It wasn’t long ago that Ubisoft announced the newest season for Rainbow Six SiegeOperation Grim Sky. The new season will introduce two new operators and a complete rework of the existing Hereford Base map, along with a significant portion of bug fixes, a Consulate map buff, and the long-awaited solution to the weapon sight misalignment issue. Game Rant went hands-on with the new Rainbow Six Siege content, testing out both the new shield-bearing defensive operator and the deceptively silent breaching attacker in the redesigned Hereford Base.

Clash, the new defensive operator, presents the biggest meta-game change seen since the introduction of Mira. As the first shield-based defensive operator in Rainbow Six, she presents brand new strategies previously unavailable to the defensive team. She can rush outside to call out enemy locations from behind the protection of her shield, or she can block kill holes while her teammates reposition.

She’s a great entry denial asset, and her shield isn’t just for protective purposes either – it doles out minor damage via electrical shocks to any nearby enemies. This electrical ability has a fairly quick recharge rate, but gamers who run the battery dry will have to wait for a full recharge before using it again. When her secondary pistol or SMG is equipped, Clash props her shield on her back, giving her some additional protection from the rear.

To counter Clash, the attacking team must get in close and melee the shield operator, forcing her to recoil and leave her lower body vulnerable. Capitao’s flaming arrows also force her to lose ground, and Thatcher grenades temporarily take away her ability to deal out electrical damage. She’s what Ubisoft is calling a low lethality operator, meaning her damage output isn’t high – but when used in tandem with other operators, she can be an invaluable asset in terms of area denial and enemy location callouts.

Fans can take a look at Game Rant’s overview of the new Operation Grim Sky gameplay below:

Grim Sky’s US-based attacking operator, Maverick, utilizes a blow torch to breach walls and hatches – whether they’re reinforced or not. This allows Maverick to open up kill holes in places defenders would have thought safe, significantly impacting how defenders will need to behave when he’s on the opposing team. His blowtorch is deceptively quiet, meaning this 3-speed and 1-armor operator will frequently surprise the defending team.

Here’s the catch: Maverick’s blow torch isn’t good for creating large spaces that operators can fit through, so he’s not a traditional breach operator like Thermite or Hibana. Wielding either a hefty AR15 or an M4, his rifles certainly pack a punch from a distance, making him a great high-risk high-reward operator.

Rainbow Six Siege veterans have been playing on Hereford Base since the game launched in December 2015, but the fan-favorite has now been redesigned from top to bottom as a World War 2-era facility. Each floor now contains much more floor space than the previous iteration, with spacious hallways replacing the comparatively cramped styling of the original. The most significant change, however, is the introduction of a second staircase placed on the opposite side of the original, removing the choke point that was previously the only way attackers could traverse floors from within the building. It’s an adjustment that makes sense, and it breathes plenty of new life into Hereford Base.

Rainbow Six Siege Hereford Base Resdesign

Ubisoft has also fixed the weapon sight misalignment bug, which was an issue impacting bullet trajectories not matching up with the where the weapon sight was during recoil. The Consulate map also has a few new buffs, one of which removes a portion of exterior wall that allows the attacking team to switch from one side of the map to the other without exposing their position. There are also new bomb locations in the server room and photocopying rooms. A new update to hatches will allow for them to be partially destroyed where appropriate, as opposed to being completely obliterated. For example, if only 3 of Hibana’s charges explode, the hatch won’t crumble in entirety, but instead will have smaller holes while remaining in place. Gamers who idle too long in the operator select screen will now be given a random available operator as opposed to selecting recruit, which is certainly one way to help Capitao’s pick rate.

In the studio’s continuing fight against toxicity, PC gamers can now selectively mute voice or text chat for individual users. PC players hopping onto ranked in the near future will also find that two-step verification is now required, though this change won’t take place right away.

Operation Grim Sky will arrive to test servers tomorrow, on August 20, for PC.Grim Sky is expected to arrive to public servers in early September.

Rainbow Six Siege is available now for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.