Meet the new enemies in Rainbow Six Siege 'Outbreak'

"It's adapting faster than we can track," Rainbow Six demolitions specialist Eliza "Ash" Cohen says in the Outbreak briefing trailer Ubisoft released last week. "We up the ordnance, and it created this thing." A thing that looks like it would be more at home in Prey than a Rainbow Six game, but there it is—and there are actually five of them, each with unique characteristics and abilities. 

The otherworldly bad guys are actually people, transformed by alien parasites into unearthly creatures who presumably exist only to kill/transform every non-alien-parasite thing they see. Zombies from space, basically, although whether or not this infection can be cured, and thus the morality of gunning down its victims before that question is resolved, is unclear. 

On the other hand, I suppose it's more selective than a nuke, and Rainbow Six Weeks of Stultifying Lab Work Followed By a High-Profile Public Health Campaign probably isn't going to resonate with the pro esports scene. 

In any event, this is what you'll be dealing with: 

  • Grunts - Grunts are common hostiles that become highly resistant when the parasite detects an enemy presence. To protect its host, the parasite armors its body and becomes more resistant to bullet wounds. Caution and stealth is recommended.
  • Breachers - Breachers are proximity bombs that crater anything in their path. They make for a very agile opponent, but they launch themselves into the fray and blow holes in indestructible walls. Make sure you are nowhere close to them.
  • Rooters - Rooters are a more rare type of hostile. They send out coral spikes from the ground to injure and immobilize their targets. Rooters are always on the move and will keep you on edge. Beware when dealing them the final blow; they become extremely lethal when on the brink of death.
  • Smashers - Smashers are not discreet. The parasite reinforces its body under a massively thick hide, making it practically impervious to bullet wounds. They will also tear down walls without suffering any injuries.
  • Apex - Apex is at the top of the ET food chain. It sends waves of hostiles your way rather than attack you head-on. They can hurl blinding projectiles, which can only be countered by Finka and Doc. This opponent is a real test of your team’s communication skills.

The Rainbow Six Siege 'Outbreak' co-op event will begin with the start of Year 3 on March 6, and run for one month. The full reveal will take place during the Six Invitational, running February 18-19 and streamed on Twitch

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.