1. Anti-addiction: When you don’t pay a monthly subscription for an free MMO, you no longer feel the obligation to get “the most for your money” out of it. In times when “gaming addiction” is a topic of mass media discussion, not paying for the game allows you to tear yourself away from the keyboard and remember you have a family (and friends, if you’re lucky!).

2. Casual-Friendly: If your gaming style is casual, you won’t feel like you’re being cheated because of your limited time. And the grind that inhabits many free-to-play titles (and let’s face it, pay-to-play titles too) won’t seem nearly so onerous if you’re only logging in once or twice a week.

3. Bring Your Friends: No matter how good the game is, it’s the other players that keep someone in the game. There are numerous people that tried a new MMO, loved the game mechanics, but returned to their old MMO because they missed their old guild and buddies. While a good game helps, it’s your friends that really keep you logging in. So why not have those good times without paying a cent?

4. Convince Your Friend/Lover to Play: Have you ever tried to convince an MMO virgin to give one a try? It’s like talking Darth Vader into giving you a foot rub. “But,” they say “I’d have to buy the game, and the expansions, and if I don’t like it, it’d be a waste of money!” Throw a free-to-play their way. Voila! No cold cash involved. The other favorite is “I don’t have the time!” See #1 for an answer to that. No guarantees that you’ll talk them into it, but at least they won’t have any excuses anymore.

5. Get in Touch with Your Inner Otaku: Do spiky blue hair and big innocent eyes appeal to you? There’s no better place to play out your anime fantasies than free MMORPG games. You’re bound to meet others that share your love. With the high number of female anime/manga fans, odds are that some of those pixel pretties are actually real girls, too.

6. Be More Social: While the big pay-to-play titles tend to attract the power gamers, there are lot of people in the free-to-play scene that would rather make friends and have fun than get the newest, hardest-to-get raid gear. If sitting around a campfire sharing camaraderie sounds like your way to wind down, free-to-play might just be for you.

7. Get involved: Free-to-play developers tend to listen more to feedback than their subscription-based counterparts. There are even titles like Holic that allow you to create your own quests and dungeons.

8. Get Rid of the Grind: While there are still plenty of grind games in the free-to-play market, you’ll find just as many where mini-games are as bountiful as kill-quests. Free Realms is a good example.

9. Be Part of a Community: Now, more than ever there are ways to be part of a community. Check out our own podcasts: Dragonica Insider, The Rune Guys, and Free Play Podcast to tune in with other players and write in your own experiences. There’s nothing more satisfying than feeling like you belong to something bigger.

10. There’s Something For You: Whatever you want in an MMO, you can have it for free. Want World of Warcraft for $15 less? Try Runes of Magic. Figure out what keeps you coming back, and we can tell you what to play. Now you have $10-$15 dollars a month to see a movie, donate to charity, or buy your kids some food (just kidding, kids don’t need to eat) !

Article by Marie Barnes, Freemmogamer.com - Posted 7/31/09

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