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Operation Cryotic Front, Design And Overview


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Survival missions have always been a little unusual when played at a terrestrial tileset. The mechanics work fantastic in a mission that’s grounded in space, but the second we take Survival onto Earth a lot of questions are raised.

 

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Why do you start running out of air?  How do the Infested gain the ability to suck the life from an entire atmosphere?  Did the Corpus finally build the Mega Maid?  Something had to change.

 

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Operation Cryotic Front is the start of a new mission type that will be replacing all Survival missions that take place on a terrestrial tileset.  In short, anything not in space.  Instead of scrambling for life support modules Tenno will follow intel the Lotus provides in order to locate artifacts hidden underground.  

 

The excavation process for discovering artifacts will go as follows:

 

  • Within the level there’s a Scanner that players must locate and activate.  The location of the Scanner will be marked on your minimap.  Once you reach the Scanner standing within proximity of the Scanner’s location will activate it and begin to drain its power.
    • Power Cells are dropped by Corpus or Grineer Power Carriers and must be picked up and brought toward the Scanner in order to be used.
  • Players must keep the Scanner powered as it searches for a dig site in the immediate area.  Corpus or Grineer Power Carriers (when slain) will drop power cells that can be used to power the Scanner.
    • If players do not provide any Power Cells then the Scanner will simply go into standby mode, activating once players have acquired a Power Cell and are standing within range.
  • Once the dig site has been found you must go to the site and defend the Excavator against incoming enemies until it uncovers the find.
    • Just like the Scanner the Excavator requires Power Cells.  If players do not provide the Excavator with Power Cells then the machine will shut down and go into standby mode until more power is acquired.

 

Once the Excavator finishes digging players will have the option to extract or continue on, and each successful dig will provide players with rewards.  The more successful excavations you complete the more Cryotic you’ll receive for the event.  Teamwork is absolutely critical, as Tenno must be ready to defend and power the Excavator at all times.  Whether you’re working with your fellow clanmates or are trying out Operation Cryotic Front with a random group of Tenno there are a few things you can do to better prepare for your venture into the cold.

 

 

Assign Roles:  The first few Excavators may allow for players to pick up Power Cores at random, but the real success is in having a good system to keep the power running.  Assigning some players to retrieve Power Cores while others provide support is a good way to keep the mission flowing.

Defend the Excavator:  It’s not enough to simply rack up a few kills and call it a day.  If the Excavator is destroyed while digging the mission will end in a failure; even if you still have a functional Scanner.  Crowd control is your friend!

Keep the Heat On:  One of the biggest dangers you face will be the harsh environment on the new Europa tileset, kept at bay from portable heaters placed on the map.  Although it isn’t a problem in every corner of Europa letting those heat generators get destroyed can cause a serious problem if there’s an Excavator nearby.

Mark Power Cores:  Sometimes it’s easy to get a stack of enemies to drop Power Cores, only to have your next Excavator drop zone be in a different area.  Marking Cores can make it easy for you and your team know where a quick source of power can be located for future use.

Don’t Rush:  Activating more than one Excavator at a time may seem like a good idea, but if your team isn’t prepared it can mean disaster during a high level wave of enemies.  Always communicate when you’ll be activating an Extractor if you’re not certain your party is ready!

 

Keep in mind that although Operation Cryotic Front is a special limited time event it’s our intention to have Excavation replace all missions where you could run out of air on a planet.  As such, any feedback you have on this new gametype is greatly appreciated.  

 

Good luck and be sure to bring the heat, Tenno.  You’re in for a cold reception.

 

(Credit goes out to Yuikami and ketrinadrawsalot for the amazing comics!)

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Corpus/Grineer mega maid. *snrk*

 

That being said the new game mode sounds really dynamic and cool. I can't wait to try it out. After I watch Spaceballs again of course.

 

Are there any thoughts/plans for implementing this game-mode to Asteroid bases? Would sort of make sense because mining asteroids (though the reverse of air being sucked out of an asteroid base also makes perfect sense). And if excavators would exhume other types of resources on non-icy planets like Phobos/Earth.

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Appreciate the synopsis, DE_Adam. But just to be clear:  Do we have to attain a score of 3000 points or greater in a single run to be eligible for the Latron Wraith? Or, is the score cumulative over successive runs? 

 

EDIT

 

"It's actually based on your best score, so you need 3000 on a single mission." - DE_Pablo

 

https://forums.warframe.com/index.php?/topic/298974-new-event-100pts-a-run-so-i-need-to-do-30-runs-for-latron-wraith/?p=3403293#entry3403293

Edited by Runehawk
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I... have very few bad things to say.

On paper, this event looks awesome. It doesn't pretend to deal with balance issues, rewards teamwork rather than gearing, and fixes up a glaring immersion-breaking omission.

Encouraging communication and teamwork by clearly setting out objectives and letting common sense dictate what players to is great. All too often, especially seen with survival missions, instructions leave too much room for interpretation, leading to frustration as people try to enforce strategies and present their plan as the best. Apparently, not so with this one. Defend the objectives, supply the objectives with power cores, play the role rather than the kill stats is a great thing to encourage. The amount of planning in a squad sounds intense, and while it could lead to exclusion or elitism, I don't think it's gone that far yet.

The mechanics (seem) easy enough to pick up, and the thematic appropriateness is a nice touch. Clearing up the life-support-on-an-open-air-planet thing is a neat way to introduce a new game mode, though the shallow nature of the lore behind it (someone says they can help us against a future enemy, and we jump to do their bidding) leaves the question open as to how this ties in with everything - anything! - else. The mission itself looks like a less-than-seamless integration of interception and defense, but it is a good, solid idea in context.

I can't comment on the grind aspect itself since I haven't had a chance to try it out, but I'd like to say thanks for giving us some repayable (jury might be out on that one after a few weeks) content which breaks up the endless grind in a fairly innovative new manner.

 

Edit: Glad to see my first impressions were confirmed!

Edited by Vastaren
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This event and mission type (rather fittingly, to be honest) reminds me quite a bit of the event that introduced Survival.

This mission type has a very good balance of difficulty, as it isn't overwhelming, nor is it a faceroll. It encourages teamwork and makes players watch what they're doing to succeed.

 

Me gusta mucho.

me_gusta_mucho_by_megustamuchoplz-d416uq

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i just got done with the whole event, but one question remains... if we don't die, can the mission fail in any way or is it like let's say an exterminate where the only failure you'll encounter, your own errors are...i'm not sure how to say that right, but i guess even with the horrid grammar you'll know what i mean.

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i just got done with the whole event, but one question remains... if we don't die, can the mission fail in any way or is it like let's say an exterminate where the only failure you'll encounter, your own errors are...i'm not sure how to say that right, but i guess even with the horrid grammar you'll know what i mean.

 

I think I know what you mean lol. Well, even if all your extractors are destroyed, the scanner doesn't have a life bar of its own, and you can still fill it up with cells. There is no countdown timer either. So it seems that the only way to fail the mission is to have your squad actually perish. 

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I think I know what you mean lol. Well, even if all your extractors are destroyed, the scanner doesn't have a life bar of its own, and you can still fill it up with cells. There is no countdown timer either. So it seems that the only way to fail the mission is to have your squad actually perish. 

 

This appears to be either a bug, or a missing feature. DE_Adam seems to have said that the mission will fail if an extractor is destroyed. Clearly, this isnt yet occurring in game.

 

Defend the Excavator:  It’s not enough to simply rack up a few kills and call it a day.  If the Excavator is destroyed while digging the mission will end in a failure; even if you still have a functional Scanner.  Crowd control is your friend!

 

As a note, I'd suggest that a single destroyed Escavator should not cause a fail, but instead implement a 3 strikes rule or something of that sort.

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As a note, I'd suggest that a single destroyed Escavator should not cause a fail, but instead implement a 3 strikes rule or something of that sort.

 

I second that. Let 3 of them get destroyed and the mission is a fail.

 

Currently it seems like mission failure doesn't work... which is not that bad either because my first squad ran into serious trouble anyways because we weren't prepared that the enemies scale up so fast so we weren't doing any damage against the Grineer on Earth anymore and had to extract at 1350 points or something because people started to get downed and the Extractors became one-hits to the Grineer. Couldn't even keep a single one alive at that point anymore.

 

If it would fail the mission because the next wave of enemies pretty much oneshots an extractor it would be very unforgiving... so I think a little room to mess up should be there. As notionphil said... 3 times seems like a good number.

 

 

Another problem we ran into is that that the generated maps both on Earth and Europa were TOO big. It takes like forever to travel back to the starting area when the Scanner deploys a new extractor on the other end of the tileset. That can become annoying as it often causes the squad to swarm out and people are sprayed all over the map and if someone gets downed you have literally no chance to revive them because you can't get there in 15 seconds. Can't defend the extractor and go for rescue at the same time. Can't split myself. oO

 

I know it's supposed to encourage teamwork... but many people just don't care and head off for a solo rampage on the other side of the map.

Edited by MeduSalem
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few questions:

1) i would like to ask if cells have some expiration rate. more than once i brought cells to excavator and it would provide only 18 or 35% power.

2) does scanner have to be running during excavation or only when searching for new dig sites?

3) 3000 points maybe difficult for new(er) players. around 2300 points collected we encountered grineer level 80-85 and spend more time reviving new guy than collecting cells. We had to bail eventually. Or, is there something we did wrong?

thanks

 

EDIT: I just found that digs at Phobos and Europa give 300 points per dig instead of 100 on Earth. Much more doable now.

Edited by turbinea
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Mega Maid made me roll on the floor laughing! :D

 

 

Corpus/Grineer mega maid. *snrk*

 

That being said the new game mode sounds really dynamic and cool. I can't wait to try it out. After I watch Spaceballs again of course.

 

Are there any thoughts/plans for implementing this game-mode to Asteroid bases? Would sort of make sense because mining asteroids (though the reverse of air being sucked out of an asteroid base also makes perfect sense). And if excavators would exhume other types of resources on non-icy planets like Phobos/Earth.

 

Cryotic excavations from Phobos/Earth are pretty ... stupid. Ice related resource excavated from a desert or a freakin' forest isn't so cool idea (but maybe nature of cryotic is different than we all think it is).

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The new mission type is really interesting and I enjoyed it. It forces the players to work together as a team more so than most mission types bring about better satisfaction overall in gameplay. 

 

One gripe I do have about it is the power cells. Earlier on upon release of U14.5, power cells can stack allowing the player to collect multiple cells at once. This is obviously a bug and was later fixed. But to me it was a better solution to the mission flow. With the players only able to carry one cell at a time, hundreds of cells will be left lying around waiting to be collected. It wastes the time given to give the devices power and with too many cells the level will most definitely start to lag.

 

Each cell only gives a fraction of power, so why can't the cells stack on collection to allow for a higher power charge on either the excavator or the scanner? It will be much more efficient that way as well as practical. Just a suggestion I'm throwing out there.

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As a note, I'd suggest that a single destroyed Escavator should not cause a fail, but instead implement a 3 strikes rule or something of that sort.

 

I'd be all for this, provided they switch up how the excavators, um, "finish working."  When they're shot to death, they understandably explode.  However, when they finally unearth whatever it is they're digging up they also explode.  It's just a little off-putting.

 

I suggest having a limited supply of extractors, say, anywhere from three to seven, given the difficulty of a mission.  If the enemy blows one up, minus one extractor.  If the extractor finishes, maybe have it warp back into orbit or something.

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I'd like the cells to operate more like this:

 

We can carry as many as we want. You have to pick each one up, but they go into a special reserve (perhaps the number carried can go between the lines of text in the top left corner? I thought I saw enough space there). There would also be more uses for the cells (i.e. Turrets like I saw someone suggest in another thread - perhaps we hack into deactivated Grineer/Corpus turrets near the drills to get them to operate for us?). Instead of automatic dispensing when approaching a drill, we are given a prompt to slot in a power core. This makes it harder to waste cores (i.e. if you have to run right by a drill that needs no more to get to another drill in need).

 

Also, how would this work for the Dark Sector missions on the planets? Infested don't carry Power Cells, as far as I know. And they have a Survival on the terrestrial tilesets...

Oooh, idea. Implement a new enemy for the infested for this, one who controls electricity (though differently from the crawler). Make the excuse that their body has found a way to integrate the power core for this. Killing said enemy causes them to drop the core. Would also solve the inevitable issue of Infestation Outbreaks on terrestrial tilesets,

 

Final question: Which tilesets denote terrestrial? The new Corpus Planet I know does, Phobos, and Earth. Do Grineer Shipyards count? Asteroid bases? Corpus ice-teroid bases?

 

EDIT: Almost forgot, +1 for Spaceballs.

Edited by Samoth95
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IMHO I think as the game mode stands right now with no failure per se makes for a non pressured mission type like survival, it makes it much more open to different types of players, Veterans, Solo, New Players. As someone said at some point excavators begin getting one shotted which even if you gave three would go very quick and I believe frustration would being to filter in. To those who may complain it's too easy or need a challenge then drop your conclave rating and do it that way. I also think the change DEGlen made regarding power core pick ups should be reversed and we should be able to pick up multiple cores, other than that I really enjoy this game mode and will definitely play it more than survival. 

Edited by Pendragon1951
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Personally I don't think excavator destruction should be a fail condition, they get destroyed too easily and in some cases, you get an excavator miles away that breaks the spawn flow due to splitting up the group, and just sits there unpowered half the time.

 

Right now I think the game mode is just about perfect, since the enemies are always increasing in level and not being based on the excavators in use, that acts as the challenge of the game type: Good runs played well grant you much better rewards than just killing everything.

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