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Ship-To-Ship Combat And Everything Else Shown At Warframe's Fan Conference

Changes to quest structure and enemy behavior, ship-to-ship space combat, and a new, sprawling open-world area are just a few of the things coming to Warframe later this year and beyond.

Digital Extremes shared some new information and a bunch of trailers for the updates they’re working on at this year’s TennoCon held over the weekend in London. At the top of the list is the Empyrean expansion, first teased at last year’s conference, which will let players team up to control combat spaceships in a new type of mission. The studio went into detail about what Empyrean will entail with a new 44-minute demo.

The video shows three players in a customizable battleship called a Railjack setting off to explore the solar system in search of aliens to kill and loot to grab. While onboard, each player can help manage the ship’s shields, weapon systems, and special tools like EMP blasts. They can also disembark and get inside their Archwings, exosuits for flying through space that have traditionally been confined to a particular set of missions, to head out and board enemy ships. In the trailer, it’s reminiscent of Assassin’s Creed’s naval combat, but if the enemy ships housed mini-dungeons.

Digital Extremes says Empyrean will also have a new type of quest built around a feature called Squad Link. According to the studio, Squad Link will coordinate missions between different squads of players in different parts of the map. One group of players might pursue an enemy Railjack that’s protected by a powerful shield, while another group on the surface of a nearby planet then gets a distress call with the location of a limited-time objective to destroy the power generator for that ship’s shields. The expansion is also supposed to have overhauled graphics and updated enemy AI to make battles more dynamic.

There’s also a batch of smaller updates headed to game:

  • A new introductory quest that ties into the game’s new opening cinematic.
  • Duviri Paradox, Warframe’s third open-world area. Based on the trailer, it may be more sinister and surreal than the current ones.
  • The New War, the next chapter in the game’s cinematic narrative quest line. Information is scant, but the trailer is pretty.
  • “Nightwave Series 2: The Emissary,” the game’s next season of weekly challenges and rewards that’s based around a mysterious child who can cure the infested (currently live on all platforms).
  • Wukong Prime, the enhanced version of the original Wukong suit. It comes complete with a crossbow, nunchaku, and looks that can kill (also currently live on all platforms).
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While the studio’s announcements were light on release dates, Warframe’s future continues to look bright despite the game originally coming out six years ago.

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Ethan Gach

Kotaku staff writer. You can reach him at ethan.gach@kotaku.com