While many gamers are anxiously awaiting the release of shooters like Overwatch, Battlefield 1, and Call of Duty in the coming months, Ubisoft is continuing to deliver with Rainbow Six Siege’s updates. Although the game has endured some network issues and a few glitches since it’s February update, it’s holding a strong community of players behind it – and the latest lineup of rewards for the community released today.
Available on Xbox One, PS4, and PC, Dust Line introduces two new playable operators to Rainbow’s roster, along with another new map and a huge collection of fresh customization options. Just like the previous expansion, nearly all of the content added with Dust Line is available for free to all players who own the game, provided they have the in-game currency to unlock the rewards. It’s important to note that both new operators are locked to season-pass holders — exclusively, until next week.
Dust Line introduces two new operatives from the United States into the game: Blackbeard and Valkyrie. Members of the U.S. Navy SEALs, both Blackbeard and Valkyrie are hardened combat veterans used to working in a variety of conditions. Unlike the previous DLC operators, they rely on technology like the base roster of operators in Rainbow.
The first operator is Blackbeard, an attacker who has access to a rifle shield for his ability. Blackbeard brings two new rifles into the game: the Mk17 CQB and the SR-25. The Mk17 is an absolute powerhouse of an assault rifle, with little recoil and fantastic stopping power; the only drawback is the low magazine size. Like other marksman rifles in the game, the SR-25 has decent stopping power and manageable recoil – but it doesn’t add anything new to the game. The game changer is Blackbeard’s rifle-shield, which is a clear ballistic barrier he can place on his weapon with a penalty to movement speed. This ability essentially allows you to become a walking tank, provided that you use it properly alongside cover or while prone, given the amount of punishment you can take.
The second operator is Valkyrie, a defender who has access to a set of ‘Black Eye’ cameras for her ability. These little handheld cameras can be thrown onto walls, ventilation shafts and even tossed out of windows in order to maintain a visual presence on the attacking team. With a 180° pivoting range, if placed correctly they can be extremely hard for enemies to destroy and provide your team with an unparalleled advantage. During my time with Valkyrie I was continuously able to help my team flank enemy attackers with my cameras while also keeping myself safe from harm – making her a required asset to any defense team in Rainbow. Valkyrie also has access to two new primary weapons, the MPX submachine gun and SPAS-12 Shotgun. The MPX is essentially another MP5 with great mobility and decent stopping power, while the SPAS-12 functions exactly as you’d expect.
New Map: Border
The new map included in Dust Line is an amazing addition to the current playlist, featuring a large play area and the most destructible environment to-date in Rainbow. Located in the middle east, the map brings players to an immigration office filled with unfinished walls and concrete barriers. Border is easily the most impressive map in Rainbow so far, due to its sheer size and complexity, which was quite the obstacle when I first started playing – learning the new map is definitely a challenge, but once you’ve got it down it provides you with great opportunities to get the drop on the opposing team. Unlike the previously released DLC map, the rooms within Border are much more destructible; providing what seems like an endless amount of options when it comes to attacking the objective. As a defender I was consistently on my toes waiting for a wall to blow up next to me or an enemy player to flank me, which is a welcome change of pace that compliments Valkyrie’s cameras quite well.
Its also worth mentioning that Dust Line adds a ton of new cosmetic items and functionality changes that Rainbow Six Siege has needed for a while. Among the highlights are new cosmetic headgear options for all playable operators, the ability to customize loadouts while in-game and a winning team showcase at the end of each match. My one problem with the new cosmetic items though are the in-game currency prices, which are through the roof compared to others available before the latest update. Most unique pieces of headgear cost upwards of 20,000 in-game credits to purchase – although I suppose it gives veteran players something to use their stockpiled currency for.
Overall Dust Line is another great package of content for fans of Rainbow Six Siege that fixes a ton of the game’s problems while adding new content for players to enjoy. The new map Border is quickly becoming one of my favorites to play on, while the new cosmetic items are giving me a new reason to grind out credits in the game. Both Blackbeard and Valkyrie are valuable additions to the roster that provide a new standard of play thanks to their powerful abilities. I’ll admit I’m a little concerned about Blackbeard’s rifle shield being too powerful for defenders to deal with though, especially when combined with other ballistic shield users in close quarters. We’ll just have to see how Ubisoft handles it post-patch.