Rainbow Six Siege: Operation Ember Rise is getting closer and closer, and this Operation brings with it a plethora of changes that are going to alter some things about Siege pretty drastically.
There are enough new things in this Operation that it could be forgiven if you aren't necessarily sure what exactly is going on, so here are ten of the most important things to keep in mind going into the next Operation.
10 New Defender: Goyo
First off and most importantly, two new Operators are being added this Operation: Goyo and Amaru. Goyo is the new Defender, and he looks like he's going to be a pretty strong addition to the game, changing things in a way that hasn't happened in quite a while. Goyo brings with him three modified Deployable Shields (which are also changed this season, but we'll get to that later). Goyo's modified Deployable Shields explode when the gas canister attached to the back is shot, lighting the surrounding area on fire and causing some explosive damage. Goyo is looking like he's going to be a very strong area-of-denial operator, and there are going to be quite a few strategies revolving around him in the coming months.
9 New Attacker: Amaru
Amaru is the new Attacker being added in Operation: Ember Rise, and like Goyo, she brings a pretty interesting modification to an existing mechanic in Rainbow Six Siege. Instead of just a normal rope to rappel from, Amaru brings with her a grapple line that can swiftly pull her up onto rooftops, launch her through windows (barricaded or not), and lift her through open ceiling hatches.
While Amaru isn't always going to as much of a boon to the team as Goyo, in certain situations Amaru could have quite a drastic effect on the match, especially when utilized as an entry fragger.
8 Ranked Map Pool Changes
The Ranked map pool is being reduced in Ember Rise, as well. Theme Park, Fortress, and Hereford Base are all being removed from the Ranked playlist, and the reworked version of Kanal is being added.
This is probably going to be a good thing, as only the most balanced/competitive maps should be included in the Ranked playlist, though it is definitely strange that Theme Park has been removed instead of Skyscraper. Theme Park is getting a map rework in the near future, so that may have something to do with it.
7 Kanal Rework
As mentioned above, the Kanal map has been reworked in order to make it more balanced/competitive. This looks like it's taken quite a bit of work on the part of Ubisoft, but from what we've seen/played, it definitely looks like a real improvement.
They've added a new bridge between the two buildings, which alone would make a big difference, but they've also added another staircase into each building, enabling for many more options when it comes to navigating. There are a ton of smaller changes, as well as some cosmetic improvements, as well.
6 Ranked MMR Lock
Gone are the days a Diamond-Ranked player can play with a Copper-Ranked player. In order to combat players from taking advantage of certain mechanics in order to play against players of a drastically lower skill level than them, Ubisoft has changed it to where players of a vastly different rank than them cannot play together in the Ranked playlist. While this is certainly going to rankle a few players, it probably isn't going to affect many players that weren't already taking advantage of how the matchmaking worked. So all in all, this is a pretty good change.
5 Unranked Mode
There's also a new game mode being added, called Unranked. Unranked is going to have all of the same rules as the Ranked playlist, but it's not going to have any ranking attached to it. (Besides the behind-the-scenes matchmaking that's already used in Casual.)
This is going to be a great addition for players that don't like the Casual game mode but need a warm-up for Ranked, or just aren't quite up for playing Ranked at the moment. This will also likely bring some new players to the Ranked game mode, who are able to learn the rules/pace of the mode without punishment before jumping into the real thing.
4 Champion Rank
Speaking of Ranked, there's an all-new Rank being added to Siege: the Champion Rank. This is a higher rank than Diamond, and something the vast majority of players aren't ever going to notice even exists. But, for players that consistently hit Diamond every season and are looking for a new challenge to take on, this is going to be a welcome addition.
3 Battle Pass
One currently controversial new addition to Siege is the Battle Pass. Included for free in Operation Ember Rise, there's going to be a Battle Pass that is similar to that of other games of late. By playing the game, you'll unlock new cosmetic items.
The more you play, the more items you'll earn. After Ember Rise, this Battle Pass is going to cost money. Though nothing other than cosmetics are included in the Battle Pass, some players are seemingly still upset by it.
2 Minor Operator Tweaks
Some Operators are getting some small changes in Ember Rise. Dokkaebi and Glaz, for example, are now getting access to Frag Grenades, presumably to help deal with the new, buffed Deployable Shields. Fuze has also received a buff, with the time it takes to deploy his gadget being reduced. A ton of Operators have gotten their secondary gadgets changed, so it will definitely be worth taking a look at your Operator loadouts to see what they have before playing with them when Ember Rise drops.
1 New Deployable Shields
As mentioned quite a few times in the above points, Deployable Shields have been drastically buffed. Shields will now have small windows crisscrossing them. These windows cannot be shot through, but Defenders will be able to peer through them and line up shots for before they stand up and fire. These new Shields are likely going to be very, very strong, but we'll have to wait for the new Operation to release before we can say for sure.