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Most Popular Free, Arena-Style FPS?

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the making-pixelpeople-explode dept.

First Person Shooters (Games) 205

anomalous cohort writes "I am a casual gamer. Go or Chess are my games of choice when I am up for a serious intellectual gaming challenge. Otherwise, I just want to blow off some steam in a free, arena-style FPS such as Alien Arena, Nexuiz, Sauerbraten, or Tremulous at the end of a long day. Either way, it is very rare for my gaming experience to exceed 30 minutes. The problem is that attendance for these games has dropped off over the years. Finding a game with about two humans and two robots is perfect for me and very rare these days. My question is this: What is currently the most popular free, arena-style FPS for the casual gamer that you know of?" That reminds me, how is the Quake Live beta coming along?

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OpenArena (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26429981)

I wish I was a nigger, I could drive a Cadillac with class

My pocket stuffed with welfare checks, and I could sit on my big black ass

Now you take a nigger, he aint nobody's fool

He doesn't buy any gasoline, to drive his kids to school

Our government has gone crazy, I'd change things if I could

If I was only a nigger, I could afford to live in a white neighborhood

Oh the things that I could do, if I was black and Hell-bent

I could send my kids to college, and it wouldn't cost me one damn cent

The wife and I were down on our luck, we were really getting uptight

They said at the welfare office, "You aint black, you're white."

Oh how I've tried to get a job, a diploma I had with pride

The post office man laughed, and said "You're not dark enough to even qualify"

I took a civil service exam, and passed it without shame

A nigger took one next to me, he couldnt even write his own name

The nigger, he got the job, now he's government top brass

He couldn't qualify for a trash truck, while I'm out on the street on my ass

If I was a Jesse Jackson, I'd be nobody's slob

Wearing $500.00 dollar suits, that nigger hasn't even got a job

If I was Barack Obama, I could sit back and relax

And when sworn in as President, I could paint The White House black

Damn, I wish I was a nigger

If I was a jig-a-boo, I could find me my roots

With a afro big as a watermelon, and a pair of white disco boots

If I was only dark complected, I could stand tall in this life

I could live high off the hog, just me and my white wife

Things used to be segregated, but things are a little off-key

I've never seen a white man as head of the NAACP

It aint that I don't like a nigger, if I've rubbed you wrong by chance

Take a look at that mistletoe hanging on the seat of my pants

If I was a kinky top, I could be a Martin Luther King

I'd have me a vision on a mountain top, my song the whole world would sing

I could have me a peace march on the streets of Memphis, Tennessee

I could tear up the whole damn city, and the police wouldn't dare stop me

A lot of things in life I know, but one thing I cant figure

Why a nigger can call me a honkey and I cant call a nigger, a nigger

If I was a jungle bunny, I could ring a golden bell

I could be a Mohammed Ali, and be loved by Howard Cosell

Damn, I wish I was a nigger

If I was a golliwogg, 7 foot tall and lean,

I could be a famous player on the Washington basketball team

If I was only chocolate brown, I could have me some turnip greens

A possum fat and watermelon, chitlens and a pot of butter beans

Now when Martin Luther King was buried in Washington with class

They put him face down in his box, so the politicians could kiss his ass

I guess its just politics, but it sure gets my goat

Kiss assing with a nigger, just so you could get his vote

If i was only a burr-head, I'd live high on the hill

Selling cocaine and prostitutes, and popping all kinds of pills

Now take the NAACP, they can march and raise all kinds of hell

Let the KKK start to move, and they'll all wind up in jail

I dreamed my life was over, I heard Saint Peter say,

"Today we're taken only niggers, you've gotta go the other way"

Then I heard the Devil, he said "I heard what Peter had to say

But I'm sorry to tell you son, Today in Hell is Nigger Day."

Damn, don't you wish you were a nigger?

Re:OpenArena (2, Funny)

dmbasso (1052166) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430323)

Dear A.C.,

your social experiment to see what is the threshold of bullshit /.ers tolerate before calling some censoring measure is clearly not working. Perhaps that's because everyone see it's a social experiment. Anyway, I think you should try harder, perhaps recruit some people to elevate the noise level... even though I don't think you'll succeed.

Best regards,


Re:OpenArena (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430339)

I think you're giving the trolls too much credit :-P

Re:OpenArena (1)

easyTree (1042254) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430661)

Yep; he's just venting because Taco rejected his advances :P

Re:OpenArena (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430419)

You must be new here.

your social experiment to see what is the threshold of bullshit /.ers tolerate before calling some censoring measure is clearly not working.

It already worked, years ago, when they implemented a moderation system and post filtering. You think Slashdot is bad now? Clearly you weren't around to see the GNAA crapfloods, ASCII goatses and page stretchings.

I think your looking for (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26429993)


Re:I think your looking for (3, Interesting)

retyurecvb (1442035) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430049)

I'll second that. It plays identically to Quake III Arena, only it is entirely open source and available in the repositories of several major Linux distributions as well. I can't imagine why anybody would play Quake Live when, as far as I can tell, this is the same thing minus ads. But then, I haven't played the Quake Live beta, so there may be something I'm missing.

Re:I think your looking for (3, Interesting)

Chi-RAV (541181) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430165)

or Warsaw []

Re:I think your looking for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430513)

Sadly it is certainly not the most popular Free, Arena-Style FPS.

In my experience it is the only one that plays well on any computer and has free content that actually is decent and diverse, making it the single best free open source game.

Also, if you are interested in the server version, you might want to know that both it and the client(0.8.1) are a working port on OpenBSD current(i386, macppc and really hot from the oven amd64) right now, so by the next release you might want to consider securing your setup.

Re:I think your looking for (1)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431873)

> I can't imagine why anybody would play Quake Live [instead of this]...

Furries. []

Re:I think your looking for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431933)

So? If I was straight, I'd yiff it.

Re:I think your looking for (4, Informative)

dakameleon (1126377) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430221)

Why is this flamebait? See []

Re:I think your looking for (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430261)

Yeah, I'm seeing a lot of good suggestions here being modded down for some reason. My guess is a fanboy of Game X who thinks everybody should play it and nothing else.

why is the parent flamebait ? (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430271)

too much mod point handout to anyone that happens to be passing by the site ?

Re:I think your looking for (2, Informative)

maclizard (1029814) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431647)

I agree, OpenArena will meet the casual gaming requirements that you have stated.

Re:I think your looking for (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432855)

most pupular doesnt neciserilly mean the best.

as an avid quake fan, I have found myself contiuing the obsession in a gamne known as nexuiz.

its got some really quite impressive rendering features while still beain able to run on an older pc, and since its based on the quake engine it flies on the internet.

in every major continent theres servers running 24/7 and a nice community of us nexheads to keep you on your toes.

thousands of maps to choose from, hundreds of players and all the classic game modes you'd expect from a good fps.

runs on windows linux and mac

Urban Terror (5, Informative)

ChienAndalu (1293930) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430019)

You can also try Urban Terror [] . I have played it for a few months and can attest that the maps are fun, gameplay is great, there aren't many cheaters (if any) and the general behavior on the servers is alright.

Re:Urban Terror (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430611)

Its models and textures are poor and there *are* cheaters sometimes. But overall it is not that bad.

Re:Urban Terror (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430883)

Urban Terror is DEFINITELY the most popular at all the LAN parties I've been to. If you want more eye candy, you can try Quake 2 Evolved, which is gorgeous, and also has the same great Quake 2 Death Match, but for raw powerful gameplay, Urban Terror has no equal. It's totally free, and you can even have in game VOIP with 3d positional audio with a little hacking (probably standard or an option eventually...).

Re:Urban Terror (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431631)

There are definitely cheaters. Me and a few friends admin a server, and catch at least one cheater a day. But, on the other hand, UrT really is a great game. If you go to the right servers, there will usually be an admin watching out for you.

Re:Urban Terror (3, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431761)

Urban terror ROCKS but is not arena type combat. Many nimrods play it that way, but it's actually team combat with strategy.

Quake Live is awesome. (4, Interesting)

bluephone (200451) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430069)

Quake Live is awesome. It's really fun. BUT, needs more people, frankly.

To that end... I have some invites. Ask nicely. :)

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430097)

If only they would sort out ta damn mac client!

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430107)

Right here: []

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (1)

XenoPhage (242134) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432067)

If only they would sort out ta damn mac client!

Small team and they want to get everything sorted out on one platform first. I can't blame em..

That said, Quake Live is a ton of fun.. I recommend checking it out.. :)

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (5, Funny)

MindlessAutomata (1282944) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430183)

Dear sir God bluephone, master of creation, Lord of the Azure Calling:

May I have an invite, you sexy hunk of man?

yours sincerely,


Re:Quake Live is awesome. (3, Funny)

n3tcat (664243) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430787)

Dear Ma'am Goddess bluephone, master of creation, Lady of the Azure Calling:

May I have an invite, you sexy babe of a woman?

yours sincerely,


-ps I figure it's a 50/50 shot, right?

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430815)

-ps I figure it's a 50/50 shot, right?

On Slashdot? Are you out of your fucking mind

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430259)

I've been following Quake Live for a while now, and i'd like to try it out. TBH, i'm more or less in the same situation as OP: not much time for games, but a simple FPS is always enjoyable at the end of the day...
Anyway, this seems to be my best chance at getting an invite anytime soon, so here's my mail: josedpedroso*blah*@*blah*

Thanks a lot :>

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (2, Insightful)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430263)

Meh, Q3 works just fine. Unfortunately, it's quite difficult to find a good DM or CTF game without the idiotic excessive mod... Still, I'd appreciate if you could send an invite to mobby.6kl gmail com so I could try it out, and perhaps challenge you to a duel ;)

Anyway, my suggestions are Q3 and UT99. They're not free, but should be very cheap by now and are as fun as ever. There aren't too many servers or other players, but then this isn't Battlefield so you only need one other player for some good 1-on-1 DM action.

Then there are a few actually free games, which are mostly derived from other mainstream titles. These include the original Enemy Territory, FEAR Combat, Crysis Wars and at least one other I can't remember. They're supposed to be pretty good though I haven't played any of them. Then there are a bunch of other free games, where you often have to pay real life money to buy equipment. That's pretty retarded in itself, but they also seem to such hardcore in all other ways so I'd avoid those.

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (2, Interesting)

neomunk (913773) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432971)

Speaking of the original Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, I LOVED that game. I played it regularly for years. It provided me with as much enjoyment as nearly any other game in my life (right up there with Sierra's AGI and SGI adventures), so even if the fun/cost equation didn't throw a divide-by-zero error it would still be good fun value. There were no ads or anything of that sort either.

I haven't tried any of the others, but I will now that I know about them.

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (1)

A Nun Must Cow Herd (963630) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430387)

If you have any left, I'd love an invite, please. :-)

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (1)

Brent Taylor (1372435) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430397)

I wasn't even aware that people _had_ invites to give out! Oh Lord and Master, will you not bestow upon me the wonder that is a Quake Live invite? On another note, how is the matchmaking and such via Quake Live? I understand it's still in beta, but I'd like to know how it's coming along. Are there persistent stats between games? Is the ladder system working well? I'd be grateful for an invite: btaylor at fuzzylogicstudios dot com

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430835)

Oh man! If you'd please send me an extra invite to Quake Live, the ghost of my 16 year old self will be eternally indebted to you! blooddawn *blargh*AT*blargh*hotmail.

Thanks in advance.

I honestly have some problems with Quake Live (5, Informative)

MunchMunch (670504) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430979)

I had a really hard time getting into Quake Live. I was excited about it for a week or so, but then went back to playing Quake 3 Arena, dwindling servers and all.

Why? Quake Live has fewer maps, it is not NEARLY as customizable, lagcode resulted in significant relearning and fudging of previously-tight timing, and in all you just felt like all of the browser-based revisions to the game were completely unnecessary, like they were filling out a concept that really didn't make much sense in practice.

Lack of Customizability

New maps and mods have to be added by central servers, top-down style. By comparison, Q3 has had such longevity because of bottom-up modding and map creation by fans. The result of QL's method is that gameplay and map choices instantly stagnate because there's no easy outlet and proving ground for new maps and features.

In-Browser Game Selection Doesn't Work

Rather than have this bizarre browser-based launcher, honestly they should have just spit-polished Q3 itself, added some ad-code to make money, and left the rest untouched. The browser is slow to navigate and find the best server for a duel using the browser map selection, compared to Q3 where I was used to using 3rd party server trackers and instantaneously connecting.

Lag/Netcode Seem Geared to More Casual Gamers

Currently, most Q3 duels take place in the CPMA mod. The physics for CPMA is frankly screwed up (apologies to those who actually like the strafe-jumping-gone-mad movement--I guess I'm not hardcore enough to remember when it was cool in Quake 1), but you can play with vintage Q3 settings and the lag/netcode is decent. A high ping is noticeable, but usually consistent enough to compensate because you are able to see your lag in the timing of your shots appearing on the screen.

By comparison, in QL, the lagcode/netcode seems to tend to mask the lag you experience, making your shots appear instantaneous even if they aren't in fact. This is likely to make it more accessible, but the result is less predictability for hardcore players. A duel means much less when you feel like the game isn't being straight with you about where you are actually shooting.


Q3 is still unrivalled as a 1v1 duel and straight-FPS TDM game. Carmack admitted he believes as much in a recent interview, so it's a shame he doesn't see how the lack of customizability, dumbing-down of the server interface, and dumbed down lag/netcode really cripples the game meant to be a replacement for Q3.

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431041)

ooh please pretty please may i have an invite ?

beginner level quake victim here :)

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431869)

This is probably off-topic, but I'm actually amazed that so many people still care about Quake of any stripe. I kind of assumed, I guess, the entire world moved on to Unreal Tourney like my own group of friends... the news that they're making a web-based Quake III blows me away.

No, you're awesome (1)

Paradigm_Complex (968558) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431925)

*hugs* Pweeeze?

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (1)

knewter (62953) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431991)

I am intrigued by your ideas^H^H^H^H^Hinvites and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432379)

Oh oh, send one to me!

Re:Quake Live is awesome. (1)

veeoh (444683) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432709)

Ooh go on you lubberly person.

marksthomas @

tar muchly

Slower pace? (1)

KlaymenDK (713149) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430095)

I'd be very interested in the same, but more similar to "Day of Defeat" than to "CounterStrike" ... that is, a game where you can't jump and run all over the place but actually need to take your stamina into account.

Is there anything like this available, perhaps a mod of one already mentioned?

Re:Slower pace? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430113)

America's Army. (providing it's still around. I stopped playing when they dropped the linux client)

Re:Slower pace? (1)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430317)

You're looking for Rainbow Six (pre-Lockdown, so most likely Raven Shield) and SWAT 4. And also Operation Flashpoint, and to a degree Armed Assault. I don't recall there being an actual stamina counter in R6, but running around like a headless chicken in any of these games will get your ass killed in an instant. There are of course plenty of "realistic" mods for other games, but this is pretty much as good as it gets.

Re:Slower pace? (1)

Barny (103770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430867)

Rainbow Six: Raven Shield is now $9.95 on steam for international purchase, one thing, update punkbuster prior to running it for the first time, or suffer the wrath of outdated driver crashes.

For the OP, stop being a cheapskate and pay for team fortress 2, its worth every cent :)

Re:Slower pace? (1, Informative)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430919)

Now that you've brought up TF2, I must say that no, OP don't buy it. I paid only something like 7 bucks, and I regret it more than the mini bike [] (not actually me in the picture) I blew all my savings on when I was a kid. Not only you have to deal with Valve's bullshit with Steam, but it's just not as good as its popularity might lead you to believe.

Re:Slower pace? (2, Insightful)

FlopEJoe (784551) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431929)

+1 for the TF2. My hours per dollar spent on the Orange Box is through the roof. Spent $40-50 and have had almost 400 hours of enjoyment out of it. And it's still fun with really professional looking user maps.

Re:Slower pace? (1)

firewalkergr (1263192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430853)

Enemy Territory: Wolfenstein.
It's free and has many players online.
Runs on Linux, Windows and I think OSX as well.

Re:Slower pace? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431031)

Try TrueCombat:Elite, it's a free tactical shooter that runs on the free game Wolfenstein Enemy Territory. It runs on Windows, Linux and Mac., there's a few decent videos on YouTube with gameplay

Warsow, WoP, ... (5, Interesting)

Johnny deBris (826604) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430167)

I personally love Warsow (, a Q2-based free (GPL?) FPS, and also World of Padman ( is quite fun at times, and I think both still have relatively active communities and some servers up at times. Other options include FEAR Combat (, the free multi-player part of F.E.A.R., or free online-only games such as WarRock (, though both options would require a relatively beefy graphics card. A game I also love personally is Iron Grip: Warlord (, which isn't free but they have a demo which allows you to go on-line, it's an FPS tower defense style game, and a lot of fun to play...

List of Alien Arena players (4, Insightful)

tttonyyy (726776) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430277)

It's possible to see a list of Alien Arena players online here: []

The servers with the most real, breathing, living players are listed first.

This makes it slightly easier to find servers with real people on. The trouble is that there are quite a few servers and people tend to flock to small subset as group (obviously wanting to play together). It's hard to find any pattern as one set of servers may be popular for a few days and then another set of servers.

Evenings are a good time to play - it seems that most people are like the OP and want to let off a bit of steam after work. And what better way than with a nice big chaingun? :)

As for most popular, that's bit of a loaded question. They all play differently - really it's down to personal choice. All of the free FPS mentioned in the article are excellent and have a dedicated following. They're good quality considering they're produced by the effort of a few dedicated souls just for the hell of it, so it's worth giving each a try to see what appeals. :)

Wikipedia also has a list of free FPS, which includes some other gems not mentioned in the article (like Warow, OpenArena and Cube): []

Quake 3 Arena (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430437)

Why play anything else when the perfect game is already out there? It's basically free these days.

Re:Quake 3 Arena (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430475)

It IS free these days: []

Well there's an old beast still alive (2, Informative)

ruzkie (1028574) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430447)

Quakeworld -> [] for servers/opponents or #qwrookie on irc on Quakenet happy gibbing.

Re:Well there's an old beast still alive (2, Informative)

KovaaK (1347019) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431459)

As much as I love Quakeworld, I'd have to say that it depends on where you live. If you're in the US, don't bother unless you want to play brainless Clan Arena mods. If you're in Europe, the community is much larger. There are (from my understanding) significantly large free-for-all communities as well as dueling and team deathmatch (2on2 and 4on4) communities.

The game is VERY difficult to get into, which is why I would fully recommend making use of #qwrookie if you happen to start fresh or even after a few years break. Quakeworld is about as hardcore as it comes. Trying to break into it in the US will result in incredible frustration unless you know the right people who have a ton of time to spend on helping you out.

BZFlag (4, Interesting)

KlaymenDK (713149) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430459)

I'll probably be modded down for this, but there's also the very neat BZFlag [] . True, players are tanks instead of humans, but technically it's still a "Free, Arena-Style FPS" (okay FTS).

Re:BZFlag (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432759)

Mod parent down: Players are tanks instead of humans

Quake Live beta (2, Informative)

FlatWhatson (802600) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430465)

I've been participating in the Quake Live beta since November. IMHO they've done a really good job of bringing Quake 3 to the web. The game client is slick - just as fast as you would expect of the original. In game, I honestly can't tell the difference. The plugin interaction is quite smooth too, sitting neatly in your browser or running at full screen without issue.

The biggest feature is the whole system they've built around that, though.

Honestly as a web developer, I'm quite impressed. They've implemented a match-making/game-finding engine, a messaging client and friends system, and all the statistical tracking you could want, pretty much entirely in Javascript. To the unsuspecting web user, it looks and feels like a Flash application. I dislike the web's dependancy on Flash as much as the next Slashdotter (or web developer), so it really is a breath of fresh air.

To me it feels like Quake Live will make an excellent inter-office deathmatch game. The ability to jump into a game with one click, and have it launch from or live inside your browser is far less effort and disruption than any current alternative.

My only gripe is that they still don't have a Linux client. That pretty much rules out all of the developers at my work - the very same group who are likely to be up for a quick frag. That's a shame, because UT2k4 and OpenArena have never really caught on there... oh well.

I have my fingers crossed.

There's always Skulltag.. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430479)

If you wanna go oldschool, there's always doom II... Check out Skulltag. It's got tons of new game modes and a whole slew of features, like OpenGL support, that make it play more like current-gen games. Supports up to 32 players. Community is still going strong and there's always someone playing.

word on QL beta (3, Informative)

majorme (515104) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430515)

First, I suggest you try Warsow [] . Someone already mentioned it so there's not much to say.

Now on Quake Live. The beta is going extremely well, although, very slow. Their website is actually better than most, if not all, current games' GUI systems. The matchmaking thing is also working like a charm. I'd say Quake Live is going to rock when the public beta kicks off.
The ads fit extremely well as Quake 3 had big video screens from 1999.

It's basically Quake 3 gameplay with some tweaks the so called "casual gamers" may or may not notice at all.

The only "problem" I see with QL is that it may not be as easy to play at work as one might suspect. At least not for everyone. At work, I am only able to log into the site but not install (and then play) it. The installer tries to put files in Documents and settings folder which as well as in system/32.

Free is nice, but seriously... (3, Informative)

SwabTheDeck (1030520) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430547)

...can't you just drop the $12 on an older game like Q3A [] ? Even if you got a measly 5 hours of play during the entire lifetime of your ownership, it would be hard to argue that it's not worth that price. It's fun, there are still tons of players, and you can pick it up and drop it without drama. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate and understand why there is free software in the world, but really good, comprehensive games almost universally cost money. The exception is probably id's free gift to the world Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, which you can download [] and play completely free of charge and it even has an available Linux client. However, this is not an "arena-style" fps, so I guess it doesn't quite fit the bill. It's class-based, but doesn't generally use timed rounds and there are a variety of map styles. I suppose it's possible to find a server that has arena-like settings.

Re:Free is nice, but seriously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430697)

I see where you're coming from, but fortunately, you are dead-wrong. This is one of the reasons id is possibly my favorite game developer, despite the arguable mediocrity of their products in recent years, other than the simultaneous multi-platform game releases. Enemy Territory isn't their only gift to the world. They almost always open-source their game engines once they're no longer profitable. As a result, we now have great free FPS games like Warsow and Urban Terror coming out of more orfices than you can count, not to mention OpenArena which is as close to a 1:1 replica of Quake 3 you can get without having a C&D to go along with it. Sure, you COULD drop the 12 dollars on Quake 3, but I can't imagine why you SHOULD when you can get the same experience and then some for free.

Re:Free is nice, but seriously... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430749)

Hell, id themselves is even working on a free version of Quake 3 Arena that's to be supported by in-game advertising, which was mentioned in the summary: []

Quake Live! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430549)

Quake Live is beautiful, everything you'll ever need for your fps arena gaming needs.

Sauerbraten (5, Informative)

GreatBunzinni (642500) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430557)

Sauerbraten wins this one by far. The gameplay is addictive and the graphics are actually very good, which is something that isn't quite common in FLOSS games. God knows how many hours I've lost to this piece of software alone. []

Re:Sauerbraten (1)

ThatGuyJon (1299463) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430713)

a free, arena-style FPS such as Alien Arena, Nexuiz, Sauerbraten, or Tremulous

Well, I suppose it certainly fits the criteria...

Re:Sauerbraten (0, Flamebait)

LingNoi (1066278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431629)

It quickly gets boring. The only games are insta gib on shitty maps like a recreation of the old UT level so it just one big lame sniper match, which I quickly got bored of in UT.

It's true there are some good maps however they're all ruined by having areas where once one side is in, they've practically won the match in capture & hold mode. The example that comes off the top of my head being the Japanese castle level.

The maps can also be as ugly as they are good looking, because the whole world is made from squares some things have unnatural looks such as ladders. On some levels the stairs could really use some improvement and it is possible however no one has bothered to update the map so that you can walk up stairs rather then having to jump.

The player character really needs updating from the horrible looking short orc to something worth looking at.

After 100+ hours of play I wish there was a game mode which was more slow paced and implemented something like Americas Army, CS, DoD, Left for Dead... Anything really. There are simply too many OSS FPS which cater to fast paced insta gib game play and I am getting sick of it.

Re:Sauerbraten (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432225)

You are fucking crazy, Sauerbraten is a horrible game. Controls feel really bad, unoptimised engine (there is no reason it should slow at all with maxed settings), rubbish level design, low resolution graphics...the list goes on.

My recommendation is to shell out a few bucks for one of the Serious Sam games.

Re:Sauerbraten (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432273)

i'll give you FLOSS...

The Real Dark Horse is... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430613)

I enjoy Alien Arena, but one I don't see mentioned is Armagetron. Shame, really.

WarRock (1)

allcoolnameswheretak (1102727) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430779)

Warrock is pretty good. It's not open source and I don't think there is a Linux version, but you can play it for free. The downside is that you will have to tolerate the constant bitching and bickering of 14-year olds.

Warsow (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430797)

It's Free, fast, and fun. :)

F.E.A.R. Combat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430847)

FEAR Combat is a great multi-player game. It's free to download/play but it's not open-source.

Combat Arms + Enemy Territory (3, Informative)

ggambett (611421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26430921)

You must definitely check Combat Arms. Free to play, microtransaction-based upgrades and customization (not really needed to play though, as you can "steal" weapons for a while)

Not "arena" per se, but ET is lots of fun, class-based. Graphics are a bit outdated (2003ish) but you can't beat the gameplay.

Re:Combat Arms + Enemy Territory (2, Insightful)

digitalgiblet (530309) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431659)

I'll second the ET motion.

I played that game probably more hours than any other game ever.

Good depth of play within a fairly simple mechanic. Combination of classes, skills and weapons fairly well balanced.

Free FPS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26430923)

A good free fps is Combat Arms. Like Source but more bouncy. lol. Less realistic but still plenty of fun. Quite a few hackers recently but still plenty of games with legit users. Highly reccomend it.

Arena-Style? (1)

PaganRitual (551879) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431015)

It's called Deathmatch, and don't you forget it.

Re:Arena-Style? (1)

LingNoi (1066278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431967)

No it's not, deathmatch implies all against all. Arena implies fast paced action within a tight confined space which could be all against all, team play, ctf, etc.

Ob (0)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431023)

Duke Nukem Forver doesn't cost anything...


Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431083)

Ok, now I know this probably is hard to find and not free, but I play and would like to recommend Red Faction. It has many, many, many user made maps (my favorite are the Micro-faction maps - whereby you are the size of a mouse in this giant room) great gameplay, and server setting called "pure-faction" that has an anti cheat mode built into the server side.

Go to to join forums and download maps for free. You can start your own server and check out the maps ( some of the best are by designers Lots-o-Pot and RedFrog.)

Many of the gamers there are ages 25-55+ Even several women players...

Cya there - my player name is Bird...

Re:RED FACTION !!! (1)

LingNoi (1066278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431651)

I always liked red faction however the memory hacks and cheating made me leave. I'll check out your links.

krpalospo, Urban Terror (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431091)

I like UrbanTerror I think is the most popular free FPS.

Soldat (1)

Dreen (1349993) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431145)

Soldat [] is a free to play CS/Liero type of game that works well under wine. Several hundreds active players worldwide, several leagues, obscenely fun, etc (if you are not stupid enough to dismiss it for it's graphics)

HL2 Deathmatch (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431257)

I know it isn't free as in speech, but Half Life 2 Deathmatch is free to all nvidia card owners. While HL2DM isn't too popular these days, it will let you play most of the mods for HL out there.

Re:HL2 Deathmatch (1)

Anonymous Conrad (600139) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431767)

I know it isn't free as in speech, but Half Life 2 Deathmatch is free to all nvidia card owners.

It's also free to ATI card owners: []

so between the two that'll covers most bases - or Windows-using ones anyway.

Urban Terror (1)

drpaulo (1380155) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431275)

In my region, Urban Terror is a VERY popular cross plataform (Win, Mac, Linux) free FPS. I love it...

Two words: Urban Terror (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431285)

Tremulous Recommended (1)

Nux'd (1002189) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431553)

Having played this game religiously for 3 years, I might not have the most impartial perspective but I can still say that I've tried the other games mentioned and have found none as entertaining as tremulous. Your ability to walk on walls/ceiling on the alien side will most likely be the first thing to grab your attention. Once you get used to that, you'll enjoy the fact that those little critters you always fought in single-player FPSs now have a human intelligence behind them, giving rise to quite an intricate style of combat. Aside from this, the way in which spawns are placed by the builder-classes along with the defences and other support structures gives the game a more dynamic feel. All in all, the game is just FUN and I recommend it whole-heartedly.

If you are interested in trying it, the latest official version (1.1) is actually quite outdated. The official reason for this is that the devs have opted for one big update (1.2) in the far, far (possibly never) future. Progress can be seen but is working at a snails pace. In the meantime, back-ports and modded-clients are being updated far more frequently and can be found at [] (just a case of replacing executables). The TJW backport is the well accepted standard. MGdev is currently working as a 1.2 test mod which uses many of the proposed balance changes for 1.2 but without any of the major graphical changes that 1.2 will (eventually) give. Also, TremX is a notably popular mod with less focus on balance and instead adds crazy abilities to both sides.

Penguins Arena (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26431595)

Get a look at Penguins Arena, it's not free but the demo is really open, and it's a great arena-style FPS. (available at [] or on Steam)

Dabble in something a little more popular (0, Offtopic)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431809)

Take the plunge and spend a one-time purchase on Team Fortress 2 or Left 4 Dead (US$20 and US$50 respectively). Lots of fun, free DLC is still being released for 'em, and lots of people play them.

Doesn't fit your definition of "free" but AFAIK all the free FPSs have been exhausted in this thread already and all of them are pretty old. Experimenting in something a little more recent could be interesting and fun. They're not very "casual" but if it turns out you don't like TF2 you're only down $20.

Quake Live - Missing the mark (1)

Dethboy (136650) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431915)

I was pumped when I got my Quake Live notice...

Quick games of Quake at lunch.

Nope. Apparently although it runs in a browser it does use some of the old odd ports so at work it's blocked by our firewall.

Oh well I can try it at home!

Get home - fire up Ubuntu - login - and get a message Quake Live isn't supported on my operating system.


WoP! (2, Insightful)

Sounder40 (243087) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431943)

World of Padman [] all the way. It uses the Quake-3 engine. Great fun in a comical sort of way.

TF2 (1)

effigiate (1057610) | more than 5 years ago | (#26431993)

You can get Team Fortress 2 for around $10 and the community is very active. I realize that this is NOT free, but it is very inexpensive. The cost to activity ratio is probably nearly as high as a free FPS because there are so many servers with lots of people playing on each.

I've played Combat Arms (which is actually free and has quite good gameplay), and I just can't stand the type of players that gravitate towards free. The chat rooms before the games are just filled with swearing and racial slurs. I see next to none of this in TF2, those kind of people usually get booted from the server by an admin.

Americas Army - Its free (1)

Ash Vince (602485) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432249)

It may not be open source but Americas Army runs on modest hardware and is a free download. Some of the maps are quite complicated but some are fairly open so take no time to learn. There are also usually loads of empty servers so you can have a quick walk around to see which map you like the look of in peace before diving into combat.

The only downside is the training missions you have to perform once at the start but solutions to these can be found on the web. In particular utube has walkthroughs for the hardest training mission called Escape and Evade. With this in mind it might you a couple of hours to setup an account initially and download it but this is one off investment you will never have to repeat.

There are also maps you can dive straight into playing without setting up an account but I have never tried these as they have only appeared in more recent versions after I was hooked.

Combat Arms (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432425) []

Here is a good one. Small urban environments. All of the weapons are modern. Weapons and upgrades you can earn by playing more. Some items only available for pay, but you can get away with only using all the free items.

go go go

Quake Live beta... (1)

w0rt3x (1340225) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432705)

Is not perfect, but if you want a free shooter, you should definitely try it out - ask for an invite in, or any other popular gaming forum.

You really can't go wrong with Alien Arena. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26432707)

Alien Arena has been steadily increasing in popularity and if you like sci-fi deathmatch that is just plain fun to play, this is your game. The game has made alot of graphical advances in the last couple of releases, as well as getting alot of polish in the gameplay department. Of all the free games, it has the most consistent art direction and style.

Tribes 2 (5, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432715)

I haven't gotten a chance to play this yet, but Tribes 2 [] has been released as freeware. Just a couple weeks ago it was patched to allow network play on unauthorized servers, which are the only servers anymore. Seeing how recent this development is (as of Jan 2), I'd expect Tribes 2 multiplayer to be on the upswing.

waning arena gamer base.. (1)

Tyrannicsupremacy (1354431) | more than 5 years ago | (#26432885)

maybe this should be taken as a sign that arena games are boring and unimaginative, and maybe you should try broadening your horizons by trying something else.
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