FOREWARNING: This article contains MASSIVE spoilers for Warframe‘s Fortuna DLC. You’ve been warned.
Okay, so Warframe is a pretty weird game. Don’t get me wrong – I love it, and I’ll spend hundreds of hours just to get my dumb little Atlas as overpowered as possible. But it’s well accepted at this point that the overall aesthetic and tone of Digital Extreme’s long-time MMO is odd at best. And in the new Fortuna update, things just got much weirder.
The Fortuna patch is Digital Extreme’s second go at a more “open-world” section of the game. Instead of the Plains of Eidolon (which only launched last year), players get to do rad hoverboard tricks, fight robo-spiders, and catch little critters in the Orb Vallis wasteland. But, as it turns out, there is an incredibly dark story lurking beneath this playful exterior.
Cyborgs Buried In Debt
Now the bulk of the story takes place on Venus, where the residents are ruled by debt. They owe this all to one Nef Anyo, a stuck up bourgeois of the Corpus (one of the enemy factions in the game). Every member of the Solaris faction owes an impossible amount to Anyo, with almost no chance of repayment.
As such, they slowly but surely get their body parts replaced with robotic rigs. These rigs are required in order to perform manual labor for Anyo. It is essentially slavery, but with forced limb replacement.
Players will quickly notice that every NPC they speak with is actually more robotic than human at this point. Honestly, it qualifies as some pretty surreal body-horror, even when compared to the biomechanical monstrosity that is your Warframe.
Forcefully Becoming A Machine
As you get further into debt, more of your body is replaced. If you cause trouble or don’t perform to Anyo’s standards, then you lose even more of your human limbs. Our player finds this out while working through the main story missions. You know, in between cute animal captures and Tony Hawk segments. Bit of a tonal rollercoaster honestly.
Anyway, you end up working with the resistance movement known as Solaris United, as one would expect. This means you also must perform daily bounties for them to increase your reputation. Anyone familiar with an MMO should know what reputation is.
With Max Rep Comes A Gut-Wrenching Twist
Getting your rep to the “Old Mate” status with the resistance is no easy feat. The expansion released on November 8, and player ‘6ArtemisFowl9’ just recently managed to get there (by the way nice name I love those books). At max rank, we find out that Anyo isn’t the only one hiding secrets from us. Watch this video first.
Did you watch the video? Okay. Massively terrifying, right? I mean I got the heebie-jeebies just from looking at her. So apparently, each member of the Solaris actually kept their most human part, their head, inside the chest cavity of their rig.
And now at max rank, they trust you enough to reveal their “true faces” to you. That’s right, every main NPC in the Fortuna colony now has their…head showing. Can’t run that back, no matter how much players have been asking.
How Does It Even Work?
Honestly, it is incredibly odd. Why keep your head in your chest? Why wouldn’t it just be on your, you know, head? Maybe this is Anyo’s way of demeaning the people of Venus even further by locking their true selves inside their borrowed bodies.
It’s some classic body horror, and I’m massively summarizing it. There is a lot more here to break down. There have been fans that have decoded audio logs to find out that the worst criminals of the bunch actually get their brains “shelved”.
I’m assuming that it is a Futurama sort of situation where you become a head in a jar, stuck in the most boring prison imaginable.
The Clues Were There
Looking back, Digital Extreme actually sprinkled hints to this revelation in a couple places. When Solaris United’s Leader Eudico speaks to you and Nef Anyo, you can see her face in the dialogue window. But now, with this context, we can notice that the background is clearly the inside of her rig.
Plus, the theme for the Fortuna Update has some chilling lyrics that allude to this twist as well. Specifically the part of the song that states “hide the heart of who we are”. These people are literally hiding their most vulnerable and real aspect inside.
It’s Worth A Look
This is all to say that the Fortuna update is a rip-snorting good time. Digital Extremes has been exponentially improving the quality of their pet project since its initial release in 2013.
Every new update they try something new, and each and every time they get better and better. Warframe really is one of the best free-to-play games out there, as there might be more than 1000 hours of content open to you for no charge.
Do yourself a favor and check out this update. Let us know how you like it, what your favorite frame is, and how long you’ve been immersed in the world of the Operator and their frames.