Warframe developer feels it’s riskier for a mid-size firm to go mobile than free-to-play

Saturday, 22nd June 2013 21:36 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

Digital Extremes creative director Steve Sinclair has said that while most mod-sized studios would rather play the safe card by developing a mobile title, to them, it’s just as risky as going free-to-play – like with Warframe.

Speaking with GI International, Sinclair said even members of the team have asked why it isn’t developing something for phone or tablets.

“I suppose internally over the last few years we’ve had a lot of the team ask why we aren’t making a tablet game, or why aren’t we making phone games,” he said. “It seems like it’s feast or famine there, and the team sizes are much smaller than ours. And we wanted to keep the people we had.

“If you want to get two or three guys and take a shot at mobile, it’s probably awesome for you. But for a mid-size developer like us, it’s even riskier than going free-to-play.

“Internally, the studio was sharply divided on what we were doing, because we had worked and tried to do frankly high budget looking stuff for way less money. You get a call from an executive saying he just saw that Halo trailer and why don’t we have X,Y, and Z? And they don’t take kindly to, ‘Well, we’re talking about budgets with extra zeroes to them.’

“Most [mid-sized develeopers] are dead and gone, and the quadrupling down on a few franchises means that a mid-size developer like us that can’t throw 500 people on a single project don’t have any work.”

And the risk has paid off: Warframe will be a launch title for PS4, and it the team has the popularity of the PC version’s beta to thank for it.

“They approached us, and they’ve been really, really good to us, helping us get more dev kits than they wanted to give us,” said Sinclair. “They definitely squeezed themselves for us and the fact they put us up [in their E3 booths] three months after they sent us dev kits has been awesome for us.

“And it’s given us a chance to expose the game to people that maybe weren’t as interested in it when it was just PC free-to-play, because there’s that certain stigma surrounding that.”



  1. PS4FANB0Y

    Lost Planet meets Power Rangers!

    #1 2 years ago
  2. yeoung

    My laptop breaks out in a cold sweat when I fire up mahjong, there’s no way I can run this thing, will have to wait for the PS4 version.

    Can anyone tell me how the controls feel? Kinda like Anarchy Reigns? Maybe Ninja Gaiden’ish? Genji?

    #2 2 years ago
  3. sh4dow

    What are “mod-sized studios”? :P

    “feels it’s riskier for a mid-size firm to go mobile than free-to-play”
    “developing a mobile title, to them, it’s just as risky as going free-to-play”
    So which one should it be?

    #3 2 years ago
  4. aaron_avelino

    Hey steph you might wanna check out this rumored pic of new God of War game called redemption for ps4 and vita.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. Lengendaryboss

    I Call fake.

    #5 2 years ago
  6. Chaos Spectre

    Honestly, I can’t say it plays like any of those you mentioned, not even close really.

    At its heart, it is a third person shooter, but the melee aspect (which needs a buff and is being worked on) is still really fun, especially if you are a stealth based frame.

    Imagine Cyberpunk ninjas, and you basically have this game. You get 4 powers that vary on a theme for each frame. You get a primary weapon which can be anything from a rifle to shotgun to sniper, or even a bow. You get a pistol, which many can fill in as a weaker role of the primary weapon itself, including dual wieldable shotgun pistols and throwing knives (kunai). Then finally, you have your melee weapon, which there is a wide range to choose from, but many need a rework (don’t touch the Bo staff).

    You can also get a small pet called a sentinel which has some cool features as well, especially Deth Cube.

    So you build your loadout, then are dropped into 4 player co-op missions of an assorted variety, and you kill off 1 of 3 factions, some of which will change mid match and fight each other, which is a blast honestly.

    The closest it can be compared to is Mass Effect multiplayer, but besides that, I have no honest comparison to any other game, its pretty unique.

    #6 2 years ago
  7. yeoung


    Pretty clear picture now, many thanks internet person. Hope the melee feels right when it launches on PS4. If stealth+melee is an option, than by god I’m going stealth+melee.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. machy

    warframe is a good game and it’s 100% free .. u should try it

    #8 2 years ago

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