Protea exploded into existence in the Deadlock Protocol, apparently created especially for Parvos Granum, the founder of the Corpus. That sentence becomes more and more worrying when you consider that Parvos spent a lot of time with Protea, made Specters out of her and the fact that she can manipulate time.
But how is Protea? Is she any good?
The farm is easy, thankfully!
For once, a Warframe is actually somewhat easy to farm. You get her blueprint from the Deadlock Protocol quest. Meanwhile, her component blueprints are rewards from the Granum Void. Each part has an 11% drop chance, and the part you get depends on the Granum Crown you spend to enter the Granum Void. Once you are inside the Granum Void, all you have to do is murder specters until time runs out.
I got pretty unlucky with my runs (30 damn attempts for the Protea Neuroptics blueprint) but otherwise it’s a pretty nice, simple grind.
What about Protea herself?
She’s… cool, I guess. You could very easily call her the Tracer of Warframe, since her 4th ability (and biggest gimmick) reverts her to a previous time. Protea seems to have several themes outside of the time travel. Calling her a female Vauban would actually be somewhat accurate, since they both use less organic items and are more technology-focused. Vauban uses a wide array of traps and grenades, while Protea uses grenades, creates dispensers and has turrets. Protea also comes with a nice built-in universal aura slot, which means you can use any aura mod you want.
Protea’s look though is… kinda weird. Mostly because of her helmet, I guess. I do very much appreciate the dialing back of metallic parts, but that doesn’t fix Protea. She has three helmets right now, all of which look a bit small for her. And her default helmet… It looks like a massive, gurning, 4-eyed face. I just can’t unsee it.
I like 3/4 of her abilities!
Grenade Fan? An awesome ability, a nice blend of damage and shields, that does slash damage. Blaze Artillery? A pretty great turret, held back by the fact that it only ever lasts 6 seconds (or fires 6 shots) then disappears, but can be spammed easily. Dispensary? An awesome ability that provides health, energy and infinite ammo for Archwing weapons. Temporarl anchor though is just nauseating.
You activate Temporal Anchor and zip around, killing as normal, before causing an implosion and rewinding yourself (and only yourself) through time, back to where you initially cast the ability. You can’t move or anything while being rewinded backwards. It’s actually quite dizzying. And it’s… not that useful.
A time travel ability that isn’t useful?
The problem is that, in Warframe, unless you are playing a Defense or Survival or something, you are generally always moving forward. But Temporal Anchor always sends you backwards. Yeah, sure, it replenishes any health and energy lost during Temporal Anchor’s duration but… so what? If you die during Temporal Anchor’s duration, you are revived, knocked down and teleported back to your initial spot, but even that isn’t as useful as you’d think.
I mean, think about it. You’re running to extraction and get hit by a bombard. If you don’t have your Anchor up, you just die. But if you have the future sight to activate Temporal Anchor… you get teleported further back from extraction. With 5% health. And you have to run past that bombard again.
I played with Protea for a while, and I honestly couldn’t find a good reason to activate Temporal Anchor. The only place I felt it might be useful is in Defense Arbitrations, but even then, it’s easy to die again immediately afterwards.
That roll animation though…
The worst thing about Protea though is her dodge. I really don’t get what Protea’s roll is supposed to be? She does this weird forward flip. Okay, sure, other frames have custom rolls. Limbo started it off with his dash to enter and exit the Rift, but it feels pretty fluid. Because Hildryn is basically a walking helicopter, she has a custom roll as well, but again, it feels somewhat fluid. Wisp and Titania have their own floating dodges as well, to go alongside their general floatiness.
But Protea doesn’t have a reason to have a special roll. She’s not floating or anything, nor is she traveling between the gaps in existence. She gets a fancy roll, just ’cause.
Overall, a good frame, nothing special.
Protea isn’t mindblowingly amazing or anything, but she is a bit of fun to play as. Aside from her dodge roll and no use for her Temporal Anchor, Protea and her abilities play nicely. But if you want a technology-based frame, then Vauban is far more fun…