Rainbow Six Siege director defends loot boxes as 'the gift shop after the rollercoaster'

Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege has steadily grown since its 2015 debut and now sits among today's biggest first-person shooters. With regular free seasons of content going into its third year since launch, Ubisoft heavily supports the game via season passes and purchasable cosmetic items.

While microtransactions are far from new to Rainbow Six Siege, the game recently caught heat over its upcoming "Outbreak Packs." Providing randomized loot drops from a pool of exclusive cosmetic content, these packs tie into the game's upcoming biohazard-themed mode, Mission Outbreak. However, unlike existing Alpha Packs, Outbreak Packs can only be obtained with R6 Credits – the game's premium currency obtainable with real-world money.

This isn't the first time Rainbow Six Siege has restricted cosmetic content to real-world money, but by locking down a sizeable portion of the next expansion's cosmetic content pool, community backlash ensued. In an interview with MCV UK, Rainbow Six brand director, Alexandre Remy has reportedly responded to the criticism, providing his perspective on industry-wide loot box debacle.

"I feel like the loot boxes act like the gift shop after the rollercoaster," Remy says, explaining that the team's golden rule with regards to loot boxes is that they shouldn't impact the gameplay in any way. "I am feeling very empathetic towards players upset with this, but at the same time I do not feel we are cheating anyone, I don't think we are being greedy whatsoever."

Rainbow Six Siege's business model has embraced microtransactions since launch, with weapon skins, charms, headgear, and armor up for grabs. Following industry trends, Outbreak Packs are a natural progression of this concept, though mark a significant departure from the game's existing business model. Unlike a "gift shop," where specific goods can be purchased for real-world cash, the randomized nature of Outbreak Packs could leave unlucky players spending close to $100 to obtain their preferred item.

Outbreak Packs are set to hit Rainbow Six Siege on March 6, as a part of the game's upcoming Outbreak event. Packs will cost 300 R6 Credits each, which depending on the number of credits purchased, roughly varies between $2 and $3. With no duplicates available with these packs, buying 50 guarantees the complete Outbreak collection.

What are your thoughts on loot boxes in Rainbow Six Siege? Make sure to drop your thoughts in the comments.

Matt Brown

Matt Brown was formerly a Windows Central's Senior Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.