On Stealth Warframes

So I had to play Loki the other day. I was farming the Plague Star mission with a group and they requested that I go Loki to help speed things up. By speed things up, they mean by using Switch Teleport to get the drone moving faster. Honestly I think I actually made the mission take longer, because multiple times I accidentally Switch Teleported team mates instead of the drone. Mostly my fault, but they WERE standing right next to the bastard.

Still, it got me thinking about things. Mostly about stealth. Stealth in Warframe is pretty hard to obtain even if you’re invisible, because once enemies are alerted, there’s no way to make them un-alert. All you can do is keep them stunned or somehow crowd-controlled or kill them before other enemies see you. But because bodies can alert enemies (as they should), stopping other enemies from seeing the mess you’ve made is pretty hard.

The easiest thing to do is just be invisible. We have three main options here. Well, four. Well, five.

Octavia is claimed by many to be the best stealth Warframe. But she’s not really a stealth character. She’s a damage-dealing team buffer, and one of her abilities happens to make you invisible should you crouch in time to the beat of her music. Of course, an invisible team is awesome, but that invisibility is kinda wasted if the whole team is slaughtering enemies and there are corpses anywhere everywhere. In a spy mission, your team will be across the map and out of the range of your music, plus Octavia’s other abilities tend to… attract enemies rather than avoid them. Invisibility just happens to be one of her buffs, even if you can make it last a while.

Loki being his normal stealthy self. I actually play very little of him these days. He's still traumatized from the War Within.
Loki being his normal stealthy self. I actually play very little of him these days. He’s still traumatized from the War Within.

The obvious stealth character is Loki. But he’s not really a stealth character. He’s a utility Warframe who goes invisible. Decoy attracts enemies and alerts them with ease. Switch Teleport alerts your target. Disarming enemies also tends to make some enemies aware of your presence too. Once enemies are alert, invisibility is the only thing stopping everyone else from being alerted. If you’re going to use Loki, it’s because you want to get in and out as fast as fucking possible, and to hell if anyone sees you.

Ash just feels really edgy. I feel sorry for him and his weird power point presentations...
Ash just feels really edgy. I feel sorry for him and his weird power point presentations

The same actually goes for Ash. But Ash isn’t a stealth character at all. He’s a kill-everyone-right-now sort of character. He’s also a press-4-highlight-enemies-watch-slow-mo-murder character. While Ash does have invisibility, it’s nowhere near as long as that of Loki, Octavia or Ivara and is more just to get out of a messy situation, work out what you want to do, re-position then get back to killing. Ash doesn’t care how many bodies there are.

I really need to get around to doing a proper article about how useful Ivara is...
I really need to get around to doing a proper article about how useful Ivara is…

Finally, there’s Ivara, the reward of lots of Spy vaults completed flawlessly without alarms. Except for the fact I bought her. Because after a metric fuckton of Spy vaults, I only had one part of her and I fucking hate Spy missions. Even though Ivara makes them piss easy. But Ivara does feel like a genuine stealth character in almost every way. Invisibility on command rather than on a duration, the ability to create ziplines and invisible bubbles (that stick to allies) and a massive, silent, exalted bow (akin to Excalibur’s Exalted Blade except it’s a bow that shoots lines of arrows). Ivara can also easily put enemies to sleep, allowing you to sneak past more easily. It feels like Ivara was designed specifically for Spy missions

Of course, there’s another option. You just put everyone to sleep with Equinox. And then kill everyone. In fact, if you want to farm for Focus (for space kid powers), using an Equinox to put everyone to sleep and stealth-killing everyone is the best way to do it. But Equinox doesn’t have invisibility or anything to do with stealth apart from putting enemies to sleep. Sure, it’s technically stealth, but they’ll all wake up eventually.

But there’s still the same problem of enemies being alerted, especially since bodies can’t be removed with ease. It takes one enemy to wake up to alert everyone else. Whatever variation of invisibility or crowd control you take, unless you’re very careful, it’s incredibly easy to lose stealth and have the entire base be alert that there’s a Warframe (or four) wandering around.

So you might as well just murder everyone.

This is not at all stealthy.
This is not at all stealthy.

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