A Search for the Best Free to Play game : Episode 2 – Arctic Combat

artic combat store

A Search for the Best Free to Play game : Episode 2 – Arctic Combat

In day 2 of our search we decided to try out a free to play FPS called Arctic Combat.  This game, like Warframe, can also be found on Steam for free… of course.  As most of you understand, it’s not exactly easy to make a good FPS.  There are so many things that just need to be right.  For me it’s the bullet damage, the “feel” when moving around, and the visual quality, in that order.  Does Arctic Combat have what it takes?

Starting out

In this game, you’ll go through a quick “basic training” type shoot house to learn the mechanics of the game.  You move through the motions of melee, pistol, rifles, rocket launchers, and grenades.  Of course you also do the typically crouch, crawl, sprint type courses as well.  I recommend doing this regardless of how you comfortable you feel, the buttons in the game are little different than most, so it makes it easier if you familiarize yourself before starting your first game.

Getting Ready for Battle

You begin with two pre-built slots to choose from, one in the role of an assault and one in the role of a sniper.  Both are very typical sets that you get with most first person shooters.  You can change those character slots by heading over to the Item Shop to purchase weapons, skills, kill streaks, and uniform items.  From what I could tell, most everything is purchased with in-game money rewarded at the end of matches, however some items are only “leased”.  There of course are a few items, which appeared to be mostly cosmetic, that are only available for purchase with real money.  This game seems to follow the same scheme that most free to play games follow.  Spending money won’t give you an edge over the competition, but it helps get your a jump start.


Arctic combat item shop

Arctic Combat Item Shop

Once you have your items all picked out, you’re ready to go.  To enter a game, you’ll first need to select which server you want to join.  There are multiple servers throughout the US to choose from, they are all identified by their region.  After finding a server in your region, you can then go through a list of available games to choose which game you’d like to play.  There are multiple game modes such as dominion, TDM, and defense, however there are also weapon modes in those games.  The weapon modes can mean anything from knives only, to snipers only, it just depends on that particular games settings.


I have to say, I was rather pleased with the “feel” of Arctic Combat.  Arctic Combat is based on the Unreal 2.5 engine, yet resembles the look and feel of the Source Engine.  By that I mean, the game mechanics felt good, the player movement felt good, and the guns felt right.  The difference between Arctic Combat and games like COD or CSS is this game is really meant to be played with a tactical aspect in mind.  Running out in the open and spraying will likely leave you dead on the field.  Instead, you should spray around corners, watch every entry way, and retreat back to a defensive position as much as possible.  My first night playing, I did none of those and was left feeling very frustrated.  Fortunately, I gave this game another go and became impressed with the level of skill it requires.  This just isn’t a game for someone with rage issues.

artic combat gameplay


With the assault class, I just wasn’t having much luck, so I quickly turned to the trusty sniper rifle.  I managed to perform a little better, yet I quickly learned this game isn’t one that hands starter characters good weapons.  When a team mate died, I dropped my M24 and picked up his SVD.  Within 10 seconds, I had mowed down 4 incoming enemies one shot at a time, something the M24 could have never done.  After a few matches I switched back to the starter assault weapon, the G3.  Since I had a little more experience under my belt from sniping, I became much more efficient using the G3.  I kept my aim high, watched corners closely, and sprayed every time I had hunch someone was around a corner.  With those tips, I was quickly climbing the scoreboard.

After I had a solid game mowing down the enemy with my G3, the server switched to an anti-gravity, RPG only map.  I can’t necessarily brag about having the most kills in that match, but I can say it was quite a bit of good fun, and that’s what gaming should be about.

Overall thoughts

Overall, I’d say Arctic Combat looks and feels like Counter Strike Source, yet has the kill streak abilities similar to Call of Duty.  The weapons weren’t overly difficult to learn, but the game isn’t one you can just walk in to.  It takes some getting used to, and upgrading your weapons to something other than the starter weapons will greatly benefit you.

This free to play game is rather solid for a free to play FPS.  The guns aren’t all the same, the skill system is unique, and it has a lot of features gamers praise in other games.  I only give it a 7 out of 10 due to the graphics and mechanics, however good they are, are somewhat dated.  Keep in mind however, that this game is free to play.  So with no cost, you really have nothing to lose.  I recommend trying it out and seeing how you like it.

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Arctic Combat Gamepage

Check out Episode 1 of the best free to play games, where we take a look at Warframe a MMO FPS with a little hack n’ slash.

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