If you’ve ever played a video game, your probably know something about World of Warcraft, the premier MMORPG that transformed the gaming industry as we know it. While rumor has it that WoW is on the downslope, it still has an enormous community of dedicated players adventuring and questing through it’s massive world.
You may also know that World of Warcraft is a subscription based game, meaning you pay monthly for your account, similar to services like Netflix. While longtime fans can easily justify this small expense for this one-of-a-king game, us frugal gamers may be put off by the idea of forking out money every month to play a game.
Recently, in a strategy to attract new blood into World of Warcraft, you can now play the “Starter Edition” for free which allows you to play up to level 20 totally free. There are a few limitations as to what you can do, such as limited chat, trading, creating parties, and the auction house, but there is still plenty of fun to be had soloing WoW through the early levels.
I started a Goblin character and got pretty overwhelmed by the sheer complexity of the starting area. I took a break, and came back a few months later and started a Troll. Using the random name generator, Zergzerbek (I think they are literally running out of names) and I had a solid 3 weeks of adventuring to get him up to level 20. I thoroughly enjoyed my first serious foray into the World of Warcraft, and it felt good reaching the milestone of maxing out a character in the Starter Edition. Now I’m not one for hardcore MMO gameplay and endgame content, but just a casual RPG fan. So while I’m sure I would enjoy delving deeper into the game and getting up to level 100+ with the paid version, I sincerely enjoyed my weeks-long journey to level 20.
A few weeks later I mentioned the free version of WoW to some friends, and soon after we had a 3 person group running around and questing to level 20 as Blood Elves. You are unable to create a party with a free account, which is slightly annoying buy understandable. You can still be inviting by paying players, so it’s not as if you’re destined to solo exclusively. What we ended up doing was just running around and accepting and completing the same missions together. We also asked a few paying members to party us up and then they could leave if they wanted, and the party would stay intact. A few weeks later, we had level 20 Blood Elves.
Around Halloween last year I started an undead character and REALLY enjoyed the spooky atmosphere of that story arc. I also started a Gnome Mage and had some fun with that. I didn’t get either of them to level 20 before my interested shifted elsewhere, but all in all, I enjoyed a solid 2 months of World of Warcraft entirely free.
If you’ve ever been curious about WoW, are looking to kill some time with an MMO, or want to revisit the World of Warcraft and see what’s changed in recent years, now is a great time to hop back in and get a taste for free!