Devstream #43 started on December 12th, 2014, @ 2 PM EST
Our final Devstream of 2014 was certainly bittersweet. Much of our time was spent talking about how far we've come; more specifically, what elements we sought to implement into Warframe and what had to hit the cutting room floor. Not caught up on Devstream 43 and want to see all the gift-giving and reflecting in action? Check out the full video here.
Instead of fixating on the past, let's focus our last 2014 Devstream Overview on the future of Warframe. New boss redesigns, updates on Stealth, and some well-deserved disclosure on the fate of the Focus System are just a small part of what we have to look forward to in 2015.
Although we've spoken about Tyl Regor in the past, he's certainly not the last Grineer to see a visual overhaul. Kela De Thaym has some impressive concept art showing off her new figure. While many may note her head is slightly smaller than before, it's important to remember that a headshot from Tenno weaponry is one of the biggest threats to Grineer life expectancy.
Beyond Kela's rework it was also revealed that the Grineer Queens would finally be making an in-person appearance. That makes at least three new female Grineer character models set for next year alone, but they're not the only female characters to see a makeover:
Plans have already been set in motion to depict the Lotus in all her glory, and I'm sure everyone is looking forward to seeing if she dresses business casual or semiformal for her informative mid-Mission broadcasts. Alternatively, she could just be a giant robot spider in disguise. Anything goes really. Perhaps this would make for an interesting contest...
Adjustable Mission DifficultyEdit
Within the community, there's been some talk about what makes a Mission more or less difficult. One suggestion has been to bring back the Mission Difficulty Slider. This short-lived feature once enabled players to adjust how hard a Mission would be, but was replaced by the multitude of planets, nodes, and game types spread across the Solar System.
Having the feature return is something we considered before, but one of the complexities associated with letting players adjust difficulty is finding a way to group everyone with disparate settings. The last thing we want is to make finding a group more difficult. That doesn't mean we're simply going to let increased difficulty fall to the wayside.
Finding the correct implementation has been a challenge, but we've been experimenting with what makes a mission 'hard' in our Tactical Alerts.
Quests and AlertsEdit
Speaking of Alerts, revisiting older special Events, Quests and unique Alerts is one of our most received requests. We've stated that having those events become replayable is a priority for us, and it will continue to be a priority next year. It's no longer a matter of 'if', but rather 'when'. The 'when' now officially being 2015.
Our recent gunslinger Mesa launched with a few unannounced passive buffs. As our premiere firearm-wielding Warframe, it made sense to that Mesa should have some extra proficiency at shooting down enemies. What better way of displaying her skill than giving her some natural talent (hah!) when it comes to gunning down the opposition?
Unfortunately, our entire list of potential weapon buffs for Mesa was never meant to be shipped all at once. It was just too much. Making Mesa the superior go-to for every single weapon category was never in the plan. That said, Passive Abilities have been requested for a long time and our implementation has only just begun.
New Warframes will most likely include Passive Abilities, which also means we'll need to look back at each Warframe we've already released and find suitable passives. Of course, we'll keep everyone informed of any additions made to Ability Passives, be they applied to a new or old Warframe.
Ability Mods and the Focus SystemEdit
The Focus System is one of the most discussed upcoming features in Warframe, largely because of what it represents: endgame functionality that offers progression for players past peak Mastery Rank or max Warframe rank.
The Focus System has never been forgotten, but we can understand this question coming up time and again; particularly now that we’re reflecting on what we’ve accomplished at the end of the year. To catch you all up with some of what’s been going on internally, here's a quick point-by-point rundown of where the Focus System stands:
The Focus System was originally created to augment Warframe abilities and prowess, providing substantial rewards for progression. Two major recent updates, Ability Mod removal and Augment Mod introduction, were first saved for implementation in the Focus System. When also considering the arrival of Syndicates, our entire current model for the Focus System has been made obsolete. We are working on the Focus System as a form of endgame progression. If, at any point, we reach a stage during Focus System development that feels like it has become as solid a concept as Syndicates or Relay Stations, expect to see an Update featuring it. Note: the above doesn't mean every wonderful idea that comes along for the Focus System will be cannibalized for something else. We just want the Focus System to be so much more than a simple 'alternative leveling' experience.
Shooting Range and Weapon BuffsEdit
Shotguns and Sniper Rifles are going to be rebalanced.
Whoo…Feels good to say, doesn't it? Damage and accuracy has fluctuated for these two weapon types. Stepping into 2015, we plan on making the right adjustments to make long and close-range players a lot more comfortable.
In other weapon-related news, a shooting range is currently in the works -- something a little more hands-on than number crunching in the Arsenal. We're also taking a look at directional movement, and whether or not Tenno are actually graceful enough to fire weapons while wall-running.
Relays haven't been in the game long and are currently only on PC (Console Tenno, expect a more polished version of Relays to arrive after the Mesa Update), but we're already looking at finding ways to improve the experience. We can't dive too deep into details, but here're examples of how we're looking to make Relays a more focal part of Tenno life:
Dynamic Syndicate Missions, accepted directly from your Syndicate's representatives. Scanning Missions that are picked up from unique NPCs. Guides of the Lotus: A unique Sigil worn by community members that are particularly friendly, helpful members of the player base. New players can look to those wearing this Sigil and always expect a helping hand. Arcades! So Tenno can crowd around a cabinet waiting to see who gets a high score. All right, crowding won't be part of the feature. But, you have to admit, seeing Tenno leave credits on machines to reserve next game would be adorable. In reality, every Tenno will be able to try Wyrmius without holding anyone else up, which is only fair.
Concluding our talk on Relays is a reminder that Baro Ti'Keer will make an appearance around every two weeks (plenty of time to store up unused Prime parts).
So ends our Devstream 43 Overview, our final Overview of the year!
I hope everyone enjoyed this condensed look at our latest Devstream. Until we meet again in January of 2015, have a wonderful holiday season and be excellent to each other, Tenno!