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“You're not supposed to be in here! You're going to ruin the surprise!”
The following article/section contains spoilers.

Lua brings you strength... but you cannot defy your creator.
—Ballas

Ballas was an Orokin Executor prior to the fall of the Orokin Empire, and presumably also the lover of Margulis, whom he attempted to convince to destroy the Tenno for her own safety - an act which ultimately proved futile. He is also believed to be the Orokin primarily responsible for the development of Transference and the creation of the Warframes.


A man of extreme narcissism, egomania, and megalomania, Ballas desires to control and bend others to subservience. He is willing to go to extreme lengths and even betray and sacrifice others for his own goals. He also harbors a deep hatred for the Tenno, blaming them for Margulis's death.

Lore[]

General[]

Much like Corrupted Vor, who proclaims that he is "energy", an immortal being incapable of death, Ballas and other high-ranking Orokin appear to be undying, as elaborated in the Fragments. It is currently unknown whether the process of Continuity – the transference of an Orokin mind into a new body – is the key to this immortality or not.

Cephalon Fragments[]

Main article: Fragments/Cephalon

Cephalon Fragments recovered throughout the system secretly reveal Ballas' involvement in the creation of Cephalon Ordis, who he created from the mind of a mercenary warrior named Ordan Karris, bound to servitude with modified memories as punishment for the latter's attempt at killing him.

Synthesis[]

Main article: Synthesis#Imprints

The Detron Crewman's Synthesis imprint also suggests that Ballas was involved with the creation of what would become the Sentients, a rather ironic action given that the Tenno would be created and deployed to fight the Sentients when they later turned on the Orokin.

The Second Dream[]

Dialogue during The Second Dream states that Ballas held the rank of Executor, and was implied to be romantically involved with the Archimedean Margulis. She had been protecting the survivors of Zariman Ten Zero, whom she is later ordered to kill. Margulis refuses to kill them and is ultimately executed, with Ballas participating in the trial. After this Ballas would continue Margulis' work on Transference to develop the Warframes.

Apostasy Prologue[]

Ballas officially makes his first appearance in Apostasy Prologue, interrupting the Operator when they meet the Lotus in person. The Orokin apologizes in advance, which left the Lotus to question what he is sorry for, remarking that she is not his lover, Margulis. Ballas replies that she is merely imprisoned within before waving his hand, releasing an energy wave that disconnects the Lotus from her own pod.

Ballas?
—Lotus

This causes the Operator to wince in pain, distorting the player's screen in a similar fashion to The Second Dream. The Lotus then seems briefly surprised and then appears to recognize Ballas, calling out his name. He vows never to abandon her again while offering his hand. The Lotus, no longer protesting Ballas' claim that she is Margulis, takes off her mask before taking his hand. The two then walk together into a blinding light in front of the Tenno before disappearing.

The Sacrifice[]

Ballas is shown cooperating with Sentients battling a rogue Warframe, Excalibur UmbraIcon272.png Excalibur Umbra, whom Ballas subdues and destroys. While the Operator searches for the Lotus they come across the scene on Earth and end up rebuilding Excalibur Umbra after detecting traces that originate from Lua and locating Ballas's Vitruvian.

The Operator discovers that Excalibur Umbra is sentient and learns through his memories that he was originally an Orokin Dax soldier transformed into a Warframe after being injected by a unique strain of the Infestation under the guise of treatment, which acted as punishment for interfering with Ballas's betrayal due to the death of Margulis. While being controlled by Ballas through a unique Transference Bolt, he went mad after being forced to kill his son, Isaah. The Vitruvian also reveals that Warframes were created through the Helminth's Infested strain intended to be used as mindless drones against the Sentients in the Old War, but this failed with the Warframes quickly going feral and becoming uncontrollable, resorting to the use of the Operator's Transference. The Vitruvian also reveals that Ballas was the one who exposed the weakness of the Tenno and their Warframes to Hunhow as part of a deal betraying the entire Orokin Empire and defecting to the Sentient.

After the Operator calms Excalibur Umbra, they confront Ballas. Ballas finds that he can no longer control Excalibur Umbra due to the Operator, and suffers a seemingly fatal stab to his abdomen. Lotus, in the form of Natah, suddenly arrives and retrieves Ballas, much to the Operator's disbelief and confusion.

Chimera Prologue[]

After chasing The Man in The Wall through Lua and dropping down into the shaft inside the Reservoir into the same chamber during the Apostasy Prologue, the Operator enters a portal and spots Ballas. The Orokin is revealed to be Sentient-turned and is mourning for the loss of his narcissistically beautiful Orokin body all while cursing the Lotus for her deception, by stealing his perfect death. As he rambles, his eye suddenly glows, which he implies to be the Lotus's vision. He eventually offers his sword Paracesis.png Paracesis, which he calls the "Sentient slayer", to the Tenno in preparation for war with the Sentients. As they grab the sword, Ballas abruptly turns to face them as the Lotus's whisper for the Tenno can be heard.

Erra[]

Ballas was leashed by Erra while the Sentient was discussing the war with his sister. He confirmed that the Orokin are truly gone, Corpus and Grineer are at war against each other, and the Tenno are her enemy.

The Maker[]

As Erra urges Natah, she shows doubts as she remembers him supposedly being killed by the Lotus and the Tenno, Erra objects and states that she remembers wrong and will need time to completely heal from what the Makers had done to her. Natah is not convinced and points at leashed Ballas asking if he is one of the Makers.

Erra suddenly grabs and throws Natah at the pedestal behind him, where she is trapped in a field of energy. Erra tells her to "finish the war" and drops Ballas's leash. Revealing that his imprisonment was a deception, Ballas stands as he and Erra silently watch Natah.

The New War[]

My vision was only ever comprehensible to myself. My ambition beyond the grasp of... 'people'. Thus I have always been alone. Your death changes nothing.
—Ballas

Ballas tortures Natah, weakening her body and forcing her to watch Teshin succumb to the effects of a Narmer Veil as he fights Erra, revealing his plan to brainwash the masses. Once the Operator arrives, they look on in horror at their weakened mother figure as Ballas steals her powers. A Void portal then opens and drags Natah's body; as the Operator tries to hold on to her, Ballas steals their Paracesis.png Paracesis and uses it to cut off her arm and stab the Operator, banishing them both.

Without the Tenno, the Sentients take over the Origin System with Ballas as the de-facto leader of Narmer, using the Veils to defame the Tenno and twist the truth into his favor. The Drifter works against Narmer, teaming up with Hunhow to destroy Erra's Archons and use their shards to restore the Lotus, while also bringing back the Operator in the process.

Ballas under the influence of a Narmer Veil

Ballas senses the return of the Tenno and is enraged, his fury overloading and remotely detonating the veils on his nearby Narmer Deacons. Erra attempts to placate him, stating that he has won and that every living thing in the Origin System, biological or not, worships him. Ballas however, sees this as hollow victory, as he believes that every denizen of the Sol System all wish for "that piss-warm comfort of being told what to think." Knowing that he cannot control the Tenno, he orders Erra to recall the Sentient fleet and plots to control the Lotus and force her to kill her child. Ballas then uses the Sentient Mothership Praghasa to feed on the sun, revealing his twisted plan to destroy the Origin System and sacrifice his Narmer empire to fuel the ship to escape to the Tau System. Erra, realising Ballas intends to doom the Sentients as well, defects and seemingly sacrifices himself to guide the Tenno to the third and final Archon.

The Tenno and the Lotus confront Ballas. As Ballas targets the Lotus, the Tenno push her out of the way and intercept the hit, allowing Ballas to steal and absorb the final Archon shard before commanding the mother to kill her child. After a long battle and wrestling the Lotus out of Ballas's control, Ballas steals the Tenno's Paracesis and stabs the Lotus, seemingly gaining the upper hand until the Tenno force a Narmer Veil on him, deluding him into kissing "Margulis" and allowing the Lotus to regain her powers, putting an end to Ballas once and for all. His death destabilizes the Narmer threat and allows the Origin System to slowly recover, yet some loyalists remain eager to fill the power vacuum left behind by their martyr leader.

Trivia[]

Sgt Nef AnyoIcon.png
“Orokin secrets cannot remain secret forever! Start talking!”
The following article/section is conjecture. Content is subjected to change/removal as the game progresses. Please do not use this article for critical in-game information.
  • Ballas is voiced by Max Howarth.
  • So far, Ballas has been the narrator of the newest line of Prime introduction videos/trailers.
    • In Saryn PrimeIcon272.png Saryn Prime's introduction video, his dialogue indicates that he developed SarynIcon272.png Saryn as a means to fight the Infestation, as well as that her design may have been inspired by Margulis' love for the natural environments of Old Earth.
    • In the Vauban PrimeIcon272.png Vauban Prime trailer, it is indicated Vauban was created to fight the Corpus. The narration also implies that the ancestors of the current Corpus faction were active during Orokin times and that they may have had a hostile relationship with the Orokin, at least sometimes.
    • In Nekros PrimeIcon272.png Nekros Prime's intro video, Ballas seems to directly address his fellow high-ranking Orokin, stating, "Your graces, we who are beyond death, have forgotten the simple power of fear."
    • In the video for Banshee PrimeIcon272.png Banshee Prime, it is indicated that Prime Warframes, if not Warframes in general, were made to create a set of units who are much more unique and capable than the mass-produced and decrepit Grineer.
    • In Valkyr PrimeIcon272.png Valkyr Prime's intro video, Ballas mourns the loss of animalistic aspects the Orokin tossed away for their immortality and beauty. He warns that the Warframes, which retain a primal nature, should be feared. Even though they are Tenno-controlled, they are merely biding their time to eventually strike at their Tenno and Orokin masters.
      • Thus far, this is the only trailer to not mention the name of the Warframe being showcased.
    • In Oberon PrimeIcon272.png Oberon Prime's preview video, Ballas talks about the errors of greed, as the greedy do not think of the consequences, evident with the Grineer who often plunder the forests of Earth. Thus, Ballas talks of Oberon as the avenger of the forest, the one who will place judgment on the Grineer who have contaminated the greenery for too long. And through the blood of these defilers will the forest grow stronger.
    • In Mirage PrimeIcon272.png Mirage Prime's video, Ballas recognizes the suffering that the Tenno--or perhaps the individuals who were used to create the original Warframes--endured to become what they are. He states that Mirage "played the fool" while others "writhed and raged in the vice," echoing some of the scenes of Alad V's torturous vivisection and experimentation on captured Warframes (and hinting at how Warframes were created from infested, tortured humans). Mirage's tricks ultimately allowed her to "distort [Ballas'] design."
      • The introduction ends with Ballas stating no one is laughing anymore except Mirage. At the very least, this line suggests Mirage proved to be an effective killer, the only one left laughing on the battlefield. The phrasing may also allude to greater significance relating to the Tenno/Warframe betrayal Ballas warns of in Valkyr's introduction.
    • In Hydroid PrimeIcon272.png Hydroid Prime's video, Ballas uses fear as concept, turned into a weapon. He considers fear to be "the greatest of faith", stating that those that gaze upon Orokin Towers hold still the "old fears", and thus, he created Hydroid as a means to "give to fear a form", striking from the depths to remind his victims who their creators are.
    • In Octavia PrimeIcon272.png Octavia Prime's video, Ballas states that, after they were created, the Warframes needed something to forget the torture they have been put through, and thus Octavia came to be, with "songs" to harmonize their torture and "anthems" to elevate their wrath, but they were owed their struggle, as the Orokin were owed entertainment.
    • In GaraPrimeIcon.png Gara Prime's video, it is revealed that the woman who would become GaraIcon272.png Gara knew the truth of the Warframes and willingly volunteered to be turned into a Warframe. Nihil demanded that Gara must be glassed. Ballas then crystallized her, turning her into the Gara Warframe.
  • Ballas' Sentient-hybrid transformation, in Chimera Prologue, foreshadows a new kind of enemies, the Sentient/Corpus Amalgams, which was revealed during Devstream 124.
    • In Chimera Prologue, Ballas still has his left leg attached to his knee, but it is gone in Erra. This is probably an indication that his amalgamation progresses further.
    • He gains it back, as well as a prosthesis for symmetry, in his Narmer outfit.
  • Ballas is the second Orokin to be defeated in the playable WARFRAME universe, the first being the Elder Grineer Queen, and the third being Nihil.
  • In concept art for Tennocon 2021 Ballas gains a new outfit. He also trys to gain back some of his lost Orokin symmetry by getting a prothetic right leg. This design would ultimately be used for his appearance as the ruler of Narmer.
  • The music track that plays during Ballas' boss fight is called "Sunkiller".

Media[]

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