Rainbow Six Siege Y6S4 Designer’s Notes explains all the big changes coming with High Calibre

Rainbow Six Siege‘s Y6S4 High Calibre was fully unveiled yesterday, and it is bringing some exciting changes to the game.

Siege’s Y6S4 High Calibre will be introducing the Irish defender ‘Thorn’ with a new SMG, Outback map rework, massive UI overhaul, and more.

In the new Y6S4 Designer’s Notes, the devs have explained the upcoming balancing changes, some of which will be welcomed positively and some controversial changes that will surely raise some talks on the Internet.

Right off the bat, we will tell you that there has been no recoil nerf in this season. In fact, controller players are receiving a recoil buff, where the lateral recoil is being reduced on some of the most used guns. On the other side, Ubisoft has decreased Angled grip’s ADS speed boost by 20%; however, the devs are open to hearing feedback on this change in the Test Server and tweaking it accordingly.

Read the full Y6S4 Pre-Season DESIGNER’S NOTES below: (via Ubisoft)

GAMEPLAY REWORKS

BULLETPROOF CAMERAS

  • Bulletproof Cameras can now rotate.
  • Added EMP burst shot that disables Attackers’ electronic gadgets (i.e. drones, claymore, Airjab, etc.).
    • The first player in the camera can use the ability to shoot. Unlike operators’ abilities, there is no notion of ownership.

Population targeted by this change: Casual, Top Ranked and Pros.

While the Bulletproof Camera offers a good amount of intel utility thanks to doing what it says on the tin, its pick rate is still far below where we’d like it to be. Building upon the recent Shattered Glass rework which changed how the Bulletproof Camera reacts to melee hits, we took it back to the drawing board to give it some added features.

In addition to making it a more versatile pick thanks to its ability to rotate and fire an EMP burst, we feel this will make it more interesting to run and a more “active” tool in players’ loadouts. Now, Defenders will have more options for effectively disabling Attacker gadgets outside of Mute, which should enable new strategies. The decision to allow anyone on the team to control and shoot the EMP is also intended to make this secondary gadget into a shared resource that can benefit the whole team.

It’s important to note, though, that once the glass on a Bulletproof Camera has been shattered, it will be unable to shoot EMP bursts.

DRONE COUNTER

  • Added on-screen counter for Defenders that tallies number of regular drones destroyed by Defenders or captured by Mozzie during the round.
  • The following actions do not count towards the Drone Counter:
    • Defenders destroy a special drone (i.e. Twitch, Flores)
    • Attackers destroy a drone
    • A drone is disabled

Population targeted by this change: Casual, Top Ranked and Pros.

Back when we tested Gameplay After Death, we noticed that many Defenders felt overwhelmed towards the end of matches when faced with multiple drones seeking them out. This feeling isn’t exclusive to that feature, though, so we used this as an opportunity to make a quality of life change.

Say hello to the Drone Counter: an on-screen counter for Defenders that helps track the number of drones they’ve destroyed. Put simply, we want to make it easier for Defenders to track this information and make educated decisions about how much intel their opponents may have left. Not only that, but we feel having this information more readily available helps to emphasize the importance of tracking and eliminating Attacker intel and drones. We also feel this will benefit solo players and those still learning the ropes, as it adds another layer of non-verbal communication to teams.

Arguably the most important note here is that this is not intended to reveal any extra intel to Defenders – it’s simply meant to streamline the mental counting that was already occurring in many cases. In addition to the special cases listed above that aren’t tracked by the counter, it’s also important to remember that this won’t affect or decrease the total number of drones owned by Attackers. They will retain all the same intel capabilities they previously had, while reducing some of the mental strain Defenders had to contend with.

PLAYER COLORS

  • Teams are now referred to in-game as “Your Team” and “Opponents” instead of Blue Team and Orange Team.
  • Default team colors changed to blue (Your Team) and red (Opponents).
    • Team colors can be changed between blue, red, or orange.

We want to make Siege as comfortable of an experience as possible, so sometimes that means tweaking long-standing aspects of the game. Enter team colors. Moving forward, we will be streamlining how color is used to differentiate each team. Now, instead of players being part of the blue or orange team, players will always see themselves represented by one color (blue with the default settings) and their opponents by another (red by default).

Some colors are simply easier to see than others, so while we will be setting a new default for team colors, we want to ensure players have the option to change how this is presented to them personally to match their own experience. We will be launching this change with three available colors (blue, orange, red), but we are working on making a wider spectrum of options available, all while ensuring that they are presented equally in-game with regards to brightness, intensity, and distance.

This is a topic that we will be continuing to build upon, expanding how colors are presented in-game to better convey crucial info to players in the heat of a match, while fortifying gadget clarity. From recolored C4 to Claymore lasers, stay tuned for more information in the coming seasons!

OPERATOR BALANCING

A NOTE ON GOYO

As many of you have already noticed, we’re approaching the end of the year and there’s a certain Operator rework that’s still conspicuously absent. We hate to make you wait a little bit longer, but Goyo’s rework still needs some more time. Originally announced during the Year 6 reveal, our team had – and still has – plans for Goyo, but as the year has progressed, other Operators have shifted and changed, and we discovered that the change we have in mind requires us to completely redo his animations, it has taken more time than originally anticipated.

We know this is something a lot of you are waiting for and it’s still in the works on our end, so we just ask for a little more time to make sure we release a rework all you past, present and future Goyo mains can be happy about!

FINKA

  • Can now activate Adrenal Surge while in DBNO.
  • Removed Recoil Boost granted by Adrenal Surge.
  • Increased cooldown to 20s (from 10s).

Population targeted by this change: Casual, Top Ranked and Pros.

Finka’s presence continues to be lower than we’d like. To help further define Finka’s gameplay identity, increase her utility, and make her more than just a decentralized healer, we’ve tweaked the way her Adrenal Surge functions.

A healer is only truly effective when they’re in the game, so we gave Finka a boost to her survivability. Whereas she used to only be able to raise others from a DBNO state when activating her Surge, she can now raise herself as well. This should help to ensure Finka stays in matches longer and brings longer-term healing value to her squad, reviving more players in the process. Why the increase in cooldown, you might ask? Ever since the change from over-heal to actual heal, it’s become clear that her healing capacity is high and quick, managing to heal 60hp in 30 seconds for every Attacker. Combined with a self-revive, we felt this would be tuned too high and had to be tempered in some way.

We’ve also heard the feedback from our pro scene that Adrenal Surge’s recoil burst is often more of a hindrance than a benefit since it alters the recoil patterns you’ve learnt, throwing off muscle memory. We’ve made the decision to remove this effect. While we understand this will be a small nerf for players who have not developed this same muscle memory, the added benefits coming to Finka with this update should more than offset this.

VALKYRIE + OUTDOOR CAMERAS

  • Cameras thrown outside will lose connection after 10 seconds of activity.
    • This change also applies to Bulletproof Cameras and Maestro’s Evil Eye.
  • Cameras are accessible while in the air, but video feed does not begin until they attach to a surface.
    • This change also applies to Zero’s ARGUS cameras.

Population targeted by this change: Casual, Top Ranked and Pros.

On the opposite side of Finka, Valk has a very high presence and ban rate on the Balancing Matrix. Not only is she like kyptonite to new players who spend too much time planning their attack while outside in certain maps, but many experienced players have voiced frustration at the overwhelming intel value her cameras bring when deployed outside at the beginning of a match. To address this, we’ve changed the way cameras function while outside of buildings.

Now, Valkyrie and other Defenders’ cameras will lose connection shortly after being placed outside of buildings. With this change, they will not activate until they are placed on a surface, but once active, will only have signal for 10 seconds. This is intended to limit the oppressive nature of outside cameras – especially in the case of Valk – in the beginning moments of each round. While her cameras are still expected to bring a great amount of value inside buildings, this should help to limit the exceptional utility they previously offered, giving Attackers a chance to compose themselves and aligning the expectations of how she functions with that of the other Defenders (i.e. within the building that must be defended).

We know this change to outside cameras is a big one, so while we feel 10 seconds is fair, we’re going to be keeping a close eye on how it performs on the Test Server. We’re open to making adjustments in time for Y6S4’s launch, so get out there, give this a try, and let us know what you think!

ECHO + MOZZIE

  • Increased drones’ time outside the building to 10s (from 3s).

Population targeted by this change: Casual, Top Ranked and Pros.

To go along with the above change to Valkyrie and the use of Defender cameras outside, we also wanted to make sure the impact on their resident drone experts is consistent with it. While we’re limiting the passive monitoring of outside spaces through cameras, there will now be more opportunities for active droning outside of buildings with a change that’ll affect Echo and Mozzie.

Now, instead of being limited to 3 seconds of droning outside of the main building, they’ll have 10 seconds to gain as much intel as they can. This is expected to shift focus to a slightly more active beginning-of-round flow for Defenders while also giving these two operators more early-round utility. It will also help to establish a continuity between camera-using gadgets that are used outside by Defenders.

MAESTRO

  • Evil Eye cameras can be rotated by teammates if Maestro is not actively using the camera.
    • If hacked, Dokkaebi and Attackers will also have access to camera rotation.

Population targeted by this change: Casual, Top Ranked and Pros.

Adding to the other camera changes – specifically around camera rotation – included in this update, we also wanted to provide some clarity on how this will affect Maestro. While he was previously able to rotate his Evil Eyes himself, his teammates will also be able to rotate them, provided he is not actively on cams. This is intended to bring them up to speed with the rotation rules of other camera gadgets like with Echo, Zero and Valkyrie. It’s also important to note that if Maestro is eliminated in a round, he will still be able to rotate his Evil Eyes, but will be unable to shoot with them.

We want to make sure when a player deploys an Operator camera, there’s a general consistency to how they function, so that meant removing one of the exceptions that limited Maestro’s Evil Eyes.

WEAPON + ATTACHMENT BALANCING

ANGLED GRIP

  • The increase to ADS speed provided by the Angled Grip is now 20% less than it was before.
    Population targeted by this change: Top Ranked and Pros.

Before we get into the description, we want to acknowledge that we know this isn’t going to be a popular change. We all love the angled grip, but that’s part of the problem – it’s so effective that it has become an essential attachment in just about every case. We know that by changing this, it will have an effect that’s felt throughout the game, so we ask you to please jump on the Test Server, give it a try, and then come to us with your thoughts. In theory, it’s a big change – we know that – but we truly want to understand how you feel with it in practice. This is something we can and do plan to continue tweaking, so we’re extremely open to hearing your thoughts, as always.

With this change, equipped weapons will take slightly more time to transition from hip fire to ADS than they previously did. We still feel that the benefit it brings is strong, but not so strong that it instantly trumps all other attachment options. Our intention with this change is to encourage a greater degree of experimentation with weapon loadouts, reducing the angled grip’s pick rate from its current place atop the roster.

As mentioned above, this isn’t the end of what we have planned for attachment tweaks. We are working on ways to change the game HUD to better and more clearly display key values of weapons, like the ADS time. Once this has been implemented, we then plan to work on balancing those values (including ADS) on a per weapon basis – not just by weapon classes – to further build out the unique identity of each weapon. This is a change planned for quite a ways in the future, but we wanted to make sure we shared our long term plans here to give you a snapshot of how this will continue to evolve.

GAMEPAD RECOIL COMFORT

  • Reduced lateral recoil on:
    • Jäger – 416-C
    • Ash – RC4
    • Vigil – K1A
    • Zofia – M762
    • Ace – AK-12
    • Warden, Echo, Hibana – SMG-12
    • Mozzie, Aruni – P-10 Roni
    • Alibi – Mx-4 Storm

Population targeted by this change: Casual and Top Ranked.

R6S Y6S4 Designer's Notes Recoils V2

Please note that recoil simulations shown are representative of recoil on console without attachments.

We’re going to keep this one nice and simple. We know that certain weapons are difficult to handle on console with a controller- specifically with some of our recent recoil changes. In particular, strong lateral recoil can be much more difficult to adjust for when compared against a mouse. For that reason, we wanted to rethink some of the weapons which have received recoil increases in recent seasons and give them a pass that makes their recoil more manageable for controller users.

We’ve included before and after images above to showcase how these changes will affect these weapons and look forward to hearing your thoughts once you get your hands on them.

Siege’s Y6S4 update will be deployed on the PC Test Server sometime today. So, make sure to hop in and try out all the new changes for yourselves.

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