Warframe Melee Guide

updated March 4, 2024


Melee weapons in Warframe can be an extremely potent force, but their only purpose isn’t damage-infliction; some boast combo systems which increase damage on certain attacks.

Melee weapons now feature an improved reticle to make aiming simpler and more accurate, and have gained new abilities such as Slide Attacks and Channeling.


Your melee weapon’s stealth attack can help you quietly eliminate weak enemies or even eliminate them before they raise an alarm. Simply press E when close to an enemy to activate this ability and perform a slow sweeping attack that deals massive damage without provoking a reaction from them.

Most melee weapons feature a Slash Damage Bias that indicates their propensity to use slashing damage instead of other forms when engaging an enemy with a standard attack. This damage bias can be increased through Slash Bias Mods or Warframe abilities; Stance Weapon Mods are also an option available to all melee weapons.

Slash-based attacks can produce the status effect ‘Bleed,’ which causes enemies to sustain Cinematic damage over time and continue to bleed over time, dealing Cinematic damage over time. It is highly effective against Infested Flesh but moderately efficient against Grineer Ferrite Armor, Corpus Robotics, and Fossilized Infested Flesh. While it does not bypass armor entirely, its Cinematic damage compensates for this penalty.

Melee attacks can be made more devastating with a Melee Combo, built up as Tenno strike and block with their weapon. Heavy attacks will consume this counter for additional burst damage while light ones add to it; additionally some Warframe Abilities scale their damage according to this counter.

Ground Slam is an effective technique for throwing melee weapons into the air with powerful attacks that propel an enemy backward while dealing damage and knocking them down, and may also help reach high or low targets that would otherwise be hard to reach and set them up for further attacks. This allows them to reach targets more easily while setting them up for subsequent strikes.


Warframe stages often contain verticality, with passageways running above and beneath players. While this verticality makes traversing levels easier, it may cause frustration if following your destination cursor leads you nowhere but dead ends.

Warframes in aerial combat enjoy much-needed mobility, enabling them to vault across surfaces or jump through gaps in walls with relative ease. But this move comes with its own set of quirks; it is important that players understand them before trying them out for themselves.

When attacking with their melee weapon while flying through the air, this will trigger a cooldown which prevents them from using ground attacks or slide attacks until they have returned to ground level. This feature helps prevent players from spamming Aerial Attack to hit enemies unwittingly.

Certain Warframe abilities that support melee combat contribute to and build upon one’s Melee Combo count. Holstered weapons won’t count towards it either; an thrown melee weapon’s combo count will start once back in hand.

Sliding action allows players to press the jump button while midair to temporarily propel themselves upwards for a short amount of time, similar to Crouch animation. This feature can be especially helpful for crawling under objects that would normally need to be jumped over by jumping. Furthermore, this move can be utilized while performing Melee Combos and Stance Mods; when equipping one will make up to three additional advanced Melee Combos available depending on its Polarity and Warframe’s equipped melee weapon.

Ground Slam

Pressing the Jump button while sprinting causes your Warframe to slide, making it easy to skirt low-hanging obstacles or simply get faster. Jumping while sliding also activates Bullet Jump, giving an additional burst of speed in any direction you choose – pushing twice on Jump during leaps will achieve double jumping action!

As another change, we’ve modified how Slams deal AOE damage. Now, their damage scales depending on how close enemies are when their attack lands; also slamming down while an enemy is nearby will create a circular shockwave that damages all nearby Warframes.

Regarding the new melee skills, they include two primary abilities. First is Vaal Ground Slam which breaks apart the ground in front of you, dealing damage converted into fire and creating Consecrated Ground. Furthermore, by slamming it multiple times on consecutive hits you can summon Ancestor Totems which attack nearby enemies with powerful cascading slams while leaping at any that come into range automatically and also leap away towards any enemies who remain out of reach.

Earthshatter, the latest melee skill addition, is an earth slam that sends out fiery fissures in front of you that deal area damage upon collision with an enemy and explode when hit. An Endurance Charge can increase its duration while spreading them out over an even wider area.

Reworking several existing melee attacks to make them more suitable for two-handed weapon builds, we’ve revamped several existing melee attacks in order to make them more attractive for two-handed builds, such as level 12 Slam skill’s spike storm with increased damage radius and synergy with Fist of War Support. Furthermore, Drifter Ability cooldown has been reduced from 10 seconds to 6 seconds, now offering 45%* ability efficiency with each Decree it collects.

Aim Glide

Guns excel at blasting enemies from a distance, but melee weapons excel at close-quarters combat. Melee weapons allow close quarters fighters to quickly take down multiple enemies at once while also dealing more damage by way of critical hits – especially when used alongside Aim Glide which allows players to stay airborne longer while slowing their vertical descent speed.

Warframe’s aim glide is a versatile skill that serves various functions. Simply stated, this technique involves holding down your jump button while you aim with a weapon to slow your fall rate and maintain momentum while in flight, perfect for targeting enemies with melee weapons and striking them down with accurate hits.

This skill can be extremely helpful when trying to cover large distances without losing momentum, for example if you’re running through an area dotted with ruins and enemies; using this strategy could save a considerable amount of time.

Crouching, rolling and sliding are also useful maneuvers that are quick and easy to learn; combined together they allow for more effective battlefield movement. Crouching while jumping will propel you in the direction of your choice while simultaneously dealing some minor damage to nearby enemies.

Wall dashes or latches can also be an invaluable skill, enabling you to run sideways along walls or objects for sidestepping in certain missions or just avoiding getting hit by enemies while moving from A to B. These techniques can come in very handy when trying to complete challenge puzzles or simply avoid being hit while traveling between locations.


One of the key aspects of melee combat is channeling weapons to increase damage and stances. With this update’s Melee Rework change, this mechanic is receiving a major revamp: rather than being keybound, it now activates automatically when facing enemies in melee combat, enabling it to increase sword or blunt power over time or activate special attacks.

Channeling with your melee weapon equipped will cause your Warframe’s energy pool to augment your attacks, draining energy from enemies you hit while this mode is active and potentially triggering an attack that deals more damage for a limited period. Energy drain rates can be affected by Channeling Efficiency Mods like Reflex Coil or Focus Energy but cannot exceed 80%.

While channeling, enemy frontal attacks will deal less damage and may be delayed or staggered. Blocking with melee weapons also reduces enemy attacks significantly; this consumes some energy as well.

Your warframe comes equipped with its own parkour abilities, but to further enhance it you can use the jump button to double jump, slide to avoid low-hanging obstacles, and dash across walls using dashes. These techniques can come in particularly handy when traversing Gas City or tight corridors within Citadels.