Rainbow Six Siege 'Outbreak' event will bring alien parasites, three new PvE maps

The Rainbow Six Siege: Operation Chimera tease-fest continues today with a new trailer hinting at the outer-space origins of the Outbreak that will signal the start of Year 3, and finally revealing the names of the two new Operators who have been brought in to help clean it up. 

Lion, a French Operator, and Finka, a Russian, will join Smoke, Ying, Buck, Kapkan, Ash, Doc, Tachanka, Glaz, and Recruit in the town of Truth or Consequences, which has fallen prey to an extraterrestrial parasite called the Apex, delivered to our neighborhood courtesy of an old Soviet space capsule. Only these operators will be playable in Outbreak—"We made a selection of Operators who are the most adapted and relevant for this specific game mode, from a design standpoint," Ubi writes.

Anyway, these alien organisms have transformed the population into "horrific creatures"—Ubisoft seems to be studiously avoiding the word "zombies"—spread across five unique archetypes, each with its own unique abilities. In response, the government has cordoned the town and issued orders for a team of three Operators to go in and clean house.   

In a bit of a surprise, the new mode will also have three exclusive maps, which will be larger, more open, and more linear than the competitive maps because they're designed specifically for co-op play. They will retain the game's "trademark destruction elements," however, so players will still be able to blow big holes in walls to facilitate movement, ambushes, or just because it's fun. 

Outbreak will be playable at two difficulty levels, Normal and Pandemic, with the latter offering stronger monsters and friendly fire, "making positional awareness and communication all that much more necessary," Ubisoft said. "Additionally, players will have to make smart use of barriers and fortifications to defend against an enemy that doesn't mind taking a few bullets as it rushes its target."  

Rainbow Six Siege Year 3, and the month-long Outbreak event, will begin on March 6. More information about what's in store will be revealed during the Six Invitationals Finals, which runs February 18-19 and will be broadcast 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.