Exterminate is a very simple mission type that requires you to simply kill a certain number of enemies. Nowadays you simple follow the red marker on your map or radar and progress through the map while killing everyone and everything in your way. Once you killed enough enemies (keep an eye on the kill counter on the top-left) you are able to go to the extraction point and leave the mission. This mission type is pretty straight forward and doesn’t really require any special group set-up.
Some exterminate missions (Dakata on the Kuva Fortress and Plato on Lua) give you the opportunity to search and loot three resource caches, similar to the caches you find in Sabotage missions. For each cache found you do get a reward (you can find the loot table here) and if you find two or all three caches you do have the chance to get better rewards. If you want to search for the loot resources caches, go ahead and turn your volume up a bit, because the caches emit a sound that will help you find the hidden lockers.
General tips and things to keep in mind
If you are still in the early phase of Warframe and don’t really know what to look for or how to maximize your ability to clear stronger Exterminate missions these following tips might help you with your missions:
- Use the cover provided: Especially against higher level enemies you should use every opportunity you get to mitigate your damage intake. Often times you can duck behind boxes or boards or simply use the corner to get out of sight and reload or wait for your shield to replenish.
- Ignore new spawned enemies: Sometimes the game will spawn new enemies behind you and use the mission marker to lure you back to the direction you just came from. You can simply ignore this and move on to the next segment of the map. Usually the mission marker will jump to the next target in front of you and you don’t lose time while going back and searching for the new spawned mobs.
- Leave when you’re done: Often times new player keep on killing enemies, even after they reached the kill count required to finish the mission. And while you surely can do that, using Exterminate missions to gain a lot of experience is simply not worth it. If you really want to start earning as many experience points as possible, go into endless missions and stay as long as you can.
Also don’t pressure yourself to always be super fast. It’s often times better to just wait a moment, regenerate your shield, health and energy before you engage the next group – especially once you reach higher level missions and feel like you’re not equipped enough to be there.
Exceptions you need to know
Even though Exterminate missions are pretty easy and shouldn’t give you the hardest of times, some missions you will encounter will provide tougher conditions. Here are same examples you should at least have heard of:
- Nightmare alerts: If you find a nightmare mission, going in unprepared will often times leave you in a tough spot. Yes, they give strong mods, but they also come with two mission modifier that can make an Exterminate mission pretty hard.
- Sortie missions: They also come with a special modifier, but also feature high level enemies (level 55 to 85), so make sure you can take them on or you will just be a burden to your team.
- Archwing Exterminate: There are also Archwing missions that feature the Exterminate style, but you’re not using your normal weapons or Warframes, but rather your Archwing equipment. Other than that those missions are fairly easy to beat.
- Crossfire: Sometimes more than one fraction is currently on a planet/node and while you still have to eliminate a certain number of enemies, you do encounter enemies fighting each other. But this will not influence the exterminate mission targets in any form. Just kill everything while you move through the map!
- Special alerts: Sometimes Digital Extreme gives out special alerts or events that seemingly feature normal Exterminate missions, but will surprise you in one way or another. Use the recruitment chat or ask around in your clan if you’re having trouble beating those alerts on your own!
Another somewhat unusual thing you will eventually encounter are Exterminate missions that do switch into another mission type – or the other way around. So if you’re running a Sabotage mission and suddenly have to kill a certain amount of enemies, don’t be alarmed, because that’s something that might happen!
Top 5 Warframes for Exterminate missions
Since Exterminate isn’t a endless-mission-type, going for a certain group set-up or picking a certain Warframe isn’t super important. Generally speaking you can finish every Exterminate mission in the game with every Warframe as long as you bring a good weapon or simply use your abilities. That said, there are some Warframes that will help you out a lot – especially if you plan on running a certain mission again and again to finally get the resource or mod drop you need. If you are looking to optimize your Exterminate missions, picking one of the following frames is recommended:
- Volt: Playing a Speed-Volt-Build can be super time efficient, especially if you do multiple runs with a group. A good example for this are relic runs, where the whole group wants to quickly finish the Exterminate mission and restart it. Speeding up the whole group will reduce the amount of time by a lot.
- Rhino: Especially during the early game, using Rhino feels super strong. He is basically untouchable in lower level missions and once you activated your second ability you can simply run through the map and kill everything. And if your team mates ever get downed you simply stand there, revive them and then keep going. Truly a good choice for Exterminate!
- Ember: If you manage to get yourself an Ember, building around her ‘World on Fire’ ability is very beneficial for Exterminate missions. You can simply use it and run around without ever needing to use your weapons or other abilities. Even though Ember’s damage falls off on higher level missions she feels super strong during early and mid game.
- Valkyr: Playing the Queen of Rage in a Exterminate mission feels very comfortable. ‘Rip Line’ gives you high mobility and the a ability to quickly close the distance between you and your target. ‘Warcry’ and ‘Hysteria’ are very strong and if you simply rush from one enemy to another, melee killing them all, you will be able to quickly finish the mission and move on to the next.
- Loki: Since the mission task is very simple and you really don’t have to worry about protecting anything besides yourself, picking Loki (or any other Warframe with an invisibility skill) gives you the ability to get a lot of stealth kills and therefor tons of Affinity. Just make sure to keep an eye on your duration and get out of sight of your enemies if you need to reset your invisibility. Loki is also super strong if you want to quickly reach your daily standing with Cephalon Simaris, because if you use the Codex Scanner while being invisible you do gain double standing.
Exterminate is probably the simplest mission type in the game, so don’t stress yourself with finding the perfect Warframe. Unless you are planning on doing a special type of Exterminate just play whatever you like. Often times you don’t even need to bring a strong weapon, because your Warframe and it’s abilities are more than enough to kill everything and finish the mission.
Top 3 weapons for Exterminate missions
When we’re talking about Exterminate and equipping the best possible weapon we’re talking about very special cases, because you really should be able to use every weapon in the game to get through the normal Exterminate missions. Nonetheless, if you want to optimize your build or weapon pick you probably should pick one of the following weapons:
- Arca Plasmor: While the damage isn’t as superior as some of the other weapons, picking the Arca Plasmor does have the big advantage of good area-of-effect damage. That way you can just rush through the mission, blast away whole mob groups with one or two shots and keep on running. That is super fast and effective and probably your best choice unless you have to face super high level enemies during a Sortie mission.
- Tigris Prime: Super strong against higher level enemies, but the shotgun feels slow against lower level enemies, especially if you face them while they are apart from each other. So while you will probably solve every problem you encounter with the Tigris Prime you won’t be as fast as you could be.
- Soma Prime: The best allrounder and very good in quickly dissolving large groups or strong solo threads. Make sure to understand the different elemental damage types and their use and change your Soma Prime accordingly if needed.
If you love to play with a secondary or melee weapon, go ahead and do that! Those usually won’t be as fast or strong as your primary weapon choices but are certainly a good pick. And again, Exterminate is pretty simple and doesn’t require you to be overpowered.