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Rainbow Six Siege's next operator has explosive drones and excellent style

Plus a ton of new stuff is on the way for the game's sixth year

Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege is heading into its sixth year, and over the weekend, Ubisoft dropped a load of details of what's arriving in the tactical FPS over the coming weeks. The new season, Crimson Heist, will kick off the Year Six festivities by adding a new explosive gadget, reworks to the Border map, and new operator Flores, who has some rather nice red glasses. He weirdly reminds me a bit of Dr Eggman, mostly because they're both robotics dudes with round coloured specs.

Hailing from Argentina is this new operator, Flores, an attacker with a penchant for explosive drones. His special gadget, the Ratero Charge, launches a remote controlled drone which also happens to be a timed explosive. Flores can drive it around and detonate it to do damage to enemies, or take out defending traps like barbed wires and shields.

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Here's where it gets cheeky though: once the Ratero starts its detonation countdown, "engaging" the explosive (i.e. shooting it) will make it stop dead in its tracks and become bulletproof before exploding. I haven't played Siege in a hot minute, but this sounds quite strong, and would likely kill me instantly if I were to play against it. It's just force of habit to shoot tiny dangerbots.

Flores' explosives aren't the only new ones in Crimson Heist, however. The season will also introduce the Gonne-6, a new secondary weapon option for some attackers that shoots a single explosive round. It's like a little pistol grenade launcher that lets you take out a bit of wall or a defending trap to help you push your objective.

As for the Border map changes, in that trailer above the devs say "a host of small changes have been made to increase mobility options". This includes new staircases and balconies which seem to give attackers new opportunities to sneak in on the high ground, as well as "reorganised" objective sites which should improve lines of sight. Ubi have also reduced the noise that pesky helicopter above the building makes, and made it so the guy who likes to ramble over the PA system will only do so in the prep phase, so you can better hear the important stuff happening in your match.

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Other major changes are on the way in year six, too. During the developer panel above, Ubisoft acknowledge how defender-sided matches can be, and have some stuff lined up to make life a little easier for attackers. One of these is that during the planning phase, attackers will be able to change their operator in reaction to why they find while scouting with their drones. So, if they discover the defenders have a Bandit, for example, they can quickly swap operators to someone who'll be able to counter his traps before the attack phase begins.

On top of that, players will soon be able to control their cameras and gadgets after they die, so they're not sat around bored waiting for the round to end. Operator armour is being switched to health, so it's more clear exactly how much damage they can take. Crimson Heist will see the launch of the match replay beta too, letting players rewatch games to catch their best (or worst) moments and investigate what they did right (or wrong).

As always, more skins and cosmetics are on the way, including a Resident Evil-themed one for Zofia, and a new system that will let players customise Elite operator skins by mixing and matching different pieces of their uniforms.

I've detailed most of the interesting bits happening in year six here, but that dev panel is overloaded with info about what's to come, so do give it a watch if you want to hear more.

There's no word yet on exactly when Crimson Heist will hit the live game, but it arrives on the Rainbow Six Siege test server today if you fancy taking an early peek.

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