Warframe‘s store is filled to the brim with cosmetic items to complete your gaming experience and diversify your character, and the ones that cost IRL money are actually part of a program which sees players and creators submit their own designs for items. If successful, the items are then sold in Warframe, with 30% of the cut going straight to the creator.
It’s a fantastic way for players to get involved in the world and make a little money on the side, and for one creator it’s made a huge difference to his quality of life.
A user by the name of FrellingHazmot created the in-game item, the Teplo Syandana, and it saved him from crippling debt.
Speaking to PCGamer, Frelling said: “I had no money. I was living off of government assistance, and I just went into this state of depression. It was a bad situation.”
Frelling had dreams of getting into the world of game development, setting his sights on Blizzard, but thanks to the 2008 economic crisis he found himself inundated with debt, with credit card balances adding up.
He added: “It’s so debilitating. Just being in a situation like that, you feel trapped. You feel isolated. Having to rely on other people makes you feel really low at times because you should be able to provide for yourself but there’s just times in your life that you can’t. That was the situation I was in. It was just all spiralling down.”
Frelling, who had to move in with his parents, relied on food stamps, government help and a health insurance programme “typically used by homeless people.”
He didn’t give up on his dreams though, admitting he’s always had “a really strong passion for art and videogames and the whole development process.”
Thanks to the help of a friend in the industry, Frelling began to get freelance work and that’s when he started playing Warframe.
“I was pretty much just playing Warframe during that time,” Frelling told PCGamer. He then jumped at the chance to take part in the submission competition, which was the brainchild of Digital Extremes and 3D artist community Polycount.
With a generous cut for the successful contributors, and success with his item, the Teplo Syandana, Frelling not only got to pursue his dream, but also dig himself out of debt.
“It’s a nice to have that security that I’ll have income as long as Warframe is around,” Frelling said. “I’m a part of the game.”
Never give up on your dreams!