Warframe Gameplay Impressions

Warframe treads an area that hasn’t been throughly explored: the free-to-play console market. Instead of tacking on to the abundance of F2P MMO’s and MOBA’s out there, Warframe focuses on fast and frenetic third-person action.

All missions (excluding the mastery tests) can be played co-operatively with up to three other players, and you don’t even need a PS+ subscription to get in on the action. Micro-transactions are completely optional since everything that isn’t purely cosmetic can be unlocked without spending real-world currency. All there really is to lose is some space on your hard drive and time to download the game client. Since cost isn’t a factor, the question remains: Is it worth your time? Or will players be seeking the uninstall button ASAP?

Setup is relatively straight forward. After downloading the game client and relevant patches, you’ll be dropped into a training mission. The relatively heavy-handed tutorial plods a bit slowly, but does a decent job of preparing you for actual missions. Once completed, you’ll be taken to the main menu. From here, you can access the following:

  • Play – Select a mission which spans across the solar system
  • Keys – Access the Clan Dojo and partake in secret missions.
  • Arsenal – This is where you outfit your Tenno ranging from equipping new gear to color customization
  • Market – Predominately geared towards those who purchase Titanium with real-world currency. Players who choose not to purchase Titanium can purchase a few ready made items as well as the blueprints they’ll need to construct their own equipment, weapons, and Warframes.
  • Foundry – Construct gear here using blueprints purchases in the Market and materials obtained during missions.


Missions are spread across multiple planets representing the solar system. As players progress, they’ll earn XP on their Warframe and weapons, both of which are capped at level 30. The story-based goal of each planet is for players to complete enough missions (or nodes) to get to the boss battle. Once the boss battle has been successfully completed, players can progress to the next connecting planet. Planet-specific bosses are not the only unique thing that distinguishes planets from one another. There are 4 materials that can be found on each planet that can be used to complete blueprints. This is important for players who are opting to not purchase Titanium with real-world money. Players who want new gear and Warframes will need to grind missions repeatedly in order to obtain pertinent materials.


Players will be tasked with over 10 different mission types throughout the game. The objectives in each mission type help keep the game fresh. ‘Mobile Defense’ will require players to coordinate as they transport several datamasses to computer terminals. Any player carrying a datamass is restricted from using their primary weapon. Although players have the option to drop the datamass, this is typically inadvisable as players will want to stay mobile going up against heavy enemy resistance. ‘Survival’ has players seeking out life support modules as they make their way to extraction. Time is of the essence in ‘Survival’ so players won’t want to spend too much time fending off enemies as they progress towards subsequent life support modules.

Combat is a mix of guns and melee attacks. Players can outfit themselves with automatics, shotguns, and akimbo pistols as well as katanas, daggers, and dual heat swords to name a few. The controls for the shooting handle gracefully. ADS and auto-aim help make acquiring targets hassle-free. Anyone who has played Gears of War should feel right at home. Melee combat is a bit clumsy, but ultimately feels gratifying. Free-aim in Warframe tends to be a bit loose and has a healthy dose of aim acceleration applied to it. For Warframes with melee abilities, the controls are easier to overcome. If a player connects with a melee strike, the camera doesn’t focus on the enemy being attacked resulting in players having to fight the controls as much as the enemy. There are subtleties that can make melee more manageable, such as making sure to not be sprinting in order to correct your aim easier. Despite the melee combat’s shortcomings, it can still prove to be enjoyable. Warframe’s impressive particle effects are on display, as each strike emits sparks in every direction. Dismemberment is present too and, while it might not be to the same extreme as Gears of War, you’ll still be able to lop off arms and slice torsos without breaking a sweat.

There are a lot of mechanics that encourage players to stick together during missions. If you lose all your health, you will enter into a downed state. Don’t worry, you can’t be curb stomped, but it does trigger a bleed out timer. The only way to not bleed out is for other players to revive you. Unless you want to use a valuable revive token (you get four per day), sticking with fellow players is the best option. Loot drops are also specific to each player’s game world, so you don’t have to worry about anyone stealing valuable loot. Each level is uniquely generated so subsequent playthroughs may not play exactly the same. For example, a seemingly innocuous room the first time might trigger a security lockdown the next time, flooding you with dozens of enemies. Security lockdowns can also lead to players being split in two different rooms making the enemy onslaught even more difficult. The choice then is to find the console to disable the lock and rejoin your teammates or try to fight your way through the wave of enemies.

During the midst of some Battlefield 4 server downtime, don’t hesitate to check out Warframe. The game is free for all players, and unless you need instant gratification, money is completely optional. Warframe also fills the current void on PS4 for a third-person action title. If you want a game that blends action elements from Gears of War and character progression elements from Mass Effect, then join the community and download the game here. If you need help getting your bearings, check out the community run and thoroughly detailed Warframe Wiki.

Tom Gregorio
Editor - News / Reviews
Editor for MP1st. Eradicating Comic Sans from the internet one day at a time.
  • zacflame

    “Warframe also fills the current void on PS4 for a third-person action title.”
    I see what you did there.

    • George

      Call me stupid but I don’t get it

      • xHDx

        Warframe has a lot to do with space as you conquer missions on multiplae planets. a Void is a presumable a black whole or an empty space which can also be found in space.

        • George

          oh thanks lol

  • xHDx

    It’s a great game but it lacks different levels and environments. There are less than 10 level layouts and it get’s tedious and boring. Other than that and the store is full of premium items, its good.

    • Benjamin

      The beauty of it though is that more content can easily be added in the future

      • xHDx

        true. Alhtough I can’t see them introducing new weaponry without having to pay 🙁

        • Mike

          Dude I made every weapon I have.. I wanted to buy them but that kinda takes the fun outta it. I’m going after the Cestra now, almost at rank 4.. I do want a different Warframe, like Nova or Nekro vyt they cost 15 bucks! Im not strong enough to farm those areas with 4 people. Mag is good at start but not end game.

    • xHDx

      Well you say that. You (and me) might just be lucky to get a port thanks to the official PEGI website which has a listing for Xbox One. They still haven’t removed it.


    • DerpSlayer

      I doubt the Xbox One could run this title. More than likely you’d be looking at a slideshow

      • Guest

        Are you serious? Its been built from the Source Engine. Playstation 3 came out 2 years after that. A toaster can run this game 60fps.

        • Oblivion_Lost667

          Source? It uses Digital Extremes’ own engine, the Evolution engine, which has only been used in a few games, like The Darkness 2 and Dark Sector.

      • James K

        Now that is funny.

      • xHDx

        What are you bashing? this is developed with a very good engine and you have no clue what your talking about. You can run this on a Intel HD 2000 with 60fps. such tool.

      • Mike

        I got to say, l laughed.. I’m hooked on Warframe. Microsoft has no interest for F2P titles, thats ok because Sony and pc has it. I got a PS4 and personally love the fact Xbox wont get it.

    • dpg70

      You may have it once you let 2nd Assault go, and not a moment sooner.

  • theplantain

    my brother played this for two weeks on my ps4, now he’s addicted

  • Benjamin

    I absolutely love this game. It’s so damn addictive!

    • xHDx

      I got to level 30, but now what? I’m kinda don’t want to leave my good character but it’s maxed out pretty much.

      • Skrying

        Use a forma you can add a polarity to your characters stats and level up to thirty again making your character stronger.

      • Sgt. Mofo

        I think you get 2 character slots. I’m not crazy about MAG, but like you, I’d hate to lose my progress. As an aside – all I need is the Rhino Systems blueprint and I got another Warframe to play with. : )

    • Mike

      I been playing this instead of Battlefield. Battlefield seems so different than BF3 and honestly I’m not even interested in trying online.

  • SamRock

    Is that awful background score part of the game??