A wide variety of Internet games exist in many different styles, themes, and price ranges. Some of the most popular ones include Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games (MMORPGs), First Person Shooters (FPS), Real Time Strategy (RTS), and browser-based games. Different games within these categories can be found for the computer and for many of the popular game consoles.
MMORPGs are currently some of the most popular Internet games, as well as the most profitable for the game companies. These games, which include titles such as World of Warcraft, Everquest and Everquest 2, Matrix Online, Star Wars Galaxies and Guild Wars, attract huge numbers of gamers who first purchase the game itself, and then usually pay a monthly fee to play. Guild Wars is a notable exception, as it does not charge a monthly fee, but it also boasts a lower population than some of the other Internet games. Everquest claims to have over 400,000 players, while World of Warcraft boasts an amazing 6 million players.
First person shooters are a popular style of Internet game that can be played on a computer or a game console. Current favorites include Counter Strike, Halo 2, Quake 4 and Battlefield 2. FPS games allow players to take the role of a soldier, often in a futuristic setting. Players compete against one another in all out battles and in many different tasks, such as king of the hill or capture the flag.
RTS games allow a player to control an entire army in a battle against one or more opponents. Warcraft III, Lord of the Rings, The Battle for Middle Earth, Starcraft and various Warhammer titles offer players a variety of troops and settings, from Orcs and Elves to space marines and alien monsters. RTS games are popular on both Personal Computers (PCs) and consoles and tend to hold their popularity for a long time, as new strategies are continually developed.
Browser-based Internet games can include casino games, text-based adventures, role playing, puzzle games and trivia, among the countless variety available. Often, these include free content, with the option for the player to access additional content, earn better prizes, or advance to higher levels by paying a fee. The popular text-based adventure game Kingdom of Loathing, for example, allows players to create characters and adventure in the sarcastic and humorous game for free, but special items can be purchased by donating 10 US dollars (USD). Many online casino or card games allow free play, but also offer real money betting.