Avatar
1
1 Month ago

Can u add black squad from steam

1
Jambutti Avatar
1
2 Weeks ago

You call the World of Tanks, Planes and Ships - simulators. they are not, they are ARCADE games. The games would be good if everything you drove, sailed or flew was accurate and not a blue print.

1