On Not Formaing Warframes

With the introduction of the Plains of Eidolon remaster, we were also given secondary energy colours on everything except for Kavats and Kubrows. But to access the secondary energy colours, you needed to forma your desired Warframe or weapon at least once. For most that’s not an issue. Most people have already picked their favourite weapons and Warframes and stuck one or two Forma on them. Heck, there are people out there who intentionally put more than 8 Forma on their gear just for the fun of it. But for me, this was a hard thing to do, as I had managed to reach MR26 without putting a Forma on ANY of my Warframes.

Not even my beloved Volts.

Originally, I didn’t want to Forma my frames because I hated leveling them up, but I wanted that second energy colour. And since I had a 3 day affinity booster available, I decided to stick some Forma in my most-used Warframes – Volt Prime, Khora, Ivara, Nekros Prime and Nezha. Ah, the things one will do for Fashionframe…

For Volt Prime, using a Forma and what Polarity I wanted wasn’t too hard a choice. On all of my Volt builds (and their many variations), I always have one slot designated for some sort of defensive mod. Normally it’s Redirection, sometimes it’s Vitality or Adaptation, but there’s a guaranteed slot there that will always have the D-shaped Vazarin polarity. Vazarin polarity mods are also often rather expensive – for example, Redirection goes up to rank 12 and Adaptation is even more expensive, so a Forma’d Vazarin slot on Volt makes sense.

For Nekros Prime, the choice was even more obvious. For reasons unknown, Excalibur, Nekros and Nekros Prime all lack a polarity in their Aura slot, meaning you never get the doubled capacity benefit from any Aura you equip. On Nekros Prime, I decided to add a Madurai polarity, just so I can use Steel Charge. This would by far give me the most mod capacity – 9 extra capacity as opposed to the 5-7 I’d normally get Forma-ing another slot.

For my other frames, it was a tougher choice. You see, most of the time, I simply make do with a frame’s existing polarities. Why? Because I am always, always playing around with builds, swapping out mods as and when they’re needed.

My Khora for example as 3 different builds – my normal high range and duration build, a high power strength build and a third build with high range but also keeping power strength positive. But I play around with those builds all the time, even more so now that Khora has got 3 pretty unique augments. The only thing that’s static in Khora’s builds is that I use Streamline, a Naramon dash polarity (-). So that’s what I ended up using. I did something similar on Ivara, while giving Nezha a Vazarin polarity since he requires a few defensive mods.

But on other frames, the choices are even harder. I had planned to put a Forma in my Oberon Prime, who is another frame I regularly play, but I didn’t know what polarity to put in. Any Forma I could use has the potential to ruin one of my other builds, since I don’t just use a high power strength build on Oberon, I also have a high range build and a balanced stat build for him as well.

On the flip side, I have multiple weapons with more than one Forma in them. My Ignis Wraith for example as 5 in it and my Supra Vandal has 2 in it. But compared to Warframes, there are a lot more staples involved with weapons. Most of the time, you will use the same mods on your weapons. There’s no reason to not have Serration or Point Blank or Hornet Strike or Pressure Point on ANY weapon, and all of those are high-cost mods that use a V-shaped Madurai polarity. That means it’s always, always worth having a Madurai polarity on pretty much every single weapon.

In fact, most of the time you ONLY want Madurai polarities on weapons, since most weapon mods are there to boost damage and almost all damage-based mods have Madurai polarities! On my Ignis, all the polarities bar one are Madurai polarities and the only one that isn’t is a single Vazarin one meant for my Ignis riven mod.

At the end of the day, Forma-ing your Warframe is great if you have a specific build and want to stick to it or if you want to min-max your builds, but if you are always playing around with builds and trying new things, then Forma-ing multiple slots isn’t always what you want and could get in the way of your modding. You have to be careful with how you Forma things, in case you accidentally lock yourself out of other builds.

Or you could just be an idiot like me and accidentally put a Madurai polarity on your Carrier instead of a Naramon polarity so you can use Primed Animal Instinct…


Also known as Doctor Retvik Von Schreibtviel, Medic writes 45% of all the articles on the Daily SPUF. A dedicated Medic main in Team Fortress 2 and an avid speedster in Warframe, Medic has the unique skill of writing 500 words about very little in a very short space of time.

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