Missions are the primary playable content in WARFRAME. Up to four players can participate in the same mission as a Squad, and upon completing the objective(s) extract themselves from the site with their Landing Craft. Missions are primarily accessed through the Star Chart, and are PvE (Player vs Environment) only. PvP (Player vs Player) content may be found in Teshin's Conclave, accessible from the Orbiter or from Tenno Relays.
There are over 21 types of missions in Warframe. Each mission has a specific pre-assigned objective, although secondary objectives or a change of objective may occur during the mission (except in missions that assign Assassination, Defense, Disruption and Interception).
Each mission node is occupied by at least one opposing Faction, but two or more may appear and engage in an invasion or a crossfire.
The mission area in which pseudo-randomly pre-designed rooms and halls commonly referred to as "tiles". Some tiles (most noticeably Reactor Sabotage and Hive missions) will include environmental hazards.
When attempting to join an online mission, the matchmaking system will take into account a player's total equipment rank (Weapons, Warframes, Companions etc.). Players with similar equipment ranking (hidden) will be more likely matched into the same squad; this way it is ensured that within the same node, the system tries its best to reduce the chances of an experienced player joining a squad full of new players. Note that for players with new or recently polarized equipment, they will be considered a slightly lower overall rank and may be placed similarly lower-ranked players, therefore possibly increasing difficulty.
Hovering the cursor over a node will give a mission description, including:
- Tileset - The theme of the environment to be expected, displayed as a picture. Different tile sets on different planets may have varying conditions.
- Mission type - The type of mission objective that will be given.
- Faction - The NPC faction currently occupying this node. Multiple NPC factions trying to occupy the same node will result in a crossfire.
- Level - Starting range of the level of enemies in this node. Survival, Defense, Disruption, Excavation, and Defection are endless missions where the enemies will scale with time and/or player equipment ranking.
Each planet will have 12 to 26 missions displayed as nodes. Completing a mission will mark the node completed as white and will unlock connected uncompleted missions as blue nodes, and unavailable missions as gray locks.
After completing The Archwing Quest, on the top right of the normal Starchart it is possible to switch to the Empyrean one (note that it is not necessary having a built Railjack in order to play an Empyrean mission). Currently, the only Mission Types for this unique game mode are Skirmish and Volatile.
There are 24 selectable mission types:
- Free Roam/Bounty (Plains of Eidolon , Orb Vallis & Cambion Drift)
- Infested Salvage
- Mobile Defense
- Pursuit (Exclusive to Archwing)
- Rush (Exclusive to Archwing)
- Sanctuary Onslaught
- Skirmish (Exclusive to Railjack)
- Volatile (Exclusive to Railjack)
|PvE||Standard||Assassination • Capture • Exterminate • Hijack • Mobile Defense • |
Rescue • Sabotage (Assault, Deception, Hive,
Orokin, Reactor, Sealab) • Spy
|Endless||Defection • Disruption • Defense • Excavation • |
Infested Salvage • Interception • Survival
|Free Roam||Bounty (Isolation Vault • Heist)|
|Arena||The Index • Rathuum|
|Special||Granum Void • Junction • Recovery • Sanctuary Onslaught|
|Archwing||Exterminate • Interception • Mobile Defense • Pursuit • Rush • Sabotage|
|Empyrean||Skirmish • Defense • Exterminate • Orphix • Volatile|
|PvP||Conclave||Cephalon Capture • Annihilation • Team Annihilation • Lunaro|
|Other||Frame Fighter • Duel|
|Arbitrations • Crossfire • Dark Sectors • Environmental Hazards • Invasions • Kuva Siphon • |
Kuva Lich • Nightmare Mode • Nightwave • Sorties • The Steel Path • Void Fissures
Situational occurrances happen within the mission. As such, they are not displayed until either the Tenno has entered the mission, or certain conditions are met throughout the mission.
- Capture, Mobile Defense, and Sabotage can randomly turn into an Exterminate mission, with the Lotus telling the Tenno to "ignore your original objective" and "leave nothing alive."
- If all the Data Vaults during a Spy mission have had their alarms triggered and data successfully retrieved, the objective will change into an Exterminate mission, where all remaining enemies must be killed before extraction. This change will not occur if only two or fewer vaults had their alarms triggered, or if two or fewer data consoles have been successfully hacked.
- Veiled Riven challenges will also appear if the player has one or more veiled Riven mods equipped. Completing the objectives will reveal the weapon assignment and attributes of the Riven mod.
- Players are assigned to hunt down Rare Resource Caches. This objective is always available on regular Reactor Sabotage missions and the Exterminate mission in the Kuva Fortress and Lua,
- In the event the player is captured by the Zanuka Hunter, the mission will transition into Recovery.
- In the event the player is defeated by the Grustrag Three, a Grustrag Bolt will be attached to that Warframe, lowering their damage against units of the Grineer Faction by 50%. A Bolt Release blueprint will be provided along with the mission failure screen; crafting it will disengage the Bolt from the Warframe.
- Depending on the current Nightwave Series, unique objectives/enemies might appear while playing a mission. They reward Nightwave Standing and possibly unique Nightwave resources, but it is usually not needed to defeat them in order to complete the main objective.
Special missions will only be playable if the player has the node available, but exceptional nodes can be seen in the notification pane even when the node is inaccessible such as Invasions, Nightmare Mode or Sortie missions.
- Nightmare Mode missions will only be available if the player has successfully completed every mission node on the same planet. Nodes are bordered red with a nightmare (maelstrom) icon and award Nightmare Mode Mods. Dark sectors need not be completed for Nightmare Mode nodes to appear. These missions do not disappear for the player once completed and their mission availability is timed.
- Invasions are missions in which multiple factions compete for nodes on an assigned planet. Faction indicators on the notification panel will show Grineer as red, Corpus as blue and Infestation Outbreaks as green. Infestation outbreaks cannot occur on Mercury and Earth. Nodes are indicated with a fist and usually award Wraith/Vandal weapon parts, rare resources, or rare blueprints. Invasion missions will disappear once either faction has complete dominance.
- Void Fissures are missions where players are able to open any relics carried into the mission and upon extraction, select the Prime artifact contained within the relic as a reward. Nodes are indicated with a Void Trace and also drops them as a mission completion reward. These missions do not disappear for the player once completed and their mission availability is timed.
- Syndicate missions will be shown in the notification pane when the Tenno is in positive standing with at least one syndicate. Nodes are indicated by the insignia carried by each Syndicate and reward additional Syndicate standing apart from the daily standing cap. Syndicate missions require a minimum of MR3 and refreshes daily. These missions disappear for the player once completed and the additional standing can only be obtained once per Syndicate mission, even if the player has joined another squad. However, Syndicate Medallions may continue to appear for the player in another player's squad even if they have already completed their daily Syndicate missions.
- Sorties are series of three difficult endgame missions that must all be completed in order to receive a random reward from a specified reward pool, and the rewards are often much than regular missions. Sorties are indicated by a ribbon-badge and may feature unique environmental/enemy conditions not found elsewhere. Sorties require the completion of The War Within (MR5) and refreshes daily. These missions are replayable, although one-time completion credit rewards and the rewards from the specified pool may only be obtained once a day.
- Kuva missions award Kuva, a resource used in the randomization of a Riven mod's attributes, and might award a random Requiem Relic, used mainly for the acquisition of the Requiem Mods. Kuva missions only appear on planets near the Kuva fortress, their nodes indicated by the resource icon of Kuva, and are listed on the notification panel. Kuva floods are much higher-leveled missions that award twice the regular amount of Kuva as normal Kuva missions, and have a 100% chance of awarding a random Requiem Relic. Kuva missions require the completion of The War Within(MR5). These missions disappear for the player once completed, however additional Kuva can be obtained on the same mission if the player has joined another squad.
- Arbitrations are a special version of endless nightmare mode missions unlocked after all nodes on the star chart have been completed (less the Mutalist Alad V, Jordas Golem and Zealoid Prelate assassinations). All Arbitrations spawn with the following modifications:
- Normal revives disabled, allies can only be revived by expending 5 Resurgence Tokens on the downed's Revive Tower.
- The standard mission drop table is replaced by the Arbitration drop table.
- Droptables lock on table C after the initial AB tables are cleared.
- Droptable loot is guaranteed upon mission failure.
- Players additionally receive 1 Vitus Essence for each rotation clear.
- One Warframe and Weapon per player have their strength/damage buffed by 300% for each node that spawns.
- Arbitration Shield Drones are added to the enemy spawn table, granting complete and total damage immunity to all nearby enemies until they are destroyed.
- The primary objective is made harder per the mission type:
- Excavation: Excavation time is increased from 100 seconds to 180 seconds, and takes two excavations to count for one round of rewards.
- Survival: Life Support Capsules are worth 75% of usual.
- Interception: Enemy towers fill twice as fast.
- Defense (except Stöfler node at Lua): The defense objective is a Hexis Operative NPC armed with a Telos Akbolto. Unlike Sortie Defense, the Operative follows a chosen player instead of roaming by themselves, and can't be given a weapon by a Tenno. Downtime between waves is reduced to 2 seconds. Like players, the Operative will not enter Bleedout, and their death will be an instant mission failure.
- Defection: Rescue targets cannot be revived.
- Infested Salvage: Consoles have half their normal health.
- Disruption: Demolyst and Demolisher beeping range is halved and are marked when within 15 meters of a Tenno (from 30 meters).
- Main article: Empyrean
To host a game in Empyrean, players must go to the navigation console on their Railjack, which can be accessed within their Clan Dojo's Dry Dock, in the middle of their Orbiter, or from the menu by pressing The Archwing can join in Empyrean missions by selecting an Empyrean node in their Star Chart. The host's Railjack is used during the mission.→ . Players must complete the Rising Tide quest in order to pilot their own Railjack. However, any player that has completed
End of Mission Summary
The Mission Summary appears after a successful mission and displays the following:
- Affinity earned for each Warframe, Weapon, and Companion
- Focus earned for each item installed with a Focus Lens
- Collected / rewarded amount of Credits, Resources, Mods, and/or Blueprints
- Team statistics for the mission:
- Percentage of total damage dealt
- Percentage of total damage taken
- Total number of kills
- Total number of kills by headshots
- Total number of melee kills
- Total number of deaths
- Total number of upgrades received
- Total number of abilities used
- Percentage of bullets that hit (Fire Accuracy)
- Total number of pickups
- Total number of revives (assisting in reviving fallen allies & companions)
- A separate screen that shows increases in Standing for ally Syndicates and decreases in standing for opposing Syndicates. Enemy standing will not be shown if the player has hit -44,000 (maximum negative standing available) for an opposing Syndicate.
An alternate Mission Summary will be shown if the objective has been failed. It will only show:
- Affinity earned for each Warframe, Weapon, and Companion
- Focus earned for each item installed with a Focus Lens
- Team statistics for the mission
The amount of loot, affinity, and standing for other players are not shown. Each player can only see their own Mission Summary Screen, though every member in the squad is shown the same list for Team Statistics.
- Almost all of the missions are named after real physical locations and objects that exist in the solar system as recognized by the International Astronomical Union.
- When multiple factions appear on the map, they are always hostile to one another.
- Raids were removed and replaced by Survival in Update 10, due to player disinterest.
- Deception was removed in Update 19.
- Although most missions allow for up to 4 players to play, Conclave modes such as Annihilation and Cephalon Capture allow for up to 8 players to join.
- Lunaro, however, can only allow up to 6 players to join.
- Some quest missions list the mission type as Salvage.
- Previously, hovering the mouse over Starchart nodes will also reveal the usernames of a solar landmark to honor "Grand Master" founders, shown in the bottom of the planet infobox.
- If the squad starts another mission before the player finishes loading from the previous mission, the player's weapons and Warframe will be unmodded.