I Hate Rainbow Six Siege’s Bombers

I quietly adore Rainbow Six Siege [official site], but I loudly hate its bombers. I think they’re the shittest mechanic in an otherwise good game that I’ve seen in a long time.

Siege is an asymmetric multiplayer game which manages to take a common bugbear of online shooters – camping – and turn it into a valid mechanic. There’s more to that than simply one team being defenders, and therefore having a good reason to stay in place. Lots of games have a defending team. On hostage rescue maps, Counter-Strike’s terrorists are defenders and sticking to their entrenched positions makes perfect sense, but it’s also infuriating for the attackers, boring for the defenders, and derided by nearly everyone on public servers.

By introducing the ability to reinforce walls and entrance points, and giving everyone the ability to shoot through unprotected floors and walls, camping becomes much more interesting. There’s a more complex series of decisions being made by the defenders who decide to stay put, as they choose which angles to defend, where to drop their barbed wire, and where they’re safest from an invading player who decides to take a punt at shooting through a flimsy wall to see if someone is on the other side.

Many of these tactics carry over to the game’s cooperative Terrorist Hunt mode, whether you’re attacking or defending, thanks to AI that’s good enough to mimic a decent opponent. This mode’s suicide bombers are the one exception.

These hazmat-suited characters shoot at you, take more bullets than normal to go down, and self-detonate if they get close. This occasionally leads to dramatic situations as bombers crash through walls like a Left 4 Dead monster and force you and your friends into retreat. But just as often you’ll be carefully, tactically moving through the cramped spaces of a suburban home when a bomber will round a corner not three feet away from you. They’ll explode before you have the chance to react and they’ll kill you instantly. It is a shit way to die.

You can hear the bombers from some distance, which lets you know that they’re coming. You can scout buildings in advance using a remote control camera, letting you mark them on your HUD in the same-coloured HUD icon as all other enemies. At times, I can see why you’d want a non-standard enemy type like them, to change the flow of a fight, introduce extra tension, create a moving obstacle that must be accounted for. But the Bombers are a bad version of all those things.

The issue is that there are no interesting options for dealing with them. Either you’re far away enough to put a bunch of bullets into them before they reach you, or they’re so close by when you first see them that you’re dead before you’ve fired a shot. If you’re defending, then you can arguably drop barbed wire to slow them down, but that’s what you do anyway, and if you’re attacking then that option is unavailable to you.

Perhaps there is a specialist I can unlock after hours of grind that will help me deal with these units, but even a hard counter that negates them wouldn’t make them fun. They seem almost thoughtless, in so far as I can’t discern what behaviors they are there to encourage or discourage in players.

If I were to redesign them, I might make it so that they grab and restrain players they come close to rather than instantly exploding. This would then trigger an explosive countdown that would kill that player unless another person could get there in time to shoot and kill the enemy Bomber. This would still create moments of drama as they lunged towards you in close quarters, but it would also create an additional moment of tension while players rushed to the aid of their struggling teammate. It would encourage teams to stick together. And it has precedent in the game since, if you’re shot to the ground, there is a similar time limit during which a teammate can reach and revive you before you bleed out and die entirely. This is essentially no different than how Left 4 Dead’s Hunter or Smoker works, but stealing from Left 4 Dead never seems like a bad thing.

Alternatively: I’d just take them out. They feel unnecessary in a game that’s otherwise efficient. I hate them.


  1. Cooper says:

    I hate Rainbow Six: Siege’s Free To Play microtransaction model in a £50 game.

    You’ve paid £50. Why do you now need to grind (with the associated microtransactiopn boosters…) to unlock things that well, you’ve paid for?…

    • Premium User Badge

      Lexx87 says:

      Because people still spend a fortune on it

      • Cooper says:

        Well, yeah. I know why Ubisoft do it, I just don’t understand why it works…

        • Gibster says:

          Because people like things to work towards and every single fps out there has some sort of progression system. I was playing Battlefield 4 earlier and found the progression system to actually be a little helpful, as it slowly introduced me to new gadgets and such which the game helpfully gave me tooltips on how to use. It makes even more sense for R6:S as it’s a game with incredible depth (I really think Ubisoft have a potential hit on their hands if they can work out some of the bugs on the technical side) and while I was playing it last night, it was nice to have the game thrown at you in little bits and pieces rather than all at once.

          • ludde says:

            Sounds like what you want is tutorials or manuals, not micro transactions.

    • The_Player says:

      Because people enjoy the feel of progress in their games? It’s ridiculously easy to get renown points, don’t call it a F2P.

    • EhexT says:

      Except there is no grind. You unlock things faster than in any other game, from CoD to Killing Floor. And let’s not even mention the absurd glacial unlock pace of Mobas. That’s a real grind. Siege has no grind – you literally (and I mean the literal definition of literally) get an unlock every other match.

      • BrazilanChap says:

        Well, they announced the future operators will cost 25.000 renown to unlock, if you haven’t bought the Season Pass. 25.000 for a single operator is too damn expensive if you ain’t got the time to play everyday. I’ll have to grind for 2 or 3 weeks to unlock one operator on a pretty costly game.

        • EhexT says:

          You mean you’ll be able to get a DLC operator for free if you’re playing on the regular until the DLC comes out? Yeah totally awful. Not to mention that having the DLC operators isn’t going to be necessarily an advantage – you can’t have doubled up operators anyway. At most one person in a team of 5 will need the DLC operator – and that’s if the DLC operator is a must-have, which I doubt.

          • BrazilanChap says:

            Yes, it’s not THAT hard to pay 25k renown for each new operator, but if you don’t win most of your matches or have plenty of free time you gonna have to play a couple of weeks until you unlock each one of the ten operators released this year. It’s a fact. The point is that, even though you paid the full price for the game, you gonna have to grind the unlocks. Why? Because Ubisoft want to sell their stupid season passes. It’s wrong and we should not be making apologizes for greed tactics. Not everyone is really good at the game and has plenty of time to put on it. And it *is* a expensive game, specially if you live on less privileged contries like me.

          • Kitsunin says:

            This is one of the incredibly few cases when I really don’t think they need to apologize.

            They made it so that if you play the game regularly enough, ALL of its gameplay DLC can be unlocked without paying any extra money. Yes the game is kind of overpriced considering its content, but this is a pretty big move which does a ton to balance that out.

            And the non DLC operators take at most a couple hours to unlock, even once they get to their most expensive. Compared to every other game which does unlocks, that’s amazing. It takes way the eff longer to unlock things in Killing Floor (1 or 2) than it will to unlock even the DLC operators, for instance, and I guess we just don’t complain about that because buying past it isn’t an option.

        • Banks says:

          In the first 10 hours I had already unlocked everything. All operators and weapon unlocks. There is no grind.

          I do have +32000 renown saved too, so I’ll probably have enough points to unlock the new operators that are coming next month for free.

          I understand the complaints about the season pass and microtransactions but imho this is a good compromise. If they deliver on their promise about the free for all post-launch content (4 new maps, 8 new operators + extra) I’ll be more than happy.

          And more on topic, I really dislike terrorist hunt. All of it.

    • Steed says:

      It’s really not a grind… you get a ton of points for doing the situations (take a minute or two each) and 200 odd each for opening and closing the tutorials.

      You’ve now learnt the game and have enough points to unlock most of what you want.

      You rake the stuff in just playing casually and will soon have unlocked everything. If you DO want to grind for some reason terrorist hunt is v quick and lucrative.

      And yes, I work all day and commute is BS so there’s never any time to play and I’m still sitting on an absurd bank of points (having not even played over Christmas).

      Have you played the game?

      • Evil Pancakes says:

        To add to that, I’d much rather have a “grind” like this than have the community be split as most every other “competitive” shooter with DLC nowadays. I think Ubisoft really wants to push this one as a competitive game, otherwise I don’t see why they didn’t just go with the usual dlc practices.

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    Qazinsky says:

    This sounds almost exactly as those exploding bastards in Dying Light. I cannot count on my hands how many times I’ve gone through a seemingly regular doorway, only to have a silent explody guy standing in a dark corner and oneshot me before I can even react.

  3. EhexT says:

    If you can’t hear Bombers coming you aren’t playing with the volume up enough. Siege has fantastic audio mechanics and they’re there for a reason – you can hear Bombers coming rooms away.

    • Choca says:

      Exactly, they’re tough and dangerous but if you’re paying attention they should never surprise you.

      Riddling them with bullets is also a waste of time since you’re supposed to headshot them, which is not that much of a challenge at range unless you’re sporting a shotgun or out of ammo (which you should never be).

      You can also disable their explosive with Thatcher’s EMP with ease since they’re so easy to locate thanks to the amount of noise they make.

      They will still instantly kill you from time to time (as they should) but they’re only a “bad mechanic” if you refuse to learn their pretty obvious mechanics.

    • Evil Pancakes says:

      Yeah, the audio is really top notch in this one. Which makes it all the more frustrating when you get a bug where all sound suddenly cuts out. Suddenly you notice how important sound is in finding and getting the drop on an enemy.

      That, and there are a bunch of operators that very nicely counter bombers. Thatcher’s emp grenades is one, there’s Twitch’s shock drone that can disable the bomb. IQ can spot them easy through a wall. Blitz can stun them when they run towards you. On defense Mute can use the jammers. Pulse can spot through walls. Bandit’s shock wires also work.
      Regardless of the counters though, they still suck as enemies.

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    Aerothorn says:

    I hope you guys will be following Due Process closely once it breaks its radio silence – hopefully it will scratch the same itch for people let down in various ways by Siege (I do worry that Due Process, which was announced first, will be accused of being a “clone” by a bunch of ignorant Steam commenters).

  5. iamtheparagon says:

    I am honestly a sub-par player and I think this game is rad. I think that if you hate the bomber in this game you should just quit and go back to frogger, or something, because even being as not-so-good as I am, I find them easy even on harder difficulties. That’s not to say I don’t get killed by them, but sometimes you just get unlucky.

  6. HeatPak says:

    To counter the bomber in Terrorist Hunt, you can pick Twitch, and using her special taser-equipped drone, you can shoot the bomb on the back of the bomber, which will diffuse it. Alternatively, I believe It’s explosive detecting special gadget will show suicide bombers as well, and I haven’t tried it, but I would guess Thatcher’s EMP grenades would also diffuse their bombs. For all 3 of these characters, you obviously still have to kill the bombers, but their special gadgets give you an advantage in doing so.

    • HeatPak says:

      I meant to say “IQ’s explosive detecting gadget” Damn autocorrect…

  7. Vapor_Strike says:

    Bombers are challenging, but not really any more than other enemy types. If you are anything above full deaf, you’ll hear their beeping and breathing a mile away, and while their body is strong, their head takes 1-2 shots from any weapon to down them. They are the opposite of a bad mechanic. They help spice things up and if you’re not paying attention, they punish that. For a game that’s all about being very punishing, they work very well to help that.

  8. StealthWalker says:

    Yes head shots kill them rather quickly however you can also use thatcher’s emp grenades to disable the bomb vest its rather funny to watch there expression. also you can use Twitch’s rc (tested although very hard to achive works) to taze the computer on the back of the bombers vest to disarm it as well or you can shot said computer on the back to detonate the bomber yourself.