When Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege arrives on Xbox One in December, it’s going to be the first iteration of this venerable franchise to hit the current console generation. That means lots of fancy new gear to play with – and lots of fancy new technology making it all function. The move to Xbox One brings with it a whole new style of play, centered on the marquee feature of dynamically destructible environments, where one team reinforces and defends a location while the other attempts to plow through their defenses. That leads to some pretty ridiculous new tactics, for both the attacking and defending side of a match. Here are six of our favorites – which you can try for yourself in the closed beta, available now to anyone who pre-ordered the game.
The Kool-Aid Man
Oh yeah! Rainbow Six Siege’s defining characteristic is its wanton destructibility, and nowhere is this more satisfying than when blasting an entirely new doorway in a wall. Simply slap a breach charge on a destructible surface (which is most of them), and enjoy your ad hoc remodeling project. Now, defenders do have a counter against this: They can reinforce walls to render them unbreachable by standard charges. But attackers have a counter-counter: an Operator named Thermite, who can blast through reinforced surfaces.
Another amazing perk of Siege’s destructibility is the ability to smash smaller holes in many surfaces. With a few shots from most weapons, it’s possible to create a porthole into an adjacent room, allowing you to see – and shoot – the enemy from unexpected angles. Of course, doing so is pretty loud… and don’t forget that being able to see through walls works both ways.
The Game Over, Man
Speaking of seeing through walls: One Operator on the defense side comes equipped with a heartbeat sensor that can detect enemies through walls. And let’s not forget that you can shoot right through many walls. It’s a pretty devastating ability, is what we’re saying; fortunately, it takes a little while to get the sensor operating, and it doesn’t update enemy positions in real time. But still, attackers want to be very careful when approaching their objective.
The Surprise Party
Of course, the attacking side has its own ways of messing with defenders through walls. One particularly nasty one is the penetrating grenade launcher carried by one attacking Operator. He can punch this thing through a wall, whereupon it pops out a series of small grenades to seriously ruin the day of anyone standing too close to said wall. Defenders do have the ability to plant a device to disable grenades as it sees them… but it can’t see everywhere.
In shooters, we’re conditioned to recognize threats from human-shaped figures. But what if that figure is upside-down? You’ll be able to conduct your own psychological experiments, thanks to Siege’s grapple/rappel system: You can creep down rappel lines head-down, peeking into windows from unexpected angles. Which can often result in unexpected losses for the opposing team.
The R.C. Pro-Am
Operators in Siege are equipped with drones to scope out enemy territory, which is pretty cool on its own. What’s even cooler is that those drones can tag enemies to let your teammates know where the bad guys are hiding out. And what’s coolest is that one Operator gets drones with electrical charges; not only can she disable some electronics, she can shock enemies. That makes for a heck of a distraction.
We can’t wait to try out even more insane tactics when Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege hits Xbox One on December 1.