In previous Nightwaves, Nora Night simply had a story to tell. One that somewhat unfolded in a linear way. Although the cinematics were nice, they were pretty damn basic. Even a kid could probably work out that the Wolf didn’t like Alad V or that the Infested would attack. The Glassmaker’s story however is supposed to be a murder mystery, one that the Tenno have to uncover. With Nora voicing over it, of course.
We have to do the work.
Nora Night has given us a crime scene to investigate. A digital one, pulled out from the Weave, which is basically the Cephalon internet. We’ve got this random Ostron who has been turned to glass, mostly. After a bit of talking, Nora Night has us look around for clues, all of which are lying around nearby. The clues are nicely highlighted and the important words made bold.
Once you find all 5 clues, Nora says the glassed Ostron has changed. He goes all sparkly. You interact with them and are told to come back later. You need Cephalite Resonance, which apparently drops in normal missions.
If this isn’t your first time and you have 10 Cephalite Resonance, then you can enter. You are immediately thrown into a jumping puzzle pop quiz. You have to jump to the platforms with the correct answers, based on the clues you uncovered. These clues are randomized per player, so there’s no point watching a guide.
The whole crime scene is badly designed.
While all of that sounds simple, it’s actually not that great. We actually have a few problems here, the main one being that your movement speed is not consistent at all. In the crime scene area, you walk slower than you do in the Leverian, with no ability to sprint at all. In a game defined by moving fast, the slow crime scene place feels insanely weird.
But as you enter the next area, the quiz, your speed changes. You’re in your Warframe but you don’t have normal speed. You are actually bound by the movement you get in relays – the slower movement speed and inability to aim-glide. Which sucks because the quiz is also a jumping puzzle and I 100% fucked up by thinking I could aim-glide. This caused me to miss a platform.
The quiz area also goes against 90% of Warframe game play by not resetting you when you fall off a ledge. Instead you instantly fail and are kicked out. Losing your 10 Cephalite Resonance in the process.
The grind for Cephalite Resonance is stupid.
I would be totally fine with losing my Cephalite stuff and having to restart however if the grind to obtain more wasn’t so damn random. The enemies themselves aren’t that bad. Okay, sure, they explode on death and you have to smash the glass off them to kill them. But they are just standard enemies spawned by a fissure. Although Nora Night does mention that they’ve spawned, they can blend in a little bit if a fissure spawns in the middle of a large mess, especially if you don’t see the fissure itself.
But that’s assuming enemies spawn.
Now, apparently the spawning of glassed enemies is on a timer. Every 25 minutes. You get a small window where you’ll get a bunch of enemies spawn in a mission and they’ll drop Cephalite Resonance. You get 150 Nightwave standing and up to 5 Cephalite Resonance. With a booster, a Nekros, Hydroid or Khora and some luck, you can get enough Cephalite Resonance for one visit to the crime scene. More realistically, it will take a few glass fissures to get enough Resonance for a visit.
If you are really unlucky, you might miss that small window multiple times (because people tend to play at all hours). It took me 4 hours to get 10 Cephalite Resonance for a second visit, simply because I happened to miss those windows every time. Oh and there’s a chance for a window to be skipped, so you could be on time and have to wait 50 minutes for literally no reason.
And what do you get for that spent Cephalite Resonance? A massive rush!
The quiz area looks somewhat interesting. Like a version of Simaris’s Sanctuary Onslaught entrance, but with more pipes of glass and less orange. But you have literally no time to stop and look around! As soon as you enter, someone starts speaking to you and accusing you of being a bad friend to Shigg, the Ostron who got turned to glass. But, more importantly, a 60 second timer starts counting down.
You have to select the correct answer in the time limit. The time limit is just about doable if you spend time to memorize the (pretty damn obvious) clues. However, throughout ALL of this, the voice is speaking at you, and you can’t stop and listen to what he has to say! What the actual fuck? We’re supposed to be searching for clues, but we are also on a time limit in a weird jumping puzzle while also answering questions!
So basically, you get to the end and have no idea what was actually said. And if you want to go back again, you need to farm more Cephalite Resonance.
If you get to the end, you get a message from an angry Cephalon and 7000 Nightwave standing. You also get a transmission from Nora saying the trail has gone cold. Because of course it has. We’ll probably have to repeat this later.
But honestly? I worry this murder mystery is going to be predictable anyway.
Warframe isn’t really a mystery game. Sure, it has strange mysteries in it, but nothing in the game really works well as a mystery to solve. The only real major twist we’ve ever had was the Operator in the Second Dream. The only mysteries that come even vaguely close to that are the massive space finger powering your Railjack, and the unreleased Duviri Paradox trailer. Everything else can at the very least be guessed.
I fear the Glassmaker will be similar. Especially when you compare it to previous Nightwave series. We already have a suspect that isn’t Gara, the Glass Warframe. There’s clearly an angry Cephalon who talks to you and makes you do puzzles. He even leaves an angry message at the end saying “i thought orokin good but they bad and now i am angry punisher.” I very much doubt we’ll have many twists and turns at all.
It’s all also partly teased with the various cosmetics. Cosmetics that are shaped like the Gammacor or mention being made by non-humans. Things clearly tied to Cephalons.
Oh well. At least the cosmetics are cool.