“It's taking longer than I calculated.”
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The wiki may use player-made, real-world, and/or internal development terms when describing WARFRAME's damage system from a metagame perspective, beyond what the game presents to the player. This article serves to document the language used to describe how theoretical damage is dealt to enemies for purposes of analysis and programming implementation. Concepts presented here should be universal to all WARFRAME's systems even if different localization is used (normal gunplay vs. Railjack armaments).

See the Damage article for information on the damage system that is relevant to players.


Main article: Module:Weapons

Weapons in WARFRAME vary in behavior and implementation so establishing a common language to describe what happens when a gun in WARFRAME is fired or when a melee strikes may be useful in standardizing how one performs analysis on weapons as well as communicating metagame concepts to other players.

Firing Guns[]

We can loosely define "gun" as a weapon that is able to hit enemies at range. A melee weapon can have a "gun" component to their attacks (e.g. Gunblades). This includes, but not limited to:

  • All primary slot weapons
    • Rifles
    • Launchers
    • Bows
    • Shotguns
    • Sniper Rifles
    • Spearguns
    • Arm-cannons
  • All secondary slot weapons
    • Pistols
    • Dual pistols
    • Shotgun sidearms
    • Throwing knives
  • Some melees with unique mechanics
  • All Archguns
  • Some Robotic weapons
  • Some modular weapons
  • All Railjack armaments

A particular gun consumes a set number of ammo units (Ammo Cost) from their Magazine to fire a set number of shots (Burst Count, non-burst-fire weapons can be described as having a burst count of 1) on a single player input (i.e. attack button input, PC default left mouse click) for a particular attack.

Depending on the gun's Trigger Type, a "single player input" is defined as:

  • For Semi-Auto and Burst trigger weapons, a single attack button press and release.
  • For Automatic and Held trigger weapons, the moment the next shot is being fired when the attack button is being held.
  • For Charge trigger weapons, the action of holding the attack button and release at no, partial, or full charge.
    • The Charge Time (game erroneously calls it "Charge Rate") stat determines the max duration of the charge in seconds.
  • For Duplex-Fire trigger weapons, the hold and release of the attack button counts as two inputs.

A "shot" is defined as the base unit of attack of a weapon when unmodded. A real-world analogy would be the projectile that comes out of a gun from a single trigger pull.

  • A single attack input can launch several shots as in the case of burst-fire weapons.
  • A single shot can shoot more than one projectile, affected by the Multishot stat, as in the case of shotguns.
    • Additional projectiles will not consume additional units of ammo.
  • A single shot can consume more than one unit of ammo (e.g. Tenora Tenora's alt-fire) or less than one unit of ammo (e.g. Ignis Ignis and most continuous weapons).

Successive shots from a particular gun are limited by the weapon's Fire Rate stat, determining the max rate at which shots are fired or the interval between two distinct shots ("Shot Delay").

  • Note that Semi-Auto trigger weapons can fire shots below the Fire Rate.
  • Burst trigger weapons are unique in that shots fired during a "burst" will have less Shot Delay ("Burst Delay"). However, the interval between distinct bursts will still be determined by the weapon's Fire Rate.[citation needed][1]
  • For added clarity, the first shot of a gun will not be affected by Fire Rate. Shots are "instantaneously" fired the moment the attack button key is pressed (disregarding insubstantial delays in I/O processing, network speed, latency, etc.).
    • Ideally want discussions on damage/weapons to be hardware agnostic, location agnostic, and skill agnostic. Otherwise there will be no solid basis for analysis since everyone has different hardware (e.g. different PC specs, keyboard/mouse vs. controller), lives on different locations on the planet, and have varying levels of mechanical skill (i.e. ability to use hands to hit enemies). Focus solely on in-game systems.

A gun can have multiple attacks which can be triggered using different buttons (e.g. normal fire vs. alt-fire), types of button inputs (e.g. pressing vs. holding), and/or are associated with different damage components. We can label different attacks with numerical indexes for ease of classification. For example, Cedo Cedo's normal/primary attack as "Attack Index 1", Cedo Cedo's Alternate Fire as "Attack Index 2", and Cedo Cedo's alt-fire explosions on impact as "Attack Index 3". Numerical indexes may be defined arbitrarily, but we try to match the ordering of different attacks with the in-game Arsenal.

When a gun's magazine is fully or partially depleted, the player must perform a Reload action to replenish the magazine.

  • For most weapons, the player will spend a number of seconds (Reload Time) to reload, drawing ammo from the reserve ammo pool to replenish the magazine to full after the reload ends. If magazine is not empty when reloading, firing the weapon will cancel the reload. No partial reloads.
  • For Battery weapons or weapons with "rechargeable" magazines, the player will have to wait (Recharge Delay) before the magazine "regenerates" ammo at a set rate (Recharge Rate) until full. Player can fire the weapon during the reload to interrupt it. Partial reloads possible.
  • For weapons that reload one unit of ammo at a time (e.g. Strun Strun), the player will have to wait (Reload Start Delay) before the avatar plays their reload animation for each individual unit of ammo (Reload Loop Time), drawing ammo from the reserve ammo pool to replenish the magazine one ammo at a time. The player will have to also wait (Reload End Delay) after reload finishes. Player can interrupt the full reloading process by clicking on the reload button again or firing the partially reloaded weapon. Partial reloads possible.

To replenish the reserve ammo pool, players must pick up ammo Pickups from defeated enemies or Storage Containers. The amount replenished is defined by the weapon's Ammo Pickup stat. Guns can only hold a limited number of reserve ammo as defined by its Ammo Maximum stat.

Melee Strikes[]

Damage Instances[]

“It's taking longer than I calculated.”
This page is actively being worked on and may not be completely correct. Please assist in making this page accurate. See WARFRAME Wiki:Research on ways to perform research on this game. Click here to add more info.
Damage, crit, status, forced procs, direct vs. AoE, etc.

Derived Stats[]

Warframe Abilities[]

Additive vs. Multiplicative Stacking[]

Main article: Calculating Bonuses
  1. Not sure about this; clarify with subject matter experts.