One of the most favourite games of players today is Warframe. You can’t deny that it is one of the leading matches online. It has more than 50 million registered gamers across all platforms. If you’re going to think of it, that’s quite a huge number for everyone in the game community. Warframe is a free-to-play action role-playing and third-person shooter multiplayer online match. It initially launched on PC, before it became available to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Digital Extremes, the developer of the game, is even considering a mobile launch for the match. That’s how popular this game is.
But no one expected this to happen. Many publishers didn’t want anything to do with the game. Some of them even told Digital Extremes outright that the game would fail. But the company still pushed through with the development, even if they are already struggling. They looked at the game as their way to move away from work-for-hire development.
But without the backing of publishers, Digital Extremes didn’t have the budget for a big launch. The initial reception was mediocre, but that didn’t deter the company. They slowly built up the game’s fanbase and became one of the most popular shooter games available. In this article, we’ll look at what Digital Extremes did to become famous and maintain its popularity even today.
What is Warframe?
Before we discuss what Digital Extremes did, let us first discuss briefly what the Warframe game is. As mentioned above, Warframe is an online third-person role-playing and multiplayer shooter game. In this game, you get to act as ancient warriors called Tenno. They are basically like space ninjas that wear battle suits called warframes.
As a space ninja, you get to equip weapons and gear to help you in battle. Your goal is to explore the universe and then kill monsters that are trying to wreak havoc. The beauty of this game is that everything you will need can be earned. But you are given an option to use premium currency and buy gear and items.
What makes this game unique compared to most shooter games is that it is not a player-vs-player (PVP) game, but a player-vs-environment (PVE). It is not competitive gameplay, but a cooperative one. This thing means that players won’t fight against each other. Instead, they would have to work together to progress in the game.
A team will have four players, and each one will have to cooperate and work together. This matter is one of the big gambles that Digital Extremes did, and it paid off when Warframe became one of the favourite games. There’s a reason why the company went with PVE instead of PVP. We’ll discuss it in the next section.
Warframe Popularity All Over The Years
Without any advertising or marketing budget to spend, Digital Extremes’ strategy with Warframe was to focus on building a community and viral marketing, according to a.list daily’s 2017 interview with Meredith Braun, the company’s VP of Publishing. This matter is the least costly method, but it was also easy for the company to measure the results of their strategy. Building a community also allowed them to connect with the players more. She said that talking with the game’s community allowed them to change and improve the game as they are playing it.
She adds that their philosophy in building a community was to be transparent with the players and provide constant and rapid updates. They also don’t like the idea of harassing players for money, so they didn’t put in a lot of tactics to get players to spend money in the game,” she said in the 2017 interview. It’s a strategy that they maintain up to this day, which is why people still play this game today.
The developer is coming out with new updates for its players, showing that the lockdown because of the Coronavirus didn’t prevent them from working and providing new content. Being transparent, showing them that you care, and always providing updates is one of the significant reasons Warframe is still popular. Another reason the game took off was that it strived to be different. When Warframe launched, most of the available shooter games were all PVP, and there wasn’t a good PVE game. So to differentiate Warframe, they made it into a PVE game, which was a good idea.
Maintaining the Game System
Since the game relies on cooperation, its community is more friendly and welcoming to new players. People are not going to compete against each other, so there is rarely any angst within the game’s community. It’s a fresh concept for them to see a forum of gamers that is very inviting and cooperative.
Though competition is good, a game that promotes cooperation is something that many players will enjoy playing. Not everyone enjoys PVP, especially when it becomes too competitive. So something different is always welcomed. Besides, a friendly and inviting community is a big plus, especially for new players. It makes it easy for them to start the game, ask questions if needed, and assistance if they are having a hard time.
Warframe overcame a lot of doubts and struggles to become one of the favourite games right now. Digital Extremes strategy to achieve and maintain that involves establishing and building a community of players. They achieved that by being transparent, providing constant updates, and being too pushy and forceful about players spending money on the game. Having a game that invites cooperation also made it attractive since gamers are friendlier and more inviting.