Ubisoft has released a set of previously-unseen data for Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege, providing a glimpse into player trends, and the processes to support its ever-changing tactical shooter. Hot Breach Podcast welcomed developers at Ubisoft Barcelona, breaking down the approach to balancing, how data is leveraged to improve the state of play.
Rainbow Six Siege continues to evolve, embracing a shifting gameplay meta, outlining the most effective tactics and synergies. It led to a dedicated balancing cell launched last year, committed to research and analysis, and translating this to meaningful gameplay adjustments. The three-hour show hosted key figures, touching on the state of Operators, with new insight behind decisions.
The broadcast kicked off with broader Operator balancing, exploring win deltas and presence, traditionally reserved to Ubisoft's seasonal Designer Notes. The latest chart highlights performance and popularity among top-tier gameplay while conveying differences between Operation Phantom Sight's Y4S2.3 patch and Operation Ember Rise.
Reports demonstrate the impact of recent downgrades to shield accuracy and melee, as Montagne and Blitz win deltas plummet. Other notable shifts include Blackbeard, Kapkan, and Frost, as Jager wins drop amid increased adoption. The chart visualizes Y4S2.3 data, with shifting points increasing in size to show Y4S3 results.
Ubisoft also detailed current weapon usage in Rainbow Six Siege, a statistic previously undiscussed by the team. The data outlines the distribution of weapons across Ranked play, also detailing average win ratios, kill-death ratios, and kills per round. While highlighting the apparent disparity in loadouts, as many firearms hit 100 percent usage, it provides a clearer understanding of ongoing adjustments via balancing updates.
This year's introduction of Pick and Ban also brought significant changes to Ranked, providing a brief voting period to remove Operators from play. The feature disrupts team strategies and shakes up encounters, barring up to four Operators from the available roster.
Ubisoft has provided firm data on current ban rates, unsurprisingly identifying Jackal, Mira, and Echo as common targets. The bar graph visualizes changes from Phantom Sight to Ember Rise, also providing further context to the recent Jackal rework on the Technical Test Server (TTS) on PC.
The dialogue pivoted to an often-untouched element of the Rainbow Six Siege balancing process, with User Research Analyst Lanie Dixon talking player frustration and the role in changes. With aid from user surveys, the team balances metrics with perception, calculating a "frustration score" for each Operator.
Jackal once again tops the chart on offense, while Echo and Clash lead the defense. However, it's worth noting data spans Burnt Horizon and Phantom Sight, during a period of rampant exploits that temporarily removed Clash from the game.
The data provides previously unseen context to Rainbow Six Siege's ongoing balancing tweaks and how the team leverages its tools to improve gameplay. Ubisoft also demonstrated a shift, further considering player frustration in its changes, rather than relying on win and presence data.
The full Hot Breach Podcast episode is now live on YouTube, with three hours of balancing discussion.
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Ubisoft's hit shooter is hotter than ever, touting tense tactical gameplay, and regular free updates. With millions of players in 2019, Rainbow Six isn't slowing down.