Esports and online gaming, in general, have been taken to new heights in recent years, as technologies such as online streaming and cloud platforms enable people to access games more readily than ever before.
Added to this is the scramble for market share that online gaming companies and publishers are undergoing, thus bringing the cost of such online pursuits way down. In fact, such is the clamor to attract new customers, and cling to the ones gaming companies already have, that there are now ways for many online gamers to follow their passion virtually free of charge.
Here are the easiest ways to play top online games and Esports, all for free or on the cheap, whether you are a fan of playing on a high quality, wireless, mouse, and keyboard, or prefer to strut your stuff on mobile.
Classic Games More Accessible Than Ever
Within the broad genre of online games, there are certain sub-genres that tend to stand out as being particularly cheap compared to others. One such genre is that of classic online games, which encompasses games like chess, poker, and backgammon, all of which can be played, to some extent, free of charge online or via connected mobile devices.
This trend has been driven by sites like Lichess, PokerStars, and Backgammon247, all of which are either completely free or at least allow some versions of the games they provide to be accessed and enjoyed free of charge. This means that whether people want to try a quick game of free blitz chess, engage in a free online poker tournament or two, or even dabble in some special Halloween Backgammon, there is sure to be a classic game provider out there willing to deliver.
Such sites and apps rely on their classic games drawing those same players back time and again until they reach the point when they are willing to pay to enter more challenging tournaments or levels. Until that time comes, though, people are left to play largely for free.
Mobile Games – Always to Hand and Usually Cheap
Ever since their inception mobile games have been cheap and reliable forms of entertainment, beginning with titles such as Snake, which was pre-loaded on all Nokia bricks.
This penchant for free mobile games has carried on into the modern-day, with the difference being that many top video game titles are now compatible with high-spec mobile devices such as iPhones and Samsung Galaxy devices. There are even some games such as PUBG which for a time were paid-for games on PC and console, but which were entirely free on mobile devices. The rise of new hybrid devices like Valve’s Steam Deck also brings about the possibility that handheld devices boasting super-cheap games will soon supersede cumbersome consoles and PCs, all of which is good news for penny-pinching mobile gamers who do not like to shell out on masses of new hardware in order to play their favorite games.
Make the Most of Free Trials
Streaming and cloud gaming platforms are all the rage at the moment, as huge companies like Google and Amazon go head-to-head in an attempt to build brand loyalty among large swathes of the gaming community.
The great thing about this for savvy gamers is that many such platforms offer free trial periods or insanely cheap initial trial periods. Some of the best value ones out there at the moment include the Xbox Game Pass, which only costs $1 for the first month of play. Then there is PlayStation Now, which offers a tasty seven-day free trial. Shop around enough and try all the platforms out there, and before you know it you will have gamed for free for a whole month.