Warframe oh Warframe. My sweet summer love – When the hit multiplayer Looter Shooter made it’s way onto Nintendo Switch, I was utterly engrossed; it was totally unlike anything I had played in recent memory, combining hyper-speed ninja-parkour-acrobatics with addictive melee and ranged combat with a massive amount of weaponry…

…And a massive number of cosmetics.

Now, I had reached Mastery Rank 4 initially, and gotten to Ceres… However due to the lack of visual fidelity on the Nintendo Switch, I had near-abandoned the title in favour of other games in my library…

…That was until last week, when I installed Warframe on PC.

Instantly the knowledge and fascination came right back to me; no longer was I making stupid mistakes by spending my beginning Platinum left, right and center, levelling mods that I’d never use, and letting my Kubrow die over and over again without putting them in Stasis…

…But amidst all of this, the gameplay and collecting wasn’t really the main focus this time around.

…The focus was to eventually appear on the front page of r/WarframeRunway, as if I was a cybernetic, intergalactic Vogue model – The attention to detail in every single cosmetic in this game is utterly insane, to the point where going to browse the Market for your ideal outfit feels like window shopping in fucking Selfridges; the only difference being that there’s not a collection of flies fluttering out of my wallet and the feeling of “I’ll never be able to afford this”, but rather the feeling of “If I stick with this and progress, no matter what, eventually, I will be able to get these sick items and look hella cool”.

It’s an odd feeling, especially coming from myself who has never (And will never) outright purchase a cosmetic piece of content with real money… Yet it’s not entirely exclusive to Warframe. In a similar (Yet more limited) vein to it, Fortnite has arguably capitalised on this by a country mile, with kids down at my local arcade crying in horror that the PC accounts there “only have the default skins”.

Now, Warframe isn’t quite that egregious, but in an odd, malformed way, I can kinda see why they got upset. In games I want to feel like an absolute badass… And with that comes a number of factors – The action, the controls, the set pieces, the gameplay, the characters… And the costume.

I want to look like a fucking Marvel reject whilst zipping around the battlefield with my partner, obsessing over what accessories would complete my ‘perfect’ Tenno outfit… It’s strange… But it’s not exactly bad. I don’t feel that my hand is being forced into my wallet to buy Platinum… But instead it’s this odd concept of “I want to progress to look cooler” that has me befuddled. It’s the first time I’ve felt a motivation like this.

…If only this feeling carried over to my IRL dress sense. Ahh well… Back to the ripped jeans and trench coat for me.

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