Zephyr, the avian frame, is far from the light gentle breeze that her name would otherwise suggest . Update 22 saw the dynamic of this feathered frame change greatly, giving room to a more universal and synergistic style of game play. The following article is a breezy description on the different capabilities and mechanics to the warframe Zephyr.
Originally, Tail Wind was a means of taking to the skies; however, since update 22, Tail Wind has become more adaptable. For the most part, the ability can still be used for launching oneself skyward simply by casting; however, now if you are to aim towards the ground while airborne, the ability becomes the dive bomb Zephyr once had as her second ability. A fully leveled Zephyr dive bomb has a base explosive radius of 7 metres and deals a solid 500 explosion damage. This, of course, also has a tendency to rag-doll enemies struck by the impact.
Thirdly, a charged cast will cause ol’ bird frame to jump straight up into the air and hover for a duration. This aspect of the ability is always good to keep in mind for when you feel the enemy has the higher ground. For that reason, and if you decide to run the aviator mod, you will spend a fair amount of time airborne, taking up to 40% less damage. Keep in mind that Tail Wind’s air speed is affected by duration mods – the faster the speed, the further the quick cast flight will launch you, making duration builds good for traversing open maps.
The ability that replaced Dive Bomb as of Update 22 is a simple ability in which Zephyr throws 3 projectiles of condensed wind in the desired direction. Upon contact with an enemy or surface, the 3 condensed wind spheres explode into a small localized burst of air, acting as a projectile version of the Dive Bomb.
Maxed out at base stats, the damage is still 500 and also rag-dolls enemies caught in the torrent, but the range of the explosion is 8 metres, giving it a little extra range over the melee variant.
Finally, Airburst shares some synergy with the final ability, Tornado – if the projectiles are to come into contact with the Tornadoes in question, their size is then doubled, increasing the range they may collect enemies within.
If ever an ability was required to increase Zephyr’s survivability, Turbulence would be that ability. Simply creating a ferocious wind around the frame, Turbulence redirects incoming projectiles, making Zephyr untouchable in most cases.
At a base range of 6 metres, the only thing you need to worry about is the potential for melee-based enemies to get close enough to hit Zephyr. Therefore, building range for this ability is unnecessary unless playing a defensive-style mission type, where the defended target can take advantage of the cover turbulence has to offer. The same can be said if playing with friends – more range means a bigger space to cover from enemy projectiles.
Harnessing the great power of the winds, Zephyr can create up to 4 tornadoes, which will zip around the area pulling enemies into the air and acting as damage-dealing crowd control. Enemies caught in these torrential winds take 120 damage per second at base stats and are unable to attack at all. When they do fall to floor, it still takes them some time to get back on their feet.
To make things more interesting, the tornadoes can take on different elemental damage types. Simply by attacking the tornadoes with weapons of different damage types, you can change the colour of the tornadoes to correspond with their new damage type.On top of this, the tornadoes can be remotely controlled by aiming down the sights of your weapon – the nearest tornado will then travel to the desired location.
Lastly, Zephyr’s passive is a movement-based skill that gives her elongated air time whenever she jumps. This makes her quite floaty to use, but can be useful when you need more air time, especially with certain Riven challenges.
Since Zephyr Prime has been made available, it only makes sense to point out the differences in stats between the two frames.
To start with, Zephyr Prime has an additional 60 armor on top of the original’s 15. In addition, the Prime has a base of 150 energy, whereas the original only has 100. The final stat change is in regards to movement speed, yet this is only .5s faster than the original.
There are many different ways to use the abilities at Zephyrs disposal and it for this reason that she should be considered a multi-purpose frame that is enjoyable for new and old players alike. If that’s not enough for you, then look at that aesthetic – she’s a great-looking frame, too (especially the Prime variant).