Warframe celebrates its 5th anniversary with ninja loot


I’ve been watching the evolution of free-to-play space-ninja shooter Warframe on and off for thirteen years now. Back at E3, 2005, it first saw the light of day as Dark Sector, a high-concept sci-fi action RPG years before its time. Rejected by publishers, Digital Extremes settled on reworking it into a Gears of War clone while they kept the dream alive.

When the concept later resurfaced as Warframe, many wrote it off. Admittedly, it was threadbare in those early days, with limited depth and only a single environment to play in, but it grew. Oh my, how it grew. Five years from its original Steam debut, it’s celebrating by showering players with goodies, including a complete set of mid-tier weaponry, with a themed character skin to match.

Those logging in over the next two weeks will find themselves immediately gifted the Dex skin and helmet (named after the now-forgotten pilot character in the Dark Sector concept trailer) for the Excalibur Warframe. Also available via the Alert mission system will be four more rewards, including a Dex-motif syandana scarf/cloak, and a trio of similarly styled weapons: Dual short-swords, akimbo SMG pistols and a lever-action rifle that fires two bullets with every pull of the trigger.

To sweeten the deal even further, the Dex weapons come pre-equipped with Orokin Catalysts (doubling their effective mod capacity), and if you’ve managed to pick up the set in previous anniversary events, it’s still worth earning them again as each one comes with a free permanent weapon slot, something that can normally only be acquired with premium currency. If you’re new to Warframe, then these weapons will comfortably see you through a great many encounters, almost up to endgame-level difficulty.

Alongside the festivities, a new update for the game rolled out just recently, adding a little more content to the Plains of Eidolon open-world expansion. At nighttime, high-level players can now hunt two more kinds of Eidolon (giant biomechanical mechs) with friends, and during daylight hours you’ll have the option of hijacking Grineer hover-platforms for a cheap, heavily armed joyride through the skies, assuming you can get to them before their pilot does. Digital Extremes have also confirmed that the second open-world planet is going to be the Corpus-held territory of Venus.

In addition to celebrating its 5th anniversary, this July will see fans of space-ninjas assemble at Tennocon in Ontario, the game’s own community convention. I tip my hat to Digital Extremes; it may have taken them 13 years to get here, but they made it big when the world (or at least the holders of industry purse-strings) told them that nobody would care. Here’s to five years, and hopefully another five to come.

Warframe is free-to-play, and you can grab it direct from its official site here, or via Steam here. You can also check out the official anniversary celebration page here, which features some impressive animated graphs, charting the growth of the game and its player-base.


  1. BaronKreight says:

    Very positive! Warframe may have its issues but it still deserves praise. Developers may have a carefree attitude but they managed to create a good chemistry with their community. Some very dedicated fans this game has. Cheers!

  2. Solrax says:

    Love this game. I’ve played at least one Alert (short mission) a night since I started playing in September. I’ve never played a game where the grind is so much fun. Combat is just so satisfying.
    And it’s cool of them to load us up with this stuff!

    • Ushao says:

      It really is amazing how they made the grind FUN! That and they give away a lot of free stuff, even if it’s mostly cosmetic it’s still pretty awesome. Do yourself a favor and link your Warframe account to Twitch and drop in on their Dev (and other) streams. They do item drops if you watch for 30 min and they give away 1000 platinum prizes every Prime Time stream.

  3. Love Albatross says:

    Hands down the best f2p game out there imo. It’s a ton of fun with great combat and movement mechanics, and the monetisation is not excessive. You get an awful lot of game for nothing by just unlocking the map and doing the story quests.

    This giveaway is a nice starter package for new players. The rifle is especially good, and getting free weapon slots is a bonus.

  4. Fnord73 says:

    If I pick this up now, how is the starter-experience? Anyone have any hints for a newbie?

    • Ushao says:

      It’s kinda funny, it seems to depend on the person. I had a rough starter experience but that was like 3-4 years ago. My 13yo picked it up a few months ago and took to it like a fish to water. A bit of advice I’d give is don’t rush into the mechanics, there’s tons of things to do but follow your missions and learn things slowly as you go otherwise it’ll be a confusing mess. I absolutely love this game and its customizability but that’s part of its downfall too, it can be a bit -too- customizable. I still haven’t even touched some of the new stuff Plains of Eidolon mechanics but I’m still having a blast!

    • internisus says:

      I’ve gotten a lot out of BBKDragoon’s newbie videos over the past couple months. He understands the game’s shortcomings with regard to new players and helpfully explains what your incremental goals should be. He also makes a great case for why Warframe is worth playing if you haven’t actually jumped in yet. I recommend searching for his channel on YouTube.

  5. 111uminate says:

    This game, as well as its developers Digital Extremes are in a league of their own in my opinion. You have the likes of Blizzard, Ubisoft, Bethesda, your typical AAA giants who play the safe game of releasing content everyone expects. DE have carved their own path, and transformed it into a highway. I can’t say enough good things about them and Warframe.