Latest Rainbow Six Siege patch rolls out big changes, Ubisoft says a Lesion nerf is coming

After a few weeks on the Rainbow Six Siege test server, Ubisoft has officially released patch Y4S4.3. The patch brings a nice bundle of nerfs to overpowered operators like Maestro, Echo, and Jäger, but some players were surprised to see one dominant defender dodge the nerf hammer: Lesion.

Lesion is an extremely versatile operator without notable downsides. Stepping on one of his cloaked Gu mines reveals your location, deals damage, and disables sprinting until you remove the poison needle. He boasts a high pick and ban rate at high-level play, suggesting that he’s a frustrating op to deal with. After years without changes, it seems like Ubi finally agrees. In the most recent edition of Designer Notes, Ubi shared plans to address Lesion’s dominance.

“Lesion is currently over-picked and performs really well as you can see in the Defender’s graphic. He can often be quite frustrating to play against, which is why he is also target by Operator bans,” the post reads. “We are looking into fine tuning him to reduce both his effectiveness and frustration.”

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Everyone has their own version of the “right nerf” for Lesion. Some want Gu mines to stop dealing damage over time or to lose Lesion’s ability to see them through walls. Personally, I’d rework Gu mines to not cloak and have a smaller profile that’s easy to overlook when hidden well. Any combination of these suggestions could do the trick. Ubi didn’t share specifics on its plans for Lesion, so it’s a waiting game for now.

The mid-season Designer Notes also include updated win delta graphs for every operator. The data only represents PC players at platinum skill level or higher. It’s a small percentage of the game’s total population, but the data adds context to some of Ubi’s balancing decisions.

It’s noteworthy that new operators Wamai and Kali are both underperforming in the “Underpicked, Too Weak” portion of the graph. Kali has an especially low win rate, likely due to her all-in emphasis on ranged attack, and the highly-visible tracer each of her shots leave behind. In Siege’s often tight corners, a big scoped rifle necessarily means some amount of tunnel vision. Still, both ops are new. Their perceptions could change as players discover more ways to use them effectively.

Echo nerfs

As for what’s new in Siege today, Echo’s round of nerfs might be less effective than I anticipated. His Yokai drone can how be hacked by Dokkaebi, he drops a phone like everyone else, and his drones have small blue lights that shine when they’re not cloaked. You can see the lights in the gif below.

You can clearly see them when looking close, but I’m not sure they’ll be noticeable in the heat of combat. The lights aren’t as bright as cameras or drones and they’re only visible for a few moments before the drone cloaks again. The lights are also only on the bottom of the Yokai, so they’re completely hidden when the drone is driving on the ground.

I don’t think Echo mains have much to fear here—his drones still keep a low profile. Though, that could become a liability now that Dokkaebi’s hack includes the Yokai. If Echo isn’t alive to pilot them and Dokkaebi hacks a phone, the attackers basically get free cloaked cameras that defenders may overlook.

Ying buffs

Ying has received a semi-rework with this patch. Her Candelas should now roll more consistently, they detonate faster after stopping, and Ying can see an outline of them through walls while they’re rolling. Check it out below:

Her changes feel awesome so far. The Candelas have always felt risky because I’m never sure where they end up. Now that their flashing power is more consistent and I can monitor their journey through walls, I'll have a much better idea of whether it’s safe to push enemies. The faster detonation is also a huge deal. Ying can now use her flash immunity to quickly push with a Candela.

Morgan Park
Staff Writer

Morgan has been writing for PC Gamer since 2018, first as a freelancer and currently as a staff writer. He has also appeared on Polygon, Kotaku, Fanbyte, and PCGamesN. Before freelancing, he spent most of high school and all of college writing at small gaming sites that didn't pay him. He's very happy to have a real job now. Morgan is a beat writer following the latest and greatest shooters and the communities that play them. He also writes general news, reviews, features, the occasional guide, and bad jokes in Slack. Twist his arm, and he'll even write about a boring strategy game. Please don't, though.