Rainbow Six Siege Shifting Tides Brings the Big Guns to Ubisoft's Shooter
Rainbow SIx Siege Y4S4 update, Shifting Tides, brings the first bolt action rifle to the game, as well as a revamped Theme Park map.
It always surprises me when a live game, like League of Legends or World of Warcraft, can manage to keep its audience with new content that actually alters how the game is played. It may not be on the same scale, but Rainbow Six Siege is one of these games that reinvigorates the formula constantly, making it easy for newcomers to join without feeling as if they’ve missed out on the past four years. The new Rainbow Six Siege Y4S4 (Year 4 Season 4) update, Shifting Tides, is a perfect example of that notion.
Attack Operator: Kali
Just on a core level, the newest attacker Kali is one of the most unique operators in Rainbow Six Siege. She is the first Operator to be equipped with a bolt action sniper rifle that is incredibly lethal. The CSRX 300 can garner instant kills with headshots and instant downs from anywhere else on the body. It also takes down boarded entryways with a single shot. It may be loud, but it is definitely one of the most profound additions to Rainbow Six Siege.
There are some disadvantages to using Kali. Maybe the least worrisome is her lack of customization options to her main weapon. What you see is what you get with the CSRX 300, so you can’t do any modifying to the bolt action sniper rifle. One distinct disadvantage is that she can easily be spotted if she manages to land a hit. If you down the opposition, that player will automatically face the direction the bullet came from, potentially giving away your position. Considering just how powerful this rifle is, it’s a fair trade.
The biggest problem I had with Kali was actually landing shots. While the phrase “git gud” would be apt, there were moments when I felt I had the reticle right on the opposition only for them to somehow avoid my shot. It wasn’t really all that frustrating; it was more baffling than anything. When the stars did align and I managed to get a shot in, it was one of the most satisfying feelings I have ever had in a match of Rainbow Six Siege.
Despite those fairly minor disadvantages, Kali is a very well-rounded character that could see a lot of play. Her loadout allows her to be dominant both from close and long-range positions. The sniper rifle itself allows you to zoom, so using it indoors isn’t really hindering. It is one of the longer guns available in the game, so peeking slowly isn’t really an option. But with its surprisingly faster fire rate and stopping power, Kali is one of the more satisfying operators to play.
Defense Operator: Wamai
Wamai is the new defender coming to Rainbow Six Siege, adding a unique gadget to the game’s arsenal. The Mag-NET acts as (you guessed it) a magnet for grenades and most throwable gadgets. Similar to a gadget like Mozzie’s Pests, these can be deployed on any surface of any given room.Its effective range is indicated by a blue circle surrounding the Mag-NET. If a grenade or certain gadgets gets caught within that area, Wamai’s gadget will essentially catch it. You can deploy a total of four of these gadgets throughout a match, so you can cover a lot of ground. However, you want to use these with some sort of strategy as they are destroyed after the caught grenade or gadget has detonated.
For example, let’s say you put one of Wamai’s Mag-NETs on the top of a door frame. An operator on the opposing team, such as Capitao, is about to shoot a fire bolt in that room. If Capitao fires through the doorway with the Mag-NET above it, the bolt will move towards the gadget rather than the actual target and ignite the top of the doorway instead.
The first thing I noticed about Wamai’s gadget is that its effective range is very large. Putting it in the corner of a moderately sized room seems like it is effective within a third or a fourth of that room. If you put two Mag-NETs in a single room, it will probably cover most of that space which makes it rather useful.
Although I never got to use it effectively, someone on the opposing team used it successfully against me. Using Capitao, I was scaling up a building and making my way to a boarded window. After destroying the boards I shot a bolt through the it only to see the bolt mysteriously fly above the window I shot through. It resulted in the smoke blowing up in my face.
Wamai’s loadout is pretty solid as well. He is one of the only defense operators, along with Jager, that has an assault rifle, making him stand out from the rest. He has the tools to be a good anchor for the team and is designed as such.
Map: Theme Park (rework)
Similar to Burnt Horizon and Ember Rise, Shifting Tides also features a map rework in the form of Theme Park. Rather than the dingy aesthetic it currently displays, the Theme Park is now brighter overall, making it easier to traverse and spot enemy Operators. There are also more distinct landmarks available, allowing callouts to happen more naturally.
The biggest change to Theme Park is the complete destruction of the train area. It now no longer exists. Honestly, it’s better without it. There are also some entryways that now longer exist, such as the front entrance. There are a lot of quality of life changes that just make the map much tighter. It may feel incredibly different initially, but as I kept playing I became more familiar with it. It’s probably my favorite rework so far.
Shifting Tides may not be like the previous season Ember Rise, which felt more catered to newcomers. This seems like a season for those who are somewhat familiar with Rainbow Six Siege already. Kali is a powerful attacker that I’m sure will get some use both casually and competitively. Meanwhile, Wamai is a bit more specialized, working well as a substitute for Jager, thus making him a solid pick. I’m really excited to see how these two characters shake up the meta.