First off, let’s most of us just agree that this game does muddy the whole idea of the “Rainbow Six” team. Some will say, “but they’re trying something new!”, but most will agree that the whole military tactical scene does not exist in Rainbow Six Extraction, and I agree with those that feel Tom Clancy is likely turning in his grave in sync with when I turn this game on. However, what you DON’T know is that the novel Rainbow Six is actually about said military team’s operations against radical environmentalism. It just so happens the villain in culling the human race through drastic environmental changes this time is an organism from space.
I HIGHLY recommend you play this either solo or with friends…
Let’s start with the good: they’ve used the basis from Siege to create the core gameplay foundations of Extraction and it works great. This means shooting is fast, visceral, and tight. The gunplay is not an issue and is, in some ways, better than most other FPS games because of the rewarding balance between offensive and defensive plays. However, fair warning: playing this game with randoms is severely painful. That’s because progression can be lost. Yes, if you die, you lose progression, and if you fail to recover your operator, you don’t fully recover. Thus, I HIGHLY recommend you play this either solo or with friends, hence me dragging Kendra (@DamFoxy) along for the ride. Since I don’t have many friends, I mostly played solo because, well, people are idiots and you’ll be rescuing operators of randoms probably 90% of the time. As you do progress, you essentially level up your operator which gives them various boosts and benefits. And as you progress, things get more and more hairy. This is until you realize there is a simple problem, here: everything boils down to shooting. All the tactics, abilities, and objectives just buy you precious moments, but those are fleeting because at the end of the day, it’s a bullet parade. It’s Call of Duty zombies, except it handles better, but has a more repetitive gameplay loop and none of the interesting complexity. It’s action packed, but it quickly devolves into shooting, more shooting, shoot-to-kill, rinse, repeat. And then there’s this even mega hard Maelstrom mode with nine objectives, and it’s just an NFT. That’s a No Fucking Thanks.
…play this game through Game Pass if possible.
I put the time in, and after over 30 hours with it, I’ve got a firm grasp on what the game offers. And it isn’t much. With just four maps at three zones each, you’ll have gone through each zone ad nauseum and have seen most of what it offers in a mere 7-8 hours. The different operators and unlocks don’t provide enough variety simply because, as aforementioned, you mostly shoot your way through situations. They will inevitably be adding more content, but that’s because they have to. As it stands right now, even the reduced price to $40 is still $10 above where it should be, and I can only recommend that you play this game through Game Pass if possible.
The lighting engine is rather good and sets a proper mood…
Playing this on PC has its benefits, but that does not mask the truth: it is clearly a last gen engine. However, maxed out on PC does offer and show one genuine upgrade: lighting. The lighting engine is rather good and sets a proper mood in most levels. So while it may look last gen, the lighting engine sets a properly good aesthetic. Eat your heart out, Siege players, this game actually uses lights. This also coincides with the ambient audio, and I can wholly recommend playing it solo with a good headset just to listen to how eerie and surprisingly haunting the levels are. This goes hand-in-hand with a surprising amount of codex entries about the atrocities you’re fighting, and while they do have their tropey enemy classes, I can’t deny that reading into the Chimera was oddly engaging. The game makes it a point that this is a research phase in the fight, and it caused me to read all of the codex entries like I was learning about them, too.
…basically a very poor imitation of CoD zombies.
This is a rough one because there IS fun to be had, but only with your friends, and only for a short while. The game suffers major repetition, loss of tactical meaning under most extreme combat situations, rising difficulty levels to no real effect except pain, barebones content that needs a severe helping of DLC, and runs clearly on a last gen engine. It’s fortunate, then, that they’ve imported the tight, high recoil gunplay from Siege, and added working lighting to the engine because without my space nerd interest in aliens, this is basically a very poor imitation of CoD zombies.