Digital Extremes’ Soulframe is a new game with at least one pretty obvious similarity to the developer’s big hit, Warframe. Details are scarce for the time being, but we do know it’s a new fantasy title. That’s a notable departure from the fantastical — yet still decidedly sci-fi — world of Warframe. Though the name might at least imply that the two games have some things in common.
More connective tissue includes the developers themselves. Obviously, many members of Digital Extremes are working on the project. Soulframe is actually being overseen by former Warframe director Steve Sinclair. As he shifts over the new game, the longtime face of the Warframe development team (and the voice behind its mascot character, The Lotus), Rebb Ford, is taking control of the science fiction epic as its new creative director. In fact, she’s already been in that role for some time.
Ford explained during a preview for TennoCon 2022 and an interview with Fanbyte that she’s been working in the Creative Directive role “in secret” since at least February of this year. She took over development of the game’s long-awaited The Duviri Paradox update partway through. Though the first major update totally overseen by her, which is called Veilbreaker, will actually launch sooner. More information on that is due sometime in August (which is just a couple weeks from now if you’re keeping track).
For its part, Soulframe will be the first totally original Digital Extremes game, period, in almost a decade. The developer officially launched Warframe all the way back in 2013. After that, it developed a Star Trek movie tie-in game (based on the J.J. Abrams reboot) to extremely mixed reviews. Digital Extremes then co-developed another licensed game, Sword Coast Legends, which was set in the Dungeons & Dragons setting “Forgotten Realms.” This also endured middling reception in 2015.
Beyond that, the last entirely new Digital Extremes project actually never came out. The Amazing Eternals was a very irreverent first-person shooter announced in 2017. Yet it was canceled shortly thereafter due to a lack of interest: both in the game’s closed beta and other multiplayer first-person shooters released in that era. Most notably LawBreakers. I can’t exactly blame the studio, either. The market for competitive shooters is as absolutely brutal today as it was half-a-decade ago.
Warframe has long maintained a much tighter focus on cooperative play instead. While there is technically PVP content, it’s a miniscule part of the game compared to PVE missions. During which players hunt for random drops to build weapons, outfit themselves with better mods, and unlock more of the titular Warframes. Though the game also has an extremely dense and detailed story behind all the grind.
We can only speculate how much of this will translate into Soulframe. Though the developer did show a tiny peek at the game alongside its various TennoCon 2022 announcements. It would certainly seem odd to share half a name with its big sibling, Warframe, and nothing else. Though that’s just marketing for you sometimes. We’ll be sure to post more about Soulframe (and of course Warframe) as details develop.
Disclaimer: Digital Extremes’ parent company was purchased by Tencent, which is also the parent company of Fanbyte Media, in 2022. Though editorial has no direct contact with anyone from Tencent. Seriously, they don’t tell us jack.