This article is about a frame fighter in the Warframe video game. Some other articles might be best read before it :
- The article presenting the Warframe setting, if you aren’t familiar with the game.
- The “base camp” article about what warframes are and how they work. This one is recommended even if you’re well familiar with the game. It has the design notes, for starters.
This profile has S P O I L E R S about the The Silver Grove Warframe quest.
Titania is an irregular warfare frame fighter. Oddly, she has a fey theme. The Orokin biologist who was forced at gunpoint to lead major parts of the design was a dedicated pacifist, so this theme may have been her way of sneaking in a protest.
This person, from the Archimidean Orokin caste, was an expert in both the Infestation and in the nightmarish, barely-surviving, post-collapse Earth ecosystems. This might mean that Earth had suffered significant Infestation damage before being mostly abandoned.
She agreed to leave her harsh field research on Earth to work with star Orokin scientist Margulis. The project was healing the child survivors of the Zariman Ten-Zero. Her exact role is unknown, but it is implied that she was one of the few persons with a genuine understanding about the Transference process.
The Silver Grove
The biologist was one of the idealists dreaming of restoring Earth. What she learned during the Titania project allowed her to design a new project to do so. The science she used likely has to do with the Helminth strain of Infestation and/or the Transference process used by the Tenno.
The Archimidean eventually deserted the project she had been forced to work on. She fled to Earth, and deployed something that grew into an unique forest, the Silver Grove. Notably :
- The biologist projected her consciousness into the entire Grove, using a process akin to Transference. But since she wasn’t a Tenno, this meant that her body wouldn’t survive the shock. However, her consciousness became immortal.
- The medium for this approximation of Transference was a dense underground neural network. This seems to be tied to the roots of the plant above, perhaps making the Grove a single-organism forest.
- The Silver Grove made a strong impression on almost every person who found it. Even former humans digitized as Cephalon ghostcomps . It might be an instinctive recognition that the Grove is the otherwise-lost natural environment of Earth.
- Over time, forests apparently extended out of the Silver Grove. They’re the same biome, so locating the Grove is difficult. Unless you know what to look for, and have scanners that can pick up the neural network from orbit.
Up in flames
As the biologist was growing the Silver Grove, her Orokin masters located her. They sent in superhuman Dax soldiers. These would easily have destroyed the Grove, but the Titania warframe stolen by her creator animated on its own.
This, the biologist had never expected. Like most Orokin, she considered the pre-Transference warframes as murderous monstrosities, no longer persons. Though she had tested Transferring herself into Titania for brief periods, the scientist had mistaken the pain within the warframe’s mind for evil.
Though she was mortally wounded, the warframe repulsed the Dax force on her own, using the terrain as her ally.
The biologist’s consciousness apparently went mostly dormant, likely due to the damage to the Grove and its neural substrata. However, she preserved the fallen Titania warframe. She even managed to manifest Warframe-like temporary constructs for self-defense, but this was done in a dream-like state.
Return of the gun fairy
After the Fall of the Orokin, the emerging Grineer faction strove to take control of the Earth. However, their raging xenophobia meant eradicating such anomalies as the resurgent forests.
This proved difficult. The plans are abnormally resistant, and many animals who adapted to the new biome are right dangerous. In particular, there were pack of animals descended from genetically-enhanced kubrow war beasts gone feral. The Grineer apparently didn’t consistently direct major forces against the forests and the Silver Grove – they have other problems.
Much later, other warframes came to defend the Grove. This was done at the behest of the New Loka, a purity/nature cult allied with The Lotus and her Tenno operatives. Though the New Loka didn’t realise the Silver Grove’s true nature, they considered it sacred. And they needed help in defending it against renewed Grineer attacks.
Enough damage was done to wake up the biologist’s dormant consciousness, but the Grove was ultimately saved. The honoured remains of Titania were returned to the Tenno – allowing for the creation of new Titania-class warframes.
A Titania-class warframe has three specialities.
- Enemy disruption.
- Squad enhancement.
- Cunning gunship impersonation.
(This here is the simplified version. Titania’s actual kit is pretty complicated, with lots of stuff going on.)
This is done using colorful projected energy fields. These confuse and mesmerise opponents. Two typical effects :
- Opponents in the field are dazed into dropping their weapons, then float helplessly in mid-air.
- A few opponents start helplessly floating in mid-air. They also glow with hypnotic lights, compel their allies to follow them Pied Piper-style as they float away. Energies build up, within them to eventually create a powerful explosion.
With Titania’s theme, Tenno often refer to these energy fields as “pixie dust” or “glamour”. The light particles from the fields do look the part.
Some forms of “pixie dust” also have protective properties. Those in the field can be protected from continuing damage such as bleeding, being on fire, being poisoned, being irradiated, etc..
Titania can also extract energy from a “glammered” target, but use it to more nuanced ends than a big explosion. The energy can overlock allied warframes in a number of ways, often amounting to a specialised defensive “spell”.
Close air support (part 1)
Titania’s most distinctive ability is to shrink and take flight. To Marvel Comics enthusiasts, this is reminiscent of the Wasp (Janet van Dyne).
When this process is launched, Titania shrinks to the size of a child’s doll. One exception is the structure on her lower back, styled to evoke the rear panniers of a 1700s aristocratic sack-back gown. Instead of shrinking, it rises to her shoulders and deploys to form wings.
Furthermore, as she shrinks Titania can deploy two pint-sized weapon system :
- The Pixia guns. Though Titania wields one in each hand, these things are closer to full-on belt-fed machineguns than to machine pistols.
- A sword. This seems primarily intended for self-defense, since closing in would usually be a bad tactical choice for a Titania warframe. This design is called the Diwata, after the nature spirits of Filipino myth.
The pixie-sized Titania can zip in the air with the greatest of ease, making her a difficult target. With her Pixias she can lay down a tremendous volume of fire. She’ll often operate at range and altitude to make hitting her even harder. This diminishes her accuracy, but she makes up for that with volume.
The Pixias automatically replenish their ammunition, using systems similar to those found in archwings.
A flying Titania warframe performs much like an attack helicopter, albeit one without rockets or missiles.
Close air support (part 2)
When shrunk and in the air, Titania can also deploy six razorfly miniature attack drones. These automatically attack opponents using smart targeting systems and fly-by slashing attacks with their wings.
Razorflies emit a loud, almost painful droning sound as they fly around. This is meant to distract enemies and entice them to shoot at the drones rather than Titania. This works well, especially since the drones will be much closer than Titania.
The Titania warframe includes a small cradle that automatically repairs damaged razorfly drones.
Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG
DEX 08 STR 07 BOD 10
Cling: 04, Damage capacity: 06, Gliding: 02, Invulnerability: 12, Jumping: 03, Radio communications: 16, Running: 06
Bonuses and Limitations:
- Cling can only be maintained for 3 Phases (if running) or 1 Phase (if stationary).
- Cling doesn’t work on surfaces at more than a 100° angle from the ground (such as ceiling, or protrusions along walls).
- Gliding can only be maintained for 3 Phases.
- Invulnerability – see below.
- Jumping has the Catfall Bonus.
- Radio coms includes video. It also allows The Lotus to anchor her Eye of Cat Power to a warframe. It usually links to the Orbiter and/or Landing Craft, which acts as a relay to the network.
Bomb: 10, Control: 06, Enchantment: 01, Flight: 07, Neutralize: 13, Shrink: 02, Stagger: 10
Bonuses and Limitations:
- Bomb’s EV drops to 0 past a 4 APs Range.
- Control is Minor Marginal.
- Control has a 1-AP selective Area of Effect.
- Control is limited to “you all wander away together in a random direction, ignoring everything else.”
- Enchantment can only be used on Warframes’ Powers.
- Enchantment has a selective 2 APs Area of Effect, and a +3 Special Duration Bonus.
- Enchantment can only be used after inflicting at least 6 RAPs (pre-LDD) to a living person or active robot, using Titania’s Bomb Power.
- Flight can only be used when Shrinking is active at full APs.
- Flight is technically Winged, but it never matters in the game.
- Neutralize has a 1-AP selective Area of Effect; and can be Combined with Stagger and Medicine (First Aid).
- Neutralize can only attack continuing damage from Disintegration, Poison Touch, and Powers with a similar Bonus. The OV/RV are the original attacking Power’s – the one whose damage continues. If Combined with Medicine (First Aid), Titania also addresses the effect of being a zero BODY as per normal First Aid.
- Stagger has a 1-AP selective Area of Effect.
- In addition to its normal effect, Stagger also performs (as its own AV/EV) a Take Away Manoeuvre on all hand-held items in the area.
Acrobatics: 08, Medicine (First aid): 05, Thief (Security systems, Stealth): 06, Vehicles: 07, Weaponry: 08
Bonuses and Limitations:
- Medicine applies to warframes without penalty.
- The First Aid Subskill of Medicine can be performed without equipment, as a single Dice Action, and without any penalty from the environment/distractions.
Area Knowledge (Real-time mapping and positioning), Leadership, Pet (Razorflies), Schtick (Paired weapons (all), Fast-Draw (all)).
- SHIELDING [BODY 02, Damage Capacity: 08, Bonus: Damage Capacity has Instant Recovery].
- DIWATA SWORD [BODY 12, Enhance (EV): 02 (cap is 12), Sharpness (EV): 02, Descriptor: Slashing]. This weapon can only be produced when Shrinking is fully active.
- PAIRED PIXIA MACHINEGUNS [BODY 07, Projectile weapons: 10, Sharpness (Projectile weapons): 02, Bonus: Autofire, Descriptor: Ballistic]. This weapon can only be produced when Shrinking is fully active.
- RAZORFLY CRADLE [BODY 03, Gadgetry: 08, Superspeed: 03, Limitations: Gadgetry and Superspeed can only be used to repair razorfly drones].
The razorflies can only be deployed when Titania is shrunk.
[DEX 06 BODY 03 INT 02, Claws: 05, Flight: 08, Sharpness (Claws): 02].
Invulnerability has Ammo: 04. The Hidden Messages quest in the game implies that it as a shorter range than most Transference functions, but there’s no other context. Maybe 100M kilometers (41 APs) – it’s a round, reasonable number.
If you are using our hypothesis that “revives” mean supercharging the Infestation within, each use would make the warframe visibly more overtaken by the Infestation. It would then have to be scrubbed and repaired in the orbiter’s “Infestation seat”.
Since Titania’s abilities kit is so fiddly, I went for quite a bit of reinterpretation. As with many warframes, the goal is to represent the video game without bending DCH too much.
Some bits are extended over what’s in-game (such as the Enchantment and the repair cradle for drones), others are fittingly shrunk.
My own Titania is chiefly modded for Efficiency and Duration, to keep her in the air for as long as possible (though I’m waiting for her Prime to really invest). With enough focus invested in Zenurik the out-of-energy bits aren’t too much of a bother.
This experience led me to abstract out energy requirements for her flight mode. You could go with one HP/phase, though. Or an Ammo mechanics, but it would be quite a bother.
Source of Character: Warframe vidjagame.
Writeup completed on the 15th of April, 2019.