Alright. Well. This is gonna be a bit of a weird piece for me personally, but I’ll try to keep it more game review than personal rant. For those of you who don’t know, Warframe is a free-to-play massively-multiplayer online third person shooter developed by Digital Extremes. I swear these game genre titles just get wordier and wordier with each passing year. In any case, this game has been out for quite a while, with the three year anniversary coming up this Friday, so this seems like a great time to give it a review.
Being the online shooter that it is, you would think it would be a highly competitive player versus player experience similar to Call of Duty or, perhaps more befitting the gameplay style, Gears of War. In fact, Warframe is mainly a cooperative game first and a PVP experience second. In the game you play as a Tenno, a being that controls a powerful battlesuit known as a Warframe with access to a variety of guns, swords, and various other pieces of highly destructive weaponry. You are awakened by a being known as the Lotus and are told that the balance of the Origin System has been disrupted by the Grineer, a clone army that seeks to take control of the Origin System by force.
With that short description having established the story, the gameplay focuses around running various types of missions throughout the Origin System, which is basically a futuristic dystopian setting in which humanity has taken to the stars and colonized a number of celestial bodies in the Solar System. During each mission you’ll gain experience point for killing enemies, and you’ll find credits (Re: Generic future gold/currency), as well as various resources and parts to construct new equipment and Warframes.
Each new piece of equipment can be modified and customized to suit each mission or enemy faction you will encounter throughout the Origin System. The game doesn’t do a stellar job of explaining its modification system, which consists of finding various cards in missions and then combining cards to basically level them up for stronger effects, but it touches on it briefly and there is an amazing community wiki, and veteran players generally don’t have an issue explaining the more intricate details of the system to new players.
So here’s my problem. I’ve been playing this game for the better part of three years now, and while I’ve taken a number of extended breaks during that time, I always seem to come back to this game. I’m not entirely sure why, but I think I have a number of solid reasons for doing so. The game, while admittedly having a number of balance issues and a very heavy and time consuming amount of grinding for free players, is still fantastic fun and has come a very long way since its release. And while I may have a few issues with some of the developer’s decisions, they don’t seem like enough to warrant my quitting any time soon. Maybe a few passive aggressive comments about how annoying things can get here and there.
You can try the grind out for yourself on Steam or through their website, located here. If you’re not a fan of grinding, you might want to give this a miss. But if you like high flying action and gun play, the awesome visuals and wide variety of play styles may be enough to keep you interested.