The new update for Warframe came out a couple of weeks ago. I’ve been, slowly, playing around with it. So far, it’s a hit or miss for me. I want to talk about my feelings on the change because I thought there might be other people feeling the same way as I do.
What’s The Wolf of Saturn Six?
Digital Extremes changed the alert system in the new update. Previously, the way the alert system worked, there would be random alerts listed that were available for a short of time (an hour or two maximum). You could monitor the alerts on Twitter, or using an app, so things were very transparent. I liked the way the alert system worked because I didn’t feel a rush to do them. If I missed one that interested me, for example Kavat genetic codes, I knew the Kavat genetic codes would be relisted again sometime within the month. Looking at the history of the alerts, players could approximate when the item they were interested in would be available again. In my opinion, that system gave players more flexibility for efficiently managing their time. Were there moments when an alert popped up and players (interested in that item) had to drop what they were doing to complete it? Sure, but the caveat to that: they also knew if they passed it up, they weren’t missing anything. There were times a reward would come up that I did not qualify for, for example, it was in an area I had not unlocked yet or was not properly geared for. That was okay, to me, because I knew the reward would relist and it gave me time to meet the requirements – on my schedule.
With The Wolf of Saturn 6, the alert system is now an event that lasts six weeks. There are 30 reward tiers, each requiring 10,000 standing, for each reward tier. Players have six weeks to complete daily or weekly acts (think of them like quests) to receive enough standing needed to unlock the rewards listed in the 30 reward tiers.
One of the rewards is a new currency called Wolf Creds, which can be used to purchase specific items within Nora’s shop. For example, for 75 Wolf Creds I can purchase a Orokin Reactor. The creds need to be used up before the event ends or they will be lost when the new event starts (you cannot accumulate them). The new system includes lore with a new narrator, which is very nice. It also gives new players more direction on what they could be doing to help with their progression. At the end of the six weeks, a new event starts.
Do I think the old system could be improved? Yes. Do I think the new system is “bad”? No.
What’s The Problem?
The problem? I feel like I lost control on how to spend my time in Warframe. Previously, I had the freedom to do what I wanted without feeling like, if I didn’t complete something, I was “missing” out. This meant I did what was fun to me at the time, even if it meant I wasn’t progressing. I admit, my fun came at the cost of progression, but as I stated previously, I didn’t see the point of racing to progress when there isn’t an end game in the game yet.
For example, when Orb Vallis was released, I spent hours and hours playing around in there. I enjoyed myself, working on my aim, etc. I didn’t do missions (quests) to increase my standing, which came at the price of not progressing. An example mission is find three caches. I don’t find that enjoyable, just like I don’t find survival or spy missions enjoyable. I avoid them. Perhaps it was not the smartest thing but I didn’t want to grind, I wanted to enjoy the random encounters in Orb Vallis and enjoy the area. It’s kind of sad that killing mobs in that area doesn’t increase standing. It’s baffling to me that it doesn’t.
I realize this play style might trigger the person that feels if they aren’t doing something challenging or progressing, they are wasting their time. I was doing something challenging because the area was challenging for me and I enjoyed leveling my Warframes and companions out there (except the frustration getting Fetch to drop without a Kavat). To be honest, there is a reason why I don’t pull missions or stunt my progression.
I hate this public stats page. Truly, I do. I don’t have a problem with a public stats page. I detest the way this one works. You see Missions Failed? The majority of those are from practicing in the test area for Mastery Rank. I mentioned previously I was stuck on the parkour 7 to 8 test. For some reason, I face-palm on that test. I was shocked to find out it was counting each and every time I practiced. Another one I dislike, the Ciphers Failed. I didn’t “fail” most of those. Most of those I stopped in the middle of a cipher because mobs were hitting me to the point I almost died. I understand it might be hard to pick up the difference between a player not finishing a cipher and timing out or doing it incorrectly. The bottom line: since I know what I do is being, to me, unfairly tracked, I am careful about what I do. It’s not an accurate summary of my skill. When I look at it, I’m annoyed. It’s not so much about other people seeing it, I can’t get an accurate perception of my skill from the page.
I tend to play solo. Sometimes, I want to level a new weapon, Warframe or pet. It takes longer doing this solo, but again, it’s about me enjoying what I’m doing not completing it as fast as I can. If I’m not having fun, the videos I’m recording would reflect that. Sometimes, I don’t want to play at all. I login, get my daily reward, pet my kavat, and log out.
With the new system, I feel like I “should” complete “something”. I look at what is available, and I try to complete some of the objectives. Most, I have zero interest in. For example, the Sortie will sit there forever. I’ve never clicked on a Sortie and thought, “OMG, lemme do this! So much fun!”. Some, like find 8 rare mods, I haven’t started because I know myself. If I start it, I will feel compelled to finish it. Honestly, who knows when 8 rare mods will drop?
While I have no interest in completing an Extermination mission with level 30 or higher enemies undetected, I’m glad Elite acts are in the game to give veteran players something to do (although I bet they’d complain this is not challenging). Personally, I don’t enjoy stealthing around making sure mobs don’t see me to kill them because, in my roleplay, I don’t find stabbing someone in the back an honorable death. There is a difference, to me, stabbing someone in the back in the middle of battle and making the choice to stab everyone in the back (they don’t fight back). I enjoy watching other people play that way, it’s a valid play style and I encourage people to play the way they enjoy.
While the new system has me playing more, I’m not enjoying myself as much as I was with the old system. I feel forced to complete acts because, after six weeks, any progress I made will be erased. Will these rewards be available again? Who knows? I knew from the beginning, the Ubra Forma would be unavailable to me because I didn’t feel like putting in the effort, based on the Act offerings, to get it. There weren’t enough Acts that interested me, and that’s okay.
Let me give an example. I started leveling Nyx, so the Warframe is fragile. Remember, I play solo so I normally level Warframes while doing something else. If I need resources in a low-level zone, I’d take Nyx or if I’m learning how to use her abilities, I’d most likely start in a low-level zone. If I have a booster, I’d play Nyx more to get her to max level (depending on how long the booster lasted). Currently, there is only one reward that makes sense to use Nyx: loot 15,000 credits to receive 1,000 standing. It’s a daily reward so I have limited time to complete it. Another one I already completed was doing three Sabotage missions. The end result? Nyx was parked while I used Rhino to start on the credits and complete 3 sabotage missions. Why did I use Rhino instead of Nyx? I had a limited time to play so I picked a Warframe that was max level and buffed, so I knew I could complete the missions quickly. Plus, I don’t want to fail a mission because I don’t want the inflated stat to go up on the profile page. After I completed those missions, I logged out. No time left for Nyx.
I admit my situation is different. I record videos so I’m always thinking about what would be good or interesting to watch. Of course, I could run missions to have the non-enjoyable footage in the background while I talk about something else, but that is how people become burned out on a game. They are repetitively doing something they don’t enjoy. If the time they spend doing something that is not enjoyable is more than doing something enjoyable, that’s when people stop playing.
I’m starting to reach that point.
What’s the Solution?
The problem is most likely mine and not the game. I’m placing enjoying the activities in the game, and a public stats page, over progression. I see so many people playing games (including Warframe), doing what they have to do to progress, but not enjoying what they are doing. I don’t want to do that. I realize it hinders my progression. For some reason, getting a mission in Orb Vallis is grindy to me because I’m not doing what I want to do but roaming around Orb Vallis, getting resources and participating in random fights is fun to me.
I know, you’re probably laughing if you made it this far. The solution is to treat Wolf the Saturn Six like I did the old rewards system – not care. The solution is to treat the stats page like I did the old rewards system – not care.
I think the new system should stay. It’s time for me to change.