Ubisoft’s new co-op shooter isn’t what I expected, and that’s a good thing. Rainbow Six Quarantine was the original name of Rainbow Six Extraction in 2019 before covid-19 killed millions across the planet.
There was a small period of silence as the disease spread, and then the game was renamed Extraction, which made sense. Ubisoft’s latest and weirdest chapter in the Rainbow Six franchise, Extraction, has finally launched, and I can’t decide which surprised me more: how much I love killing aliens or the fact that Extraction is fun despite the saturation of the genre.
Featuring characters and weapons from Siege, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Extraction is a (likely) non-canon chapter in the long-running tactical shooter franchise.
The original Limited Time Mode map that served as the inspiration for Extraction can be found in the new mode. Instead of terrorists or other human soldiers, Siege’s diverse cast of operators must now contend with alien parasites known as… *looks around keyboard* Archaeans.
I’ll just call them aliens or arkies like the game does. Humans are being infected by these horrible organisms and transformed into alien monsters. Together, Team Rainbow and REACT must disinfect each infested room and put an end to the alien invasion.
To defeat the alien threat, teams of three-person Rainbow operators are deployed to places like New York City and Alaska. There are three maps in each area, and each map is divided into three sections. While each area has been carefully designed and will remain the same, the objectives will vary between games. Your objective can be to eliminate a specific enemy, rescue hostages or detonate bombs.
In Extraction, you don’t run for an exit while shooting hundreds of enemies like you do in Left 4 Dead, Back 4 Blood, or The Anacrusis. By contrast, Extraction is methodical and deliberate. In Extraction, you have the option to use stealth to take out enemies or use destruction to fight your way through chambers filled with infected enemies.
You can use stealth and technology to accomplish one goal, or you can use physical force and loud explosions to accomplish another. You can also leave. Given the game’s treatment of damage and “death”, you probably want to.
When playing Rainbow Six Extraction, it’s important to be willing to take hits. Although your operator’s health will recover while you’re on a mission, it will reset to zero when you leave, leaving them in a heavily damaged state until you gain experience with different operators. If you have wounded personnel, they will heal as you gain experience points, allowing them to get back into the fight.
They can be dispatched early when your health drops below 100 after reaching a particular threshold. It’s dangerous, but occasionally necessary if you have a strong preference for a particular operator’s abilities.
A character named Pulse, for example, has a fantastic sensor that allows him to see beyond walls and ping alien nests for his allies. Given his value, I take care of his well-being. After taking some damage and not wanting to take any more, this caused me to abort a mission via an extraction point.
Also, if an Operator loses all of their health and is knocked unconscious during a mission, you can’t use it again until you rescue them on a different mission. If he doesn’t, he will eventually get them back, but they will get hurt and lose experience points.
It all seemed pretty similar to character management in XCOM. While it’s impossible to permanently lose an operator in Extraction, even the temporary loss of experience or the inability to play as them during some missions adds a new layer of tension and excitement to the game.
Since Ubisoft is responsible for making this a Tom Clancy game, the standard Ubisoft blurb is present. Many American flags are being torn down or destroyed, representing the decline of the United States and its principles. Instead of being the quick-to-kill, untrustworthy jerks we see in the real world, the police and SWAT teams are heroes who will save us all from the evil danger of inhuman parasites in this universe.
This layer of patriotism and propaganda covers so much of the world that it can be hard not to laugh or roll your eyes every few minutes. I’m used to that and now I can joke about it after playing so many Tom Clancy games and enjoying them for the last 20 years. I was reminded that this is all very strange and dated to 2022 by a player unfamiliar with the Clancy series.
I think there’s a lot to like about Extraction if you can handle a bit of nasty propaganda and aren’t put off by gross alien stuff like goo and pulsing flesh pods.
If co-op shooters have become homogeneous due to their reliance on swarms of enemies and rapid fire, Extraction seems like the ideal antidote, providing a more tense, tactical and distinctive “zombie shooter” that trades hordes of the undead for more contained levels. and ingenious squad management systems.
The combination of a fun and engaging gaming experience with a system that rewards players with substantial progress on a regular basis is enough to keep my attention, and I imagine it will attract a lot more people.
Also, the availability of the game on Game Pass means that many of you can try it out without spending a dime. Remember to laugh at some of Clancy’s most ridiculous moments.