Mirage: Arcane Warfare is free for keepsies right now

Whether you love wizards or loathe the jumped-up magicians, you might fancy a crack at Mirage: Arcane Warfare [official site]. For the next 24 hours, the magical follow-up to historical first-person murderfest Chivalry: Medieval Warfare is yours to keep forever if you click a button on Steam. It will let you: 1) pretend to be a wizard; 2) murder a great many wizards. Mirage sales have been less than developers Torn Banner Studios had hoped for, see, but they want to spread the word so hey, here, it’s free – grab it while you can. Once the free period ends, it’ll get a huge price cut.

Hit Steam and slam that ‘Install Game’ button then, whether you actually download it right then or not, it’ll be registered to your account forever. You’ve got until 10am Pacific (6pm UK time) on Thursday, September 7th to nab that.

After that, the price will go up to the new lower price of $9.99 (it used to be $29.99).

Torn Banner explained their decision in a blog post:

“Mirage launch sales were poor. That sucked, and we know it. Our company’s doing fine, and we’ll be able to continue to make awesome games in the future.

“More than anything, we’re disappointed for the players who stuck by us and did buy Mirage – but who have struggled to find people to play against. We just want people to play the game we spent years making.

“We have faith that Mirage can find a larger audience still, so we’re being aggressive about getting it into people’s hands.”

Getting a load of people in now for free will help build an active community to encourage future potential paying players. And hey, devs want people to play their games.


  1. Premium User Badge

    Drib says:

    Glad I got this free to start with. I’d be rather angry if I’d bought this and it was given away only a few months later.

    • Beefenstein says:

      “I’d be rather angry…”

      The way to contentment lies in addressing one’s own perceptions. Good luck!

      • Premium User Badge

        Drib says:

        I don’t know that being upset by a perceived injustice is a bad thing.

        That said, there’s even biblical parables about this sort of circumstance, so I suppose I’d be in the wrong either way.

        • joer says:

          Prodigal son? I’m pretty sure that’s about salvation, not the market. ; )

          • Premium User Badge

            Drib says:

            Nah, the one about people showing up late to work on crops and being paid the same, with the point of not to be jealous of other people’s fortune if you got what you wanted as well.

      • Unclepauly says:

        I like you.

    • Nelyeth says:

      I’d be rather pleased if a game I enjoyed went from having a playerbase of exactly zero point zero, to being a temporarily (and possibly durably) active game.

      • Premium User Badge

        Drib says:

        Well that is reasonable.

      • Bull0 says:

        Yeah you have a point. I have lots of unpopular multiplayer games I want to play, and I’d love it if the devs gave them away to churn in some newbies

  2. Jalan says:

    That last bit is overly optimistic. Just look at Cult of the Wind (to name but one of these mostly/completely dead multiplayer games that handed out freebies to try and secure a sustainable playerbase).

    Hopefully Torn Banner’s next endeavor isn’t another multiplayer game (and the most I take away from this is that at least they get to have a next endeavor, because I certainly do love Chivalry).

    • Nelyeth says:

      Steamcharts.com says 28000 players are currently playing Mirage, as opposed to an impressive sum of zero before it went free (and I’m not even exaggerating, it really was zero. Not a single player).

      It should rise a fair amount higher in the following hours. Of course, not all of them will stay, but say one out of ten or twenty people enjoy the game (and it’s probably going a lot more than this, since the user reviews are pretty good save for the player count issue), and you get a bigger playerbase than For Honor, which, while not exactly thriving, does have a decent pool.

      • vorador says:

        The same thing happened with Evolve, even became F2P and at the end people didn’t stick around.

        So yeah, giving it for free might generate enough buzz to create a small but loyal playerbase…or it might die anyway because Destiny 2 happens, or the new season of Overwatch happens, or a lot of things can happen.

        Put buntly, there’s way too many quality choices for F2P or paid multiplayer games, and right now is extremely hard for a newcomer to manage to stick around. Just look at Lawbreakers.

        • Nelyeth says:

          Law… wot ? Never heard of it.

          In all seriousness, what happened to it was dreadful. Kind of like Mirage actually. A shame, but well, such is the multiplayer market, and not every game can be PUBG.

  3. Freud says:

    It’s not easy for multiplayer games to find and keep a solid player base. Even excellent games can struggle to survive.

    • pepperfez says:

      The superstars-only nature of multiplayer games is really depressing, in part because it’s self-perpetuating: Why get invested in a new game when it’s probably going to be dead in a month? Better to just play DOTA.

      • April March says:

        I think the other way around: it’s worth it to find a little known gem, because after all if it goes the way of the dodo (or you just turn out not to like it) Overwatch will still be there. It’s better to have a unique experience for a short time than to not have it at all.

        That said, I almost never end up doing that anyway because I’m too cheap to buy games when they still have a playerbase, and I’m not much of a multiplayer guy anyway 🤷‍

      • Flopper says:

        There is no justice in the world. Things like Overwatch are still around and Lawbreakers high skill cap ridiculously fast paced gameplay has completely dead servers.

        RIP arena shooters. Quake isn’t doing well either. And Unreal Tournament reboot has been free for all to play the alpha for over a year and it’s dead as well.

  4. Cederic says:

    Typo in the article. It’ll be Thursday 7th September, not Wednesday. So until 6pm Thursday in the UK or 10am in whichever bit of the US it’ll be 10am in.

  5. April March says:

    I played it during a free weekend or somesuch, and honestly found it really bad. It’s at some unconfortable middle point where it’s not as frantic and unique as Chivarly but doesn’t quite work with the kind of tactic, class-based gameplay it’s gunning for (or should I say magicking for, ha ha… ha)

    I’m not very good at multiplayer games so I wouldn’t give my own opinion much credence, but the fact that it had literally zero players may mean I was in fact correct.

  6. skyturnedred says:

    I have a feeling this will be one of those games I just add to my library and will never get around to even trying out.