Despite me being Mastery Rank 30, there’s still a lot of… tidbits I haven’t done yet. Small challenges and hunts that I never got around to. While I did eventually get max rank with the Ventkids, I never bothered with Conclave. And don’t get me started on finding all the Kurias. But one of the slightly more challenging things on this list is quite simple really. That challenge was an hour in the Index. I had to spend an hour in the Index, so I could finally face the myth that was John Prodman.
John Prodman is the Clem of the Corpus.
Well, kinda. John Prodman was actually, well, a very normal Prod Crewman who valiantly held off an Infested incursion all on his own with just a simple Prova. Over time, John Prodman rose through the ranks, becoming employee of the month after the Zanuka Project failed. John Prodman has only ever used his trusted Prova and his fists, having turned down actual shooty weapons like the Detron. The same way that a converted Kuva Lich can sometimes appear in a Tenno’s time of need, John Prodman does the same. He appears out of the blue, deals justice and then disappears once more.
Out of universe, John Prodman is actually just a very lucky Prod Crewman who managed to beat Phoroid on his own. But he’s as much a meme among Corpus as Clem is among Grineer.
John Prodman’s place in the Warframe halls of fame was sealed by introducing him as a very, very rare enemy in the Index.
So rare that you really have to coordinate to meet him.
To face the myth himself, you need to survive an hour in the Index. Now, this is already quite a feat, because these guys scale fast. Also, it means playing an hour in the Index. I normally hate playing the Index, even for short periods of time. So an hour of the Index is a lotto ask for.
Still, when Kaiga, a fellow MR30 friend that I helped climb the ranks, told me he was getting a squad together at 1:30am to try to meet John Prodman… Well, of course I said yes. The ‘Tenno Sensei’ was not going to let Kaiga down.
Everything was fine until the 50 minute mark.
We were doing well. There was plenty of time on the clock and Kaiga had turned into one of those green glowing Rhino memes. Our fellow team mates, a Wisp and a Valkyr, were helping with the killing, while I was playing goal keeper as Khora. Our plan was actually pretty simple, to let Rhino hold all the points, deposit all at once and then wait as long as possible before depositing again.
Unfortunately though, enemies started chewing through Iron Skin really quickly. And, worse, we… didn’t bring any armour strip… So, by the 50 minute mark, the level 250 enemies were getting pretty tanky and were chunking us. If it wasn’t for Shield Gating, I’d probably have died. I also learned something. Turns out, Fetch on Venari works in the Index. And it kept on stealing points from Kaiga.
Still, we struggled onward. We were counting the seconds until the hour mark hit, so we could see John Prodman, get our poster, win and then leave. John Prodman’s appearance was apparently announced, and he’d spawn in a shimmering column of white lite.
Never saw him.
Despite all my efforts, I never saw John Prodman. Okay, sure, I was mostly playing goal keeper, protecting our goal from the Corpus. Some of whom would randomly… just ignore Strangledome and Ensnare. That’s how they managed to score 10 points. But as we hit the hour mark, nothing happened. We didn’t hear an announcement, nor did we see a column of light.
In fact, the only thing I personally saw was a brief, red objective marker, caught briefly in my Strangledome, which quickly teleported away. I just assumed it was the waypoint to the goal.
The rest of my team didn’t seem to see him either. So, as the hour mark passed, we kept fighting. But we were struggling. Enemies were taking a little too long to kill. And, worse, the Iron Skin on Kaiga’s Rhino was being chipped away too quickly, meaning we could no longer bank large amounts of points.
At the 1 hour 15 mark, Kaiga decided to check the progress menu.
I’d been keeping tabs on our progress by pressing P and switching to the stats menu, which showed how long we’d been in the mission. After the hour mark though, I stopped checking. Thankfully, Kaiga decided to on a whim (as well as somehow switching between the wiki and the forums without dying). That’s when he noticed that he’d… already picked up John Prodman’s autograph.
Turns out, we’d defeated him and hadn’t even noticed. What should have been a cool moment kinda fizzled into nothing. His arrival and disappearance had gone by completely unseen. That was a shame, because I did genuinely want to fight John Prodman.
Still, we got what we wanted, banked the last few points then got the fuck out of there. We extracted with our poster and our 800k worth of credits, and returned to our ships to hang up our cool autographs.
And, of course, I placed my poster in the most useful place possible. Right in front of my market. Because that was a hell of a ride, and one I won’t forget any time soon.