One particular Warframe Riven Mod challenge — which requires players to kill Dargyn pilots before they hit the ground — can be especially confusing if you don’t know what the game is talking about. Not to mention it’s still awfully tricky if you know where to go and what exactly a “Dargyn Pilot” even is (unless you bring a few handy tricks). That’s exactly what we’re here to provide in this latest Riven Mod challenge guide for Warframe! Let’s figure out how to kill Dargyn pilots quickly, easily, and above all correctly.
The “correctly” part is the trick. It’s probably the number one reason most players (me included) have or had difficulty with this challenge in the past, simply because the objective itself is not clearly worded. Anyone can kill a Dargyn Pilot before they hit the ground. Just blow them out of the sky! Yet that won’t count for the Riven Mod challenge. What gives?
The answer is that each Dargyn Pilot must be airborne and outside its Dargyn (the flying skiff vehicles they use) for the challenge to trigger. This means you must destroy the tiny fighters without killing the pilots. Then you need to shoot them out of the air as they fall to the Plains of Eidolon below. At least in theory.
Speaking of the Plains of Eidolon: for those that don’t know at all, Dargyn Pilots are the Grineer enemies found in this open-world zone that fly around during the day in little one-person attack vehicles. They often spawn in the air during bounties and whenever you use the Tranq Rifle to conserve wildlife. Yet you can actually find them scattered throughout the region on the ground — standing outside their Dargyns on foot. If you kill them quickly, you can steal the attack craft for yourself as a temporary aerial stand-in for your Archwing. If they spot you, however, they’ll mount up and give chase from the sky until you blow them up.
This is actually key to one of the easiest methods for completing the Riven Mod challenge. Just don’t let them board their Dargyn at all. Warframe does not actually check to see why each pilot is airborne when it dies. It only cares that they are in the air and NOT currently aboard a Dargyn. This means that any Warframe ability which levitates a creature without killing it counts for the challenge!
For this reason, I personally prefer using Titania and her third ability, “Lantern,” to unveil these Rivens. Lantern is a single-target skill that turns enemies into floating fonts of damage. The enemy in question is completely invincible during this time and cannot be killed by anything other than the skill deactivating — which reduces the odds that something else will accidentally kill the pilot too early or incorrectly. You can either just wait for the skill to end naturally or hold the ability key to end it (and kill the pilot) manually.
Other players prefer the fourth Zephyr ability, “Tornado,” as it can hit a larger group and more easily catch Dargyn Pilots falling out of the air. That way you don’t always need to find them on the ground.
If you opt for the ground-based method, though, note that you can usually find Dargyn Pilots directly to the east and/or west of the entrance to the Plains of Eidolon. I’ve personally always had the most luck going east, killing the group I find there, fast traveling back to Cetus, and then repeating the process. Though your mileage may vary according to luck and spawn rates, as with so many other things in Warframe. I also highly recommend that you unequip any Companions (e.g. Sentinels, Kubrow, or Kavats) so that they don’t kill the pilots before you can set things up.
Alternatively, shooting pilots out of the air can alleviate the RNG aspect. More pilots spawn in the air than on the ground (especially during bounties and wildlife conservation). Though the method requires more skill and preparation.
You need to equip a gun that does not explode (like a grenade launcher) or deal punch-through damage (like bows). A sniper rifle or simple pistol is probably best. Then aim for the bottom of the Dargyn (where the little “tail” sticks out underneath) to minimize the chances of accidentally hitting the pilot. Once the Dargyn explodes, you can finish off the pilot in whatever way you wish, so long as it happens before they touch the ground.
In fact, the aforementioned levitation tricks still work on pilots that survive a Dargyn explosion and fall to the ground alive. Titania, Zephyr, and other Warframe abilities will still work for the purposes of this challenge whether they were onboard a vehicle at one point or not.
If you don’t want to use those Warframes, or don’t have them unlocked, you can also more easily “snipe” falling pilots out of the air with Ash (using his target-seeking “Shuriken” skill). Alternatively, using the “Rest” skill on an Equinox in Night Mode will put the pilots to sleep, even as they fly through the sky. This holds them still to make shooting the Dargyn without hurting the pilot easier. Then you just need to use a quick, decisive weapon to shoot them as they fall down in a straight line.
As a couple of closing tips: make sure to enter the plains solo (or with a group of friends who know the score) so that allied players don’t kill the enemies first. Also note that you can equip multiple Riven Mods with the same or similar challenge to different weapons. So, if you have multiple Riven Mods that require you to kill Dargyn Pilots before they hit the ground, try to knock them out all in one go to save time.
And there you have it! Those are the methods we’ve had the most success with so far. Best of luck unveiling the (potentially) best mods in Warframe.