The Warframe Peculiar Audience mod has wormed its way into the stocks of the Void Trader, Baro Ki’Teer. Perhaps as a way to “celebrate” the Cross Platform Inventory Sync Event — a fairly notable update to the way Warframe dishes out some of its best mods. Previously, Baro had different inventories between console and PC. With console players basically being left a few weeks behind. That’s no longer the case, so now everyone can enjoy Peculiar Audience for themselves.
“Enjoy” might be a strong word, though. The item doesn’t really do much right now. At least not as far as anyone has been able to discern. Its item description says “Killing an enemy has a 60% chance to amuse a certain Void entity. Cooldown: 30s.” The mod itself also has a wiggly, ethereal quality that sets it apart from the rare and “primed” mods in the usual Void Trader inventory.
Players might immediately assume this entity to be The Man in the Wall: a big figure in Warframe lore who played a very big role in The New War campaign early this year. The game is headed into even more Void-y territory this winter, with The Duviri Paradox expansions building on some roots laid by that expansion.
However, Peculiar Audience appears to have nothing to do with men or walls. Instead, it’s tied to another familiar face from a recent update. Skittergirl.
Skittergirl is a ghostly villain who appears (for the time being) only during Void Cascade missions on the Zariman (a big, floating spaceship which constitutes wone of the game’s newest playable zones). She basically shows up to steal your stuff. Like those little potion goblins from Golden Axe on the Sega Genesis. Now there’s a reference I’m sure that everyone understands…
Just like those little freaks, you can beat Skittergirl up to steal your stuff back. And then some. All the while, the transparent child laughs in your face, regardless of how much you wham her with weapons fire. Peculiar Audience replicates that experience. It makes her laugh play over your speakers sometimes when you kill an enemy.
Why…? I have no idea. It doesn’t seem to do anything else. Somebody somewhere is probably already tearing their hair out trying to decipher what lore hints it might entail. However, I’m operating under the assumption that this is just a goofy bit of fun. Albeit “goofy fun” that costs 250 Orokin Ducats and 200,000 Credits. That’s a pretty steep price for what at least appears to boil down to the “Grunt Birthday Party” Easter egg from Halo.
Who knows, though? Maybe the item has some other function we’re not aware of. It’s a Warframe Exilus Mod — meaning it theoretically only takes up a slot often reserved for quality-of-life gear. Like a mod that makes loot appear on your mini-map.
At max level, Peculiar Audience also only takes up seven “Capacity” points, making it one of the least draining mods in the game. Though that’s still potentially a lot of room to give up on your character build for a joke. Assuming it is a joke and not some grand hint.
One thing I do believe is that we haven’t seen the last of these wispy “Peculiar” mods. While this is the first such mod to cost Orokin Ducats, or to be directly purchasable at all, you can get a couple more as very rare drops from Elite Sanctuary Onslaught. I doubt developer Digital Extremes would have gone to the trouble of making a unique effect if the team didn’t plan on using it more. Perhaps future such gear will have a more obvious or more gameplay relevant effect.
For now? It’s at least a neat little cosmetic and something to ponder.
Disclaimer: Digital Extreme’s parent company was purchased by Tencent, the parent company of Fanbyte Media, in 2020. Even so, Tencent has no direct contact with any member of Fanbyte editorial. I still write these disclaimers anyway because it seems like the right thing to do.