I just love first-person shooters. It doesn’t matter what you’re into, they got it. We’ve fought in World War II in Call of Duty, defeated aliens to save Earth in Halo, and killed zombies in dozens of games. Today I’m sharing with you some of my favorite free to play FPS games to play on PC.
Paladins is a free FPS that takes place in a fantasy world in which two factions – the Magistrate and the Paladins – are locked in constant struggle.
Paladins has a great range of Champions splits into categories: front line, damage, support, and flank. As it is a team-based hero shooter, players have to set a strategy and work together in order to win. The Champions have unique abilities, so it’s really up to the player to choose which one works best for their own playstyle.
The game modes available are Siege, Deathmatch, Onslaught, and King of the Hill. Siege is the primary competitive mode, and it plays similarly to the Hybrid mode in Overwatch.
Apex Legends is of course Respawn’s Titanfall-adjacent battle royale. In this game, players drop in a giant arena in 20 teams of 3 players, or 30 teams of 2 players. The usual battle royale fare – scrambling around for weapons and loot, ambushing and third-partying other players, and so on – is spiced up with the addition of a lot of unique mechanics, including hero abilities and interactive map elements. The goal of the game is no more, no less than to be the last team standing, and there are a lot of ways to achieve that.
Notably, Apex Legends has a vibrant lore background that continuously evolves through in-game events, cinematics, and new content drops.
Apex Legends is somewhat more skill-dependent that other FPS games. If your hand-to-eye coordination and situational awareness are not honed from years of playing similar shooters, you might not have the best experience playing this one.
Quake Champions is an FPS game developed by Bethesda Softworks and is the fifth game of the Quake franchise. You used to have to pay in order to play the game, but since 2018, it became free to play.
It features a lot of different game modes, from the traditional deathmatch to 2v2 fights and even 1 on 1 duels, which is amazing, especially if you want to kick a specific annoying relative’s butt in a game in the most over-the-top way.
For fans of other iconic shooter franchises, Quake Champions lets you play as characters like like the Doom Slayer, or B.J. Blazkowicz from Wolfenstein.
The Cycle takes place in an alternate reality and universe, where interstellar travel is not only possible but done quite frequently. A faction of of humans called the Prospectors carry out mercenary contracts on a very dangerous planet called Fortuna III. The players assume the role one of those prospectors, and have 20 minutes to complete as many contracts as possible.
There are 20 players total in each round, and the gameplay is rather sandbox-y. You can gets some guns and start hunting for players, or you can just roam around the planet fulfilling contracts and exploring. You don’t have to fight other players: in fact, if you meet another player you can form temporary alliances with them to help you score more points. If this mechanic sounds familiar, it may be because Crucible tried to adopt it for its Alpha Hunters mode. The mode was the first one to go, disabled even before the game was cancelled.
At the end of the match, a storm forces all players to evacuate via a transport ship which arrives at a specific spot. This is usually where players duke it out, and fragile alliances collapse. Extracting from the Fortuna III gives you a nice score bump, but even if you fail you still get some of your revenue, which can be used outside of matches to unlock new content and equipment with in-game factions, in a way similar to Hunt: Showdown.
There are three major factions with available contracts, and each contract can vary in points, according to the difficulty of the task. But, even if the contract is as easy as going from point A to point B, there are countless monsters and creatures lurking and waiting for a chance to attack, so make sure to choose your contracts wisely.
For those of you tired of playing Counter-Strike: Global Offensive or simply tired with the game’s more enduring problem, then it’s time to try playing Valorant. Valorant is heavily based on CS:GO, but it does have a couple of fresh ideas to help it stand on its own.
In each match, players will have to complete objectives and of course, take out the enemy team in the process. Just like in CS:GO, at the beginning of each round, players can spend money on weapons, ammo, gear, and anything needed to win.
Valorant replaces the utility items of CS:GO with unique character abilities, which mostly act like utilities and help in setting up and pulling off strategies and plays. Though this is only true as long as you have a functional team that knows which character is best for what, and is willing to cooperate.
The game is available only on PC, and should be expanding to other platforms soon.
Ring of Elysium
Ring of Elysium is one of my favorite battle royale games to date. The background story and concept of the game are very original and not like any other battle royale game. The action takes place in a land strangled by some type of ecological crisis, and players have to contend with an encroaching cold wave that could end their lives easily.
Ring of Elysium isn’t just about outliving every other player in the match. In fact, it is much more about escaping and surviving. The goal in each match is to get to the helicopter which will lead the player to safety. But there is a catch: the helicopter can only hold a limited number of players.
Call of Duty: Warzone is the Call of Duty franchise’s second attempt at a battle royale, and most people prefer this one. It’s an over the top, action-packed game that remains realistic and gritty at the same time.
Much like other battle royales, CoD: Warzone drops players on a massive map, with the objective of being the last remaining player alive when the match ends. Players can play solo or join in squads, so there is always the option to play with friends.
All the usual battle royale treats are present: tons of weapons and equipment, vehicles you can drive, map elements to interact with, and a deadly persistent fog that slowly shrinks and drives players closer to each-other.
Unlike most battle royales, Warzone gives you a second chance to rejoin the game once you die. It’s called the Gulag, and I think it’s a pretty cool feature. Simply put, the Gulag pits you against another defeated player in a quick, vicious pit fight: whoever wins gets to re-spawn back in the main match.
And so we’ve arrived at my personal favorite free FPS game on PC at the moment: Rogue Company. This game has only been officially out for a couple of months, and so far I have only good things to say about it.
Rogue Company is tactical 4v4 shooter in the vein of CS:GO or Rainbow Six Siege, but with number of twists and innovations. For starters, it is in third-person, and the gameplay is much faster and more action-oriented. Players take on the role of Rogues, unique characters with powerful abilities and role-specific loadout options.
Purchased weapons, items and traits are retained from round to round – as the game goes on, you don’t scrounge and trade equipment with enemies, but rather build up your Rogue the way you want to.
In addition to a standard bomb defusal mode, Rogue Company has a number of less strategic game modes, including Strikeout which features limited player respawns and is much more chaotic and fast-paced than what you’d normally find in a tac shooter.
Hope you enjoyed the list! There are a ton of free to play FPS games on PC, but these are some of my favorite ones.
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