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Paws-on: Warframe

Warframe by Digital Extremes
Multiplayer Co-op
PC only

Looks like free-to-play games are becoming good lately.
There is the bad Free-to-play, where you can play for free, but you have to pay to enjoy it, and it will try turn you into some sort of addict (And the usual slow update, no customer service, etc etc)
And there is the good one, who can be played without paying a buck from start to finish, and you won't mind landing a buck or two just because you like the game, and not because you GODDAMN HAVE TO.

Warframe is part of the Good free-to-play crowd (Like Blacklight)
The game is still quite young, but it's a game made by developers who wanted to make this game years ago.

Some of you may remember Dark Sector, and if you don't, it's... normal.
Dark Sector is this: http://youtu.be/fnsjVO3Y6Rw
Why am i talking about Dark sector? Because Warframe is actually what Dark Sector should have been, but the developers had to change everything because of what the the Publisher wanted, if i remember correctly (So don't quote me on that). They felt it wasn't the game they wanted when it came out. So years later, they make Warframe, which is... A Futuristic Space Ninja Action Game.
The concept itself is great, You are some sort of Ninjas, raiding Space stations and ships in a distant future, using Rifles, Pistols or melee weapon, and your agility to wreak havoc... In Coop. if it doesn't sound cool enough, i don't know what could.

Also, you are not human, actually you don't really know what you are... Some sort of hyper-genetically enhanced human or something, with a strange organic-like armor, great martial skills, and deep amnesia (Cryostasis isn't good for memory it seems) also, strange feet.
The only thing you know is from an agent who call herself Lotus. You are a Tenno, and she is the only friendly face around (Except you never really see her)
Your character wake up in a Solar system full of peoples that either hates you, or want to sale your peoples artifacts (Including still-in-stasis Tenno)

So that's what you learn in the first minute of the game: Everyones hates you, you know jack sh*t, and you are the most awesome thing in the universe.

The game is a Third person shooter, but without the usual cover system that every TPS seems to use nowadays.
You can use a good amount of different guns, such as Assault Rifles, Sniper, Pistols (Akimbo included) Shotguns, and even a Bow.
Each of them are used differently, obviously. You can go close and personal with the shotgun, or try to silently kill enemies with the Bow.
You also use Melee weapon, from Katana to Two-handed axes. Not much to say what they do, i think it's self-explanatory.

The firearms feels good. I don't like the sound of some guns, but that may be a personal tast.
Every gun act differently, so you pretty much know what you will like. And, even if there is no crosshair bloom, they have a slight recoil, so you will have to control them.
The Melee weapons feels better, you quickly slash through enemies with smooth animations, and the heavier weapons shake your camera like hell (And your coop friend's camera too if he is close)

The game looks good, the game is well optimized, i didn't had FPS drop even with lots of sh*t happening on my screen, and there is quite a lot of effects and bloom and stuff (There is a bit too much bloom sometimes, though) and it's quite stable for a Beta, as i only had a couple of crash in 70 hours of game play.
The art style is nice, your character looks strange, and the enemy looks different depending on the faction they are. The animations are good, and there is a lot of moves (hey, it's a Ninja game) you can slide, run against wall, backflip, wall jump, etc...
Not always useful, but if you have to completely destroy your enemies, at least do it with (ninja) style.

The Sounds are good, but the music is even better.
It's a type of music not commonly used, even more in Sci-fi game which usually use dubstep-techno-whatever-stuff, but in Warframe, it's some of pseudo-traditional Japanese music. My only complain is that sometime the music don't react exactly how it should (Sometime the music stop when there is still action, or keep playing when there is none)

Enemies are actually smart, not super-duper smart, but still smart. They use cover, and usually avoid to stay close to you, or change cover as soon as they take hits from the cover they actually use.
There is different factions, and different enemies in each factions. The Factions also don't fight the same way.
There is the Grineer, remain of the humans, who use a lot of Clone Marines with ranged weapons, and use the covers a lot, even using a Shield guy as a cover (Smart AI, told you) rarely using melee against you.
There is also the Corpus, who use lots of robots and drones, who don't use cover but are quite resilient.
And there is the Infected, which are Grineer and Corpus infected by Nano machines which mutated them badly; they use a swarm tactics, and only use melee. Missions with infected somewhat looks like a more Actiony Dead Space, i've got to say.

The game use procedural level creation, and if you don't know what it mean, it's like... a puzzle, except each piece can be put next to any other. Diablo use this too, as an example.
This mean, even if you start the same mission, you will have a different level (using the same rooms, though) which give the game a longer longevity.
There is different type of level: Ships, Mining Stations, and Ground level (Only Snowy landscape, so far)

There is a leveling and crafting system.
Your character and weapons level up to 30, gaining experience as you use them, and making them more powerful through the use of Modules which grant more Life, Armor, or special abilities.
You can also craft weapons and such, requiring materials you find during missions, and in-game money. Also, crafting takes time, taking from 12h to 3 days to make an item.

The Story is mostly hidden, or given bit by bit. Though, you may completely ignore the story, play the game as you like, and enjoy it for all the action it gives.
If you like to learn about the story in a game, you will find clues here and there, or theories about it, but there is some... Dark sectors (Pun! pun! pun!) which leave some questions. Maybe there will be more answers in the future.

The game can be played solo or online in cooperation with either random peoples or friends.
I've got to advise, playing with random peoples is usually not that good for immersion (If you like that kind of thing) it usually end up in a rush, or farming fest. It's only good if you want to quickly farm some resources, or get rid of the missions you can't do alone.
Playing solo is a lot more immersive, but also harder, and a mission may take a long time to finish, as the game don't seem to scale depending on the number of players.
The best is probably to play with friends, as they probably will play as you do; but joining a friends session is a bit hard sometime (Mostly due to Firewalls)

Finally, the economy of the game allow you to either play the game without paying, and crafting what you want (You can craft every weapons, and characters of the game) or directly buy them with real money, if you are impatient.
The only thing that in-game money can't buy is Colors, and Characters and Weapons slots. But the Slots are quite cheap, and the colors are only cosmetic.

So, in the end, Warframe, is definitively a cool game about Space Ninjas, made by developers who wanted to make it long times ago and have the will to do so... and succeed.
The game is still in beta, and even if the game use procedural leveling creation, and have a bunch of different missions, the game may become repetitive to some peoples.
But others will enjoy a game with actions, guns, robots, nano-sentient-zombies, and badass space ninjas.
The game is also updated often, which is a good thing obviously.

Warframe Videos:
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Added: 5 years, 11 months ago
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