When you do a mission in Warframe, one of the four players in your squad (or one of the eight players back when raids existed) is the mission’s host. Your completion of that mission, your ability to extract and get rewards and also your ping and latency all depend on the host. This applies to all missions, including solo play (where you host) and things like the Conclave. The only exceptions to this player-based hosting are the social areas – the relays and places like Cetus, Fortuna and Iron Wake, which are hosted by Digital Extremes. As one server becomes more and more full, another server opens up and people are given the option to join the new server. As servers empty out, as players leave, those servers close up and disappear.
This is most commonly seen on big updates like Fortuna. Many instances of Fortuna were created, and at its peak I saw a Fortuna 150. But as things calmed down, most of those instances disappeared. Except for Fortuna 69.
Actually, I should be more precise. Fortuna 69 is only accessible if you’re in the North America region on PC. Playstation and XBox communities, who only recently got the Fortuna update, are also trying to keep their own Fortuna 69s open, but if you want to see the original Fortuna 69, you have to go to your Optons, head to Gameplay and change your region to North America.
What’s so special about Fortuna 69? Apart from the funny number? At first glance, nothing at all. Fortuna 69 is identical to every other instance of Fortuna. It has all the same shops, all the same NPCs, the same everything. Gameplay-wise, there’s nothing special about Fortuna 69.
The special stuff comes from the players who are gathered there. People have been cycling in and out of Fortuna 69 ever since the instance was created when the Fortuna update was released, keeping the instance alive and stopping it from disappearing forever. Some people will spent twenty minutes there, laughing at the novelty of it before going on with their lives. Some people will pop by, say hi then select a bounty and go on their way. But some people will spend hours, if not days, idling in Fortuna 69 in their bid to not let the instance die.
Of course, sitting in a server for hours on end might drive you a little crazy and cause you to do strange things. Maybe that’s why most people come in and say “nice” instead of “hello”, dress their Rhinos and Nezhas up in bright pink and purple Fortuna colours and spend their time dancing. Conversational topics vary from day to day, but that doesn’t matter. What is more important is your presence more than anything else. There are a lot of people just passing through, but there are also quite a few regulars that you might notice if you stick around for long enough. Many people there are also not actually there, just leaving their Warframes to idle.
The problem is, you can’t really do this indefinitely. Every time a Warframe update comes out, whether it’s a bug fix or something else, the game will automatically kick you out after 15 minutes and ask you to update. So coordination efforts have been regularly put in place to keep the server alive. Many people will try and stay as long as possible so that other players can grab the update as fast as possible and rejoin Fortuna 69. This wasn’t too hard to organize in the last hotfix, as the all-knowing Red Text informed players and suggested they go to Fortuna 69, but…
Well, not all updates are little things. Some of them are in fact quite large. Some of them might take more than 15 minutes for the average player to download. Luckily, Fortuna 69 is an American instance which means players with great internet speeds might be able to hold the fort. Even if the next few updates are small, at some point a multi-GB update will come out that will take the majority of players more than 15 minutes to download.
I hope that day is a long way off.
Until then, go and visit Fortuna 69. It’s nice.