Ubisoft has announced that the first free update from Rainbow Six Siege Year 2 is now available for Xbox One, PS4 and PC. Year 2 pass holders can download the Operation Velvet Shell update from today, but non-season pass holders will have to wait until February 14th before they can unlock them using the in-game ‘Renown’ currency or with R6 credits.
Operation Velvet Shell contains two new Spanish operators from a counter terrorist unit as well as four signature weapon skins. Players will be tasked with trying to regain control of the Ibiza coastline using each character’s unique tactics abilities.
For example, the first operator, Mira, can create Black Mirrors, which are indestructible horizontal one-way windows that can be punched into barricades or destructible walls. Meanwhile, Jackal has a special headset that can track enemy footprints, with more recent footprints appearing hotter onscreen.
The Year 2 pack will also see the introduction of a new dynamic navigation interface, which groups challenges, news and boosters all in the same place.
Rainbow Six Siege originally came out in December 2015. It wasn’t a huge success at launch, but it’s since gone on to accumulate quite the player base, with Ubisoft saying it now has 10m registered players. In recent months, it’s also been a near-constant presence in the UK games charts, too, charting in 11th in GfK’s Budget Price category last week.
MCV spoke to Ubisoft’s VP of live operations Anne Blondel at length about its live games strategy at the end of last year, where she explained how Ubisoft was planning to keep players engaged with their games long after they launch on shop shelves.
"If we want to be there for the long-run with gamers, this is what we have to do: provide them with a great game and then content all the way," Blondel said. "When I say content, it’s not about DLC only, it’s about events, it’s about patches, it’s about updates, it’s about fixes… when we say we are here to stay with players, we mean it and we show it that way."