Warframe

From the studio that co-created the Unreal series comes a free-to-play third-person shooter pitting a group of superhuman warriors (in advanced exo-armor systems known as "Warframes") against a hostile universe.

Overview

Warframe is a free-to-play sci-fi fantasy third-person shooter developed and released by Digital Extremes for the PC on March 25, 2013. It was later ported to the PlayStation 4 (on November 15, 2013), Xbox One (on September 2, 2014), and Nintendo Switch (ported by Panic Button on November 20, 2018).

Built on the original concept for the studio's earlier 2008 game Dark Sector, Warframe is set in a far future where the universe is dominated between three factions: the Grineer (a militaristic empire of human clones), the Corpus (a highly-technological merchant cult), and the Infested (those mutated by techno-organic parasites). Players control a member of the Tenno: descendants of an ancient civilization that have awaken from cryostasis to a hostile universe.

Under guidance from a mysterious figure known as The Lotus, players are outfitted with an advanced exo-armor system (known as a Warframe) that give them superhuman mobility, regenerative shields, and a unique set of supernatural abilities (similar to Heroes in MOBAs). While the game is usually played in a four-player co-operative setting, later updates added competitive PvP matchmaking support (with up to eight players in a single match).

Since its original closed beta release (on October 25, 2012), the game has been under continuous development, with over 20 major content updates (each with numerous smaller updates) that added new gameplay systems, Warframes, weapons, enemies, cosmetics, and other content. The game is supported with a microtransaction system (where players purchase an in-game currency known as Platinum).

Gameplay

Warframe is a third person, objective-based, loot driven shooter. Players collect materials and weapon upgrades (called "Mods") as they complete missions and progress through a map of the solar system. Players may harness the powers of their Warframe and weapons in order to clear hordes of enemies in the PvE maps, or against each other in the specialized PvP mode. Players also have access to public spaces known as Relays where they may interact, trade, or practice their skills.

Mod System

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Warframe's Mod system allows for players to customize the various aspects of their equipment, which comes with 8-10 slots for the card-like mods that can be upgraded as the player progresses through the game. Character mods include things like enhanced health, damage resistances, and ability modifications. Weapon mods are typically focused on damage types, but can also include silent firing, magazine changes, and unique effects during battle. Likewise, Warframe mods focus on augmenting a Warframe's stats and main four abilities with enhanced range, duration, power and mobility.

Movement System

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Warframe features an unique parkour movement system that is made up by chaining and combining several different action maneuvers together into a series of fluid flowing movements.These maneuvers include but are not limited to the ability to perform slides, dodge rolls, backflips and handsprings, divekicks and the ability to glide through the air. Combining basic maneuvers creates more advanced movement options such as Bullet Jumping and can be further used in tandem with other unique maneuvers such as Aim gliding to propel through the air through great vertical and horizontal distances. The movement system was originally inspired by a well beloved movement exploit known as “Zoren Coptering” within the player base that then developers embraced when redesigning the movement in game. Parkour 2.0 as it was known was introduced in Update 17.

Focus System

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An ability system unlocked after completing the game's cinematic quest lines the "Second Dream" and "The War Within". Focus introduces new mechanics and abilities to game that are critical for playing the game's later content such as Eidolon Hunt and Kuva Extraction.

Landscapes

While most missions in Warframe are traditionally set in procedurally-generated Tilesets, as of Update 22, open world areas called Landscapes were introduced into the game. Landscapes are large, fixed maps each with their own unique biomes and day/night cycles. These areas feature activities such as quests, bounties and incursions, along with side activities like hunting, fishing and mining. Each Landscape is connected to a 50-player instanced town hub which gives them access to NPC quest givers and shop vendors. However, similar to the game Guild Wars, once a player leaves town and enters the mission area only up to 4 party members can play together in the same instance.

Plains of Eidolon

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The first Landscape introduced to the game in Update 22, The Plains of Eidolon is set on the site of an ancient battle between the Warframe Gara, and a colossal Sentient during the Old War. In present day, the remains of the Sentient called Eidolons while weak and disoriented, come alive rising from the grave, and wander the plains during the night. The Tenno are tasked with protecting the Ostron people of Cetus from threats of Grineer and the Eidolons that come out at night.

The Plains of Eidolon is the first expansion to introduce fishing and mining to the game. Subsequent updates also added Animal Conservation, along with Eidolon Hunt which challenges experienced players to takedown and capture the Eidolons.

Orb Vallis

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Introduced in Update 24 as part of the Fortuna expansion. The Orb Vallis features a partially Orokin-terraformed Venus Landscape. Due to the incomplete terraforming, the surface of Venus and the Orb Vallis is cold, mountainous covered by frequent snow storms. While beneath its surface remains a blazing lava filled interior. The people of Fortuna, the Solaris, live in this harsh weather climate, working in coolant factories run by the corpus regime.

Similar to Eidolon Hunts in the Plains of Eidolon expansion, the Orb Vallis features large mechanical spider-like boss enemies: The Exploiter Orb, and Profit-Taker Orb. These raknoid enemies can be found stomping around the Orb Vallis and later presented to the players as bounties when they reached certain milestones in Fortuna.

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Fortuna was the first expansion to feature Warframe's wild life Conservation mini-game that involves tracking, luring and live capturing the local fauna. In order to engage in the activity, players are must be first equipped with Lures and a Tranquilizer Rifle. Players who complete the Conversation mini-game are rewarded affinity with the Solaris United, and earn cosmetic decorations called Floofs.

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The Fortuna expansion added hover-boards called K-Drives to the game. Obtained by the Vent Kids NPCs in Fortuna, K-Drives can be used to traverse any open-world area. Players can equip K-Drive specific mods to boost its performance and handling.

The K-Drive can perform Grinds, Spins and Flip Combos to earn trick points all of which translates to affinity gains with the Vent Kids.

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The K-Drive's appearance is customizable with different parts and details crafted by the player. The K-Drive also feature deck art called Scrawls. Scrawls can be earned in-game from the Vent Kids, earned through Twitch Drops, or purchased with platinum.

As of Update 29, the ability to fire one's secondary weapon while on their K-Drive was added.

Cambion Drift

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The third Landscape to be introduced with Update 29, The Heart of Deimos is set on Mar's moon of Deimos that has taken over by the Infestation. The Hub area of Deimos is called the Necralisk, the place where the NPCs of the Entrati Family reside.

The Cambion Drift is under a constant war between Vome and Fass. Infested wryms that battle one and another. Whomever is dominate at the time influences the Day/Night cycle of the Drift. This situation conditions also effect what wild-life and enemies the player will encounter.

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The Necramechs are player controlled mechs added in the Heart of Deimos expansion. Nechramechs are machines of the Old War. The player must have completed "The War Within" quest to obtain their own. Similar to Warframes, Necramechs have 4 abilities and their own set of mods that enhance those abilities and their stats. The Necramech are able to utilize the Archgun, the Archwing primary weapon.

Space Combat

Warframe features space combat in the form of Archwing and Railjack. Archwing is a flight-based weapon's platform designed as a mobile attachment to Warframes enabling them to engage in combat in atmosphere, in space and underwater. Railjack is a space crew ship that while can be controlled by by single player, is intended to crewed by a squad of up to four players.

Archwing

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Archwing missions take place in three-dimensional plane of space allowing the Tenno maneuver and move and in all directions. Combat is similar to traditional Warframe combat with Archwings having 4 abilities. In space combat missions Archwings are equipped with their own primary and melee weapons called the Archgun and Archmelee however, they do lack their own secondary weapon. Since the introduction of Landscapes, Archwings can be also deployed in the atmosphere of the open world areas. When deployed in these scenarios, players only have access to regular warframe primary weapon and side-arm.

Railjack

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First introduced the Rising Tide Update, and then playable in Empyrean expansion in Update 27. The Railjack is a spacecraft that can be piloted by up to 4 squad members, each responsible for managing the different stations of the ship ranging from piloting, managing weapon systems, engineering to putting out on-board fires and performing repairs while in combat.

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Railjack features alongside it a separate skill perk system called the Intrinsics which determines how adept the player is when accessing the features of the Railjack. Many of the capabilities of the Railjack is locked behind different Intrinsics ranks. There are currently 4 categories of Intrinsics: : Tactical, Piloting, Gunnery, and Engineering. Each Intrinsics can be ranked to 10 each Rank and grants players an additional perk.

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Players can unlock their own Railjack by building a dry dock in their Clan Dojo, where they then have access to build and customize their own personal Railjack. Unique to Railjack is the Aviontics upgrade system. Avionics are analogous to mods but the interface is much different than the traditional modding screen. Avionics are separated into three categories: Integrated, Tactical and Battle. Each type of Avionics enhance the railjack in different ways.

The Steel Path

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A difficulty mode designed as an additional challenge for players that have completed all missions on the regular star chart. Players must reclear all the regular mission nodes on the Star Chart with following conditions applied:

  • All enemy levels increased to start from Level 100
  • Enemies have an additional bonus of 2.5x to their Shields, Armor and Health
  • All enemies in Archwing increase to Level 50
  • Squad Consumables have a 1-minute cool-down
  • Eidolon Level increased to 100+
  • Missions in Steel Path have an Resource and Mod drop chance boost.

Players that clear the planets in Steel Path mode are rewarded with additional Mastery Points, Steel Essence, and exclusive cosmetic ship decoration.

Kuva Lich System

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A Nemesis system inspired by the Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor games was introduced in Update 26: The Old Blood.

After completing "The War Within" quest, the player has a chance to encounter a Kuva Larveling in any Level 20+ Grineer mission. If the player chooses to perform a Mercy finisher on a downed Kuva Larving, the result is that the Larving will transform into a Kuva Lich. A Kuva Lich generated is unique to the player. The Warframe that created the Kuva Lich will effect what warframe abilities the Liches' inherits, and the elemental bonus of their special Kuva Weapon. The Lich will spread influence and take control over planets in the star chart, temporarily taking end of mission rewards from the player if they choose to play a mission on nodes currently controlled by their Lich. Kuva Liches are immortal and will re-spawn and continue to grow stronger even if taken down by the player subsequent times. The player must collect Requiem Mods and determine which combination of passphrase is correct in finally vanquishing their Kuva Lich with the Tenno's special weapon, the Parazon. In the final confrontation, players can either choose to Vanquish or Convert their Lich to the Tenno's side. Any rewards stolen by the Lich during this time are then returned. If the player chooses to Vanquish their lich, they then can keep their Lich's Kuva weapon as a reward. A converted Lich has a chance to appear in missions to aid the Tenno, whenever they fall in battle.

Helminth System

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Revealed at Tennocon 2020 and introduced in the Update 29: Heart Of Deimos. This system allows players to exchange one ability from a Warframe, and replace it with another ability from a different Warframe.

Upon obtaining a Heminth Segment Upgrade, players unlock the ability to subsume and infuse Warframe Abilities. Every (Non-Prime) Warframe can be Subsumed to donate 1 specific Ability to Helminth. The player can then take that ability from the Helminth and replace one original ability of their warframe with a subsumed ability. The subsumed Warframe is permanently lost, but the Helminth will retain the donated warframe ability indefinitely.

Story

Tenno, warriors of blades, guns and masters of the Warframe armor were left drifting in the ruins of an old war are now needed again to maintain the balance of powers in the solar system. The player Tenno was rescued from their cryostasis chamber by the Lotus. Lotus will guide the player and teach them the ways of the Warframe and their secret powers. Story quests that are found after many hours of playtime reveal new and interesting spins on the nature of the Warframe universe.

Tenno

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The descendants of an ancient mystical civilization from the Orokin era on Earth. Stored in their cryopods for centuries, they are awakened into a new conflict where they must fight and maintain balance between several warring factions. Their memories have faded but their ability to use a gun, sword and exo-armor have not. The historic values of the Tenno are chivalry and discipline but they may not all be so in this new war as they emerge into this unfamiliar world. They stand united against common foes, loyal to only each other. Cinematic story quests found deeper in game reveal the origins of the Tenno and the true nature of the Warframe universe.

Grineer

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Vast in numbers from cloning technology, the Grineer seek to expand their vile empire from Earth outward and control the whole solar system. They took over Earth by their numbers alone, led by the mysterious Twin Queens. While high in power, the Grineer army is decaying. The constant cloning is increasingly making them more primitive. The Grineer's ideology of enormous hate and discrimination of anything not like them drives them to the face of inevitable dissolution.

Corpus

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The Corpus are a conglomeration of commercial interests unified by their greed. They control the entire supply chain of goods in the Solar System, and see Orokin artifacts as profit to exploit at any cost. Corpus are rarely seen by others and are better known for their robot proxies that serve them. They have taken the social structure from the ancient mercantile guilds of old Earth.

Infested

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The Infested are those who have succumbed to the mysterious Technocyte virus, which consumes and twists flesh towards an unknown goal. The virus afflicts all it comes in contact with, save for the Tenno and their Warframes. While animalistic, there seems to be some kind of larger coordination in the plague's action.

Orokin Empire

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The Orokin Empire is a lost civilization that ruled over the solar system in an era known as the Orokin Era which has long since passed. When Earth became no longer environmentally habitable the Orokin were one of the first humanoid factions to ventured into space and began colonizing the rest of the solar system. The Orokin eventually asserted dominance over the other colonists in the solar system and grew into an empire. They developed technological marvels such as the Solar Rails and were able to terraform much of the Solar System, even making Earth habitable once again. The Orokin at their height however, then went to war with a machine race known as the Sentients, and during that time developed the tennocyte and the Warframes to combat the Sentients. Now the Orokin have not been seen for generations, and are presumed to have died out. The remnants of Orokin society, the merchant class, became the present Corpus, and the labor and working class revolted eventually forming into the Grineer Empire. However, their technology and legacy forever continues to shape the Warframe universe.

Sentients

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The Sentients are a race of hive-mind machines who were the greatest threat to the Orokin Empire. Originally developed by the Orokin, the Sentients first began as nothing more than expendable worker drones, mindless automatons sent to scour into the solar system, and tasked with the construction of the Empire’s faster-than-light travel system, the Solar Rails Network. Overtime the machines rapidly adapted and evolved learning not only to replicate themselves but built more complex terraforming machines themselves until they inadvertently gained sentience and went to war with their creators. The Sentients are now fragmented, scattered from the Old War with the Orokin centuries ago, yet an increasing number of them are returning and threatening the balance of the solar system. The Tenno are the only remaining warriors to oppose them.

Lotus

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The Lotus is a single individual who guides the Tenno through their missions. She has great knowledge of the Warframes, their unique powers, and understanding of Orokin relics. After deactivating the cryostasis on the Tenno she uses this knowledge to lead the Tenno warriors in their fight.

Warframes

Current Warframe lineup as of Update 19.
Current Warframe lineup as of Update 19.

A Warframe is an exo-armor that uses unique combative technology to create the ultimate weaponry. Each Warframe holds many mysterious powers and mastering one requires dedicated use.

As of Update 29, there are more than 44 unique Warframes for players to use. Each Warframe has a different spread of base stats such as Health and Sprint Speed, and each has four different abilities that can be used in battle. Warframes are highly customizable, using Mods to adjust the properties of the suits.

Some Warframes also have "Prime" variants, with enhanced stats and altered appearances compared to their standard counterparts.

  • Ash
  • Banshee
  • Frost
  • Ember
  • Excalibur
  • Loki
  • Mag
  • Nyx
  • Rhino
  • Saryn
  • Trinity
  • Volt
  • Vauban (added on May 17, 2013)
  • Nova (added on July 13, 2013)
  • Nekros (added on September 13, 2013)
  • Valkyr (added on November 20, 2013)
  • Oberon (added on December 19, 2013)
  • Zephyr (added on February 5, 2014)
  • Hydroid (added on April 9, 2014)
  • Mirage (added on July 18, 2014)
  • Limbo (added on October 24, 2014)
  • Mesa (added on November 27, 2014)
  • Chroma (added on March 19, 2015)
  • Equinox (added on July 31, 2015)
  • Atlas (added on October 1, 2015)
  • Wukong (added on November 25, 2015)
  • Ivara (added on December 3, 2015)
  • Nezha (added on December 16, 2015)
  • Inaros (added on March 4, 2016)
  • Titania (added on August 19, 2016)
  • Nidus (added on December 22, 2016)
  • Octavia (added on March 24, 2017)
  • Harrow (added on June 29, 2017)
  • Gara (added on October 12, 2017)
  • Khora (added on April 20, 2018)
  • Revenant (added on August 24, 2018)
  • Garuda (added on November 8th, 2018)
  • Baruuk (added on December 18, 2018)
  • Hildryn (added on March 7, 2019)
  • Wisp (added on May 22, 2019)
  • Gauss (added on August 29, 2019)
  • Grendel (added on October 31. 2019)
  • Protea (added on June 11, 2020)
  • Xaku (added on August 25, 2020)

Companions

A new addition to the game as of Update 7, Companions are mechanical or biological creatures that accompany you into missions to provide combat bonuses and additional firepower. As of Update 19, there are 14 different Companions to choose from, some having Prime variants similar to the Warframes. Companions also make use of the Mod system for additional customization.

Weapons

Warframes carry three weapons with them into missions. These consist of a Primary, a Secondary, and a Melee weapon. Weapons use the Mod system to enhance the different qualities of the weapons.

Weapons level up by using them in combat and by collecting yellow Affinity pickups. By leveling up, weapons gain new ranks that offer the ability to equip more mods.

New players start with a selection from MK1-variations of standard weapons. Additional weapons can be acquired either from crafting them from blueprints in the Forge or by purchasing them directly from the Marketplace.

Mastery Rank

Mastery is an in-game method of measuring a players cumulative skill by how many weapons, Warframes, and Companions have been fully ranked. Mastery Rank is used to lock players from certain advanced weapons and missions, controls how many in-game trades a player may make in a day, and as well as how much faction standing they can earn each day.

Cosmetics

Players can decorate and personalize their own personal quarters on their Oribter
Players can decorate and personalize their own personal quarters on their Oribter

Warframe features a growing number of visual customization options. Cosmetic options range from unique skins, and helmets for Warframes, Companions, and Operators to cosmetics for decorating and personalizing one's player ship and clan dojo with action figures, posters and furniture. While most cosmetic items are bought with the game's premium currency Platinum, some can be earn in game during special events, as well as acquired through the Twitch drop program.

Tennogen Program

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Tennogen is a program started by Digital Extremes to allow creators to create and submit their own Warframe cosmetic skins via Steam Workshop. Players can vote and discuss which cosmetics made by the community they would like to see in the game. Once a Tennogen skin is approved and put into the game by Digital Extremes, part of the sales from that Tennogen skin goes to the creator. Unlike regular cosmetic items which are purchased using Platnium, Tennogen items are purchased in the Market directly with real world currency.

Founders Program, Prime Access, and the Prime Vault

The Founder's Program
The Founder's Program

In December 12, 2012 Digital Extremes introduced the Warframe Founders Program. For a limited time you could help the future of the game and get exclusive in-game items and privileges. All members recieved instant access to the beta, and depending on tier chosen, exclusive content.

In subsequent updates, this system has been turned into Prime Access and the Prime Vault. Prime Access is a rotating paid program that adds the latest Prime variants of Warframes, Weapons, and accessories to a player's account. Use of Prime Access provides instant access to these items in-game without the need to farm or build the items. While Warframes and Weapons can be farmed in-game, cosmetic accessories items are often exclusive to the Prime Access system.

Example Prime Access
Example Prime Access

The Prime Vault system was introduced on March 24th, 2016. This new system removed certain Primes from the game's loot rotation in order to add new items to loot tables. Similar to Prime access, the Vault is occasionally "opened" for approximately one month at a time, allowing players to either purchase or farm Vaulted items. Vaulted items are not removed from the player's inventory, only from the game's loot system.

Platinum

Platinum is the premium currency of Warframe. It can be used in trades, to instantly complete the build of an item in the Foundry, or to purchase items from the Marketplace. The Marketplace has items that can be purchased with either the freely earned Credits or Platinum. Certain items, mostly cosmetic, can only be purchased with Platinum

Platinum can currently be purchased in a variety of tiers:

Platinum PointsUSD
2100 Pt (1500 + 600 Bonus Pt)$99.99
1000 Pt (750 + 250 Bonus Pt)$49.99
570 Pt (450 + 120 Bonus Pt)$29.99
170 Pt (150 + 20 Bonus Pt)$9.99
75 Pt$4.99

These prices are subject to change.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 7/8/10 64-Bit (32-bit not supported)
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo e6400 or AMD Athlon x64 4000+ (~2.2Ghz dual core CPU)
  • Memory: 4 GB System RAM
  • Graphics: DirectX 10+ compatible video card
  • Hard Drive: 35 GB free HD space
  • Other Requirements: Broadband Internet connection