Warframe arrives on the open-world Plains of Eidolon

I remain delighted that a sci-fi game looking like Warframe [official site] has become so popular. In a genre dominated by robots and spacemen, Warframe stars pearlescent crustaceanfolk fighting bulging turgid baddies who remind me of sea cucumbers. It is a strong look. This style continues in the free-to-play action-RPG’s latest expansion, Plains of Eidolon, which developers Digital Extremes launched overnight. It adds an open-world zone where, after dark, the ghosts of giant meatbots rise from the water to wander. That’s the sort of sci-fi I want. Ta, Warframe.

The main feature in Plains of Eidolon is its eponymous open-world zone, three square kilometres for up to four players to roam around and fly over. The deeper you go, the nastier the baddies get. And when the day/night cycle swings round to darkness, little baddies will retreat as the Eidolon emerge. They’re ruined meaty warbots from an ancient war, trying to complete themselves (you’ll note they’re using trees to lost arms). They are big and they are nasty.

Also, you can go spearfishing on the Plains. Heck yes the waterlife is weird-lookin’.

A new hub town, Cetus, arrives too. This has new folks with new quests, new crafting, and new places to hang around jumping up and down as one should in any hub.

The update also brings a rework of the Focus system, balance tweaks, a new Warframe, and plenty more. Check the Update 22 patch notes for details on everything. These are big patch notes.

11 Comments

  1. Kollega says:

    I’ve got a question to ask. Are there any co-op-centric hero shooters besides Warframe? The grim-and-gritty biomechanical sci-fi aesthetic doesn’t seem like it’s for me, and the free-to-play aspect is also unattractive to me. But maybe there are other co-op hero shooters that I could try?

    The closest thing I can think of is Battleborn – but that game is very unpopular, and co-op is only a part of its “everything for everyone” formula rather than the focus. And there are games like Payday and Killing Floor, but those aren’t really “hero shooters”, seeing as all classes can use most weapons and abilities in those. Plus both of those are also “realistic”, KF2 features gamble-crates while Payday got involved with those only to try and shake them off when people turned against that, and KF2 in particular doesn’t feature mission objectives, being a horde defense game (unless I’m wrong on that?).

    So, I guess what I’m asking is: are there any games in the style of Overwatch and Battleborn that are focused on co-op and balanced around co-op? I think I would really appreciate a game like that, but I don’t know if any were made.

    • phantam says:

      Warframe isn’t exactly a hero shooter itself, the eponymous warframes act more like equipment, which you level and customise for their stats and abilities. You can use any weapon combo with any frame.

      • Kollega says:

        For some reason, I was under the impression that warframes were tied to specific weapons. Which just makes things all the stranger: why the hell are all the hero shooters PvP when making a co-op-focused one could be an easy way to stand out from the crowd? I mean, the relative newness of the genre as a whole notwithstanding.

    • YogSo says:

      Digital Extreme’s other in-development game, The Amazing Eternals, may be more agreeable to your tastes, aesthetics-wise. But it’ll be F2P as well, so caveat emptor.

      • Kollega says:

        Yeah, concerning style The Amazing Eternals showed up on my radar as soon as it was announced, simply because there are precious few games that take aesthetic inspiration from pulp magazines. Still though, what wouldn’t I give for a hero shooter, pay-once or otherwise, that’d be focused on co-op action…

        There’s Agents of Mayhem, of course, but in a bizarre twist of VG-development logic, that’s SP-only. And it just didn’t grab me, for some reason.

    • Xelos says:

      My vote would be for the excellent Warhammer:Vermimtide, although there are no follow based skills involved, only different equipment options. You can also get it for dirt cheap with the sequel coming soon

      • WhiteHawke says:

        Totally agree. Vermintide is my favorite version of Left 4 Dead. Great characters, lots of content, dark fantasy, I love it.

  2. BaronKreight says:

    Tried it. Good stuff. Will the novelty wear off soon? Probably. But it felt underwhelming to get back to regular missions after PLAIDOLON.

  3. mukuste says:

    I’m thoroughly impressed with this update. I can’t, off the top of my head, think of any update in any other game that so significantly transformed what the game is. It’s gorgeous. And all in a free to play title.

  4. brucethemoose says:

    Thing is, the rest of Warframe doesn’t really fit into this update…yet

    Matchmaking, for example, is set up around specific areas with specific levels. But the entire area counts as one “level”, meaning you don’t know what you’re randomly joining (which means most people don’t go for random games).

    As opposed to other RPGs, which usually have a quest log, Warframe is setup for 1 level, 1 quest basically. So you roam out and complete 1 task, then you (or your whole party) have to hoof it ALL the way back to the city to turn it in. You can’t put it off either: go back to your ship, and all that progress is lost.

    • RobinOttens says:

      Huh. I was expecting this area would allow multiple squads and like 60 people at once to roam it. That would make more sense. But I understand why that would be difficult to implement with how the rest of the game works.

      Maybe in a future patch.

      Having just started playing warframe last week, I’m very pleasantly surprised by it so far. Combat is a bit one sided with dumb canon fodder enemies, but the aesthetic is amazing and being a cyborg ninja is fun. I’m glad I started just in time for this update to land.

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