One of the games that left a big impression on me growing up was the original Rainbow Six back in the 90’s. The series saw many new iterations since then based in hot spots around the world. Now for the first time the series is taking a focused approach on competitive multiplayer. Except it’s staying true to what makes the Rainbow Six games so special, which is realistic gun fights with lots of tactics involved behind the scenes.
The concept of a counter terrorist unit going up against terrorists has been around for many years in games such as Counter-Strike. These games have been great but a new generation of systems needs a tactical shooter that was built from the ground up to take advantage of all the new technology and Rainbow Six: Siege is that game. As mentioned the competitive multiplayer is the prime focus of Siege and it’s here where the fun really hits the high points. How it works is one team will take control of the counter terrorist unit – which is made up of tier 1 operators from various world class tactical teams, such as the SAS and GIGN. Each unit has specialized operators within that have unique skills sets such as Pulse, who wields a heartbeat sensor to detect enemies through walls.
The terrorists also have highly skilled members that wield unique abilities such as that piece of S@#T Russian guy that comes equipped with a machine gun turret and camps in the darkest corner of the room, waiting for you to step inside to be cut down like an overgrown shrubbery. Both sides will have certain objectives such as rescuing hostages, defusing bombs and defending certain areas. This might all sound very familiar but Siege puts a twist on things in the form of its brand new Micro-destruction engine that lets you change up the angle of attack on the fly.
They don’t call me Die Hard for ‘Noting’!
If there is a camping Russian terrorist with a mounted machine gun in the corner of the room, why not blow a hole through the roof, drop down from above and let him kiss the barrel of your shotgun? It’s this unique destruction system that not only looks amazing in motion, but keeps things very unpredictable – just like a real combat situation, so you have to keep your head on a swivel and check those corners. If you get shot that’s it, you better go check on the pie in the oven because there is no getting up, and you will have to wait for the round to finish to start again.
Team work and communication is therefore vital in helping you stay alive and it’s this focus on team work that makes Siege an absolute blast to play online with friends. However, if your friends are all at a party you were not invited to then have no fear, there is a single player mode as well in the form of Terrorist Hunt. This involves you hunting down terrorist in various locations and completing basic objectives. If you ramp up the difficulty to hard you will have an epic challenge on your hands, but if it feels like too much to take on by yourself you can invite friends to watch your back. All of your load outs can be customized before each game and you can select a starting location, but sadly the days of planning your attack via a virtual blueprint with a marker and checkpoints are gone.
The biggest question is whether Rainbow Six: Siege has the chops to convert some Counter-Strike players? I believe it does. There is spectator mode that has very obviously been built with E-sports in mind. And I think Siege will hit the E-sports scene soon. The only drawback is that unless you are playing with friends online it is very light on content.
That being said I think it achieves the goals it set out, and I do think that any fan of past games in the series should pick it up. The destruction system will leave rooms littered in debris and for a game that prides itself on realistic gunplay, it’s nice to see the extra detail put into the ballistics and weapon damage. Rainbow Six: Siege is not for the hard-core run and gun player that wants to rack up multi-kills. It will test your patience but it will reward you for it at the same time.
The only question is can Ubisoft keep the servers full long enough for Rainbow Six: Siege to prove itself as a worthy alternative to the almighty Counter – Strike? Time will tell, but for now it’s time to strap on some holsters and flash bangs and take out some terrorist scum bags.