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The best of free to play

The price of good entertainment might seem unreachable for students in these tough economic times, and all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

Fortunately, Venue has compiled a list of four brilliant games which are available to download and play for free on Steam for the PC.

Many free to play games are often written off as “pay-to-win” experiences but thanks to a well balanced economy, you can still be competitive without paying a dime in all of these titles.

Planetside 2

PlanetSide 2

From developer Sony Online Entertainment comes this futuristic massively multi-player online game (MMO) in which you play a soldier in one of three factions fighting for control in real-time battles of up to 2,000 players.

Game-play remains true to the nature of traditional MMOs, such as the ability to customise your character based on your preferred play style and a complex skill-tree system.

However, Planetside 2 also sports several unique game-play mechanics. Despite its primary status as an MMO, the game also features many characteristics of an FPS, the player must capture control points, sneak behind enemy lines and heal team-mates.

Real time battles take place over richly detailed landscapes, allowing the player to experience total immersion in the experience of infantry, vehicular, and aerial planetary warfare.

Stronghold Kingdoms

Stronghold Kingdoms allows players on build and defend their own fortification in an online representation of medieval Europe.

Building and supporting a small rural settlement, players can expand and conquer until they control massive forts and citadels in this Age Of Empires-meets-Sim City MMO. From developers Firefly Studios, Stronghold Kingdoms is perfectly playable on low-end PCs, but also sports enough depth and strategy in its game-play to keep you amused for hours.

Despite each player’s settlement being unique to them, friends are more than entitled to interact through trading, forming an alliance or even, in the competitive spirit, waging war against one another.


Air Mech

AirMech is a real-time strategy (RTS) game from developers Carbon Games. The game is a blend of traditional strategy games in which the player takes control of an army (in this case, an army of giant transforming robots) and multiplayer online battle arena-style games in the tradition of League of Legends and DOTA 2.

By building units and sending them into battle, players push forward against one another, capturing buildings and turrets and, through the strategic placement of their own turrets and units, are able to gain victory in fast-paced and intense online combat.

Tribes: Ascend

Tribes Ascend

Tribes: Ascend (Hi-Rez Studios) is the relaunch of the classic shooter franchise Tribes, one of the most fast-paced and popular FPS games available for the PC.

The game sets teams of players against one another in multi-player combat, engaging one another as a variety of classes with access to a plethora of weapons, vehicles and game styles to try out. One cannot overstate how important the rhythmic feeling of skiing is to Tribes Ascend – it’s simply hypnotic.

Skiing makes the player frictionless and means that, with some help from their jetpacks, they can swoop and soar across the game’s accentuated hills and valleys. This means that battles more often resemble dogfights than infantry skirmishes.

With over one million players online and counting, Tribes: Ascend has plenty to offer in terms of entertainment and, with game-play primarily based on movement and momentum, has a degree of tactical depth and intensity unlike many other FPS games out there.


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April 2021
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