Nightmare Mode is an optional difficulty modifier introduced in Update 9.0 (2013-07-13). When Nightmare Mode is selected, up to two mission modifiers take effect that greatly increase the mission's difficulty, but completing the mission will reward players with Nightmare Mods, which positively affect two stats of a weapon, Warframe, or Companion.

To unlock Nightmare Mode on a given planet, one must complete all mission nodes on that planet.


Each planet has one randomly selected mission node for Nightmare Mode, appearing a scarlet background and a white swirl in lieu of a faction icon. The chosen Nightmare Mode mission is selected once every 8 hours. The Nightmare Mode mission is treated as a separate mission from the normal mission.

All enemies encountered in Nightmare Mode have significantly increased levels, damage, and enemy spawns compared to their standard levels. Ciphers may not be used during Hacking and failure to hack any console will result in an Electricity DamageDmgElectricitySmall64.png Electricity proc applied to the player. Any summoned allied Specter will immediately be hostile to all players (except Shockwave MOAs spawned from a MOA Cabinet Spawner), indicated by a reddish distorted glow. Environmental Hazards can also appear as usual.

Endless mission types are treated as non-endless, but have higher victory conditions:

  • Defense Nightmare requires 10 waves (instead of normal 5 waves) to complete.
  • Interception Nightmare require 2 waves (instead of normal 1 wave) to complete.
  • Excavation Nightmare require a minimum of 500 Cryotic (instead of normal 200 Cryotic) before players are allowed to extract.
  • Survival Nightmare require a minimum of 10 minutes (instead of normal 5 minutes) to complete.


Up to two of the following challenge may occur per mission, and each modifier has an equal chance of being selected.

Mission Modifier Effect Notes
No Shields Player and companion shields are reduced to zero.
  • Overshields created by Warframe abilities do not occur while this challenge is active.
    • Guardian Blast from the Vazarin school will still create Overshields.
    • Any MOA equipped with Blast ShieldMod TT 20px.png Blast Shield can still generate shields for themselves even with this challenge active.
  • Hijack missions will never roll this modifier.
  • By virtue of having no shields, this modifier has no effect on InarosInarosIcon272.png Inaros and NidusNidusIcon272.png Nidus.
  • As HildrynHildrynIcon272.png Hildryn's entire kit revolves around using Shields in lieu of Energy, she will not be able to use any of her abilities during this modifier.
  • Affects all entities in the mission, including enemies and Rescue targets.
Timer The mission has a 5-minute timer that will fail the mission if it runs down. Killing enemies will add 5 seconds to the timer.
Health Vampire Players will lose 1.5% of their maximum health every second; Killing enemies will recover 12.5% of their maximum health for the entire cell. Players cannot die from the effect.
Energy Drain Players will steadily lose Energy at approximately 15 points per second.
Low Gravity Gravity is reduced.
  • Will affect player maneuvers in the air, enemies, and pickups.
Death Detonation Enemies explode upon death, dealing damage in a small area of effect.
  • Damage done by the explosion depends on target's max health.
  • Enemies cannot be damaged by other enemies detonating.
  • Players do not take damage from performing melee stealth finishers.

Retired Challenges[]

The following modifiers were present in earlier builds of the game, but have since been removed.

Retired Challenges
Mission Modifier Effect Notes
No Minimap Minimaps are disabled. Self-explanatory
Lethal Explosive Barrels Explosive Barrels deal high, if not fatal damage. Self-explanatory
Longer Reload Reload Speed is reduced by ~50%. Self-explanatory
No HUD The HUD is disabled. Self-explanatory
Friendly Fire Players and enemies can damage their allies.

Mission Rewards[]

Main article: Category:Nightmare Mode Mods

Below are the possible Nightmare Mode Mods that can be rewarded upon completing a Nightmare Mode mission. There are three pools of rewards that the Nightmare mission will pull from. These pools are based on the Planet where the Nightmare mission takes place, regardless of node level. Rescue missions have the potential to draw from any of the three reward pools based on the achievements performed throughout the mission:

Tiered Rewards Locations

Rotation A Rotation B Rotation C
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Chilling Reload 22.11% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Drifting Contact 22.56% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Streamlined Form 22.56%
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Accelerated Blast 18.97% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Armored Agility 15.49% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Animal Instinct 15.49%
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Ice Storm 18.97% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Fortitude 15.49% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Constitution 15.49%
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Stunning Speed 18.97% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Rending Strike 15.49% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Focus Energy 15.49%
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Wildfire 18.97% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Seeking Fury 15.49% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Lethal Torrent 15.49%
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Blaze 1.01% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Shred 15.49% FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Vigor 15.49%
FusionCorePackSilversingle.png Hammer Shot 1.01%

Module:DropTables/data last updated: Fri, 17 Sep 2021 00:01:35 +0000 (UTC) by User:Cephalon Scientia

For any non-Rescue missions:

Rotation A Rotation B Rotation C

For any Rescue missions, regardless of Planet:

Rotation A: One of the below

Rotation B: Two of the below

Rotation C: All of the below

  • Rescued Hostage
  • Stealth Rescue
  • Killed All Wardens


  • Rescue missions may have their nightmare mod reward tied to the tier of the specter blueprint gained at the end of the mission, sometimes causing a nightmare mod reward from a higher difficulty tier to be rewarded on a lower difficulty planet.


  • Sometimes Nightmare Mode missions have a chance to drop any Nightmare Mode mod regardless of what planet it's on.


Patch History[]

Hotfix 25.7.4 (2019-09-05)

  • Fixed enemies in Nightmare missions spawning at different levels than advertised in the Star Chart UI.

Update 25.7 (2019-08-29)

  • Fixed only 2 Nightmare modifiers being chosen at a time across the Star Chart.

Update 25.5 (2019-07-31)

  • Any summoned allied Specters in a Nightmare mission will now have a reddish distorted glow to indicate that they have turned against you and you’ve made a huge mistake in trusting them.

Update: Recurring Dreams (2016-11-03)

  • Increased the amount of enemies spawnable in Nightmare Exterminate mission (max cap of 500).
  • Removed ‘Friendly Fire’ modifier from Nightmare missions.
  • It is no longer necessary to use Antitoxin to get Nightmare rewards on Earth Sabotage missions.
  • Tweaked the Nightmare node algorithm so that they appear on the same node for all players, regardless of Star Chart progression.
  • Fixed Nightmare missions clearing from the Star Chart if aborted/failed before reaching the mission objective.
  • Fixed players who have cleared the Nightmare for a given planet, getting Nightmare rewards by joining friends who have not cleared it yet.

Hotfix: Recurring Nightmares 2 (2016-10-28)

  • Vastly improved framerate for Nightmare missions on some systems.
  • Fixed Nightmare missions appearing on quest nodes (e.g. Mutalist Alad V Assassination from Patient Zero quest).

Hotfix: Recurring Nightmares 1.1 (2016-10-27)

  • Fixed Nightmare Exterminate missions spawning an insane.. Or… nightmarish number of enemies.

Hotfix: Recurring Nightmares 1 (2016-10-27)

  • New Nightmare modifiers have been added to the mix! Take on the new ‘Death Detonation’, and ‘Friendly Fire’ modifiers.
  • Fixed Nightmare modifiers not re-applying after a Host Migration.

Update: Recurring Nightmares (2016-10-27)

Nightmare Missions are now back in the Starchart but with a few twists:
  • Each Planet will have 1 Nightmare node that changes every 8 hours (all respective Planet nodes must be completed before that Nightmare node becomes available).
  • Mercury, The Void, and Lua are now included in Nightmare node eligibility.
  • These Nightmare nodes are not replayable, and the Nightmare will be cleared for that Planet for 8 hours until the next one appears.
  • Failing to effectively hack panels will now result in a zap and tougher enemies will spawn when you set off alarms- good luck!
  • New Nightmare Mods are now available through Nightmare missions!
    • Chilling Reload (Shotgun): Increases Cold Damage and Reload Speed!
    • Drifting Contact (Melee): Increases Combo Duration and Status Chance!
    • Streamlined Form (Warframe): Increases Holster Speed and Slide Boost!
  • Nightmare Mod rewards (19 total now) can be earned across 3 tiers of Nightmare missions: Easy, Medium, Hard.
Easy Nightmare Missions can be found on Earth, Venus, Mars, Phobos and Mercury and contain:
  • Ice Storm
  • Stunning Speed
  • Hammer Shot
  • Wildfire
  • Accelerated Blast
  • Blaze
  • Chilling Reload (new!)
Medium Nightmare Missions can be found on Jupiter, Ceres, Saturn, Void, Europa, and Lua and contain:
  • Drifting Contact (new!)
  • Seeking Fury
  • Armored Agility
  • Shred
  • Rending Strike
  • Fortitude
Hard Nightmare Missions can be found on Sedna, Pluto, Neptune, Uranus, and Eris and contain:
  • Streamlined Form (new!)
  • Animal Instinct
  • Vigor
  • Lethal Torrent
  • Focus Energy
  • Constitution

Update: Specters of the Rail (2016-07-08)

Unlisted Change
  • Nightmare nodes removed, though Nightmare alerts can still occur.

Hotfix 18.5.4 (2016-03-07)

  • Fixed an error preventing Nightmare mods being received from Sabotage Nightmare Missions.

Hotfix 16.11.3 (2015-07-10)

  • Some Endless Nightmare missions now function like their Alert counterparts in completion criteria to be eligible for a Nightmare Mod. Specifics as follows:
    • Nightmare Interception now requires 2 Rounds to be eligible for extraction/Nightmare Mods, like their Alert Counterparts.
    • Nightmare Defense missions now require 10 Waves to be eligible for extraction/Nightmare Mods, like their Alert Counterparts.
    • Nightmare Excavation (Nodes & Alerts) now requires 500 units of Cryotic before extraction is enabled.
  • Fixed Nightmare Defense Missions not properly giving Nightmare Mod rewards.

Update 16.11 (2015-07-07)

  • Time-mission Nightmare variants will no longer appear in Assassination Missions.

Hotfix 16.10.2 (2015-07-02)

  • Added the new platinum-purchase mods to the Nightmare Mission drop tables.
  • Nightmare assassinate missions will no longer select the "mission time limit" challenge mode.

Update 16.8 (2015-06-10)

  • Fixed Sentinels and Kubrow having shields in no-shields Nightmare Missions.

Update 15.13 (2015-02-05)

  • Nightmare Mode nodes now have an updated Icon on the Star Chart.

Hotfix 15.5.7 (2014-12-03)

  • Removed Nightmare Mode from final quest mission in Patient Zero.

Hotfix 15.0.6 (2014-10-27)

  • Fixed an issue with Nightmare Rescue Alerts giving out additional mods.

Update 15.0 (2014-10-24)

  • Fixed an issue where Hijack missions in Nightmare Mode with the ‘no shield’ permutation would be unbeatable.

Update 14.6 (2014-09-11)

  • Fixed an issue with Alerts/Invasions/Nightmare nodes disappearing when returning from a mission.

Hotfix 14.5.2 (2014-09-03)

  • Fixed an issue with Nightmare modes not having their proper debuff applied when playing on Rescue event missions.

Hotfix 14.1.3 (2014-08-02)

  • Fixed an issue with join in-progress functionality not working correctly for publicly hosted alerts, invasion, Conclave, Dark Sector, and Nightmare missions.

Hotfix 14.0.8 (2014-07-24)

  • Fixed an issue with Nightmare Mods only successfully being rewarded in Survival and Rescue missions.

Update 13.0 (2014-04-09)

  • Fixed Nightmare mode overrides not being properly maintained.

Update 12.3 (2014-02-27)

  • Fixed progression stopping issue if playing Earth’s Sabotage mission with Nightmare mode ‘timer’ permutation.

Update 12.1 (2014-02-13)

  • Fixed nightmare-mode rewards on Interception Missions.

Hotfix 11.7.3 (2014-01-17)

  • Changes to the Nightmare Alert structure:
    • No more 5% chance of Optional Nightmare (was incorrectly announced Wednesday 1/15/2014 – we’ve changed it)
    • NOW: There will be 10 nightmare alerts "per cycle", one for each original nightmare mod.
    • When the Alert is up, it will appear as "Nightmare Mod Located"; the type of mod will be displayed in the Alert info popup.
    • The mission does not have an option, must be played in Nightmare to acquire the Mod indicated.
    • No shields is always the nightmare modifier.
    • These alerts will also be worth double the credits that would normally be given for an alert mission on the selected node.

Update 11.7 (2014-01-15)

Alerts now have a 5% chance to be nightmare Alerts (Clarity: Eligible alerts will prompt choice to play in Nightmare Mode).

Hotfix 11.0.7 (2013-11-26)

  • Removed energy drain from no-shield mode Nightmare missions.

Update 11.0 (2013-11-20)

  • Added option to opt-in to Nightmare nodes.

Update 10.5 (2013-10-23)

  • Fixed nightmare Assassination missions giving only the nightmare reward, and not the boss reward.

Hotfix 10.3.2 (2013-10-10)

  • Fix for nightmare assassinate missions giving only the nightmare reward, and not the boss reward.

Update 9.7 (2013-08-30)

  • Mod Rewards from “Arid Fear” event (Shred, Vigor, Lethal Torrent) now available in Nightmare Mode.

Update 9.4 (2013-08-02)

Nightmare mode tuning
  • Don’t allow 0 shields in nightmare mode if Vampire mode is in effect.
  • Energy Drain mode now gives zero shields in addition to draining energy. Reduced chance of Energy -Drain mode (33% instead of 50%).
  • Mobile Defense is now exempt from No-HUD mode.
  • No-Mini Map mode removed as it was universally despised (but if you really liked it, a post-it note will do the trick).

Update 9.3 (2013-07-26)

  • Increased difficulty (just a little) of Nightmare Mode.
  • Nightmare mode storage lockers don't give ammo.
  • Better timer sound for Nightmare mode.
  • Fixed weapon restrictions not being applied in nightmare mode.
  • Fixed weapon restrictions not being applied in Nightmare mode.
  • Fixed host migrating during nightmare mode causing the mode to change.

Update 9.2 (2013-07-19)

  • Vampire mode degeneration cannot kill the player -- lowest health can be is 1%. Must die to enemy fire or other environmental disasters.
  • Removed Nightmare mode as an option for Mercury missions.

Hotfix 9.1.4 (2013-07-16)

  • Fix for Nightmare mode timer sound not being high enough stakes.

Hotfix 9.1.3 (2013-07-15)

  • Further tweaks to Nightmare Mode Vampire missions to be challenging but playable.

Hotfix 9.1.1 (2013-07-15)

  • Increased difficulty of Nightmare Mode. Vampire drain rate is higher, and weapon restrictions are now enabled... coming soon. MUHAHA!
  • Fix for Nightmare mode appearing on nodes before entire planet had been completed.

Update 9.1 (2013-07-14)

  • Fix and swap for Nightmare Defense mode: mission is now 15 wave countdown aka Nightmare Survival Defense.

Update 9.0 (2013-07-13)

  • Nightmare Game Mode. Are you tough enough to survive Nightmare mode?
  • 10x Dual Stat Mods rewards (awarded in “Nightmare” game mode challenges only)

See also[]