“You're not supposed to be in here! You're going to ruin the surprise!”This article contains spoilers about the game's lore.
As a game mechanic, a player gains control over their Operator at the conclusion of The Second Dream quest, whose importance lies in improving their grasp of the Tenno's five great schools in the form of the Focus system. Functions related to the Operator can be accessed in the Orbiter's Transference Room by interacting with the Somatic Link inside, or by accessing the Operator option under the player's Settings. The Operator also gains additional abilities at the conclusion of The War Within quest.
- Main article: Focus
The menu is where players can access options relating to the Focus System.
Operators gain power and utility by unlocking abilities through the Focus system, granting them active and passive buffs that enhance their combat power and survival abilities.
On completing The War Within, players are given the ability to use the Operator themselves during missions. While in a mission, players can summon their Operators to the field by performing the Transference ability (default ), which will then switch the player's control to the Operator's view, leaving the Warframe in its place. While Transference is active, the Warframe becomes invulnerable to damage from all sources; however, if the Warframe is currently using an active toggled ability (e.g. World On Fire), the Warframe will only receive a 90% damage reduction instead.
Operators are incapable of performing many Warframe Maneuvers, and are limited to sprinting, jumping, and using zip-lines. They do however possess a unique slide maneuver that can be used to dodge attacks (default double tap ), and they maintain all momentum from any movement made by the Warframe upon performing Transference.
While on the field, Operators are capable of using various abilities that consume Void Energy when used, whose levels can be seen on a circular gauge at the bottom right of the screen while in Operator form. The Operator's Void Energy gauge regenerates quickly after being depleted, but since all of the Void Powers use the same energy pool, energy management is essential to prevent the Operator from losing their ability to use their powers during a fight. Void Energy can also be replenished more quickly in the field by picking up Energy Orbs, or via allied Warframe powers that grant Energy. The Void energy gauge replenishes independently of the Warframe's state, and will regenerate at its own pace while the player is in control of the Warframe.
The various powers available to the Operator are as follows:
- Void Beam (Primary Fire): the Operator's default power, the Void Beam is an energy beam made of pure Void energies that extends up to 20 meters, dealing ~750 damage per tick to enemies with a 1-meter radius of its impact point, and dealing an additional 50% damage on critical hits. Void Beam consumes energy for every second it is active, and can last up to 9 seconds with a full gauge without upgrades. Void Beam is silent and will not alert enemies. The Void Beam can also reset the damage resistances of all Sentient enemies, including the Shadow Stalker's.
While Void Beam normally uses energy from the Void Energy pool, players can equip Amps on their Operator, which will create a separate energy pool for Void Beam, visible as a white bar beside the Void Energy counter. This allows Void Beam to be used without hindering the usage of the Operator's other powers. Amps also serves to enhance the damage and utility of Void Beam.
- Void Blast (Quick Melee): The Void Blast is a forward arc area-of-effect attack that knocks back all enemy units caught in its 4-meter radius, and also stuns enemy units like Kuva Guardians. The ability deals negligible damage, with damage being dependent on distance. With a full Energy Gauge, up to 5 Void Blasts can be performed until depletion.
- Void Dash (Crouch + Jump): Void Dash is a mobility power that allows the Operator to perform a short-range teleport within the direction of aim, which will also pull enemies and damage objects caught in its path. Each enemy hit with Void Dash will restore 10 Void energy. It is also used as a utility power, such as in collecting Kuva. With a full energy gauge, the Operator can perform three consecutive dashes before depletion.
- Void Mode (Hold Crouch): When activated, Void Mode turns the Operator invisible, preventing them from being seen and detected by enemies and various sensors (but not Corpus laser barriers or Grineer energy barriers), and also protects against any incoming damage, including fall damage and Status Effects. Void Mode is not disabled by nullifiers. Void Energy is gradually consumed every second that Void Mode is active; with a full gauge, Void Mode can last for 9 seconds before depletion.
If the Operator's health is depleted during a fight, or if their inactive Warframe's health is reduced to 30 from enemy fire, they will disappear from the field and the player's control will receive a debuff known as Transference Static, which returns them to their Warframe's original position while depleting all of the Warframe's shields, along with the Warframe taking ~10% of current health as damage &mdash. However, if the player manually initiates Transference while in Operator form, they will regain control of the Warframe at the Operator's position without any shield or health loss. A Transference Static debuff takes approximately 45 seconds after being applied to wear off, and the debuff's effect can stack up to 4 times while the timer is active. Additional debuffs do not refresh this timer, and stack on top of it.
- Mods of any kind equipped on a Warframe or its weapons do not affect the Operator in any way.
- Any active Warframe abilities will persist while in Operator form.
- Players can switch to their Operators while inside the Orbiter and interact with all segments inside, except for the Incubator segment's 'Interact' function, preventing them from restoring morale to Kubrows and Kavats.
- Operators are capable of Hacking, opening lockers, reviving allies, picking up items and Mods on the ground, and picking up and carrying solid pickups like Datamasses and Power Cells, which will be dropped upon switching.
- They can also pick up Health and Energy pickups, which will restore Operators heath and Void energy respectively, but they cannot pick up Affinity pickups.
- Operators can gain energy from the Arboretum room in the Orokin Moon tileset.
- The Operator's health does not recover by going in and out of Transference, retaining whatever amount of Health they had before returning to their Warframe. Operators can be healed by various sources, including their own Focus passives, Health Orbs or allied Warframe powers.
- The effects of Volt's Electric Shield apply to Void Beam.
- Since Void Beam has no damage type, it is able to bypass the adaptive damage resistance of Sentient units, though their heavy armor can still reduce the Void Beam's damage considerably. Additionally, Void Beam will reset any resistances that Sentients have gained.
- The Operator cannot be summoned in a Dojo or a Relay.
- Operators can still use the majority of Emotes, however the four acrobatic Nartas cannot be used.
- Companions and syndicate agents will not follow the Operator, and will instead stay behind with the Warframe. They will still remain active however, and will defend their ground and use abilities.
- Syndicate sigils equipped on the Operator will NOT earn Standing from the associated syndicate; the sigil is purely aesthetic.
- Unlike Warframes, falling as the Operator into out-of-bounds pits may deal damage depending on how much health you have.
- The Operator is capable of using Ground Finishers on downed enemies with their fists by using Quick Melee (default ) while standing over and aiming at the target. This action requires significant amounts of Void energy to perform however, otherwise the Operator will simply use Void Blast instead.
- Operators are able to bypass Corpus Laser Barriers and Sensor Bars using Void Dash. However, moving Corpus Laser Barriers in Spy vaults still trigger the alarm when dashing through.
- The Operator has their own Stealth Affinity Multiplier counter, which is independent's of the Warframe's own Stealth Affinity counter. This counter is maintained and will continue to count down even when the Operator returns to the Warframe.
- It is possible to use the Operator's Void Mode power to stealthily maneuver a non-invisibility equipped Warframe around enemy units. This can be done by transferring to Operator form, using Void Mode, and then cancelling the Transference to teleport the Warframe to the Operator's position, allowing the Warframe to bypass obstacles stealthily.
- All of the Operator's Void powers are silent, making them ideal for performing Stealth in situations where the Warframe does not posses stealth capability. In particular, the Operator's Void Dash and Void Mode abilities are most useful at bypassing security measures such as Laser Barriers, and Void Beam can be used to destroy Security Cameras without alerting nearby enemies.
- The Operator experiences reduced gravity while Void Mode is active, similar to Zephyr's passive. This can be used to negate fall damage from height by activating Void Mode before hitting the ground.
- Void Beam allows the player to temporarily dissipate Magnetic anomalies in Reactor Sabotage missions. Care should be taken to keep the Operator at a distance, as a destroyed Magnetic anomaly will emit Electricity damage in a large radius, dealing damage.
- Holding down the buttons for Void Dash slightly increases the travel distance as opposed to quickly tapping it.
- Void Dash can be chain linked and is unaffected by gravity mid-process.
- The Operator counts as a separate entity from the Warframe for the purposes of mechanics like pressure plates. This can be used for various situations requiring a player to hold two different locations at once, such as when accomplishing the Collaboration Test on the Orokin Moon.
- While the Operator can capture Interception points, their inactive Warframe will not.
- With proper timing, Void Blast can be used to block incoming enemy projectiles like a Scorpion's grappling hook.
Players can customize the appearance of their Operator under the Customize Tenno button accessible at the bottom right of the Focus Menu screen, or through Customize Tenno under the Operator option under Settings.
There is no option to change the Operator's gender, but a male or female voice and body shape can be selected independently from each other through the "Face" and "Voice" options.
The following options are available for customization in the Customization menu:
- HEAD options:
- Face - Customize the Tenno's head and face shape. It also switches the Operator's general body shape to male or female depending on selected type of face.
- Face 2 - Choose an optional secondary head and face appearance for the Tenno. This second face is restricted to the gender selected in the first Face option. This option can be left blank if desired.
- Face Blend - This slider is used to determine how much of the chosen Face 1 and Face 2 appearances are visible, with the left side showing more of Face 1, and the right side showing more of Face 2. Face blending allows the player to create a completely different face from the default templates by combining two preexisting ones. Due to restrictions it is not possible to blend male and female faces.
- Skin Color - Change the Tenno's skin color. This option uses its own unique color palette instead of the player's standard palettes.
- Lip Color - Change the Tenno's lip color, as well as the corners of the eyes.
- Accent Color - Change the color of the Tenno's accents, visible as a color shade beneath and around the eyes.
- HAIR STYLE options:
- Hair Style - Change the Tenno's hair style. If not used, the Tenno will revert to the default buzzcut hairstyle, and the option will read No Hair Style Selected.
- Hair Color - Change the Tenno's hair color. This option will also change the color of the Tenno's eyebrows and eyelashes.
- Hair Highlight - Change the secondary color of the Tenno's hair.
- Hair Part - Modify the appearance of the Tenno's hair style, oriented either to the left or the right.
- MARKINGS options:
- Markings - Add visible Somatic Link implants to the Tenno's face, with different implant appearance styles available. If not used, the option will read No Marking Selected.
- Primary Color - Change the markings' primary color.
- Secondary Color - Change the markings' secondary color.
- Metallic Color - Change the color of the metallic parts of the markings.
- EYES options:
- Inner Eye Color - Change the color of the Tenno's inner part of iris.
- Outer Eye Color - Change the color of the Tenno's outer part of iris. The chosen color also affect the slim ring between the inner and outer eye colors, which may not blend perfectly with saturated colors.
- Eye Glow - Change the color of the Tenno's eye glow, referring to the light coming from their eyes.
- VOICE options:
- Voice - Choose the Tenno's style of voice. There are currently 4 different options available: the Owl and Heron options are male voices, while the Falcon and Raven options are female voices. Clicking on the chosen voice option will play a sound preview of the chosen voice.
- ACCESSORIES options:
- Accessories - Add ornamental accessories to the Tenno's head and face, ranging from ear clasps to spectacles. If not used, the option will read No Accessories Selected.
- Primary Color - Change the accessory's primary color.
- Secondary Color - Change the accessory's secondary color.
- TRANSFERENCE SUIT options:
These options mainly affect the oversuit models and colors, as well as some colors of the undersuit. Options that are left blank will expose the basic undersuit.
- Hood - Add headgear to the Tenno's bodysuit. This will appear draped over the Tenno's shoulders and chest. If not used, the option will read No Hood Selected.
- Hood Opened - This option determines whether the Operator's hood is opened, or closed to cover the entire head. The Operator's hood is opened by default, and clicking on the slider to turn it on closes the hood.
- Lining Color - Change the color of the Transference suit's linings, mainly covering the inside of the player's hood.
- Body Suit - Change the appearance of the Transference suit's torso and lower body. If not used, the option will read No Body Suit Selected.
- Sleeves - Change the appearance of the Transference suit's arm sleeves. If not used, the option will read No Sleeves Selected.
- Waistband - Change the appearance of the Transference suit's waistband. If not used, the option will read No Waistband Selected.
- Leggings - Change the appearance of the Transference suit's legs. If not used, the option will read No Leggings Selected.
- Primary Color - Change the Transference Suit's primary color, as well as the color of the undersuit's arms and legs parts.
- Secondary Color - Change the Transference Suit's secondary color.
- Tertiary Color - Change the Transference Suit's accent color, as well as color of the undersuit's fingernails.
- Suit Energy - Change the Transference Suit's energy color, which also affects the color of the Operator's Focus and Void abilities, and the Operator's worn Sigil if any is equipped.
- SIGIL options:
- Sigil - Equips a selected Sigil.
- Rotation - Change the rotation of the Sigil.
- Width - Change the width of the Sigil.
- Height - Change the height of the Sigil.
- X Offset - Move the Sigil left to right to change the position to the designated location.
- Y Offset - Move the Sigil up and down to change the position to the designated location.
- Default Properties - Resets the Sigil's appearance to its default state.
- Primary Color - Change the Sigil's primary color.
- AMP options: This option is only unlocked upon visiting the Quills for the first time on Cetus.
- Equip Amp - Select the Amp the Operator can equip.
- Colors - Customize the Amp's color scheme. Note that this option can only be performed on Gilded Amps.
- The term "Operator" was first used by Ordis to refer to the Tenno during the events of the Vor's Prize quest, which was first introduced in Update 14.0.
- The Operator's chosen face will revert to the first selectable face of their gender after their first transmission in a mission. This will not permanently affect the Operator's customization choices but will most likely reoccur in subsequent missions after once again triggering the first transmission.
- Removing parts of the Zariman Suit may sometimes not update correctly after changing color options on the Operator.
- A bug may happen on Grineer Sealab tilesets where the Warframe will float in the air.
- In some situations, switching between the Operator and the Warframe may be erratic position-wise, including recalling older position and glitching the player out of the map. This occurs most often when attempting to switch forms while inside an extraction zone or falling into out-of-bounds pits.
- There is a rendering bug in the Orbiter that that allows players to see inside the Warframe when walking through it as the Operator.
- Placing a Warframe within the interaction proximity of consoles interferes with using them by the Operator (the action prompt may not show up at some positions) until the Warframe is relocated.
- Sigils placed on the Operator will reset their positioning parameters and grow to ridiculous sizes when using the Star Chart as Operator.
- The Operator's chosen energy color (determined by "Suit Energy") replaces the hair highlight color within missions.
- Switching to Operator and back counts towards the "Exercising Power" Challenge Reward (Use your first ability 5 times).
- In a high-latency match, it is possible to switch to the Operator just before their Warframe is downed, effectively allowing the player to revive their own Warframe.
- If a player experiences an out-of-bounds glitch with their Warframe while in Operator form during a mission and is killed afterwards, the player will be stuck in Operator form after reviving. In this state, the Operator cannot be killed despite retaining the ability to receive incoming damage.
- While Void Beam will activate the effect counters of conditional Rifle mods like Argon Scope when their conditions are met, the mod's effects will not actually apply to the Void Beam, conferring no benefit.
- When switching to the operator after The War Within is completed in a Hijack mission and standing near the objective you can power it despite not having shields. It will not drain your health either, creating an infinite source of power for the Hijack objective.
- When switching to the operator in The Jordas Precept after killing the Juggernaut Behemoth and before the cutscene, the player will be sucked into space without their Warframe. The player will not be able to move until they switch back to their Warframe, and will then be stuck inside the infested corpus ship for the remainder of the mission.
- Some warframe abilities do not continue when switched to operator, notably Invisibility and Prowl.