Warframe Introduction

Warframe is a Free-to-Play third person shooter from Digital Extremes. You play as a Tenno who operates the eponomous Warframes on a wide variety of mission types typically in co-op squads of up to four other players. It was released as an open beta on the PC in March of 2013 with the PS4 version arriving in November of that year. In September 2014 the beta was extended to the XB1.

Digital Extremes was best known for their collaboration with Epic Megagames working on the Unreal franchise. In 2008 they released their own original IP and game engine in the game Dark Sector on PC and the current consoles of the time. Many of the elements in Dark Sector appear in Warframe, but it is not clear if the game should be considered the prequel or merely a spiritual successor.

Warframe stands out from other games in a variety of ways, mostly because of the enormous number of choices available. There are over a dozen different mission types including killing all the enemies or bosses in a level, defending positions and a horde-mode style survival mode. Each Warframe (currently over two dozen types) has four distinct abilities. Warframes can equip a primary weapon, a secondary weapon and a melee weapon with over 200 different weapons to choose from. There are companions you can take on missions, including the dog-like Kubrow and the floating drone Sentinel. In addition, all of these are upgraded with Mods – reusable “cards” that improve the various statistics of the item. The game is constantly evolving as a beta with new Warframes, weapons, missions and other items being released on a regular schedule.
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Why Warframe?

You will be seeing a variety of Warframe articles in this blog. I have been playing the game for about a year now and wanted to put together a webpage for my clan The GryphonStar Platoon on the XB1. As I was thinking about the content I would put on the page, I realized there were a lot of subjects I would be interested in covering for both my clan mates and the general new player.

This will be a work-in-progress for a while, so let me know what you think and/or topics to cover in the comments below.

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What is the Connexions RPG – Part 2

In this post, I would like to tell you about some of the design choices made in the Connexions RPG. If you want to know a little more about the history, here is the previous article in this series. Where we left off in the last post, I was ready to get back to the game I was kicking around in my head for a while.

The time had given me some distance, and I knew I would need to clean up the core ideas and remove some of the cruft that was the result of “wouldn’t it be cool if…” The first thing I did was to set down some design goals, so I would (or should?) have an easier time knowing what to keep, what to change and what needed to be thrown away.

I have three principles for the game:

  • Design a game open to the myriad styles of play.
  • Create a platform, not a codex.
  • No more complexity than required.

What follows are my thoughts about each.
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Review: Project Spark

A month has gone by and I committed a horrible blogging sin – no updates. I have not set an official schedule for myself, and I have several articles in the queue pending some clean-up and review, but are ready to publish. In addition to some longer hours at my day job, I have been spending time on the Project Spark beta.

Project Spark is a “game creation” game for the Windows and XBox platforms. It allows you to use in-game assests to create a world, the objects in it and program behaviors for those objects. For people who don’t want to start from scratch, there is the option to auto-generate worlds and most of the objects come with default “Brains”, which allows you to drop them in a game without additional work to get them functional.

At a higher level, I was interested in Project Spark as a platform and I wanted to share my thoughts from participating in the beta since late last year.
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My Tools

I was involved in a discussion recently about what IDE is the best. Like many things it is a very subjective thing, and depends heavily on what you are coding, what your team is using, and often what you are most familiar with. I thought I would post this to let people know some options and get feedback on what works for you.
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What is the Connexions RPG – Part 1

This is the first in a series talking about the Connexions RPG.

Since this is the first post, I decided to start at the beginning – how it came about. About ten years ago a friend of mine Tim and I were taking a road trip down to the Texas Renaissance Festival or an SCA event in Houston (it has been a while – my memory isn’t what it once was) and we spent a lot of that time discussing a mutual passion – role playing games. We had both played a wide variety of games, so as you could expect, we talked a lot about what we loved about specific games and how the different games compared.

You can probably guess that it was a very short leap from talking about those games to saying “if I was writing a game I would…” and I began writing down ideas, most of them very rough outlines, of what I would do in my game system. Being a pack rat regarding RPG stuff, those notes may even be in one of my boxes around here.

Here are the highlights:
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The Holidays

Just wanted to wish everyone happy holidays and a good new year.

I also wanted to test out a poll, so let me know your most favorite basic genre to play in:

What is your favorite base genre for role-playing?

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