Warframe is a free-to-play, third-person action shooter published by Digital Extremes in 2013. The game takes players to a rich universe plagued by warring factions seeking dominion of the Origin system.
As the Tenno, players must utilize highly advanced battle suits, called Warframes to fight against the Grineer, Corpus, and Sentients.
Well, now that we got some exposition down, I know this game doesn’t need a huge introduction. Warframe is known as the best free-to-play game out on the gaming market today. Few games out there can match the balance between free content and paid content at a level of mastery that Warframe has. Regardless of whether this is true or not, There is still an aspect of the game that matters most when it comes to bringing in new players and keeping steady retention of new players coming.
So what can Warframe be like for new players?
I’ve got to tell you, when Warframe came out for the Ps4 in 2013, I had no interest in it. I actually thought it was the most boring experience. That was before I played it though. If my friend hadn’t made me at least try it, I would have never come to love the game as I do today.
As a veteran now with close to 400 hrs in the game, I have seen about a years worth of content spill into the game. So I wonder what it will be like as a new players in terms of what is noticeable.
Organization of Content
Honestly, first impressions of the game may be mixed if someone decided to play the game now. In terms of story quest organization, star chart, mastery level, codex, and market, there is a lot to take in. I will admit myself, if I hadn’t been given a sense of direction by one of my more veteran friends.
Now with the updated plains of Eidolon as well as Fortuna, it may seem a bit overwhelming to new players who don’t have friends to guide them. This is especially frustrating when one of the main focuses of the game are on the grind which is what we are about to get into.
The Grind and Progression
Warframe is free-to-play. And while it does offer the greatest balance between paid and free content, for new players this isn’t very apparent. I would go as far to say it is not apparent at all. Merely take a look at the market in the game. Everything listed is promoted first by its Platinum (premium currency). But, in reality, every item can farmed in the game. The market can be used to purchase blueprints. Just press Square in order to buy the blueprint for a small amount of credits.
The progression for new players might not seem unobtainable if the items in the market were not first tagged with its premium price. And while Platinum is farm-able in the game, it is not accessible really until later in the game.
When it comes to the mod game, its really tricky. There are thousands of mods out there including broken and riven mods, but only a select few are really worth using.
The Graphics and Gameplay
The graphics, I think, will be one of the highlights of the game. The graphics still hold up more or less to today’s standards. The gameplay is diverse enough to allow for different play styles in the early game. However in the endgame, I would say that more strict play styles are necessary.
Overall I think these aspects of the game would be received well enough to allow new players to play for a time. But I think the retentive value of Warframe is severely held back by its crowded and unorganized story and progression system.
I won’t bash the progression system that much because overall, it is good. Merely, the organization and when it comes to creating new warframes and weapons, the market does not do a good job at welcoming that part of the free-to-play aspect of Warframe.
Overall Warframe is a great game, and I have been a dedicated player since I started playing it in Early 2018. But right now I do not see players being retained like they could be.
What does this mean for the future of Warfame?
I really do think DE will fix their issues. It is just a matter of priority. They have to balance the wants and needs of the veteran player with the potential needs of new players coming in. This is the struggle of games as a service templates. But we will see what happens. I for one have high hopes.
How was your experience with Warframe as a new player? Did you have help? or did you mainly solo? Why?