The big-name MMOs, such as World of Warcraft, EVE Online, Destiny 2, and Final Fantasy XIV, take up a lot of space on your hard drive. However, if you have a computer lacking hard drive storage, these mammoth installations can be a problem.
If you want to play MMOs without downloading any files, check out these free MMOs that you can play in your web browser without taking up any space on your hard drive.
Arcane Legends is a fast-paced action MMO you can play in your browser. Arcane Legends combines RPG elements with hack-and-slash gameplay, allowing you to create a group with your friends and plow through enemies of all kinds.
There are three classes to choose from (Warrior, Rogue, and Sorcerer), multiple pets to enhance your gameplay, and hundreds of thousands of items you can use to level up your character. Your party members can also combine their skills across classes to create powerful spells and hit for more damage.
One of the best Arcane Legends features is the cross-platform gameplay. While Arcane Legends is available as a free browser MMO, you can also play on Android and iOS devices.
Hordes is a clan-based open-world browser MMO, featuring both Player vs. Player (PVP) and Player vs. Environment (PVE) gameplay. It has multiple environments for you to explore with your clanmates, as well as large bosses that you can only take down as a group (sort of like a raid, but not quite on the same scale… yet).
There are four classes to choose from, two factions, and three gigantic maps. There are also heaps of loot of varying rarity, plus a rune system that allows you to upgrade your existing weapons and armor.
Hordes is the work of a two-person team, one coding the game and the other one bringing the world to life with 3D assets. When you see how much effort has gone into producing Hordes and on such a minimal budget, you’ll see why it is worth playing.
Mad World is a free browser MMO that integrates a lot of the latest browser technology to bring users an experience that could easily pass for a regular indie game.
In that, there are a few things that will remind you of larger games, too. For example, Mad World features a large talent tree for extensive player customization. You’re also bound to a weapon style that focuses your build type, rather than being bound to a specific class.
Other than that, the art style gives Mad World an almost unique aesthetic. The hand-drawn characters, items, and backdrops help Mad World stand out from a browser MMO crowd that is often happy to mimic the best performing games of the era.
If you prefer to download free games for offline play, check out our guide to the best open-source video games .
If you played real-time strategy games in the 1990s and early 2000s, you probably remember all-time classic, Command & Conquer. The Tiberium-focused C&C games take their lede from science-fiction, featuring cool futuristic technology you can deploy against your enemies.
Tiberium Alliances continues that legacy as a free-to-play browser MMO. After you start building your base, you have a week of protection where no one can attack you. After that, it is a free for all. Collect resources, build units, expand your base, and lay waste to the opposing faction.
Tiberium Alliances is free, but you have the option of purchasing funds to speed up your progress. You can easily go through the game without spending any real money, though, making this a great way to get your RTS fix.
C&C Tiberium Alliances is far from the only browsed-based RTS. Here are some of the best browser strategy games for you to delve into right now.
Do you prefer to shoot stuff instead of strategizing? You should check out Realm of the Mad God, an 8-bit pixelated bullet-hell browser MMO. There’s not much preamble to this game. You’re teleported by Oryx, the Mad God, to his realm to be consumed by his minions.
Team up with other players, let the bullets fly, and survive! If you can. Once you’ve defeated enough minions, Oryx will show up—but once you’ve killed him, there’s plenty more to do. Explore the Shatters, a super-hard dungeon experience, collect legendary loot, and try to get the highest stats.
Just don’t die: once you’re dead, that character is gone forever, and you’ll need to start over. As irritating as this is, it adds another level of difficulty and is a nice nod to the roguelike genre.
Did you know that there are text-based MMOs? Urban Dead is a great way to get introduced to a fascinating genre. You start as a human, and you need to survive zombie attacks. If you get killed off, you’ll come back as a zombie unless someone can heal you.
Explore the city, find useful items, and stay alive as long as possible. And don’t forget that you can be killed off even after logging out, so be sure to find a safe place before you quit for the day (or before you use up your Action Points).
Urban Dead is a free browser MMO. However, If you want to give money to the developer, you can buy some UD merch.
Do you prefer the high-seas to zombies and bullet-hell madness? Try Pirates: Tides of Fortune instead.
Pirates: Tides of Fortune offers a more classic setup, where you build up a Haven, establish your pirate fleet, and plunder the seven seas for loot and infamy. Harvest lumber and gold, distil rum (very important!), pillage shipwrecks, and take on other pirate fleets to become the most fearsome pirate of them all.
You can also spend time working through an impressively large technology tree, which includes things like sword-fighting, gunpowder, mathematics, trade, and even flight. Join a brotherhood and get to it!
In Dead Maze, you’re building a better tomorrow in a zombie-infested post-apocalyptic world. The free MMO doesn’t require you to download any files, although there is a version of Dead Maze available on Steam.
Back to the game. Dead Maze is an isometric MMORPG with a focus on survival. You must gather resources and work with your fellow survivors to create shelter. Your shelter must also withstand attack from zombies, which you’ll also battle as you work your way around the world, finding resources.
So far, so familiar, but Dead Maze is well worth a look. There are warring factions, quests, private housing for your characters, and a crafting system.
Intium is a free MMORPG you can play from your browser, developed by a team of Reddit users. Intium is not only an MMO but also a MUD-like (Multi-User Dungeon). MUDs were one of the first ways people played out MMORPGs on the early internet, allowing for detailed world-building through text without creating a heavy network overhead.
Intium features roguelike gameplay with permadeath (when your character dies, they’re gone forever). There is a substantial amount of loot, server-wide elite bosses, and quests. Furthermore, the Intium world economy is entirely community-driven. There are no NPCs or price-fixing for items, which places a strong emphasis on exploring and finding premium loot to sell (or to craft!).
Stein.World started as a part-time coding project but evolved into a free MMORPG for your browser. Like Dead Maze, you can play Stein.World without downloading any files, but there is also a Steam version available.
Stein.World features a 2D 16-bit art style that brings the fantasy world to life. You’re on a quest to recover a lost family heirloom in the shape of a priceless beer stein. There are hundreds of quests, dungeons, guilds, and even in-game professions to hone your character. The game world is extensive and receives frequent content updates, adding new weapons, tools, and other improvements.
Are Free MMOs Dying Out?
The era of browser-based free MMOs was curtailed as many popular internet browsers removed support for Java-based games. Java is considered an unnecessary security risk , although some browsers still allow third-party Java installations.
Many of the most popular free browser-based MMOs depended on Java to run. Without Java, some browser MMOs switched to a non-browser version requiring you to download a program to launch the game (like Runescape). Other browser MMOs decided to cease development from that moment, preserving the game in gaming history.
So, in that light, are free browser MMOs dying out?
As strange as it sounds, the answer is no.
As you’ve seen from several entries on this list, new browser MMOs are appearing all the time. The lure of MMOs that require no downloads remains strong. While the number of free MMOs might decrease slightly, the overall quality of story, gameplay, and artwork rises as creators use more advanced tools to craft their worlds.
What Are Your Favorite Free MMOs?
These games are great free MMOs that you can play in your browser. However, there are plenty more MMORPGs that don’t require downloading out there.
However, if you do have hard drive space to spare, you should check out the best free PC games you can play right now.
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