Free Tank Games
One particular genre that seems to be ever increasing in popularity are free to play tank games, whether strategy, first person of third person MMOs players can seem to get enough of rolling around in armoured death machines and raining fiery death and explosions upon their enemies. So what is it about tanks that gets MMO players gears turning? What do we as players want from a tank game? Finally, when thinking about creating a tank game do you focus or do you diversify?
In truth there’s not that many games on the market that you could realistically turn around and say “that’s a tank game”, going beyond the numerous flash based single players, but there’s an increasing number of MMOs where tanks play a very central role within the general theme of the game. Some games focus solely on tank battles, some have tanks playing an important role and others have tanks being almost an entirely separate meta type game within the MMO.
Taking such obvious games as World of Tanks, here players take on the role of a tank driver and fight in endless battles against other players, unlocking new tanks and upgrading old ones where the tanks itself takes the role of a character like in a traditional MMORPG. It’s clear from the title that this is a game focused on tanks and it is a very specific type of game that almost sits in its own category, though realistically it could equally be a shooter game like Team Fortress 2 and Battlestar Galactica Online and the tank simply being the method by which you move around the map fighting other players.
More modernized futuristic themed games also take on the idea of walking tanks, with Hawken and MechWarrior Online both consisting of tank like constructs blowing the snot out of each other with all manner of machine guns, lasers and missiles, it operates very much in the same vein as World of Tanks does, but might not traditionally be considered a tank game.
We thought we'd put together a list of some of our favourites that we highly recommend you check out:
World of Tanks
Heroes and Generals
Furthermore, what about those games that may be war focused but not solely about driving around tanks? Games such as Heroes and Generals and Planetside 2 allow you to drive a tank (or other vehicle of war) but it is simply one of the available options when on the battlefield and not necessarily a tank game in their own right. However, with the likes of Planetside 2 players can, and often as not do, choose to focus specifically on being a tank driver and putting all their levels, XP and time into kitting out their tank vehicles in the same way another player might level up their Medic or Engineer infantry.
The issue faced by those games that focus on solely being a tank game is that for some it can start to get a little boring, there’s only so many times you can add a new tank and it be a big deal. Regardless of the game genre players like choice, they like customization and they like to be able to fiddle with the inner workings of the system. A new “skin” that plays relatively similar than all the other “skins” before it can be slightly tedious and is often the slow death of many MMOs.
However, World of Tanks does seem to break this trend and has an increasingly large and active community. Interestingly though is that even World of Tanks will be diversifying slightly as with the addition of World of Warplanes and World of Warships, developers Wargaming have said that they intend to start linking the three titles and so the question begs as to whether the game will reach a point where the three games are merged to make one larger mega game? Whilst it would offer up some diversity and most definitely be an interesting game, the problem is that each individual title would then lose its focus and originally and sink into the a list of games that is already growing overcrowded.