Top Best Free-to-Play Guide for Beginners

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Often you will hear some people rage that Rise of Kingdoms is a pay-to-win game and that Free-to-Play players don’t stand a chance at all. What if I were to tell you that there’s several ways you actually can play Rise of Kingdoms as a Free-to-Play player?

I mean, I barely spend anything in the game aside from farming resources, killing barbarians, upgrading my buildings and advancing technologies in the Academy. Plus being in one of the top alliances is a huge help for any F2P player and I am doing pretty well so far.

You can grow easily and stay competitive as long as you are active and continuously upgrading. If you are not convinced yet, then read my Free-to-Play guide for beginners to find out how you can play games for free without having to spend your gems at all.

How to Pick Best Civilizations for Free

Civilization Change Rise of Kingdoms ROK

All civilizations are absolutely free to pick for any players right in the beginning of the game. If you want to pick the best civilization to start with in Rise of Kingdoms, I have assembled a list of best starter civilizations for beginners:

Though, each civilization has their own unique traits that make the gameplay and strategies different apart from each other. In a sense, you will be able to play each civilization well if you use strategy that is optimal and have the advantage,

For instance, Japan is great at scouting due to 30% increased scout march speed and Britain is good at defending your city, including alliance structures such as Fortresses and Flags.

One of the biggest perks about this is that you can switch to another civilization for free once you hit your City Hall to Level 10. If you decide that you don’t like civilization, you can change. But you get to keep your starting commander. After you change civilization and want to make another change, you will have to spend 10,000 gems. So make the change wisely and stick with it throughout your kingdom.

How to Pick Best Commanders for Free

Rise of Kingdoms Commanders

A lot of new players ruined their first Epic / Legendary commanders. This is one of the biggest early game mistakes by not reading our recommended talent tree guides for all commanders in Rise of Kingdoms. Making corrections to these mistakes can get extremely expensive.

In fact, if you want to reset your commander’s talent tree, you will have to spend 10,000 gems. A lot of Free-to-Play players simply don’t want to do that at all. So, before you start investing your commander’s talent points, give it a moment to see where the game is taking you in.

You might get more luck with other commanders due to getting more commander sculptures and whatnot. You also might have to change your gameplay strategy during the game session. As always, I recommend giving it at least two weeks or three weeks for you to stockpile on the commander sculptures.

Once you have a clear idea of how things are looking for you, use that as your starting point to move forward. Luckily, I have several great commander tips to help you get started as a new Free-to-Play player and doing it right will save you time.

Commander Tips for F2P Players

Beginners who are new to Rise of Kingdoms need to read these guides to get a better understanding of what they are expected to invest their talent points in and know the best optimal talent builds to use:

A friendly tip for all players, don’t spread out your resources on multiple commanders. You will risk with low level commanders and unable to make progression while your peers who are high-powered with high level commanders will have no issue camping barbarians and doing the expedition mode.

Focus on one commander at a time. Max the commander out first, then work on the next commander and so on. This ensures you can make steady advances without falling behind too much.

Recommended Commanders for F2P Players

Like I mentioned previously, you should focus on one commander at a time. Legendary commanders are great to have, but they can be quite hard to get as a Free-to-Play player. For starters, I suggest leveling up your Elite and Epic commanders as they are pretty quick to get around by.

A fully upgraded Elite commander will have no problem beating 5/3/1/1 Epic commander. And a fully upgraded Epic commander will have no problem beating 5/3/1/1 Legendary commander. Considering how easy you can level them up.

If you are wondering which commander is the best to start with for beginners and to play as a F2P player. Then you will find this list helpful in navigating to the best starting commander when you are choosing a civilization to play with.

Joan of Arc

Best Joan of Arc Commander ROK

Joan of Arc is the best starting gatherer for any players. Her expanded resource load capacity and improved march speed for siege units makes it simple enough for players who want to farm tons of resources early in the game.

Joan of Arc pairs well with every other commander listed above as well others in the game. Her versatile and gathering skills makes it simple to pair with any commanders. Bonus point, if you are running mini farming accounts, Joan of Arc is a great starting commander to have!


Best Boudica Commander ROK

Boudica is another solid starting commander who pretty much excels at both PvE and PvP matches. If you are playing as Britain, you get 20% garrison capacity which will help out a lot with defending alliance structures against invaders.

This starting epic commander pairs well with Lohar, Aethelflaed and Cao Cao due to her skills being versatile. So, if you are looking for a good commander to level up quickly, Boudica is definitely your top choice.


Baibars ROK Selection Screen

If you are looking for a decent cavalry commander that surely packs the punches. Baibars is absolutely a godsend starting epic commander to have. You can get him for free if you start the game as Arabia. Baibars is one of the fastest and most powerful offensive commanders thanks to his active skill.

You can easily mow down your enemies and chain-target them using his Sandstorm skill that does damage and slows them down. With a combination of talent tree build, you can further cripple your enemies and do even more damage.

Scipio Africanus

Rise of Kingdoms Scipio Africanus

Scipio Africanus is the best choice for players who want to play with various armies. He can be obtained for free at the beginning of the game if you play as Rome. This commander acts as the debuffer due to his active skill which reduces your enemy’s strength and increases your troops’ strength.

He is great when you plan to play purely with troops and the effectiveness increases as you upgrade your troops to Tier 4 / Tier 5. Not to forget to mention that Scipio Africanus have expanded troop capacity which means he can bring more troops compared to other commanders.

Osman I

Osman I Commander Screen

And lastly, Osman I is a good starting epic commander as well. He can be obtained for free if you play as Ottoman right in the beginning of the game. Unlike other commanders, Osman I excels at dealing direct damage with his active skill.

He is capable of doing heavy blows and quickly eliminating the enemy targets. Additionally, Osman I is well equipped to conquer enemy cities thanks to his conquering skill. He has reduced damage taken from enemy watchtowers and increased attack against enemy garrisons. An ideal pick for any bloodthirsty F2P players.

How to Jump to a New Kingdom for Free

Rise of Kingdoms Jumper Guide

Did you know that you can jump to a new kingdom for free. You can do that by following my step-by-step jumper guide for beginners. This is the most important part for all players who are new to Rise of Kingdoms and wonder how they can move their city to a new kingdom.

First, you need to max out all of your buildings to level 7. This means you need your City Hall at Level 7 and all other buildings like barracks, quarries, lumber mills, etc max out too. When you first start the game, you will have 10 headstart days before you are no longer eligible for Beginner Teleport.

When you hit Level 7, just research military technologies and train troops as much as you can. You should be able to attain 200,000 to 300,000 power. By then, you are ready to jump to a new kingdom and will have no problem joining one of the top alliances.

Items, power, quests and everything that you have made progression will transfer with you using the Beginner Teleport. So, how does that sound for you as a F2P player right now, huh? Game is getting easier as long as you use these tips and tricks for playing the game free.

How to Use Speedups for Free

Another important factor that you need to consider as a free-to-player. Rise of Kingdoms is a lot more forgiving to F2P players because you are always going to get a lot of free speedups from expeditions, quests, events, and even alliance gifts (if you have whales in your alliance).

So by all the means, use your speed ups as often as you can to get ahead of your competitors. If you are not sure what to use your speed ups for, then follow this steps:

  • Leverage help from your alliance members to use free speed ups first.
  • Never use speed ups before you max out your help from alliance members.
  • Use specific type of speed ups before using universal speed ups.
  • Always keep upgrading your buildings and training troops while you are idle.

How to Spend Your Gems for Free

More Than Gems Rise of Kingdoms Event

As a free-to-play player, the gems is a limited resources. It is one of the most valuable resource that should be spend wisely. While you can obtain it in-game through unlocking chests and doing the quests, understanding how to spend your gems in the best ways is very important.

In the beginning of game, you need to rush your VIP Level to 6 since it provides you with plenty of buffs in every single aspect. Plus, you get a permanent secondary builder. Which means you don’t have to spend gems on recruiting a secondary builder.

Once you hit VIP Status Level 6, you can keep on investing gems to further increase your VIP level (personally, I prefer VIP Level 13 / 14). But if you are happy with VIP Level 6, you can use the remaining gems to buy items from the Mysterious Merchants whenever she comes to your city. Never ever use your gems to buy at full price as you will run out quickly.

Ways to converse your gems for more bangs:

  • Buy resources which is typically sold in normal resources.
  • Buy speed ups that are discounted more than 80% or higher.

And not to forget to mention that you can farm 1,000 gems a day as a Free-to-Play player. Just research Jewelry, upgrade your City Hall to Level 21 to unlock fifth dispatch slot. Then send all of your commanders to farm the gem deposits located around the map.

How to Prioritize Upgrades for Free

Rushing your City Hall is a high priority because it is what takes you to the next level and brings your overall buildings to a higher level. Which means you can train more troops, produce more resources, and send more commanders to wars / gathering.

Therefore you need to focus on main buildings:

  • Farms / Lumber Mills / Quarries / Gold Mines
  • Hospital / Tavern / Academy / Alliance Center / Wall
  • Barracks / Stable / Archery / Siege

Other buildings like Trade Post and Scout Camp aren’t required for upgrading your City Hall early in the beginning of the game. But as you progress further in the game, they will become an important requirement to upgrade your City Hall.

Also, you want to research technologies as you can since they will help with you grow in power and get better armies as well as improving your combat effectiveness. If you plan on upgrading your Castle to Level 25, then you will find my guide on how to farm Book of Covenants helpful.

How to Speed Gather Resources for Free

Resource Tokens Rise of Kingdoms

Being able to gather resources is one of the most important game aspects in Rise of Kingdoms. Without resources, your game progress will be much slower. Which is why you need to focus and develop the best gathering commanders right away when you get your hands on them.

For starters, the best gathering commanders are:

They are pretty easy to get and quick to level up. Aim to hit talent skill of 5/5/1/1 to get the gathering rate boost. Afterwards, you don’t have to upgrade them further. But if you still want to get more out of them, you definitely can do that.

Each zone has resource points that are dependent on the quality of the zone. For instance, Zone 1 will have a level of RSS between 2 to 4. Zone 3 will have a level of RSS between 5 to 6. Ideally, you want to aim at moving towards Zone 3 to get the best RSS points.

Also, you can collect runes that have a gathering buff and activate it to increase your gathering speed. Bonus point, your gathering speed is also improved by 25% when harvesting the resources in alliance territory. Use these tips and tricks to your advantage!

A couple of guides I think also will be helpful for you too:

How to Chain-Farm Barbarians for Free

Barbarian Troops ROK

You do not have to use your gems to buy more action points recovery potions at all. Because there is a very cool game trick that I found out it is possible to chain-farm barbarians. All you have to do is pick a commander that has AoE active skill: Aethelflaed and Baibars both are good pick and pair with a peacekeeping commander in the secondary role.

Then dispatch to attack one of the barbarian army. Group them up along with other barbarians and when your primary commander uses the AoE active skill, it will hit other barbarians and fight them too. This doesn’t consume any additional action points at all.

Doing the chain-farming barbarians is a great method to speed level your commanders and to get on similar competing power with high level players. At first, it will take a bit of practicing but afterwards it will become incredibly easy and simple.

Why Should You Get the Growth Fund

Growth Fund Rise of Kingdoms

Lastly, you should consider getting the Growth Fund. If you plan to stick purely as an F2P player, that’s fine because buying this is completely optional. But out of all packs I have seen in the Gems Store, Growth Fund is one of the best in-game investments you can make.

At a price of $14.99, you get 81,000 gems in total when you fully upgrade your City Hall to level 25. Compared to the most expensive gems pack in the store which is only 25,000 gems and has a price tag of $99.99. Any new players who are thinking of spending a little bit of their money needs to get the Growth Fund first after reaching VIP Level 5.

Conclusion of Free-to-Play Guide for Beginners

Best Free to Play Guide Rise of Kingdoms

That’s all Governors. I hope you found my Free-to-Play guide helpful and covers all of your questions regarding playing Rise of Kingdoms for free with little to no spending in the game. If you do plan to buy something in the game, getting the Growth Fund should be your first pack.

Afterwards, you will have no issue propelling your civilization forward and upgrading your VIP Status level. Make sure to follow these game tips in this guide to maximize your advantage. Practicing and making good habits as well as avoiding early game mistakes will get you far ahead in the game.

If you have any questions about playing Rise of Kingdoms for free. Feel free to drop a comment in the comments section below. Happy ruling, Governors!

Top Best Free-to-Play Guide for Beginners
Top Best Free-to-Play Guide for Beginners
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