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This page covers tropes in Warframe.

Tropes A to D | Tropes E To H | Tropes I to M | Tropes N to S | Tropes T to Z


  • Early Installment Weirdness:
    • From 2012-2014, the story was generally in the vein of Star Wars, being a fairly standard 'empowered, honorable space warriors struggle against vast evil empire' Space Opera, and closer in tone to darkSector (Dark Sector, after all, was meant to be Warframe). New codex entries, along with the Second Dream and the War Within, began putting much more emphasis on the Orokin, their mysticism, and their evilness by making them directly responsible for the creation of the Grineer Empire's bloodthirsty fascism and Corpus greed, as well as emphasizing non-Warframe abilities used by the player character.
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    • Prior to the Second Dream, lore generally implied or supported the idea of Warframes being Powered Armor the Tenno wore, as well as the Tenno being much like a samurai/knight caste for the Orokin. The Second Dream and The War Within both stated that the Warframes aren't worn — they're built around organic constructs, and that the Tenno are really superpowered teenagers granted psychic (and more) energies by the Void and shaped into becoming super-soldiers for the Orokin via the Warframes, while dropping some of the more Samurai/Knight implications with the indoctrination and training of the Tenno. The game changed Warframe "helmet" to "neuroptics" to reflect it.
    • Following on this, part of the reason Alad V was reviled was that he was explicitly killing Tenno, according to the Gradivirus Dilemma, Zanuka, and his assassination introduction. Post-Second Dream, it is made explicit the Operators/Tenno are separate from their Warframe. Lotus' assassination lines for Alad V still exist in regards to killing him for the murder of Tenno, however.
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    • In closed and very early open beta, the Lotus would announce that the Lotus would be pleased with the Tenno's performance, presumably as a holdover from early darkSector designs which featured The Lotus Rebellion as an organization. Later updates changed lines like "the Lotus will be pleased" to "I am pleased". She also used to speak much less formally, even using mild profanity(!) occasionally. A few holdovers remain, notably her use of "nobody" instead of the more formal "no-one".
    • Warframes used to have a progression tree before a mod system. Additionally, previously Warframe abilities used to be mods that had to be earned, leveled and equipped like any other, before they (and the extra slots they took up) were removed and you gained and upgraded abilities simply by leveling up your frame.
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    • Every grid was a Corpus ship for a long time, with English Canned Orders over Loudspeaker from Rebecca herself, announcing ship status and alarms.
    • The first Tenno weapons that weren't used by anyone else, like the Braton and Lato, had Corpus features (boxy designs and gray metal). It was later explained as the Corpus, who'll work for anyone who has cash, making inferior copies of the actual Orokin weapons for the Tenno.
    • Grineer goons spoke clear English, and Corpus grunts had a MUCH more gutteral, animalistic screech for speech.
  • Earth That Was: Earth was abandoned at some point in the distant past, and has since been reclaimed by nature. What parts of it are not polluted, Infested or otherwise toxified are shown to be haunted steppe plains littered with Sentient wreckage or overgrown jungles of Orokin-engineered 'super weeds' meant to keep the land out of the hands of any who might claim it. There are off-hand mentions in the lore of Orokin "cities" existing on Earth in the deep past, and at least one Tower still remains from that age, but most of the planet is wild and unwelcoming. Which makes the Grineer's claim on it shaky at best. Vay Hek tried to reclaim Earth through the use of the Cicero toxin, in order to stop Earth's jungle from growing endlessly. His attempt, however, was thwarted by the Tenno.
  • Elaborate Equals Effective: The highly-decorative Prime weapons are nonetheless a step above their vanilla counterparts.
  • Eldritch Location/Genius Loci:
    • Orokin Towers, hidden away in dimensional folds and only accessible by a one-use key. Each Tower is filled with traps and still defended by some form of Artificial Intelligence called a Neural Sentry. It seems that anyone who dies in a Tower is upgraded with Orokin tech and brainwashed to serve the Tower's Neural Sentry. The Towers have a white-gold color scheme, and are full of weird features like root-like growths sprouting from the walls, and waterfalls that flow upwards. They also contain many secrets and valuable treasures from the Orokin era, waiting to be rediscovered.
    • With the Tower Key/Relic conversion, "Void" is now a star map location much like the other planets of the Origin System. There are several different paths into the Void, and each leads to a different array of leveled content: 15-25, 25-35, and 35-50. This trope was subtly applied at the end of "The War Within", when the Void itself seems to speak both through and to the Tenno.
    • Cetus and the Plains of Eidolon exist in the shadow of the Unum, a massive Orokin tower that is mined for its meaty flesh and once possessed (or still does possess) a consciousness of its own.
    • And said Plains of Eidolon contain not only the "bones" of the sentient defeated by Gara and the Unum, but also its fractured consciousness, which twists pieces of debris into ambulatory entities known as eidolons, hunks of stone and tree which lumber to and fro in the Plains. It also imbues all the water on the Plains with its spectral, wispy energy.
  • Elemental Powers Elemental: In the classic fire, ice, and electrical flavours, plus Toxin as a fourth element, as well as six other elements that are created by combining two of the main elements. All of them have a special effect;
    • Heat does high damage to the cloned flesh of the Grineer and most of the Infested, especially the smaller ones, with a chance to cause enemies to burst into flames and take damage-over-time while they panic about being on fire. It barely does anything to advanced shields.
    • Cold has a chance to significantly slow enemies down (both movement-wise and in terms of attack speed) and does additional damage to basic shields, certain types of armour, and extremely tough Infested tissue, but is ineffective against standard Infested flesh. Additionally, enemies killed by Cold damage may shatter into pieces.
    • Electric damage stuns enemies, with a chance to chain damage to additional targets. It deals more damage to mechanical targets, and less damage to alloy armour.
    • Toxin damage is more harmful to humanoids with a chance to deal damage-over-time straight to the target's health, but is less effective versus robots and Infested.
    • Blast damage combines Heat and Cold damage and can knocks most enemies onto the ground (as a bonus, enemies killed with Blast damage are launched far away). Grineer machines are highly susceptible, but their rank and file are resistant.
    • Corrosive damage combines Electric and Toxin damage to possibly remove a quarter of an enemy's armour permanently. Obviously armoured enemies are vulnerable to this, just not proto-shields.
    • Gas damage combines Heat and Toxin damage that can envelope an enemy in a deadly cloud that does Toxin damage to it and anyone else nearby. While it doesn't fare well to flesh, it ignores shields and is highly effective in large groups, especially against the Infested.
    • Magnetic damage combines Cold and Electric damage to do very high damage to shields, with a chance to lower them by 75%. Tenno also lose most of their energy and end up with an Interface Screw. Grineer troops in Alloy armour are resistant to it though.
    • Radiation damage combines Heat and Electric damage that can confuse enemies and cause them to attack one another (for Eximus units though, their effects are just turned off). When a Tenno is affected they lose some accuracy and can now suffer from Forced Friendly Fire that can rub off on allies. Heavy Grineer troops, Corpus robotics and tough Infest flesh are all susceptible, but almost all of the rest of the Infested are highly resistant to it.
    • Viral damage combines Cold and Toxin and can cut both maximum and current health in half (just not on bosses obviously). While nothing likes losing most of its health, the damage hits humanoids the worst while the basic Infested and the Grineer's machines can take it.
    • As of Update 22, there is now an Element Number Five: Void damage, dealt exclusively by the Operator's attacks, particularly their Void Beams and Amps. It's not effective on Grineer flesh and machines, as well as some of the Infested, but has disruptive effects on Sentient defensesnote . Void damage has a chance to create a magnetic sphere around enemies which will drag in incoming projectiles.
  • Elemental Rock–Paper–Scissors: Even physical damage is divided into three types, impact, puncture, and slash, each effective against different enemy types (shielded, armored, and fleshy respectively). Then there are four base elemental damage types, heat, electric, cold, and toxin. Combining two of these will create one of six secondary elemental damage types, blast, corrosive, gas, magnetic, radiation, and viral. Each enemy in the game has several different resistances and weaknesses to various damage types, and different elemental attacks have a chance to proc different special effects, such as knocking enemies down, setting them on fire, reducing their armor, confusing them into attacking their allies, or creating clouds of poison gas.
  • Elite Army: The Tenno, whose emphasis is on small numbers of highly elite soldiers, waging a war by acting as special forces to make precision strikes.
  • Elite Mooks:
    • Grineer Heavies, which come in Napalm, Bombard, and Heavy Gunner flavours. They look like upscaled, recolored versions of standard Grineer Soldiers and/or Ballistae, but are tougher and have more powerful attacks, as well as an annoying ground pound attack. Grineer Commanders are another type, just as tough, lightly armed, but have an annoying enemy ability to swap places with a player. And seeing as they tend to use it while in the middle of a lot of Grineer Mooks, well.
    • In a slightly more literal example, there are Elite Lancers; these tougher troopers have a higher armour value and use the Hind burst-fire rifle in place of the Grakata. Their accuracy and power was underestimated at first, and they had to be nerfed fairly hard. Ironically, in the hands of the Tenno, the Hind is severely underpowered, while the Grakata is decent but Overshadowed by Awesome.
    • The Nightwatch Corps is this for the rest of the Grineer army. Their ranks consist solely of improved versions of other Grineer units — tougher, packing new weapons with stronger damage and different behavior, and often displaying special abilities that regular versions of the unit do not have. Plus, they have some units unique to them, namely Bailiffs, extremely heavily armoured melee fighters with Charge Attack, and Reavers, who are Bailiffs with a jetpack and Helion's missile attack. In addition, they have a red and black color scheme to distinguish them, and the lore portrays them as a no-nonsense and competent force, in contrast with the main bulk of Grineer troopers.
    • Additionally, the Grineer also have the Elite Kuva Forces, which, fittingly, are only found on the Kuva Fortress. ALL of the Kuva Grineer are significantly better armed than their normal counterparts (for reference, a normal Lancer wields a Grakata SMG while a Kuva Lancer will wield the Kohm plasma shotgun.
    • Corpus MOAs have bigger, tougher variants — the area knockdown Shockwave MOA, the ranged stagger/wall-penetrating Railgun MOA, and short ranged, face-melting, drone-deploying Fusion MOA. There are also Elite Crewmen now, packing Flux Rifles, who make up for their lack of armor with long-range flux rifles that do the same damage as Fusion MOA.
    • Elite Zombie: Finally, the Infestation also has the Ancients (Ancient Healer, Ancient Disruptor, Toxic Ancient) which are bigger and tougher infested foes. The Healer heals nearby Infested, the Disruptor can eradicate your shields and energy with a single hit, and the Toxic Ancient's gas cloud ignores your shields.
    • Lephantis and Phorid would also qualify, being the Infested Bosses for the Orokin Derelict and Invasions respectively. Lephantis is a towering mass of amalgamated bodies which fused to create a three headed monstrosity, with 2 heads with toxin-based ranged attacks and the last head sporting a gigantic scythe. Phorid is a powered-up Charger that can fire homing quills from his back, and emit a radial sound-blast to stagger his enemies.
    • Some Ancients are sometimes presented as "bosses" in alert missions, despite being completely normal units. J-3 Golem, a former boss, was the same way prior to his removal, but in a permanent boss position.
    • Update 12 added Eximus enemies, which are stronger versions of regular enemies that also have additional special abilities, including but not limited to Mana Drain and a knockoff of Frost's Snow Globe.
  • The Empire: The Grineer, who conquered Earth a long time ago and have spread their empire out to the rest of the solar system.
  • Endless Daytime: It never gets dark in the Orb Vallis region on Venus - Venus's already very long day cycle is extended by an orbital mirror array that collects and redirects light into the region, ensuring that night never sets there.
  • Enemy Civil War:
    • The Grineer are clearly bickering amongst themselves, fighting for leadership and control of various holdings and resources. Powerful warlords like Vay Hek and Sargas Ruk pursue their own interests in the guise of helping the Empire. Klingon Promotion and You Kill It, You Bought It seem frequent, with the rank and file not even contesting hostile takeovers in some cases.
    • Several builds ago, the Grineer would raid Corpus ships, or vice versa. It was a rare occurrence, but still a possibility. The infested can join the fun, as well. This feature seems to have been disabled, and/or eventually upgraded into the full-on Invasions system. It's now active as the Crossfire mission type, which can appear on certain planets. Mechanically, it's an Invasion Extermination... except you don't pick a side. Grineer and Corpus alike will be firing at you as much as each other, and you're expected to do the same.
    • The Hunt for Alad V has Corpus board member Frohd Bek offering to give Alad's location up to the Tenno if they help him deal with the Infested, out of fear that Alad would take the chairmanship if his Zanuka Project succeeds.
  • Enemy Mine:
    • One weekend event, Operation Sling-Stone, has shown the Corpus (grudgingly) reward the Tenno for taking out a fleet of Grineer ships meant for a special operation against the Corpus. The prize were some ammo conversion mods.
    • The very next weekend saw Operation Arid Fear, where the Corpus were now hiding the locations of Grineer settlements from the Tenno because the Grineer were paying them a small fortune.
    • The fact that the basic rifle for the Tenno was Corpus in design (Before DE completely remade the weapon) is handwaved by the Corpus willing to work with anyone for the right amount of cash.
    • The Gradivus Dilemma was this again, albeit adding in Sadistic Choice and We ARE Struggling Together. The Corpus and Grineer are warring again at the eponymous place and the Tenno are called to make a choice — side with the Corpus to prevent the Grineer from gaining ground, but letting them get their hands on some Tenno in cryosleep? Or side with the Grineer to save those slumbering Tenno, but letting the Grineer grow in strength? The Lotus has refused to prescribe which side a Tenno should choose, with the result that Tenno are competing with each other.
    • The Hunt For Alad V has Corpus board member Frohd Bek sending some MOA and Shield Ospreys to help the Tenno clear the Infested ships in Jupiter.
    • The Tenno are stated to be enforcing the 'balance' between the Grineer and Corpus now, and can side with either faction during invasions as they see fit. As before, Battle Pay is awarded for assisting them.
    • And it doesn't matter how much the various sides hate each other: once the Infested show up on the scene, everyone cuts the squabbling and works together.
    • Like the Gradivus Dilemma before it, the Tubemen of Regor event gives the Tenno a choice between two rival factions with conflicting goals. Alad V desires Tyl Regor's research into genetic repair, which he believes can cure him of the Infestation. Nef Anyo would prefer to keep Alad V out of the way, bribing the Tenno to destroy the research instead. Naturally, Tyl Regor's not very happy with either side or the Tenno.
    • The Second Dream quest has two different examples. Right off the bat, you learn that Stalker is working with the Sentients. Partway through, Alad V offers to help Lotus and the Tenno, reasoning that the Sentients were probably a bigger threat.
    • Operation Shadow Debt has the Tenno helping Alad V yet again, this time defending him from the Stalker's Acolytes.
  • Energy Weapons: This is the specialty of the Corpus, although the other factions have created a few of these as well.
  • Escort Mission:
    • Rescue objectives sound like they could be hellish... fortunately, they're not. The Hostage you have to rescue is armed with a very basic pistol when they are first found, and always tries to take cover when he isn't running between multiple players trying to figure out who to follow, and has strong shields and lots of health, despite being essentially naked. However, the hostage can be armed — a player can hand the hostage their secondary weapon. Their level-capped, Orokin-Catalyst upgraded, fully-modded murderous secondary weapon, that can be anything from a magnum pistol to dual fully-automatic nail-guns, to a beam-spewing flux pistol, which the player would be fully capable of beating a level using exclusively from start to finish.
    • Unfortunately, the "VIP" variant of the Defense mission type (always used in sorties and only by sorties) has a major difference compared to the regular rescue escorts — the operative you need to defend just walks around aimlessly rather than hunker down in the most defensible position.note  This basically becomes frustrating for Frosts who have to keep laying down snow globes when the VIP wanders off, even in a firefight. Thankfully, unlike regular defense missions, the operative can be revived as many times as needed as long as they don't bleed out first. And on occasion, if you're lucky, the VIP will wander into a linear dead-end corridor and not leave for a good while, creating a choke point that turns the enemy horde into a shooting gallery.
    • The Defection mission type is closer to the typical trope example, but is still rather forgiving. The escorties you have to protect are more on the fragile side and stick to the weapons they start with. But they don't wander off, staying near med stations until you tell them to move, after which that they obediently beeline for the evacuation point or the next medstation without being distratced by anything, they can still be revived even if the revival window for them is rather small, there are several dedicated consumable items that can help them, and most importantly, many healing and support warframe powers affect them, making the job of escorting them much easier.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • The Gustrag Three are psychopathic to the point of slaughtering fellow Marines, simply because their ship was taking too long to get to the action. When Sargas Ruk learns about this, he is disgusted that Vay Hek, who ordered their rehabilitation, would find use for traitors, and warns him that he'll regret it when they stab him in the back.
    • As much as the Corpus epitomize Corrupt Corporate Executive, even they found Alad V's actions reprehensible.
  • Every Man Has His Price: Invoked by Alad V during the Gradivus Dilemma; he offers to double whatever Sargas Ruk is giving the Tenno to fight for him if you sided with the Grineer. Perhaps unfortunately, you can't actually take this offer.
  • Evil Gloating: Alad V invokes this if you sided with him during the Gradivus Dilemma, telling you not to worry about your friends in Cryosleep, because he has grand plans for them. This, to the Tenno who are trying to stop him and his buddies from being steamrolled by the much stronger Grineer.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: The Once Awakened quest shows that originally, the Technocyte plague was originally not a problem... until a certain Grineer, Dr. Tengus, decided to see if it would make a good weapon. One inevitable containment breach later and the Infested threaten the entire Origin System. And then he has the temerity to blame the Tenno for the breach and tries to take credit for the (not entirely successful) containment of the initial outbreak.
  • Evil Makes You Ugly: The Grineer are all clone troopers and their genetic stagnation really shows in their faces. Most of the Grineer bosses have been cybernetically modified and augmented to the point where very little of their original flesh is left and only their decaying faces remain as a key to the human origins they disgrace. Contrast Cressa Tal, who, despite being ex-Grineer, only has a scar on her lip to show for it.
  • Evolving Weapon: The Paracesis sword is the game's first example, being a weapon which performance can be improved with time through means other that putting mods on it. However it's quite a Guide Dang It! as none of this is explained in-game and it's up to players to figure it out through trial and error. Namely, putting Forma on it increases its mod capacity beyond 30 points, which can be done up to 5 times. Additionaly, with each Forma up to 5th it inflicts additional damage on the Sentients, and at the 5th Forma it gains the ability to reset their resistances.
  • Exactly What I Aimed At: In "The Profit" trailer, Zanuka dodges Banshee's thrown Glaive... which goes on to hit the control apparatus Alad V is wearing.
  • Excuse Plot: The game began with one; you are part of a clan of space ninjas, fighting to push fascist space assholes and their army of degenerate clones out of the known Solar System, and crush some corrupt corporate goons, and deal with a 'technocyte plague' that's overrunning countless ships, stations, and colonies. Later updates have been adding more and more lore, backstory, and character depth; so far this has culminated in the Second Dream, a major Wham Episode that heavily invokes Nothing Is the Same Anymore.
  • Experience Booster: Affinity Boosters can double experience gained for a limited time. They can be purchased or earned from Daily Bonuses.
  • Exploding Barrels: Bright red-and-orange barrels with little red lights — they are plentiful on most levels. The Orokin have them disguised as ceramic storage containers — look for the red slits and smoke coming out the top. Even more varieties have been added in, such as the Corpus cryo-barrels (handy for punching through those shields.)
  • Eyeless Face: The Tenno do not have eyes, or at least not ones visible on the Warframes themselves (with a couple possible exceptions). This is lampshaded by Alad V, who tells Tenno fighting for him that they finally see eye-to-eye in the fight against the Grineer, and immediately corrects himself on that. He makes similar comments while helping the Tenno in the Second Dream quest.
  • Faceless Goons: Many (but not all) of the Grineer soldiers wear faceplates. The plates don't seem to reduce how much damage the troopers take from headshots though. The glowing eyes just make them easier to headshot in the dark, in fact. Then there's the Corpus personnel, who all wear giant bulletproof box helmets. For their enemies, the Tenno must appear to be this.
  • The Faceless: The Tenno never remove their helmets. What they actually look like, or actually ARE, is anyone's guess. As it turns out, the Tenno have faces- but they're not inside the helmets at all. They're fairly ordinary-looking teenagers. However, what lies beneath the helmets of the warframes was unknown until The Sacrifice, where it's revealed (courtesy of Excalibur Umbra) that underneath the helmet is a Dax soldier that has been infected with a specially cultivated strain of Infestation. One helmet even reveals a single, sightless eye under a stretch of raw red muscle.
  • Fashionable Asymmetry:
    • Event badges and several Warframes have always had this effect. As of Update 13, players can mix-and-match armor on either shoulder or leg of their Warframe, as well as wings on their Sentinel.
    • Banshee has a large spike on one shoulder and nothing on the other.
    • Valkyr's default helmet plays this for drama: Alad V had been steadily dissecting and disassembling her.
    • All of Equinox's helmets feature this effect. Typically, her day form's versions will be a mirrored, color-flipped version of her night form's, while her composite form will merge the two together.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Anyone who dies (and isn't a Tenno) in an Orokin lair is indoctrinated and warped into becoming eternal guardians. Also any poor soul unlucky enough to be assimilated by the Infested. Body Horror personified.
  • Fighting with Chucks: The Tenno can utilise the Ninkondi nunchaku in their arsenal to obliterate and shock enemies.
  • Fire-Breathing Weapon: Grineer Scorches (and the players, with some Clan research) use the Ignis, a handheld flamethrower which does moderate damage to unarmored targets, can hit multiple enemies at once, penetrates walls, and can be modded to shoot hot-pink radiation blasts that freeze the target, or electrified explosions, or corrosive fire, or...
  • First Person Snapshooter: Update 11 added a "Codex Scanner" that can be used on enemies for experience as well as information on their vital statistics such as health, armour, shields, any vulnerabilities or resistances to certain damage types, locations where that enemy can be found, and items dropped. Update 16 added the Sanctuary, which lets the Tenno earn reputation with Cephalon Simaris for doing this, to be redeemed later for special items. For lazy Tenno, the Helios Sentinel can do this for the player automatically, though there is a notable lag and acquire time between the scanning, as a trade-off. The Heliocor hammer can also do this for any enemy that it kills, as long as the wielder brings either kind of scanner to the mission.
  • Fishing Minigame: Added with the Plains of Eidolon update. Uniquely, it isn't actually a minigame — instead, you just equip a fishing spear from your gear, take aim by the water, and wait for fish to spawn. There are four things you can do with your catches:
    • Cut them up into bait, which awards you components that can be used in crafting.
    • Offer them to the Ostrons, netting you standing with them in proportion to the size and rareness of the fish.
    • In the case of larger fish, you can make them into trophies that can be mounted on your orbiter's walls.
    • Finally, you can also put them in an aquarium in the personal quarters part of your orbiter.
  • Flash Step:
    • Grineer Flame-Blades and other high-tier melee Grineer, as well as the bosses that resemble them, offset their melee only weaponry by the ability to teleport right next to you. Usually behind you.
    • The Stalker also likes to teleport right behind you.
    • Ash can do this with his Teleport.
    • Loki can flash-swap using his Teleport Swap power. Infamously portrayed in a Mashed video to allow the Tenno in question to defeat Alad V without dealing with Zanuka by letting himself be tackled by Zanuka and then teleport-swapping Alad V right before Zanuka delivers the death strike.
  • Flunky Boss:
    • Not intentionally, perhaps, but bosses often have a decent sized group of mooks on hand to help out, and provide ammo/energy drops for the players. The only boss that doesn't really have mooksnote  has regular energy/ammo drops into his arena from overhead rails.
    • Vay Hek invokes this, as one of his primary abilities is to buff nearby Grineer, which wouldn't work if there were no Grineer to buff.
  • Flying Cutlery Spaceship: The Grineer galleons have dozens of prongs protruding from their hulls, giving them an appearance of giant insects.
  • Foe-Tossing Charge:
    • The first ability of the Rhino warframe, which knocks down any foes that aren't literally vaporized. Hydroid's Tidal Surge power likewise sends the user rushing forward, scattering foes in their wake.
    • On the other side of the barricades we have an Infested Juggernaut, who possesses a charge attack that scatters any Tenno who did not move away in time.
    • There's even a pet that can do this, along with hooking enemies with a retractable lash.
  • Force-Field Door: Some doorways on Grineer tilesets are tied to a Sensor Bar which means the entrance is covered in a forcefield. You can pass through it, but it will strip away your shields, completely deplete your energy and screw with your HUD similarly to a Magnetic proc.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You:
    • During the Tethra's Doom event, Councilor Vay Hek interrupted the developers' livestream mid-sentence.
    • If the Grustrag Three or Zanuka Harvester defeat you, the game will try its absolute damndest to keep you from force-quitting the game until after they've properly set off their Non-Standard Game Over.
  • Fragile Speedster: The Loki 'frame has the lowest starting shields and health of all the warframes (75 each) but is also the fastest of the lot, faster even than Ash and Nova.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams:
    • At range the Corpus use energy-bolt or energy-beam weapons almost exclusively, with the exception of plasma grenades and the Jackal's arsenal; machine guns, grenades, and missiles. The Supra Repeater is apparently a 'heavy laser gun' with green projectiles, whilst the Dera Rifle uses bolts of cyan plasma, to give just two examples.
    • Darvo, a Corpus you have to rescue from the Grineer during the opening missions, lampshades this.
      Darvo: Legions of robots, mindless automatons, freaking lasers!
    • The Flux Rifle and Spectra pistol fire continuous orange laser beams.
  • Friendly Fireproof:
    • Infested are immune to the toxic auras of Toxic Ancients... unless you have a Nyx handy to mind-control said Ancient.
    • The point of Radiation status is averting this; enemies inflicted with it will shoot one another. It works both ways, too. If you're affected, your shots can damage your allies, and there's NO mitigation. Watch your fire, or your allies will drop like flies.
  • Friendly Rivalry: While the fanbases tend to be more rabid, Digital Extremes at least considers its rivalry with Destiny-producers Bungie to be friendly, if this twitter post concerning the loss of the armoury that Destiny 2 forces on returning Guardians is any indication.
  • From Bad to Worse:
    • Previously, missions could easily wind up like this. A simple mission to destroy a ship's reactor to cripple it? Okay. But now you've done that, the Infested have come aboard — and to make matters worse, you now have to rescue someone from the ship's brig! Now you have to battle your way through the Grineer and Infested, who are fighting each other for control of the ship to reach the extraction point, whilst praying things don't manage to somehow get even worse. However, this is no longer the case, as missions tend to be strictly by-the-books affairs, and random invasions or changing objectives no longer occur.
    • From the Corpus's viewpoint, the Gradivus Dilemma could be seen this way. First, they have a dispute with the Grineer over trade routes, but then the discovery of a large cache of slumbering Tenno incites a full-out war between the two factions — and then the Tenno get involved...
    • Alad V's entire story is one steady From Bad to Worse, with the starting point being when he antagonized the Tenno.
  • Game Mod:
    • Referred to as TennoGen, but done a bit differently. People can submit possible cosmetic mods to the Steam Workshop, where other players can rate them. Mods that are rated the highest are implemented in-game. PC players get first dibs on them, but must be playing the game through Steam and they require money instead of platinum, but this is so the modders get paid for their work note  Console players can get the TennoGen at a later date if the modder gives the okay, and they can be bought with platinum there instead.
    • On a much smaller note, any Partner gets an exclusive Glyph and can give them out how and when they feel.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: The Second Dream update/questline outright acknowledges Death Is Cheap in-story as far as the Tenno are concerned, and even uses it as a jumping-off point to answer certain important questions about the Tenno. The basic story is even entirely about the Stalker being frustrated that the Tenno he kills seem to keep coming back to life. Turns out the Warframes aren't actually inhabited by the Tenno, but remotely controlled (the actual bodies were in the moon, but moved to their orbiters when the moon was moved back into normal space in order to ensure their safety), and as long as the orbiters stay hidden in the Void and stay one step ahead of potential hunters, the Tenno are not remotely at risk of death.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: A few related to some of the quests.
    • Despite the fact that you can have half the syndicates one the relays hate your guts, this doesn't affect your ability to do the quests associated with them (the Silver Grove for New Loka, Octavia's Anthem for Cephalon Suda, etc.). You can even hypothetically be attacked by the Syndicate you are currently working for while on a mission.
    • Both Natah and The War Within involve Teshin, the character that hosts the Conclave PVP minigames. Even if you have literally never met him, he still addresses the Tenno as if though they have been his student since they woke up.
    • Alad V's storyline gets quite a bad case of this following the revamp of the star chart. Previously, the Patient Zero quest came before The Second Dream, which explains why he has a purple scar as a result of Infestation, and why he's willing to work with the Tenno— they technically saved his life. Now, Patient Zero is unlocked upon completing Eris junction, two planets after you would have finished Second Dream, leading to a Continuity Snarl.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: When the Ignis was revamped in Update 17, it coincided with a glitch that broke Banshee's 'Resonance' Sonar augment. Instead of a killing hit only creating new weakspots after a few seconds of activity, each killing hit would cause a new weakspot to instantly form on every enemy within range, and since the Ignis has a massive area-of-effect, it would cause hundreds of weakspots to form per tick, inflicting millions of points of damage. After a few seconds of this, the game would turn into a slideshow until Sonar's duration ended or all enemies died. The Sonar bug was fixed within a week.
    • Peculiar Bloom, a Joke Item that when placed on a primary weapon causes flowers to grow from the victim (for cosmetic only effects) had to be nerfed to end one of those. An Amprex build could reach 22 critical hits per second for low damage,and even more with Mirage, creating so many entities the game's frame rate dropped sharply and player experienced sessios split from the person doing that. Now the mod only allows for 5 flowers per enemy to prevent said Game-Breaking Bug.
  • Gatling Good:
    • The Grineer Gorgon LMG is a minigun in all but appearance — it uses a motor driven feed system, which forces it to have a wind-up time to get to full firing speed, but it hits like a train and has an impressive rate of fire. The Corpus equivalent, the Supra, also has a wind-up time, but it has multiple barrels — they do not rotate, however.
    • The Corpus Cestra sidearm is a pocket energy repeater with a rotating multi-emitter/barrel assembly — presumably to aid in heat dispersal and rate of fire, as with actual gatling weapons. Oddly enough, the barrels are part of the magazine.
  • Genetic Engineering: The Grineer Empire's hordes, all turned into overly muscled brutes. Their female soldiers take the route of cybernetic enhancements, like the Corpus.
  • Geo Effects:
    • Missions can sometimes start with the location having had cryogenic malfunctions or battle damage/munition storage accidents. The former halves your maximum shields for the duration of the mission, whilst the latter creates patches of burning material everywhere that inflict lots of damage if you're daft enough to stand in them. For temporary Geo Effects, some rooms can also be depressurized by shooting out the windows; this seals off the room and causes Continuous Decompression, which steadily depletes the shields and health of all players and enemies trapped in that room.
    • Prime Warframes also have some kind of interaction with parts of the Void Towers, such as causing certain objects to emit a once-off wave of energy to restore power to the Prime and his allies.
    • Orokin Tower missions feature numerous booby traps, including pressure-activated lasers and shockwave generators, proximity-sensitive collapsible covers, and fog traps that will slow down both Tenno and Corrupted foes alike. Orokin Derelict missions feature dilapidated versions of all of these, as well as stagnant water supplies with electrical currents running through them, which can quickly eat through a player's health and shields much like the fire patches in standard missions.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Helmeted Grineer Troopers have orange-reddish eyes, whilst some of the Infested have orange-red or blue eyes. Corpus bosses also have glowing lines where eyes would be on the helmets.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Ordis is implied to be saying (or wanting to say) the same kinds of things that Red Text always wants to say. Which is not clean.
  • Glass Cannon:
    • Grineer Butchers, Powerfists, and Scorpions do a LOT of damage up close, but die from one sword slash, pistol shot, or poke. Less damaging are the Corpus Prod Crewmen, who lack the damage, but have a chance to stunlock.
    • Corpus in general. The lack of body armor means they'll be taken out much more easily than Grineer goons, but arm themselves with somewhat better weaponry and field shielded Mecha Mooks that are tougher and more dangerous.
    • Fusion MOAs can do extreme damage in a matter of seconds, stripping someone's shields (regardless of mods) in moments — but aren't noticeably more durable than regular MOA. On the other hand, they can also deploy a fairly durable Drone armed with a rapid-fire plasma weapon.
    • On the player end of things, Ember and (especially) Nova can dish out some pretty brutal damage, but have lackluster defense and, in Nova's case, below-average shields as well.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The Orokin Empire waking up the Tenno to fight the Sentients. It was considered a desperate move. How desperate, you ask? They tried using the Technocyte plague first, a serious threat to the universe at large, due to how virulent and transmissible it is, because it was more prudent. Codex entries hint at the Tenno being warped and unstable from their time in the void — an Orokin agent was severely disfigured by a candidate that would later become an Ember in a giant fire that swept through the ship.
  • Gold and White Are Divine: The Orokin aesthetic in a nutshell, which only serves to add to their mystique.
  • Good Is Not Nice:
    • The Red Veil, Well Intentioned Extremists that see corruption in everything and wish to purge it — at any cost.
    • Cressa Tal, the Steel Meridian leader, is openly dismissive of the Tenno even when you join up with the faction. She does appreciate your help, but as per the trope she's really bad at showing it. At first, anyway.
  • Grand Theft Me: In case you needed another example of how the Orokin were Abusive Precursors, apparently they used to do this to youths in order to artificially extend their lifespans. The potential victims would be paraded in front of the Orokin council, who would then overwrite the minds of the ones they selected with their own. Oh, and by the way, the Twin Queens have been doing this even after the Orokin Empire fell.
  • Grappling-Hook Pistol: The Harpak and Paracyst assault rifles's Secondary Fire fires a harpoon that can drag enemies towards the user. Valkyr has an integrated hook launcher, which she can use to swing about the environment or violently yank enemies towards her. Grineer Scorpions likewise have an integrated hook launcher for dragging enemies towards her, which can knock players off their feet.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: Tenno is the word for "Heavenly Emperor". It could also be translated as "From Heaven", both of which apply well to your cadre of space ninjas. As it turns out, this is subverted, as the "Tenno" children were named after the decrepit ship they were found on, the Zariman 10-0.
  • Gratuitous Latin: A single-word example; Corpus can be translated from Latin to mean 'corporation', amongst several other things. The symbols used in their writing (various ship signs, broadcasted messages, etc.) seems more like a mix of the standard Latin and Cyrillic scripts, though.
  • Gravity Screw: Gravity works bizarrely in Warframe. In addition to your velocity increasing while falling, the magnitude of your acceleration increases. It's very noticeable on Warframes with climbing abilities like Valkyr or Zephyr; casting Tail Wind three times straight up will result in a dramatic drop in the abilities' effectiveness at climbing, while the fourth attempt will generally result in you slamming into the ground before it finishes casting.
  • Gray and Gray Morality: The Syndicates:
    • The Steel Meridian vs. The Perrin Sequence: Either side with Grineer traitors who believe in protecting the weak and helpless, but believe in force, violence, and especially war and all its terrible costs, which they push onto the people they protect by demanding payment, or side with Corpus traitors who push for peace, pacifism, and progress, but still pursue the prized profit, and primarily push for peace to pocket more payout. Also, Cressa Tal is kind of a dick to recruits. The Kavor Defection event also showed that the Meridian is more than willing to forcibly press gang pacifists who just want a normal life into fighting for them.
    • The Arbiters of Hexis vs. The Red Veil: Side with those who wish the Tenno to become a proper civilization and not just a breed of warriors for a long-dead race, but may uphold, and possibly be responsible for, the genocide of the said long-dead race, and push for putting themselves as the ruling class not unlike the Japanese Shogunate, or side with a resistance group rebelling against the Grineer, Corpus and Infested, but are insanely dogmatic and absolutist, to the point where they consider everyone who isn't following their dogma "corrupt" and a threat to be removed (even civilians), while blatantly torturing Grineer captives and weaponizing the infested in plain sight.
    • Cephalon Suda vs. New Loka: Side with a unfeeling, possibly crazy A.I. who wishes to study and learn about everything in the universe (and "study" includes "maim, kill, and disassemble anything she considers worthless"), or side with a rabidly xenophobic group of Earth-worshipping fascist zealots who wish to revert to untainted humanity (this being a setting where everyone is at least in some way post-human and their idea of 'untainted humanity' seems to only include them), yet see no problem in employing Infested Ancients, and recolonize Earth, at the cost of technological progress and placing the Earth above everything else in the war.
    • The alignment system of the Sun and Moon that first appeared in The War Within. Unusually, neither side is obviously "good" or "evil". The Sun side practices restraint and distance from the powers of the Void, but at the same time invokes wrath, struggle, and Cruel Mercy. The Moon side, on the other hand, involves choices reflecting love, empathy, and peace, but also embracing the powers of the Void and actively hunting and slaughtering enemies. Neither set of choices is exactly one hundred percent right or wrong, and selecting the neutral choices often involves recognizing both wrath and restraint as well as the need to use the powers one is given and act when needed.
  • Great Offscreen War:
    • The war that the Tenno fought in before being put into stasis, as well as the war that caused the Orokin to unleash the Infested.
    • In addition, before the Syndicate update, Word of God stated that there were non-Tenno factions fighting against the Corpus and Grineer — it's been alluded to in flavor text, such as Alad V. talking about supporting the Mars resistance, anti-Corpus rebels using Serro saws, or political dissidents and arms smugglers being hostage rescue targets. With the Syndicate update, it's revealed that Steel Meridian, a band of Grineer traitors, have been leading a guerrilla war against their former masters for some time.
  • Ground Punch: Grineer Heavies can do this to damage and knockback nearby attackers, based on the Radial Blast power that Rhino used to have.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy:
    • Both smart and stupid to varying degrees. They won't leave patrol paths to check out noises, but other times they can be deaf and blind. Usually if you engage them and aren't quick about it, one of them will run to the nearest Command Console to raise the alarm — unless you can kill them before they get there.
    • The Wardens in Rescue missions practically reach Metal Gear Solid levels of insanity. As long as you're crouching, they won't see you even if you're out in the open ten feet in front of them.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • Simply put, this game does a very poor job of explaining itself. And this is already after the tutorial has been improved; it used to be worse. Explaining what the game does will result in the page being twice as long as it is.
    • Good luck finding all of the Kuria, tiny scannable objects that are well hidden in specific spots on certain tiles.
    • Hesperon is an important component in several Fortuna blueprints, and is gained from mining. It is listed as common, but many people found it difficult to get. It took a while for anyone to realize that the problem is it's too common; if you do well at the mining mini-game, you get rarer drops. Skilled players therefore have to intentionally fail the mini-game to get hesperon.
  • Gun Fu: Any Warframe that wields the Redeemer (Shotgun Sword hybrid) or the Sarpa (Rifle Sword hybrid) can combine sword strikes along with a shotgun blast in a combo, particularly if you have the stances for the weaponset.
  • Gun Kata: Mesa's Peacemaker ability performs the trope in a fashion closely resembling the Trope Namer.
  • Guns Akimbo: You can do this with various kinds of semi-automatic and full-auto pistols. Many of the dual sidearms are named with an "ak" prefix. For example, if you have two Boltos, you can make an Akbolto.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: A potential result whenever Slash damage is involved. Canonically, this is how Captain Vor died, although his Janus Key brought him back. The gap between his torso and legs becomes his only weakpoint in his Corrupted form.
  • Hacking Minigame: Two variants, one requires speed, the other thinking.
  • Hand Cannon:
    • Among the pistols you can get: a gun made to fire shotgun rounds, about as big as your head. There's also a slightly more conventional handcannon, the Lex, that does very high damage, in exchange for holding only six rounds. The Kraken, a high-damage two-shot burst pistol, also qualifies. There are also a couple of hand-held rocket launchers.
    • The crowner has to be the Marelok pistol; it's literally nothing more than a Grineer lever-action rifle with the barrel chopped off. It's large, loud, powerful, and accurate.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Steel Meridian and The Perrin Sequence syndicates are lead by Grineer deserters and Corpus merchants, respectively, that oppose the warmongering nature of the two empires. However, the two syndicates still hate each others' guts.
  • Hell Is That Noise: The last mission in the Stolen Dreams quest sends you on a mission to an abandoned Orokin Derelict, which, like all of them is overrun with Infested in order to upload the Arcane Codices you've collected into a machine that can make sense of them. A short while before you reach the machine, you hear a creepy, cryptic message about... something.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: While boss banter for the older bosses is rendered in Speaking Simlish, the text-only translations will include insulting the player and his clan by name. They'll also mention the Warframe you're using. Averted when Stalker became Suddenly Voiced; the text will include your name and the name of the boss you killed most recently, but his voice acting does not.
  • Herd-Hitting Attack:
    • Melee attacks with dual wielded or heavy two-handed weapons (including the Bo) can hit multiple enemies per strike.
    • Certain weapons, particularly Launchers, possess high punch through stats or area-of-effect damage to take care of crowds of mobs with ease. Some standout examples include the Arca Plasmor, which fires a massive energy bolt with infinite punch through so long as it doesn't hit a wall or its Arbitrary Maximum Range, the Ignis, a flamethrower that roasts everything in a cone in front of it, and the Amprex, which creates beams of Chain Lightning.
    • Numerous Warframes have abilities designed for this. Excalibur's Exalted Blade fires Sword Beams with infinite punch through and an Arbitrary Maximum Range. Zephyr's Tornado generates massive twisters that trap foes and expose them to additional damage. Rhino's Rhino Stomp and Zephyr's Divine Spears leave all enemies in a radius around them helpless and suspended in the air.
  • Highly Visible Ninja:
    • The Tenno are futuristic ninjas, but there's nothing stopping you from painting your Warframe bright pink and carrying around a heavy machine gun, a pair of Hand Cannons, and a giant hammer.
    • It gets utterly ridiculous when you realize the Rocket Launcher is a silent weapon meaning it's very much possible to do entire stealth runs by exploding everything with your rocket launcher. Of course, if you don't leave any witnesses you might as well be invisible.
    • Some Warframes like Rhino or Nova are nigh-impossible to consider stealthy by any means.
  • History Repeats: During the Ambulas Reborn event, Ergo Glast notes that the Corpus risk meeting the same fate as the Orokin if they let Animo get too smart.
  • Hitscan: Standard implementation. Nearly everything that shoot bullets is Hitscan, most things that do not aren't. Though most of those Frickin' Laser Beams are not painfully slow (unless they're shot by Corpus goons). There are also some pretty much instant-travel beam weapons and other oddities out there.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • The Codex entry for Excalibur released in Update 11 states that the Orokin were losing their war against the Sentients due to the latter turning their weapons and technology against them.
    • Amusingly, this can be done against The Stalker as of Update 11; he isn't immune to the insane headshot damage of his own bow any more than you are.
    • The Grineer Scorpion have been an annoyance to players since their introduction because of their hard to avoid harpoon that pulls players to their feet for several seconds. The Valkyr Warframe has a very similar ability with Rip Line allowing players to give them a taste of their own medicine.
    • The deployable cover the Grineer use, Blunts, are generally ineffective even at the worst of times, but when a Tenno is using explosive weapons with a large blast radius and explodes on contact, such as the Tonkor (which falls into Difficult, but Awesome due to the difficulty of hitting moving targets with an arced projectile), Blunts become an outright liability for the Grineer due to it being considered a valid target for explosives to go off on when hit. This changes them from ineffective cover to very large static targets that enables a Tenno to wipe out entire groups gathered around it.
    • If both of you are nearby, it's possible to electrify Grineer with their own arc traps.
  • Homing Projectile: The Grineer Buzlok assault rifle can fire bullets that home in on targets marked by a player.
  • Hyperspace Is a Scary Place:
    • It's not made clear what the Void actually is, but from what we know, it is the source of the Tenno's Reality Warper powers, a place where the Orokin sought refuge in the last days of the Old War, and it enables Faster Than Light travel via the Solar Rails. Not even the Orokin know for sure what it's all about, but it seems to alter human physiology after unprotected exposure (this is how the Tenno were created), it is the only weakness the Sentients had and it allows Argon gas to solidify into crystals that decay radioactively when removed from its environment. It also seems to be the closest thing people in the Origin System have to a deity; the Corpus religion seems to be based on the assumption that it is sentient. On the other hand, it's also the only permanent weakness of the Sentients, which meant the Orokin didn't have much choice but to use it during the Old War. During the War Within, all the adults on board the Zariman Ten Zero were driven insane by just being there.
    • And as of the Chain of Harrow quest, well... Rap. Tap. Tap. The man in the wall.
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