It has been almost two years since Warframe developer Digital Extremes announced Railjack, now Empyrean. Just last week, during Dev Stream #133, the developers announced they were going to drop the precursor patch to Empyrean, on PC shortly after the Dev stream concluded. The patch titled, Rising Tide, patched into the game less than an hour after the dev stream ended.
Rising Tide’s main focus is to let players build their Railjacks before the Empyrean patch comes out. The developers recognize that players would want to jump right into the Empyrean space battles right away and not have to wait for their ships to build. The amazing part about this mindset the developers have is, it does not force the players to choose between spending real money to speed up the process of building their Railjacks or having to wait days for the crafting timers to complete. The developers want everyone to be able to experience the space battles of Empyrean at the same time. It takes out the frustration of time-gated content just for the sake of slowing the players down.
Being able to build your Railjack was just a piece of the Rising Tide update! Along with the Railjack quest to get your very own piloted space ship, the first thing p[layers will see that has changed when they log into the game is the changes to their Orbiter. If you have been playing the game for a while, you know your Obiter is like your house where you can change warframes, loadouts, and show off your collection of noggles. The main change to the Orbiter is the skylight in the main part of your chip. Even though it is a small change, it makes the Orbiter feel twice as big as it was before.
Also, to get ready for Empyrean, there were some changes made to Archwing. Now, all Archwings have the ability to Blink. Before the patch, only the Itzal Archwing had the ability to Blink and, depending on the mods, changed the distance. Blink distance cannot be increased by mods now, but it propels your Archwing over twice the distance and is only on a three second timer. During the Dev stream there were some tests with Blink, and there was talk they might tweak the ability depending on the feedback from the community. Along with Blink, there were changes made to Archwing afterburners. Before to trigger afterburner you had to hold down shift and press the space bar to start afterburners. It was Twister for your fingers. To trigger afterburners now, you just need to hold shift and press W. The Itzal Blink ability is now Arch Line, which is a grappling hook to either pull enemies to you or pull you to stationary objects.
One of the annoying things about being in a group and Lich showing was sometimes your group members didn’t try to use their Parazon on their Lich. The Lich would stay in the mission the whole time and either pester your group or take group members away from the objective for too long. In Rising Tide patch, Liches now flee after being downed three times if a Parazon is not used. This now gives you and your group members a clear indication that no one is going to attempt to kill or capture the Lich. In the Dev stream, Rebecca Ford talked about future changes to Liches and the addition to different types of Liches we might see with Empyrean. If you haven’t watched the Dev stream, you probably should! In my opinion, it was one of their most dynamic Dev streams ever.
I am 99% sure we can expect Empyrean before Christmas. I do not think they would drop a patch that gives the players the ability to build Railjacks if Digital Extremes did not expect Empyrean to come out before their holiday break. Last year the holiday break lasted far into January. The only reason Empyrean would not launch before the break would be a major problem or a moose stampede on the Warframe servers. If you are not ready for Empyrean, now is a great chance to log in and start building your Railjack. If you do not have a clan or if you are a clan of one, it is easy to build the dry dock and complete the Rising Tide quest to start building now. I am guessing you have two to three weeks, so get playing!