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Broken Base / Warframe

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While worth noting that a community as large as Warframe's has gotten will have some conflicting opinions about virtually anything, a few items in particular are quite polarizing.

  • Prime weapons are starting to become one of these. On the one hand they're powerful item rewards for completing missions in the Void and they're aesthetically very pleasing with gilded edges and flowing lines like the rest of the Orokin technology. They make an excellent reward for the later game play. On the other hand, they're typically direct upgrades to default weapons with significantly better stats in a number of important fields like damage and fire rate. This wouldn't be so much a problem in and of itself but a lot of people have invested rare resources in upgrading these default weapons or even bought them with real money before the Prime version came out. This has lead to some players developing "Prime paranoia" and avoiding the use of Catalysts, Formas, or heaven forbid Platinum on something that's just going to be made obsolete later. The introduction of Prime Access that allows you to directly buy Prime gear with real cash only made things worse. There are also those who find that Prime weapons and Warframes are not powerful enough over their base counterparts and complain about DE's focus on new prime weapons.
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  • The Rhino Prime frame. Up until this point, Prime frames only had extra polarities, not counting the now unobtainable Excalibur Prime. Rhino Prime has all the tanking ability of the original without the slower movement speed, making him a Lightning Bruiser even without the Vanguard Helmet. And now a Loki Prime with a bigger energy pool than the original has been released, so this appears to be the new standard for Primed Frames.
  • If the controversy over Rhino Prime's advantage over his normal counterpart wasn't big enough, Volt Prime blows it out of the water. His energy pool doubled, putting him above even Loki Prime and Nova Prime with a whopping cap of 850 using a maxed Primed Flow. His armor also increased from 15 to 100. No other Prime Warframe even comes close to the same magnitude of buffs.
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  • The Soma assault rifle is this now, too. It's an assault rifle/light machine gun hybrid with low damage... but exceptional critical stats. A properly built one will beat most weapons in the game in terms of DPS. It's also available to low-ranked players and doesn't even need Dojo research. It's since been recently changed to be available to high-ranked players, but players who already had the Soma get to keep and can continue using it. Then it got a Prime version which outpaced it. Eventually, both weapons started to fall out of favor as the power gap between rifles and other weapon categories began to show.
  • The Nova Warframe, see Game-Breaker below. There are some player which consider her to be fine and advocate that the other Warframes should be buffed to her level, while other say that she should be brought down a bit more together with the former. It doesn't help that her Prime version got an increased energy pool and more shields.
    • Ultimately the latter camp seems to have won, as Nova's abilities were adjusted around Update 13.4; though for balance and performance reasons (too many enemies dying at once could cause processing hitches from the number of ragdolls created in a single frame). Balance reviews of frames are constantly ongoing, however, so it's entirely plausible that she may be buffed back up again.
  • The Nekros Warframe. Due to his Desecrate ability (and playstyles that are built to spamming the key), he is considered something of a Crutch Character for rare mod and component farming. Even after his other abilities were buffed, the most common build for Nekros is to spam Desecrate with little emphasis on his other powers, to the point where the developers themselves show it to be the most-cast ability in the game. This has spawned several camps — those who consider spamming 3 boring and want the crutch replaced with something less Metagamey (often requesting that regular drop rates be buffed to compensate); those who want to keep Desecrate (at worst turning it into a passive loot aura) but buff his other skills; those who are unimpressed with his Necromancer title and want him to be revamped to focus on pets and debuffs; and even those who believe removing Desecrate's drops will make Nekros useless who want it to become the sole focus of the frame, with many willing to part with all three of his other abilities just to keep Desecrate.
    • Not helping matters is that the developers have since released two more Warframes with loot-manipulating powers, and augments for additional frames to do the same. Some players argue that loot-manipulating effects make playing those frames unfairly rewarding over other classes (and possibly affect baseline loot drops to compensate), as well as removing opportunities to make those frames more engaging, while others simply appreciate the boost, arguing that it's the player's choice whether or not to use these powers and that they compensate for the low firepower on frames that possess them. Still others argue that they only use those powers to provide energy and ammo to their party, though it's hard to tell whether they only say this to keep the developers away from their loot.
    • Update 18.5 released Inaros, a Warframe based on a mummy. The frame in question shares Nekros' body type and undead theming, and he can resurrect "Sand Shadow" minions of his own. Further, during Nekros' own announcement, the developers let slip that "Search the Dead" was originally planned to be a Life Drain attack (also a frequent call from players to replace Desecrate), which is a focus for Inaros. Even before his release, many players have been quick to argue that Inaros is a Suspiciously Similar Substitute designed to give players the experience of playing the necromancer they were promised without the burden of Desecrate.
  • The Gradivus Dilemma event. Partially because players were forced to choose between aiding Alad V who kidnaps, dissects and sells the parts of fellow Tenno or advancing the fascist Grineer empire in taking over another planet; and partially because getting all of the rewards required the completion of 100 Invasion missions, the highest single-player requirement of any event.
    • Most players found it easier to side with the Grineer, their sworn enemies, both because of their attachment to fellow Tenno and comparative lack of interaction with civilians the Grineer were supposedly enslaving (in fact, unless you looked at certain screens, you wouldn't even know they were going to enslave civilian areas), as well as the early rewards of the event favoring the Grineer (while scoring was based on loyalty to one faction).
  • Once upon a time, the Orthos was by far the most powerful weapon, having high DPS, range, and speed, as well as cleaving, of course; then came the Orthos Prime, which is even better in all categories. Some argue however it's worse than Galatine, seeking to buff Orthos. Of course, between Melee 2.0 and power creep in general, neither the Orthos nor its Prime version register on very many top-tier lists anymore, rendering the argument moot.
  • Update 15, Archwing, and then the Tenno Relays. Hoo boy.
    • Most players played the first week of Archwing while it was still very rough, and dismissed it forever. Weeks later it's been improved and polished a bit, to be less broken.
    • Relays, on the other hand were decried as being useless, despite having access to features unavailable elsewhere, like turning in Syndicate Medallions for reputation, and access to the Void Trader.
    • Then an event starts, where Councilor Vay Hek reveals his Balor Formorian Fleet and threatens to annihilate the Relays. The PC players actually let Hek destroy Strata Relay over Earth, just to see what would happen. All told, all three systems lost four out of their seven relays, because a sizable chunk of players refuse to even set foot into an Archwing. The fact that the event occurred over the holidays, when many players were unable to participate because they were visiting family, didn't help matters.
    • Update 17 drew quite a bit of ire with its introduction of the underwater lab tileset for Uranus. While the concept of switching between Archwing and normal gameplay sounded interesting in theory, the underwater areas slowed movement to a crawl, and the visual effects reduced visibility to a minimum. Many players were also upset that Archwing was now mandatory for progression, as opposed to an optional side mode.
    • Just when everyone had started to forget about the game mode entirely, Specters of the Rail inflamed everything again. Questionable changes to the controls and camera ended up triggering motion sickness in many players, prompting a hasty reversal of the camera changes. Archwing was even further integrated into the game's progression with the overhauled Star Chart, and inventory slots for Archwing equipment were added in with no warning. However, there were a couple bright sides; Archwing equipment was made easier to get, and the much-reviled Archwing Defense mission type was scrapped in favor of the more enjoyable Pursuit and Rush missions.
    • Apparently the game mode can't catch a break, because Plains of Eidolon brought it front and center for yet another round of complaints. This time, however, it was less about Archwing itself and more about how it was integrated into the new open-landscape area. The pre-release material for the eponymous Plains hyped up the ability to call in your Archwing to zoom around the landscape quickly, and indeed the distances involved almost necessitated this to prevent traveling from becoming a tedious schlep. The only problem? You really have to work to earn that privilege. First, your Clan needs to research the Archwing Launcher Segment; once that's done, you'll need to build the Segment for your ship, which requires materials found only in the Plains. Once you have that, you get to farm up more materials from the Plains to build consumable charges that summon your Archwing. Needless to say, that's a lot of waiting for what was supposed to be a fairly central feature. Oh, and to add insult to injury, your Archwing is much more susceptible to damage in the Plains, and taking too much damage (which happens to be less than your nominal health) drops you back to the ground. Did we mention that basically all the enemies have anti-air capabilities? Have fun.
  • Augments are usually considered fun, optional additions to frames' kits. However, they have received their own share of flak:
    • Some augments have been accused of being band-aid solutions to poorly-designed abilities or frames. This is particularly the case for augments to many early frames' first powers, such as Fireball Frenzy or Shock Trooper; without the augments, the abilities themselves offer very little damage or utility. Pilfering Swarm and Ore Gaze also offer more loot for using abilities which players consider to be problematic and difficult to use. One example of such a band-aid is the Fire Fright augment for Ember's Fire Blast; when it was announced, many players pointed out that its effect (increased chance to proc Heat status on enemies) was one that had previously been removed from Ember (believed to be an oversight during the transition to Damage 2.0) which they had been begging to see re-added to Fire Blast baseline, and that the need to mod for the effect meant taking away slots better spent on universal mods such as damage or survivability, while putting a Syndicate grind wall on a utility Ember should already have had.
    • Most augments are designed by the player Design Council, with top choices whittled down by the developers, and the final choice from those survivors voted on by the Design Council. However, the developers have occasionally negated votes made by players in favor of their preferred choices for augments. The winning vote for Vauban's Bastille, for instance, was a mod that would place a health and ammo station for players at the center of its effect; instead, the developers went for a runner-up, which cloned the effects of Vauban's Bounce. To use Fire Fright again, the winning vote was an augment to allow Fire Blast to perform a radial knockback; the resulting status chance mod wasn't even on the list, which again, was constructed by the developers. Players have complained that the limit to one winner meant fan-favorite augments would never see their way into the game; while the devs have stated they intend to allow multiple augments per ability, the system has been available over 2 years and most of the original frames still don't have augments for every ability.
  • Update 16.4 brought the False Profit event, which centered around the Tenno trying to bankrupt Nef Anyo by committing fraudulent banking transactions. It's about as interesting as it sounds, and that's only if everything goes right. Actually getting credit for the event meant hacking the Bursa, stunlocking it without killing it (with a penalty to the duration of most crowd control) for upwards of 10 minutes, then finally killing it in a very brief period, all while the Bursa chains radial knockback attacks that slow down the process (as you need to stay close to advance the transfer). However, glitches are rampant, and a third of the new Bursa enemies are quite capable of slaughtering an entire squad if the players lose focus for even a second. The other two thirds were nearly defenseless, stopped by simply keeping them next to a Frost or Loki. The end result was an event that alternates between sitting around doing nothing and resisting the urge to break something.
  • As if Excalibur Prime didn't have enough controversy, the 2015 announcement that Warframe China (working title "Star Armor") would get their own special limited-edition Founder's Pack Excalibur frame called Excalibur Umbra Prime. Cue the fanbase exploding, with many people still sore over the original Excalibur Prime being unobtainable feeling Digital Extremes is legally barred from doing this, somehow. And then Warframe China started distributing the Lato Prime, which was part of the same Founders pack as Excalibur Prime.
    • The developers quickly patched up complaints about Excalibur Umbra by declaring that they were just giving Warframe China's founders a head start, and their intent as of October 2015 was to release a (non-Primed, but virtually identical) duplicate on the Global build "before the end of the year". Over a year and a half later, the frame still has not seen Global servers (aside from players exploiting server vulnerabilities to hack it in), or even had a formal announcement of when it will be releasing. The developers have since stated that they don't want to add him in before they have a proper story justification for his existence, and eventually declared they would no longer be fielding questions about him until it was completed.
    • Umbra's release quest was formally announced at Tennocon 2017 (albeit with no ETA)... just in time to announce that Warframe China would also be shutting down later the same month. Hmm.
  • On the forums, there's an ongoing debate over whether or not Tenno are Energy Beings. It's one of those theories where the main game puts all of its evidence against it (all of the original Tenno were flesh-and-blood mutated humans who could not Body Surf), but the devs never explicitly denied it, so the supporters of the theory would tweak it however they need to to keep it valid. As of U18, the matter's been definitively settled with the Second Dream quest; needless to say, not everyone was happy with the final answer.
  • Update 17 released Exilus Adapters, which can add a mod slot to your Warframe which can only hold utility mods, to combat player complaints that they could only fit stat-affecting staples (like survivability or power-affecting mods) into their builds. While the idea of adding more mod slots was already a contentious solution (especially due to the difficulty of getting a single Adapter), Update 18 then released "Drift" mods, which can fit in the Exilus slot and increase power stats. While some players argue that the bonuses provided by Drift mods are small enough for the casual player to warrant swapping out, others have pointed out that it doesn't matter to min-maxers, who are the entire reason the extra slot got added in the first place.
  • There's quite a divide over PvP and whether or not it should be a part of such a PvE-focused game. It's completely separate from the rest of the game and has its own dedicated team within DE, but some players still feel it's a waste of resources. Even players who are okay with the mode's presence have disagreements about its current condition: some view it as a fast-paced test of actual skill, while others cynically note that it's incredibly hard for new players to get into it thanks to the lack of matchmaking options to pit them against fellow newbies. However, pretty much everyone agrees that the peer-to-peer hosting system is a terrible idea.
  • Saryn's rework with 17.10 caused quite a bit of controversy. The ultimate goal was to get players to use all of her abilities in conjunction with one another, rather than spamming Miasma to nuke entire rooms. However, many players felt that the changes made her powers too interdependent, to the point where they were nearly crippled on their own, and Saryn just didn't have the energy reserves to maintain the rate of casting her kit now demanded. Unfortunately, things rapidly devolved into a flame war between players who felt the detractors didn't have the skill required to use the new Saryn and players who felt that the rework had turned Saryn into a convoluted, incoherent mess.
  • Update 18.13 sent the fandom into a rage to the point even the developers noted that the forums achieved the highest amount of threads responding to the changes. The main point of contention were the adjustments made to Excalibur, Valkyr, Mirage, and most contentiously, the Mag and Volt reworks. For the former, they changed some abilities to make them less likely to use their Ultimates to cheese entire maps, while for the latter, Volt's reworked abilities are hampered by damage caps that seems to be counter-intuitive to making them more useful, when players are now regularly fighting Level 100 enemies in Sortie mode. Most egregiously, Mag's rework dramatically changed her abilities in an attempt to make her more effective against all enemy factions, rather her prior position as "Corpus Nuke". In the process, players are up in arms at how Mag's rework shifted her from an effective counter to scaling enemies, even if only against one faction, to a Master of None who now can somewhat damage all factions. In short, everyone is divided over whether the developers succeeded in making the players actually do more than "4 To Win", or once again nerfed their options into the ground for the sake of balance.
  • The release of Nidus and the two weapons related to him sparked a new debate, namely relating to the Hema and its research cost. In order to research an item in the Clan Dojo, Clan members need to contribute credits and resources to the appropriate research lab, with the quantity required scaling based on Clan tier. The Hema happens to require a whopping 5000 Mutagen samples for the smallestnote  Clans to research, escalating to half a million for the largestnote  Clans; prior to this, nothing had ever needed more than 65 Mutagen Samples for the smallest Clans, a number much more in line with the resource's drop rates, and 445 total Mutagen Samples was enough for the smallest Clans to complete all previous research. Needless to say, many players were outraged at such a tall order even before the developers tried to justify the decision with some specious math claiming that each Clan member would only have to contribute 500note . Things only got worse when the developers decided that they wouldn't be adjusting the costs since it wouldn't be "fair" to the Clans that had somehow managed to complete the research in that time; they were going to try to smooth things over by adjusting the drop rates for Mutagen Samples instead, but those plans were apparently scuttled when one of the developers somehow concluded that it was "raining" Mutagen Samples in the Orokin Derelict. Most players seem to think that the costs are too high and set a bad precedent, especially if future research ends up depending on the Hema, but there are some vocal individuals who don't see a problem with it. There's also a deep rift between those who agree with the developers that it's relatively easy to farm the Mutagen Samples in the Derelict and those who point out that it takes a skilled squad with all of the top-tier farming equipment to even reach those rates in the first place. Meanwhile, as time goes on, there's a contingent of bitter players who don't want the cost reduced because they suffered through the grind and therefore everyone else should as well.
  • While the Pacifism Defect event had a pretty smooth launch from a mechanical perspective, the way it handled scoring and rewards was rather controversial.
    • In previous events, the Clan and individual components were pretty firmly segregated; each player's performance only affected whether they as an individual would get the individual rewards like cosmetics, mods, and weapons, while a Clan's overall performance only affected communal rewards like trophies for the Clan Dojo. The Pacifism Defect bucked this trend, tying the new event weapon to Clan performance instead of individual performance. Like Clan research, the score thresholds for each reward tier scaled according to the Clan's size category, but, as is traditional for events with a Clan-based component, Clan rosters were locked at the start of the event, preventing larger Clans from kicking inactive players and downsizing for a challenge more appropriate for the number of active members; since a Clan's score was based on the sum of each member's best run of the final mission, this made it progressively harder to reach the higher reward tiers as you went up through the Clan size categories.
    • The next major misstep was the nature of the reward tiers themselves; while previous events had always bundled a weapon slot and pre-installed Orokin Catalyst with their weapons, the Pacifism Defect opted for three different reward tiers for the same weapon: the Participation Tier, which would only give all Clan members a blueprint for the weapon; the Victory Tier, which would give all Clan members a fully-built copy of the weapon with the traditional accouterments; and the Hardcore Tier, which would let the Clan research the weapon for an infinite supply of tradable blueprints. It didn't help matters that the score thresholds for the Participation and Victory tiers were set excessively high given the nature of the event missions, and while the threshold for the Participation Tier was quickly slashed to one-fifth its previous value, the Victory Tier threshold was not adjusted; meanwhile, the cutoffs for the Clan trophies were set so low that achieving the revised Participation tier would get your Clan the second-best trophy automatically (and only slightly higher to get the best trophy; a small clan required 250 points for Participation Tier and 260 for the Gold trophy).
    • The icing on the cake was the Hardcore Tier, which didn't have a fixed score threshold at all; instead, once the event ended, the Hardcore Tier would be awarded to the top 10% of Clans in each category. By the end of the event on PC, the minimum score to enter the "Hardcore" Tier was nearly one-third the score needed for the "Victory" Tier, with more than five times as many qualifying clans.
  • Datamining in general tends to cause a ruckus — with players on one side noting that it violates DE's privacy and goes against the EULA, while others point out that it's the only source of information like droprates or hidden stats on abilities and weapons — but after a popular dataminer on the subreddit was sent a C&D a few days before TennoCon 2017, the debate seems to have gotten much worse.
    • The droprates themselves are a point of contention too, not because they were low, but due to Digital Extremes lying about said drop rates. This was most notable when Forma was released. Several livestreams had DE say that Forma had a 15% drop rate, while dataminers found out that it was 2.3%. The fact that the Arch-Weapon parts and a specific Kubrow egg were not in the drop tables at all (meaning the only way to get them was to buy them with real money currency) at the time made things even worse. Thus, players in favor of datamining have made frequent notes that it has kept the developers honest, and that the developers should have worked with the dataminers in order to deliver accurate info to players.
    • On the other hand, prominent voices against datamining love to bring up that the receiver of the C&D went beyond posting droprates, and posted every file he decrypted, including spoilers for upcoming Warframes and weapon releases, and some of the dialogue for The Second Dream prior to its official release (having been pre-patched into the game files) onto his data repository for all to see, prompting additional rewrites by the developers for the final version. There has also been speculation that the datamining contributed to the perpetual delays behind Umbra and The War Within, since leaked early scripts for the latter included references to the former that were scrubbed by release.
  • No single Warframe has generated so much controversy as Limbo. Ever since his inception, he's done nothing but break the community in half due to his Difficult, but Awesome playstyle, which more often than not will get in the way of many people if handled poorly. To wit, his kit revolves around selectively banishing allies and enemies alike to another dimension, with his other abilities complimenting that. The problem is that if the enemy is in one dimension and you or your allies aren't, they won't be affected by anything aside from Warframe abilities, meaning that mishandling your Banish could make dealing with enemies a whole lot more frustrating than it should ever be. One ability in particular can freeze enemies stuck in that dimension...but also affect allied bullets meaning they would have to resort to either melee or abilities (as those are wholly unaffected by Limbo's rift mechanics). To say that Limbo is loathed is an understatement. Many people absolutely despise Limbo in pub matches, as he can singlehandedly dictate how everyone has to play the game. It's gotten so bad that people actually leave the game just at the mere sight of someone using Limbo. Of course, there are defenders of Limbo that say that he's also potentially one of, if not the, strongest Warframe in the right hands, allowing extremely easy and effortless victories, especially on Grineer/Infested missions or defense-oriented missions. He alone could make game-winning plays and turn the tides of an otherwise lost battle in favor of his team. Detractors often remark that while that may be true, it doesn't necessarily mean that it's going to be fun for anyone that isn't playing Limbo and that you should either play him solo, keep your ability usage to a minimum or flat-out not play him. To this day, arguments rage on whether or not Limbo should be removed, reworked to be less annoying to his teammates or left as-is.
    • And now he has a Prime.
    • Finally it seems that Limbo's team-trolling abilities have been subdued after a rework changed up his Stasis to no longer affect allied and self projectiles at the cost of halving the duration...but because of this, a new broken base has emerged between Limbo players who either see the change as pandering to the playerbase and lowering his skill ceiling and those who welcome the change and are more grateful to not be immediately shafted by teammates, albeit still having to get used to the new duration. Whether or not the freezing projectiles after-effect will be returned in one form or another has yet to be seen.
  • With the introduction to Nightwave, fans are divided by not just its execution but by how it replaced the old alerts system. To elaborate, Nightwave is a "Battle Pass"-esque seasonal system where players must finish weekly and daily challenges to rank up and earn milestone rewards. You also occasionally earn "wolf credits" which you can use to buy items that used to be limited to random alerts, most notably Nitain Extract and Vauban parts but also many other such items like cosmetic helmets, aura mods and even Orokin Catalysts/Reactors. The problem, however, is the execution, which some people either love or hate:
    • All of the challenges are on a 7-day or 3-day timer which means you have to either make time to do them in order to rank up and earn rewards, do what you can and forego some of them if you don't have time or flat-out risk losing out on the big rewards by not doing them. Detractors say that the Nightwave mode turns Warframe less into a leisurely game you can play at on your own time and more into a chore where you lose out on limited-time items if you so much as miss out on a week or two. Others enjoy the new system as it gives you something to do and also gives you freedom in choosing what you want, where in the old alert system, you had to either keep a website or the mobile app handy to see if an item you want is available as an alert. Others say that none of the higher-tier items you earn on Nightwave are mandatory and that you don't have to force yourself to do anything in those weeks if you don't want to.
    • On that note, the actual challenges Nightwave offers are even bigger cause of bickering. A good majority of them are fairly feasible challenges such as "kill X enemies with Y elemental damage" or "do X mission 3 times". Then you have some of the more "Riven"-esque challenges like "fill 5 ayatan sculptures with stars" or "complete a 60 minute kuva survival mission without using life support". Then there's the more controversial ones like "Complete a Profit-Taker bounty with friends" or "Gild a Modular Item", the former due to the fact that anyone that ISN'T already maxed standing with Solaris United is effectively locked out of the challenge and the latter seen as wasting materials/time just to finish a challenge. Some are quick to say that most of the challenges can be done and that you can skip a few if you don't want to do them, but others mention that challenges in general should not either take up a substantial amount of time at once or not force you to waste materials or incite paranoia about if future challenges will require such items again.
    • Then there's the fact that most of Nightwave's missions are more "veteran-friendly" and most newcomers or people who have yet to clear the star chart are unable to do most of those challenges unless they were grouped with veterans who were able to. Once again, the argument of "most of the higher-tier rewards are cosmetic" is brought up but others argue that the old alert system was a lot more lenient towards newcomers not forcing them to do huge challenges just to get so-and-so item. It definitely doesn't help that Orokin Catalysts/Reactors used to be more easily acquired before, and now require 75 wolf credits (of which you earn 50 of as an occasional tier reward) which means newcomers have to use a majority of their wolf credits if they want to get something that used to be "free" before.
    • On a smaller note, the Nightwave's host, Nora Night, has a fairly split fanbase. Some see her as a charming and intriguing character who allures the listener with tales of such things like the "Wolf of Saturn Six", giving us an interesting narrative to follow as we do the challenges. Others find her to be lackluster and especially annoying because as soon as you would finish any of the Nightwave challenges, she'd pop in and tell you (and presumably any outside listeners to her radio station) about your incredible feat, even if said feat was something tremendously mundane. You'll find yourself finishing the "Catch 6 rare fish" challenge only for Nora to label you as a "bad-ass".

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