I a casual gamer but, freelance and freespace2 are my games, i played freelancer online a few months ago, and i just play freespace2 solo, but i really enjoyed playing freelancer online, it's like a mmo minus the chedder.
The problem with Freelancer is that once you get the gameplay down, you can go from newbie ship to all class 10s in one sitting. At that point the game loses a lot of it's replay value. Though if Microsoft made a sequel, I would be at the store buying it on release day possibly after preordering it. I loved that game.
If you like freelancer try out X3, it's the same thing but on a much bigger scale, universe is huge, you can have a fleet of ships, build space stations. Pretty cheap too.. but it does take a much bigger commitment of time than freelancer would ^^;
Not the same thing at all. You see Freelancer was an arcadey action focused space shooter.
The X games are full blown space sims and very slow with a very high and steep learning curve. Not saying there is anything wrong with that, but the only thing it has in common with Freelancer is that you are piloting ships in space.
If you like Freelancer and X3, there is a very promising MMO space sim in development called Jumpgate Evolution. http://www.jumpgateevolution.com/
You can see a video with in-game footage right after you come to that site. I wish they would offer a lifetime membership like in LoTR Online instead of monthly fees when the game is released.
Not a lot to go on yet.... Looks like it could be very good, or it could turn into a nightmare for any newbie to join. Eve walks that delicate tightrope act by making a formidable police force cover a large percentage of starting areas. I'd like to just see a system designed in such a way that opportunity for noob predation is either not possible, or at least extremely costly for the predator and not so much for the newbie.