Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Carlo's Take: Rainbow Six: Siege Review!

Breach, Clear. Protect, Defend. Repeat.
They're two rounds ahead, we're one point behind - their match point. We're attacking and pilot our drones (pretty much RC cars) to look for both the bomb and the enemies. We have no plan... no one's talking to each other. After spending the 30 seconds on our "Preparation Phase",  and finding one bomb, we begin our assault. All bar me and another with a riot shield rush onto the roof to attack from above, while we attack directly. I'm the pseudo-sniper of the group, equipped with a variable scoped semi-auto rifle. So my job is clear: to attack from afar. Not that difficult, right?


Once we enter the building, out of nowhere, an enemy rushes from the side, killing the riot shield wielder instantly. Surprised but still in control, I manage to snipe him in the head. "4 V 4" emerges on the screen. Then, "2 V 4" pops up. Oh no. Two of us are taken out by laser trip mines, leaving only a pair, separated, to fend for themselves. We move in slowly from different angles, and the other guy manages to pick one of them off. I'd say "Good Job" if I could, but I wouldn't get the chance - he gets killed straight after. "1 V 3". Palms sweaty although resisting pure panic, I continue my slow advance. My teammates tag an enemy through the wall whilst spectating, helping me get the drop on them. I look around the room, the bomb's in my reach, when I realise something. There's a mounted machine gun staring me in the face. Woops.

That is the usual experience playing Rainbow Six Siege solo, and it's good, but nonetheless has flaws. It takes cues from several games. Firstly, the fast tactical aspect and the competitive vibes in the ranked mode borrows from Counter Strike, with hints of MOBAs in the unique purchased characters with distinct abilities. The gunplay is a mix of Battlefield and Call of Duty: slow but twitchy. I haven't played much of previous games, but the same feel is present. The slow preparation then the chaotic execution of aforementioned plans.

Playing with friends is significantly better however; making "fool-proof" plans on the fly and then carrying them out, only to have them be utterly destroyed is heartbreaking, but when the opposite happens you feel truly accomplished. I only experienced this in the beta though- no one else bought the game. There are two sides to every match, attacking and defending. Both teams of 5 have 30 seconds to prep, with attackers scanning for enemies, hostages or bombs, and defenders setting up barricades and reinforcing walls to prevent breaches. It provides a good change of pace, as the defenders are biting their nails waiting for the attackers and the attackers are doing the exact same thing in anticipation for their defenses.

In terms of looks. The game looks sub-par when it comes to the textures, which some may expect considering I played it on the PS4. However, I looked at some gameplay of it on high end computers and it still looked almost the same. But they do manage to nail the atmosphere. It feels like you're fighting in domestic regions, with lots of small details. As well as that, the destructive environments make it feel more intense and real, as you could be attacked from anywhere and everywhere.

But, the repetitiveness of the gameplay is where it is held back. There are 4 gamemodes, 5 if you count the tutorial (which only serves to provide currency with which to buy characters). Terrorist Hunt, a PvE mode that fans will remember, a ranked mode, casual mode and custom games. Terrorist Hunt is a fun distraction to say the least, as you play on the same maps as multiplayer except against multiple AIs. There are only two variations on objectives and 10 maps, which means it gets pretty samey after a while. People usually don't even play for the objective and focus on killing the entirety of the enemy team, which is easier.

To help soothe that however are the operators- 20 unique characters from different organisations such as the FBI and SAS, half and half also being used for defenders and attackers. They have different playstyles- the attacker Blitz has a riot shield with a flash on it, so he gets in close and attempts to take out the enemies by supporting teammates with his defense or taking them out with his pistol. Smoke, a defender, blocks entrances using his chemical weaponry to deal huge damage over time. It gives fresh experiences, but the small number of them makes a small amount of these aforementioned experiences. Smaller still when there are clearly stronger members than others. Anyone who owns a riot shield on attack side has a huge advantage for example, as they have lots of defense and can just rush in. The person who plants trip mines on defense is also a very common pick.

It's a high asking price for just a multiplayer mode in my opinion. But I'd definitely be lying if I said it wasn't a good multiplayer. It just gets boring sometimes, but it could be expanded upon in the future with free maps (confirmed), and more operators. I just hope the DLC is reasonably priced.

I'd recommend it to anybody with friends that also have the game, and fans of tactical shooters!


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