Warframe (U11) Review
Warframe (Update 11)Free to Play
Game Play and Mechanics6.0/10
Visual Style and Quality8.0/10
- Quality Co-op Gameplay
- Most items easily obtained
- Diverse player rolls available
- Spending real money not required
- Relatively low system requirements
- Excessive Farming for Material
- Long Crafting Times
- Forma Blueprints. EVERYWHERE!
- Steep Learning for New Solo Players
- Mechanics Can Be Difficult
If you’ve ever aspired to be a space ninja, you’re gonna want to check out Warframe. It has all the bells and whistles that go along with being a futuristic death machine without the risk of being punched in the throat.
Game Play and Mechanics: 6
You begin the game by choosing one of several starting Warframes – specialized suits of armor that allow you to channel mysterious energy into powerful attacks and abilities. A Warframe’s ability to move is one of the key gameplay elements, as this includes walking, sneaking, running, sprinting, running up walls, running along walls, sliding, jumping, double jumping, flipping, zip-lining, and doing a barrel roll. Some abilities will make enemies move slower, while others might make them move faster, or stop their movement altogether.
Of course, the powers of these Warframes aren’t all you have to work with, as the game allows you to buy or craft a huge plethora of weaponry from pistols, submachine guns and assault rifles, to electrified whips, toxic grenade launchers, and flamethrowers. If you’re a melee enthusiast, don’t fret, as melee is a special snowflake here with numerous weapons to choose from and a fleshed out system to make use of it all.
All of this is achieved through the third person camera view, which can be adjusted to either shoulder with the press of a button. The third person camera also allows the player to get a good look at their own Warframe, which just wouldn’t feel complete without customization. And yes, there is a lot of customization. You can change the colors of pretty much everything, including your weapons, energy and even your personal spaceship. What, you didn’t forget we’re talking about space ninjas already, did you?
Controller users should be aware that while Warframe does fully support controllers, the multitude of buttons needed to be programmed may require the use of a mouse and/or keyboard anyway.
Visual Style and Quality: 8
The amount of effort put into the visuals is really extraordinary. The maps are expansive and varied, depending on where in the solar system you’ve gone to for your mission. The surface of Earth is full of vegetation, but Jupiter has you working in cities that float over the planet to harvest its gases. Beyond all that are asteroid mining colonies, huge military ships, and a twisted, enigmatic place known as the Void. Each environment (or “tile set”) has its own uniquely defining details and characteristics.
The environment isn’t the only thing that got attention, which quickly becomes clear once you get to work. Each Warframe’s abilites are unique in function and style. Icy snow globes that protect those inside, a Warframe that covers itself in heavy armor, a sonar pulse to find an enemy’s weak spot. The weapons haven’t fallen behind, either. Muzzle flashes, smoke trails, electric sparks, flames, and toxic gas clouds all find their places on the battlefield.
It should be noted that in particularly hectic situations, the mad scramble of flashing lights and colors may overwhelm some players or hinder their progress as they cannot see beyond the chaos that is unfolding around them.
Sound Quality: 7
Everything in Warframe has its own unique sound, which adds to the depth of immersion. You may be having a firefight inside of a ship, but once a set of doors to vacuum of space opens up, everything becomes muffled and distorted. Footsteps, ricochets, explosions, beam weapons and even enemy speech. It also helps that sound control is diverse enough to accomodate the player’s personal taste in hearing effects versus hearing enemy speech, music, or even your teammates through in-game voice chat.
Story Elements: 4
With an ever-expanding cast of characters and game-changing events happening all the time, the story in Warframe is constantly growing. For people who don’t really care for story, it doesn’t get in the way of any action. However, for those who are interested, dialogue is present on various missions that explains what your purpose is for that mission. Inside your personal ship, there is a console that grants you access to a codex, a library of gathered information about everything from Warframes and weapons, to enemies and descriptions of major events that have taken place.
Digital Extremes has done well in filling the Warframe universe with content and lore, though they have mostly left things open to discussion and theory so far. While playing the game, it’s more common to develop questions than it is to find answers. Lastly, it can be difficult to catch what characters are saying during a mission due to all the fighting, so you might end up missing certain details of what is really going on.
Multi-Player Elements: 7
While it is possible to solo a decent chunk of the available content, the game was really designed for co-op gameplay. Standard missions allow teams of up to four Tenno (players) to join up and take on a shared objective. To assist with teamwork, in-game chat and voice communication are available. It’s understandable if you’d prefer not to listen to random people yapping at you, so if you disable voice chat in the options menu, it will also keep you from hearing all other players.
You can add players to your friend list or join up with even more people and form a clan to open up a vast amount of opportunities. There is also trading and a separate level-based PvP system that you can jump into. While in a mission, the mini-map displays icons for your objective and teammates, so it’s not too difficult to know where you need to be at any given time. It’s also possible to change your lobby between public, friends only, invite only and solo.
Fun Factor: 8
I don’t usually play shooter games, but right when I started playing Warframe, I was hooked. There are so many cool effects. The gameplay was easy for me to pick up. INTERGALACTIC. SPACE. NINJA. What else do I have to say? The enemies talk in a language that, who knows what it is, but it’s funny to hear. I mean, there is a Warframe that can shoot balls on other teammates or enemies. What other games have that!? You can even have a weapon where you risk blowing yourself up. Okay, it’s not always cool to get blown up, but it’s funny to watch!
Replay Value: 7
There are so many different missions to run, quests to complete, Warframes and weapons to craft and configure to your liking, that it’s exceptionally difficult to say, “Just one more mission” and actually mean it. Even if you complete most missions, you can still go back and replay them for credits, affinity (experience), resources and special components that are used to craft weapons and Warframes.
Not to be lured into a pit of dull repetitiveness, maps are randomly assembled each time you run them. The rooms themselves are pre-built, of course, but what rooms are used and in what order is completely random. You might have found a room that is particularly good for fighting in, but the next time you run the mission, that room will likely not be in the same place, or even included on the map at all. Objectives can be changed mid-mission, as well, turning a rescue into an exterminate, or a sabotage into a capture. Sometimes, if you’ve met certain conditions, special enemies can find you and spawn into your mission to attack you.
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