Rainbow Six Siege goes anime with the Nighthaven Collection trailer

In November, Ubisoft said that it wants Rainbow Six Siege, a game about mix-and-match squads of soldiers and cops from around the world killing each other in a variety of scenarios for no particular reason, to have more of a story in 2020. To me, that seems like asking for a whole lot of unnecessary complication: Once you add "plot" to the mix, sooner or later you're going to have to explain why the Spetsnaz guy is hooked up with the Scotland Yard copper to shoot at another Spetsnaz guy and a French microbiologist.

That does seem to be the way it's going, though. Operation Shifting Tides, the final season of Siege Year Four, went live a couple of weeks ago with two new operators who, in a break from previous updates, are not part of a real-world special operations force or law enforcement agency. Instead, Kali and Wamai are members of the Nighthaven, a mercenary group based out of India.

Officially, Nighthaven was invited to join Rainbow Six after successfully stopping the hijacking of a supertanker. But the real reason, apparently, is to keep it from being hired by an opposing organization—and also to keep Kali and Wamai close at hand, where they can be more easily monitored. Not everyone is enthusiastic about the idea, though, especially the Rainbow Six soldiers who earn a tiny fraction of what Nighthaven mercs make, and have no say over what jobs they take on. Understandable, I suppose.

I think it's interesting that Ubisoft now seems to be wholeheartedly embracing the more cartoonish, GI Joe aspects of Rainbow Six Siege, which naturally mandates a move to a more fiction-focused approach. After four years of expansions and additions, has it finally run out of credible special forces groups to draw from? I suppose it's possible that Ubi is angling toward some trenchant commentary on the rise of "private military companies" and the roles they play in maintaining and even instigating our far-away proxy wars, but I'm pretty sure that the smart money is on some kind of Cobra Commander cameo.

Anyway, back to the point. Much like Nighthaven's employment contract, the Nighthaven trailer serves dual purposes: It's a cinematic introduction to a pair of new operators, but it also promotes the Nighthaven Collection of premium cosmetics that went live today. Available until January 6, the collection will offer 18 customization items—three each for Alibi, Fuze, IQ, Jackal, Mute, and Rook. Nighthaven packs can be purchased for 300 R6 Credits or 12500 Renown, and all players will be given one free pack when they log in. Details are up at ubisoft.com.

The Nighthaven Collection: A bold new look for a bold new year. (Image credit: Ubisoft)
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.