Developer(s) –Digital Extremes
Publisher(s) – Digital Extremes
Artist – Michael “Mynki” Brennan
PEGI – 18
Warframe is an online free-to-play third-person shooter, made in roughly the same vein as Metal Gear Rising, but with considerably less swordplay involved, and more detailed graphics. At first, I had skepticism that this game would prove to be pretty straightforward and generic, but after playing, I was proven somewhat wrong, since there elements of it that seemed to have influenced some of the biggest games to have come out in the eighth generation so far.
Graphics – 7/10
The visuals are pretty well done for a game developed by a third party, that came out upon the release of a new console; the level of detail is particularly impressive, and the conceptual design also has its strong points. For example, the wide variety of different warframes (the game’s variant on futuristic suits of armor), is extremely well thought out, made even better with the facility of customization. There are a few issues with the loading of textures, but for the most part, I was impressed with how well the game looks overall.
Gameplay – 7/10
The gameplay in Warframe is also surprisingly varied, with a combat system consisting of not only third-person shooting but of swordplay, leveling up, and the use of special abilities unique to each fighting class. The main thing I will criticize it for is its lack of side quests since even games as linear as this have at least one of them; games like Gears of War and Uncharted. Nevertheless, the combat system is pretty addictive, and each level is quite varied in terms of how many main objectives there are to do in each one.
Controls – 7/10
Unfortunately, there are a few issues with the game’s control scheme. One of which, and the most standout one, in my opinion, is that the climbing mechanism seems to have been handled quite clumsily since there are some climbs players will probably think should be made, and aren’t, creating issues of inconsistency. Another gripe I have is that it can be unnecessarily difficult to effectively execute certain special moves, including the Slash Dash, as it’s overly easy for CPU enemies to move out of the way. Another big problem I have with the game’s controls is that from time to time, the game’s main antagonist can pop up with voice messages, but with time, the holographic image of his head takes up almost half the screen. I get that the developers did this to try and impose a level of fear within gamers, but for me, it’s much more of a hindrance than the developers intended. Otherwise, however, the game plays out smoothly enough.
Lifespan – 5.5/10
Taking all missions into account, including alert missions, the game can last up to 8-10 maximum. Even compared to games such as Gears of War and Uncharted (which though are among some of my favorite games of all time, are far too short), this is an incredibly underwhelming amount of time for a game of its kind to last. Even if it is free, there are other games on both the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade free not only to paying subscribers but to anyone with an account, that can be made to last much longer.
Storyline – 6/10
The story behind Warframe is that the Tenno, a race of ancient warriors awoken from years of stasis, is plunged into war with three other races; the Grineers, the Corpus, and the Infested. It’s particularly standard for a science fiction game, and there’s not a great deal present to differentiate it from the likes of Gears of War or Halo. The only strong point I can highlight bout it is that the character of Captain Vor is very well brought to life by his respective voice actor, Kol Crosbie, and the character of Ordis does provide some basis in comic relief. It’s actually quite interesting to consider how similar both Ordis and the ghost from Destiny are; though Ordis provides a lot more personality in my opinion.
Originality – 6/10
There aren’t a lot of games made in this manner that present such varied combat, but in terms of story and inclusion side missions, I think Warframe does fall short of how unique a game it could have been if there had been more added to it. At the time of the release of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, it would have been considered just a game to tide people over before greater and varied releases would come out, but for the people who chose to align with it beyond that point, I believe more could have been done to accommodate for them.
In summation, Warframe is a better game than I expected it would be at first, but I’m still able to express too many concerns about it for me to consider it a classic, or even one of the better games on the PlayStation 4 or Xbox One so far. There are a few hours of enjoyment to be had out of it, but after that, there’s not much cause for players to pick it up again, except maybe to play it on a harder difficulty.