The Hydroid frame has quickly become my favorite frame in Warframe. As his name would suggest, he’s a water-themed Warframe. He does great on stationary missions like Survival, Defense, and Mobile Defense. And it just so happens that those are my favorite type of missions. All four of his powers are actually useful, but I find myself relying very heavily on his #3 (Undertow) and #4 (Tentacle Swarm) powers.
Power #1 – Tempest Barrage
This power is pretty decent for a #1 power. It is an area of effect (AoE) attack that calls down a barrage of liquid fury and damage the enemies inside of it. It isn’t terribly accurate but can damage a wide area for a short amount of time. This power is affected by Power Strength, Power Duration, and Power Range. It does not bypass environment obstacles and damaged enemies can be knocked down.
Power #2 – Tidal Surge
I don’t use this power too often, but its great for missions where you are really mobile. The Hydroid transforms into a wall of water and surges forward through the enemies in front of him. This power is affected by Power Strength and Power Duration. Enemies hit by the wave can be knocked down and dragged a short distance.
Power #3 – Undertow
One of the coolest powers in the game that really has no other similar power. The Hydroid turns into a puddle of water and drowns any enemies that step into the puddle. While in puddle form (as I like to call it), you are invulnerable to damage and cannot be targeted by enemies. Your shield will regenerate to maximum so it can be used for defense. Any enemy inside the puddle takes ongoing damage and any enemy who dies inside the puddle counts as a stealth kill. The power slowly drains your mana away over time so you can’t sit there forever, but if you have a good mana pool you can last for a long time. This power is not affected by Power Range. Activation and channeling costs are affected by Power Efficiency.
Power #4 – Tentacle Swarm
An AoE damage and crowd control power, Tentacle Swarm is similar to some other powers in the game. It is a very respectable #4 power that I use all the time when I’m playing Hydroid. Tenticles emerge in an area damaging and controlling any mobs in the area. It can even catch enemies that wander into the area after the power is activated. This power is affected by Power Strength and Power Duration. The power is very effective and fun to watch.
For the aura mod, I recommend Energy Siphon (energy regeneration) as I believe it is the best mod for Hydroid hands-down. I use Redirection (shield capacity), Vigor (shield capacity/health), and Thief’s Wit (loot radar) on almost all of my frames. With Hydroid I also add Intensify (power strength), Flow (power maximum), and Stretch (power range) to increase the usefullness of his powers. I’d take off the Thief’s Wit and add it with anything you would prefer in there as that is a very flexible slot.
Hydroid Tips & Tricks
All four of the Hydroids powers are damage focused with some crowd control. My favorite tactic on Survival, Defense, or Mobile Defense missions is to lockdown a chokepoint. I will find a doorway, bridge, or other area that a large amount of enemies are running through and use Undertow there. The enemies will no longer target you and will start targeting the others in your group. If you are positioned in the chokepoint between the enemies and your groupmates, you’re golden. The enemies will run towards the other players and get caught in your puddle of death. Just keep letting them fill up in there as long as your mana will allow. When you feel ready, or before you dip below 100 mana, come out of your puddle and immediately activate Tentacle Swarm. It will crowd control and damage all the mobs that fell into your puddle and hold them there. Then the rest of your party can damage down any remaining ones (usually only high level, strong mobs).
You can also use this technique to defend an area like in a Defense or Mobile Defense, especially against Infected since they don’t attack with range. Just drop your puddle of death on the location the enemies are targeting and use the same tactic. I typically will warn my group mates when I’m about to come out of the Undertow so they know a bunch of damaged mobs are about to come up, ripe for the picking.
Also, simply take note that when the Hydroid is in liquid form in Tidal Surge or Undertow, he is invulnerable. He can still be affected by non-damage status effects though.
Hydroid is a great frame. It is useful for soloing but really shines in stationary missions with a group. His powers are mostly reskinned versions of powers from other frames except for Undertow, which is extremely useful and unique if used correctly.
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