Browser games do not require any client software or anything to install. Some just love it and are hardcore gamers, for others it could be a great way to defuse the tension and take the mind off. There’s no hassle – all you need is to open a web browser (some may require a browser plugin/add-on or Flash player) and play whatever you like with friends or just people from the net. A pool game or a shooter, usually free to play, multiplayer browser games are worth giving a hit.
Luckily, such multiplayer online games are in abundance, and of all kinds and tastes to choose from. Standard linear games or asymmetrical games – where users take turns and may have different roles/abilities.
From casual minimalist time-killers to massive and addictive hard-hitters. We’ve started fooling around with two dozens of browser games about a month ago to make a list. Until today we can’t get out of it, but we have to pick 10 or 15, so we’ll share those that have consumed us the most.
Developer: Aratog LLC
Publisher: Bisbog SA, Tartezal Holdings Ltd.
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/7/8, 1GB RAM, Internet speed 256 Kbps, 2GB disk space for client version. Recommended: Windows 10, 2.3 GHz processor, 2GB RAM, graphics 256 Mb, Internet speed 1Mbps, 3GB disk space for client version.
NB: some issues may arise when running Astro Lords on Google Chrome 42+. Mozilla Firefox or other browsers supporting Unity web form are recommended.
If you are a connoisseur of sci-fi and city building (in this case, base-building) you will love this browser game as we did. Great gameplay, great soundtrack, peculiar combat system… it all really settles in. It’s a space MMO, one could say, that is quite diverse: it encompasses science, construction, management, piracy, etc.
You can send spies to asteroids and hire up to 6 Captains. Each of them belongs to one of seven classes with different skills and type of a spaceship. For example, a Scientist to delve into smart lab stuff, a Manufacturer to produce things, a Cyborg to generate more cyborgs. The tech tree is nicely elaborate.
Start with simple constructions to rise up to the advanced ones. Be aware that asteroids aren’t static, they can also move, and you can can colonize empty asteroids. In certain parts, massive player-vs-player (PvP) battles are taking place, and you won’t want to miss those.
- Amazing ship battles
- Detailed graphics and nice environment
- Complex management
- Only PvP mode to play
- Long wait times
- Pay-to-win may get annoying soon
Business model: Free to play. There is also the in-game currency (which players can buy by donations) for premium accounts, elite ships, speed-up construction, etc.
Publisher: Armor Games, Kongregate, Miniclip, Mail.Ru
Genre: Shooter with first-person RPG elements
Minimum system requirements: AMD or Pentium 3 GHz processor, 512 Mb RAM, 256 Mb nVidia, Internet speed 2 Mbps, IE 9, Mozilla. Recommended: AMD or Pentium 3 GHz processor, 1GB RAM, Yandex browser or Mozilla Firefox 3.
A solid shooter with all the attributes of the genre. Simple mechanics, versatile weapons, several game modes – altogether enough to have good fun and not get carried away too much. Contract Wars is the first-person shooter with amazing graphics, available as a social network app or standard client version definitely deserves a place among top multiplayer browser games.
Players are immersed into near future to observe and influence political, economic and military life. And, of course, lots of combats with beautifully animated weapons and possibility to score points as teams. Clan wars are particularly awesome – create a character, accumulate credit points, develop skills and get awards for “master kills” and “killstreaks”, join elite troops for hardcore modes.
There are several modes: DeathMatch, Team DeathMatch, ReconOps (night reconnaissance and sabotage operations), Sector Assault (team fights on several maps), Delivery mode – a team has to deliver a valuable cargo from point A to point B, Bounty Hunters mode – to snatch that cargo. The game is very life-like, for example, sand may get into the eyes of the character, or he could be deafened by explosions.
- Great dynamics of combats
- Available weapon upgrades
- Skill system with special bonuses
- Disbalanced donation system
- May be less interesting for “Western countries” audience
Business model: Free to play, with the ability to make purchase in-game currency with real money.
Genre: MMORPG, shooter, sci-fi
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP, Pentium 3.7 Ghz processor, 256 Mb RAM, 128 Mb video, Internet speed 256 Kbps. Recommended: Windows 7/8, Pentium, 6GHz processor, 512 Mb RAM, 256 Mb video, Internet speed 1Mbps.
Works on all popular browsers: Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera. A game in which a player becomes a starship captain with all its challenges. At the start, you have to choose company (faction) to join: Mars Mining Operations, Earth Industries Corporation, or Venus Resources Unlimited. Overall magnitude, large-scale clan wars with hundreds of ships in battle to this day make Dark Orbit one of the best multiplayer browser games out there.
it is also a sci-fi strategy and a spaceship simulator, if you will. Players can choose to be merchants or space pirates, and have the map of whole solar system at hand, as well as are able to cooperate with other players. PvP battles are really rough and large-scale, for some it may feel too hardcore. Honour system implies awards for destroying enemy ships and competing for the space gates.
- Ten ship models
- Various PvP game modes with awards
- Graphics and gameplay may seem a bit repetitive
- Servers lag when too many players join
Business model: Free to play. Surely, players can purchase ships, accelerators, weapons, equipment with game currency.
Publisher: Esprit ames LLC
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/7/8, 800 MHz processor, 256 Mb RAM, Internet speed 256 Kbps. Recommended: Windows 7/8.1,1.2 GHz processor, 512 Mb RAM, AMD Radeon or GeForce, DirectX 10.0c, Internet speed 1Mbps.
Another multiplayer role-playing game (RPG) classic among browser games for fantasy-lovers using Chrome, Firefox, IE or Opera. A world of elves, orcs, and dragons awaits and the prime goal is to conquer the Dragon Lord. Fortify a castle, use it as a base, gather troops, craft items, create new weapons in the blacksmith. The plot is straightforward: Good vs Evil, and there are plenty of arenas for PvP action.
The developers did their best avoid another simple farming game, players can participate in active events via various game modes. Introductory quest explains everything, and you will definitely enjoy a rich system of quests. There are 8 classes to choose from, making Dragon Lord stand out among other multiplayer browser games of similar kind. Funny enough, there are animal companions who will help in fights.
- Lots of events
- Dynamic action combats
- Assistant bots to accomplish simple tasks
- Quite stale game mechanics
- Frequent ads asking for donation
Business model: Free to play.
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/Vista, Pentium 2.4 GHz processor, 1.5GB RAM, DirectX 9.0c, Internet speed 6 Mbps. Recommended: Windows Vista, Core 2 Duo 2.6 GHz processor, 3GB RAM, 10GB drive space, Internet speed 6 Mbps+.
You will also need the following software: Flash Player and Java latest versions, Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 / 4, Mozilla FireFox or Rambler browser.
This is a stunning example of MMO/MMORPG genre being ahead of competitors. Like the majority of top-level multiplayer browser games (e.g. Diablo 2), it is client based, offers quests, battles, as well as own character development. Game dynamics are great, combats are full of special effects, lots of enthralling dungeons to explored. High-quality 3D graphics make all experiences very vivid.
New quests open up with each new level attained by player’s character. For characters there are skills, abilities, classes, specializations, PvP experiences. Multiplayer battle arena has various modes. What is rare for multiplayer online games is the system of “full combat control”.
- A nice old-school RPG
- Extraordinary 3D graphics
- A system of full control over combat
- Lack of plot twists and turns
- Unstable camera may affects the combat negatively
- Many repetitive combats with mobs
Business model: Free to play.
Genre: city-building game, strategy
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/Vista/7/8, 3.8 Ghz processor, 128 Mb RAM, Internet speed 6 Mbps. Recommended: Win XP/Vista/7/8, Intel Pentium 4, 512 Mb RAM, DirectX 9.0c, Internet speed 6Mbps +, 100 Mb drive space.
This browser game (Chrome, Mozilla, Internet Explorer, Opera) is also available on Facebook, iOS and Android devices. Forge of Empires has been well known to gamers for almost a decade now, it is a high-quality city-building game.
Players start back in the Stone Age and move gradually up to modern times, witnessing the wheel invention, industrial age, mass production and everything else. All in all, it somewhat reminds Rise of Nations and Age of Empires.
One of the advantages is that player’s actions matter – it’s not just a computer calculating battle results. There are both single-player campaigns and PvP actions. You have absolute discretion to select a place for construction. Non-linear gameplay is also great, it isn’t another template city-building browser game.
To gather and manage armies there are 5 types of units. Combats are turn-based and you control your troops, you can also attack and loot villages. Notice the indicator of village “Happiness” – if it drops, it means people there work less and contribute less gold.
- Enjoyable graphics
- Non-linear gameplay
- Ability to fight the way you like
- Some quests are impossible to complete without a donation
- Your village can be robbed by players of higher levels
Business model: Free to play. Make purchases in cash shops for in-game currency – to then buy premium accounts, elite troops, boost constructions.
Developer/Publisher: Free Range Games
Genre: 3rd person shooter, action
Minimum system requirements: Windows 7, 3GB RAM, DirectX 10.0c, 100 Mb disk space. Recommended: Windows 7, I3 processor, 4GB RAM, nVidia 7xx or Radeon equivalent, broadband Internet connection.
In this multiplayer browser game the story takes place in the year 2027. Sudden discovery of alien message boosts up humankind technology to brand new levels – jetpacks, shellproof space armors, laser weapons. Battles everywhere. For combat there are various boosters and accelerators, skill amplifiers and weapons, and game theme is space marines. It is fully captivating down to every bit ,and it is free to play.
There are 10 classes to choose from but only 2 available without payment. The good news is that after one week of playing, another class becomes available for free. Heroes of different classes possess different combat techniques, for example, the Scouts use katana and are lightweight, and the Blazers have minimal defensive skills but balance it with powerful damage they inflict with a flamethrower. Battles are intense and fast-paced, the rule is plain: fight to win.
- Great animation and camera control
- Balanced monetization system, almost no pay-to-win situations
- A variety of weapons and classes
- Due to limited amount of game modes may get boring quick
- Maps are not so versatile as in other online shooter games
Business model: Free. For in-game currency donate whatever you deem appropriate. Alternatively, get game currency as award for winning team matches. Get updated weapons, direct boosts, requisites for health, ammo etc. for money.
Genre: strategy, .io games
System requirements: any computer with Internet access or even a smartphone is enough.
Clearly, the most simplistic of all multiplayer browser games in our list, yet worth noticing. Hexar is a single-player game with bots, and there’s really not much to say to describe it: play and seize as much territory you can. Leave your base and outline the area you want to gain.
Tiles you took are painted in certain color. When confronting another Unit busy with conquering territory too, you may die. So the goal is to consume competitor units’ territory and defend yours. Minimalist, yet unlike other action-packed browser games, Hexar is your way to defuse the mind and play without thinking. Nice relaxation.
- Any PC/device will do
- No donations
- Specific type of game, not for everyone
Business model: Free to play, no donations.
Developer/Publisher: GDT Ltd.
Genre: online car shooter, action
Minimum system requirements: Windows Vista/7/8, 3 GHz processor, 2 Mb RAM, 4.8 GB drive space. Recommended: Windows 8/7, Intel Core i5-760 / AMD Phenom processor, 4GB RAM, 1024 Mb nVidia or GeForce or Radeon. NB: You need a browser that supports Unity Web Player. The best choice will be Mozilla FireFox.
For fans of action, shooting and fierce confrontation this is it. 4 classes, a development system, several gaming modes and being to-the-point is what made Metal War Online one of the most popular multiplayer browser games. Set in near future, when the world is divided between two factions, now competing for resources and influence. They use mercenaries and a player become one of them.
The game has elements of both racing and a third-person shooter. Four types of technics exist: Scouts, Stormtanks, Engineers, and Artillery, with specs and certain advantages and drawbacks. You may also upgrade and unlock new tanks, play at different versatile locations, use modes like DeathMatch, Capture the Flag, Assault on Base, etc. Teamwork is important as MWO is still a PvP focused browser game.
- Unique tanks
- Clans and strategy abilities
- Gaming modes are standard for the genre
- Number of players not that big
Business model: Free to play, with ability to buy in-game currency, or donate.
Developer: Ubisoft Blue Byte, Related Designs
Publishers: Ubisoft (Europe, USA), Fabrica Online (Russia)
Genre: strategy RPG, MMORPG, BBMMORPG
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP, 1 GHz processor, 2GB RAM, 200 Mb on disk. Recommended: Windows 7, 2 GHz dual core processor, 4GB RAM, 200 Mb on disk. NB: the latest version of Flash Player and registration in game is required.
This classic turn-based strategy, known to everyone since childhood, is now available online. While Haven stands against Necropolis, build and develop your own city, hire an army, develop a hero… all directly in a browser (Chrome, Opera or Firefox). A character could be either a Warrior or Mage, for both factions. Classes, by the way are Knights, Clerics, Death Knights and Necromancers.
Go carefully and smart with town development: you need a specific amount of resources to build something, as well as Construction permit. As you build, constructions could earn you profit and allow to hire creatures for the army, if performed rightfully. In Heroes you will fight against fictional enemies and human players. Multiplayer Combat allows to unite with other players against enemies, this is what makes Heroes one of multiplayer browser games.
- A tutorial at the beginning is useful
- Great quests
- Customizable armies
- More classes would be more fun
- Minor bugs in few places
Business model: Free to play, plus donations.
Developer/Publisher: Steve Howse
Genre: .io, strategy
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/7/8.1, 800 MHz processor, 256 Mb RAM, 100 Mb drive space. Recommended: Windows 10, 1.2 GHz processor, 1GB RAM, 100 Mb drive space. NB: You need a browser supporting Flash Player.
It is a good old Snake game in a new form – as a browser game. Nourish and grow yourself, but destroy enemies. A snake is consuming multi-colored pellets – oh, the wonders of primitive artform.
- Simple to learn and play
- 600 levels and lots of fun
- Minor glitches at times
Business model: Free to play.
Developer: Tanki Online Ltd.
Publisher: APL Publishing Ltd.
Genre: MMO-shooter with real-time PvP battles, tank arcade simulator
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/Vista/7/8/10, MacOS X 10.5, 2.3 GHz processor, 1GB RAM, 128 Mb video. Recommended: Windows 7/8/10, MacOS X 10.5.8+, 2.3 GHz processor, 4GB RAM, 1024 Mb video, DirectX 9.0c.
A simulator of tank combats, what could be more entertaining? Plain and simple, crude tank designs, yet all is concise and quite enjoyable. Tanki Online creators did their best to make gaming welcoming for new players, but often inaccurate graphics and glitches cause trouble, for instance, a tank gets destroyed because of poor mechanics and then a penalty applies for a team for nothing.
Anyhow, it’s great that there is no frustrating waiting-time to regenerate and get back into battle. Convenient interface, several game modes, great dynamics make it a mind-capturing browser game. There is a rank system for tanks, various types of armament (e.g. one-cartridge canon is powerful but takes time to reload, dual-barrel cannon is weaker but reloads momentarily). The self-destroy button is bingo. Controls, by the way, rely on the keyboard, even aiming cannons, which might feel odd.
- Easy for beginners
- Only PvP action
- Many pay-to-win elements
- You may be banned for no reason
Business model: Free to play. Donations.
Genre: indie, RPG, strategy
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/7/8.1,800 MHz processor, 256 Mb RAM, 100 Mb hard drive space. Recommended: Windows 7/8.1, 1.2 GHz processor, 512 Mb RAM, 100 Mb hard drive space.
A good old Mafia is now online. 7 to 15 players can play at once, and only 3 of them are Mafia. Town of Salem is based on bluffing and lying, and if you’re fond of secrecy and riddle-solving, human-to-to human interaction, it is doubtlessly worth playing.
There are 33 unique roles and a variety of mechanics. Every role implies a big global goal and smaller specific tasks. There are 220 unique achievements which are rewarded with in-game items.
Gamers can craft a character, choose a pet, choose town setting, and even death type from 5 available. Players are randomly divided into Mafia, Town members (incl. doctor, major, etc.), Neutrals (serial killers, arsonists, etc.) and Coven. As in a classic offline version, town members have to find out who is a villain, while those kill people in the night and try to avoid being caught.
4 game stages are: Night – when murders happen, Day – when town members vote on whom they suspect, Defense – the suspected citizens argue their non-guilt, and Judgement – voting on fate of defendants.
- Quite entertaining overall
- Only PvP but many roles
- No free version
- Players cast out still have to stay in the game
Business model: Pay to play. In-game currency.
Developer/Publisher: Travian Games GmbH
Genre: BBMMOG, strategy
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/7/8.1, 800 MHz processor, 128 Mb RAM, 64 Mb video, Internet speed 256 Kbps. Recommended: Windows 10, 1.2 GHz processor, 1GB RAM, 128 Mb video, Internet speed 1Mbps. NB: You have to sign up to play.
Travian is a classic Middle Age game with village development, resource mining and raids. But mind that it is multiplayer browser games we are talking about, therefore as other players can raid your village, you have to strengthen the defense, not just attack attack.
Heroes can acquire different skills, towns can be built from scratch, and there’s plenty of activities: mine resources, build military force, etc. Note, that although you can have several heroes, only one of them will be active at the time.
Player can choose a nation or a tribe, and originally there were three tribes (the Gauls, the Teutons, the Romans). However, on some servers currently, there are additionally the Egyptians and the Huns. Besides raiding villages for gold and resources, you can make alliances, form clans and guilds, trade with other players.
There prime goal is to build a wonder of the world at 100th level, which only becomes possible after certain achievements. Overall, a great online strategy which sits firmly among best multiplayer browser games.
- Nice 2D graphics
- Many gameplay options, replayable
- Great hero development system
- Not much personalisation
- No internal communication channels for players
Business model: Free to play. Donations.
Genre: strategy, MMOG
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP/7/8.1, 1.2 GHz processor, 512 Mb RAM, 256 Mb video. Recommended: Windows 7/8.1, 2.4 GHz processor, 1GB RAM, 512 Mb video.
A curious city-building strategy game with everything typical of the genre. There is a city development system, resource management, armies with a variety of unit types. Additionally, a system of heroe development as an RPG element. With clan wars, tournaments, team play and everything else Vikings is popular with genre fans and truly deserves to be listed among top multiplayer browser games.
“Build and fight” strategy offers various city structure types. Gamers can develop their hero, upgrade her/his economic and combat skills, add power through artifacts (go to Forge). The crucial aspect is players cooperation as “lone wolves” tend to lose very fast. To raid someone, just click on the map. The result of a combat is calculated considering town level, army strength, hero levels – and you do not actually control the battle, as in other similar online games.
- Fascinating artworks
- PvP combats
- Interesting tech-tree
- Only automated combats
- Many pay-to-win elements
Business model: Free to play. Donation system.
P.S. As we saw, there are older and brand new browser games of various genres and types. Any kind of games are and will be always popular for obvious reasons. Multiplayer browser games only add to the trends, increasing the player base.