The phrase “Pay to Play” long predates the advent of modern-day games that expect you to pay FIAT (though increasingly accepting of Crypto these days) in return for a complete gaming experience. However, Pay to Play is most frequently associated with gaming in most contexts these days, as is its counterpart on the opposite end of the spectrum: Freemium. One model used to exist without the other, but gaming today could not exist without both options tantalising potential players into RPG Gaming experiences.
If you ‘re hugely into your character creation, RPG is really the best choice of genre if you want your custom-to-the-max tweaks and character-forming visual/mechanical nuance kicks. Furthermore, some of the top character creator games are in fact free to play, offering players the chance to create a character and get fairly stuck in to an open-world, predominantly fantasy and/or combat-based RPG experience with vast customisation options from the get-go, all free of charge. Robust character creation in games for which you need to pay up front is also on offer here, too.
Even with free games, you eventually will end up handing over cash to buy power-ups and eliminate time barriers within the games anyway. So why not kick back with your pile of cash or time that you’re either planning on spending or planning on keeping in that pile, and read about some of the top Free and paid RPG Character Creator Games for the PC (lol master race) platform.
Realms Beyond – Ashes of the Fallen (Pay to Play)
If you’re more into your fixed-place, turn-based RPG games, then you should seriously consider Realms Beyond: Ashes of the Fallen. Though turn-based RPGs aren’t everyone’s cup of English breakfast, this has got fantasy elements up the yin yang, a turn-based, party-centred tactical combat system, and most importantly of all, it’s got customisation options coming out the wazoo. This one’s available on Steam, which is itself a robust platform to deal with.
Realms Beyond’s character-creation elements run pretty deep, too. You can be sure that you’ll be able to engage in some hefty avatar and character customisation, with a huge variety of classes to choose from (Human, Half-Elf, Elf, Dwarf, Halfling, Half-Orc, or Gnome) as well as a variety of looks and tweaks you can apply to your avatar. Each class selection comes with its own weightings in terms of stats, too, and you’re not just able to customise for one character – you have control over the design, makeup, and customisation of your entire party of warriors, too. It doesn’t even stop there, since this game also allows you to customise your own campaigns and even the worlds in which you play. Yes, Realms Beyond will truly be unique in its level of customisation.
Bless Unleashed (Free to Play)
It’s quite remarkable that Bless: Unleashed is actually a free-to-pay MMORPG game. You can be sure you’ll explore some expansive fantasy worlds if you choose get stuck into this game, living out the fantasy RPG life with the ability to customise your character to levels of detail seen in very few games that are so damned free to play.
If you’re into your RPGs, you won’t be a stranger to the game’s selection of classes, from Mage to Priest and the mighty Crusader to name but a few. Each class ensures a different weighting in the stats department as well as different weapons/moves available to develop as you play.
The realism of the Bless: Unleashed character creation options also cannot be understated here. Not only can you tweak virtually every aspect of your chosen character’s appearance with a variety of selections and sliders, but the graphics engine on this game also offers a level of realism that remains unparalleled in free-to-plays
Final Fantasy XV: Comrades DLC (Free to Play)
Ok, so you might need to already own Final Fantasy XV in order to be eligible to download this free DLC pack, but it packs one hell of a punch. This expansion allows you to enter into cooperative multiplayer, but the real reason the expansion is so great for RPG fans that like their customisation is, yup, you guessed it: it affords you the ability to create your own customisable avatar to embark upon quests and cooperate in teams of up to 4 (including you).
As well as being able to customise all the usual aspects of your character such as their appearance, clothing, and equipment, you’ll also be able to go as far as to change your character’s place of birth to areas like Lestallum or Galahd. You’ll even be able to make amendments to certain weapons, too, taking the customisation options to the next level here, and all while allowing you to do so within the legendary world of the Final Fantasy uber-lore.
Star Trek Online (Free to Play)
Another remarkable and remarkably free game is Star Trek Online. Here you get to enter the Star Trek Online universe in much-revered MMORPG format. There’s plenty to be excited about here, least of the fact that the game involves playing out worlds and characters from the TV series. There’s a ton of combat to engage in too, with the ability to command a starship and also enter into more up-close-and-personal conflict.
The customisation options aren’t as comprehensive as many paid RPGs of course, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t impressive. Not many other games would allow you to create and customise your own Starship in addition to customising your own avatar. True Star Wars fans will be excited to hear you can create and customise your own alien races where you can edit appearance and abilities. The Starship customisation is also impressive here, styling your very own USS Enterprise, only much better because it’ll be yours and you’ll be making Picard eat your space dust.
AION (Free to Play)
Though AION is one of many MMORPGs covered here, don’t be fooled into thinking that this game will just blend into the pack or into MMORPG obscurity. Aion has an extensive solo campaign as well as offering both PvP and PvPvE functionality too, all wrapped up in a sweet exterior of impressively-graphic-ed fantasy.
AION has a myriad of expansions available to augment the gaming experience, not to mention the character creation and customisation options available. The number of classes you can choose from for your avatar here is almost silly, with over 10 selections to get stuck into. Use various sliders to customise the finer details of your character’s appearance, as well as being able to customise features as granular as your character’s voice. Expect some presets here, but the ability to choose from colour swatches and RGB panels when it comes to customising the hues of your character is truly remarkable. Oh, and you can choose your class and race too, of course.
Jump Force (Pay to Play)
Unreal Engine 4 strikes again for the graphics of what is arguably one of the most unusual games so far on this list. Here you’ve got a game that’s got whole worlds, fighting, and customisation galore. It’s 1v1 fighting, too which makes it an interesting inclusion on this list, which is more traditionally geared toward the RPG games where you end up fighting against multiple enemies, as well as with multiple team members yourself.
Jump Force allows impressive customisation though, from avatar customisation and the ability to tweak appearance through to deeper customs that involve being able to alter and influence your character’s abilities, as well as outfits and accessories that you earn through hard graft in the game.
Black Desert Online (Pay to Play)
RPG fans will almost certainly already know about this one, being what is considered by many as one of the best RPG games with character creation functionality known to man or beast. An 8.1 rating on MMORPG.com and acclaim from many critics aside, Black Desert Online has been around since 2014, but remains widely revered due to its unique sandbox format, innovative combat system, and its incredibly robust character creation and customisation interface/functionality. While this game is free to play in certain versions, those owning the English-language versions will need to hand over cash to make owning this game a reality.
Sure, many games offer a decent roster of options when it comes to selecting body type, hair, clothing, and items, and they should be tapped patronisingly on the head for that. I say patronisingly because when compared to the sheer weight of customisation available in Black Desert Online, everything else pales in embarrassing comparison. Not only can you choose from an astounding array of options for different body parts, the shape, size, and appearance of basically everything on your avatar can be edited. Of course you can choose your avatar’s class, too, which will determine your abilities, your weapons, and for some classes, whether you are even able to play as a male or female (some classes are gender-exclusive, for example).
Oh to be a young’un rediscovering the deep sandbox world of Black Desert Online once again. There’s even a mobile Black Desert Online RPG game with mobile character customisation to boot. The character-creator aspects of this game, both online and mobile, are as good if not better than most dedicated character creator games, as well as most purpose-built character creator software out there. That’s some feat.