As part of the conditions of getting a refurbished laptop from me, my sister had to join me in a few games of Warframe. While playing, she wanted to customize one of the Warframes she had bought and get a new helmet for Khora. She lacked Platinum, but luckily the Khora Delphi helmet blueprint was in the Nightwave credit store, so we decided to do some Nightwave missions to get her 150 Intermission II credits so she could buy the helmet. So we decided to do some fishing, as that was the second easiest thing to do after doing mobile defense missions. But to do THAT, she needed to access the Orb Vallis, which required her to do the Vox Solaris quest.
Now I remember the Vox Solaris quest to be pretty quick and simple, if a bit tricky because the enemies are actually pretty tough. Turns out, my memories are actually completely wrong because, while this quest is easy if you’ve already done Plains of Eidolon stuff and most of the star chart, it’s pretty damn slow as a newbie.
The story itself isn’t that bad, if a bit basic. You are asked to help out a kid, but because the kid is a kid, trying to pay his parents’ debt and said kid is standing face to face with an immortal space ninja, of course said kid bites off more than he can chew and gets into trouble and you have to help save him and get tangled up in Fortuna affairs. This ends up spurring the leader and igniting a new flame in a dying rebellion. It’s definitely not a bad story but the Vox Solaris quest is a pretty mediocre way of telling said story, because it’s all done via talking heads, all of whom are people the player doesn’t know and can’t really relate to and frankly can’t really be expected to care about since all we know is that they’re indebted slaves.
But the story means nothing if the player, especially a low level player still struggling to learn the ropes, is greeted with constant back and forth tedium.
Seriously. You speak to Eudico, you speak to Thursby, you head out to the Orb Vallis and do some stuff, then you go back to Fortuna, then you go back to the Orb Vallis, then you go back to Fortuna… and so on! That’s going to be pretty frustrating, especially to someone who doesn’t have an Archwing launcher yet.
Some of the missions are also annoyingly tricky as well. In one part, you need to get some Amarast from an excavation drill, but there’s a high chance that enemies won’t spawn the power cores needed to POWER the damn thing AND the whole objective starts while you’re pretty far away from the excavator, meaning enemies can deal a lot of free damage to the excavator. For a newbie with zero energy and basic guns, such a task can be a small nightmare. Oh and then you have to run around on foot until you get the K-Drive at the very last part of the quest, and most objectives are 400-800m away. Sure, not far if you are good at parkour, but a nightmare if you haven’t gotten the hang of bullet jumps yet. You don’t even really get to see much. Sure, K-driving past Profit-Taker is pretty cool, but you don’t see any explosions or anything like that as you NEARLY BURN DOWN THE ORB VALLIS IN AN ATTEMPT TO GET NEF ANYO TO COMPLY.
This quest gets worse though if you have a slow connection or a slow computer. Vox Solaris is a slightly tedious but otherwise doable quest if you have a half-decent computer, but the loading times to and from the Orb Vallis will crush your spirit when they start to take too long.
But really, the most frustrating thing is that you need to do Vox Solaris to unlock the Orb Vallis in the first place. What should have been a quick “let’s do a bounty, get a fishing spear then go catch some fish” thing turned into a back and forth chore just to be able to step foot freely into the Orb Vallis. The Plains of Eidolon weren’t like that, you could enter freely just by going to Cetus and walking through the gate, so why is Venus’s open map area any different?
Maybe it was just impatience that was holding us back, mainly because I was trying to do something with other people and had to wait on them. These big world areas though are a big selling point of Warframe, so I find it very hard to understand why you’d make them so hard to access. The same issues can be seen with Kuva Liches and Railjack as well, but frankly it’s fine if Liches remain far away from new players’ hands.
I think the hardest thing though is that this whole quest would be so much easier if Eudico or a stand-in was placed out in the Orb Vallis, so you didn’t have to constantly go through loading screens…