It’s mid-season reinforcements time for Rainbow Six Siege and Ubisoft is ringing in the changes for Operation Chimera. The mid-season reinforcements are used to rebalance Siege after the new Operators have arrived, and there are some major tweaks at play as Ubisoft looks to even the playing field.

First and foremost, Ubisoft has provided us with data on win rates and pick rates that I absolutely had to nerd out on. We get two graphics; both are based on Ranked PC Platinum & Diamond play, plotting pick rate against the win rate delta. The Win Delta is the average win ratio when an Operator is picked minus the average win ratio when an Operator is not picked. So a high win delta means an Operator is involved with more wins than the average, contributing a new positive to a team.

Attacking Operator Stats

Beginning with Attackers, it’s interesting to note that both hard breachers (Thermite & Hibana) contribute to a negative performance delta. Stack both together and throw Thatcher into the mix and, statistically, you’ve got a very weak team on your hands despite their abilities. They’re both undeniably useful but I suspect this is down to hard breachers being picked on rounds where they may not be particularly useful, depending on where Defenders choose to base themselves.

Looking at the most potent Attackers, Finka is at the top of the pile. Her ability provides a temporary health boost to teammates, as well as enhanced aim and increased reload speeds. She’s a bit of a monster and my Operator of choice these days, although she’s massively underpicked despite her quality. The overpicked and overstrength Operators are, unsurprisingly, Lion and Ash. Ash is still at a reasonable win delta while Lion has been identified as an Operator that needs nerfing.

Defending Operator Stats

For Defenders, it’s always worth a chuckle to see Tachanka in his rightful place. If anything I’m surprised his win delta is only -3%, he’s effectively dead weight on a team. Likewise Castle, who’s also in dire need of a buff. The reinforced walls can just be hit through and usually just serve as nice shields for a Fuze, or slow down Defenders trying to tear them down. Of the weaker Defenders, Mira is the most overpicked. I suspect Mira players smashing the gas canister too early are probably to blame for this as in the right hands she’s deadly.

Lion Nerf

As for the upcoming changes to Rainbow Six Siege, the biggest of these is Lion’s nerf. Ubisoft says he’s also at a 100% pick rate in the Pro League, while his win rate delta is +1.5%.

Lion’s Scan ability detects moving players and traces a red outline around them. With the next update, the outline will not show once a player stops moving. This allows players to be detected very briefly but to then stand still and hide.  As well as this, the number of Lion Scans is being reduced from 3 to 2, while the ability cooldown has been increased from 10 to 20 seconds to prevent chain spamming the ability in the closing stages of a round.

Major Operator Changes

Jager - Magpies will no longer destroy Hibana’s X-KAIROS pellets. This is designed to improve Hibana’s pick rate.

Blitz - Shield flash range reduced to 5 metres from 8 metres. Now has 4 charges rather than 5.

Vigil - Cloaking device now depletes in just 12 seconds rather than 30 seconds. It’s now available to re-use after 6 seconds rather than 12 seconds. Vigil is the joint-strongest roamer in Siege, statistically, and this is intended as a slight nerf.

Hibana - Loses Claymore, replaced by Breaching Charge. Hibana is overpicked due to superior weapons compared to Thermite. This change is intended to boost Thermite’s pick rate.

Ying - Lose Smoke Grenades, replaced by Claymore. Ying has too many grenade types and is too powerful in organised groups. However, LMG damage is being increased…

LMG Damage Increased Globally

Ubisoft believes all LMGs (Light Machine Guns) are too weak currently, so damage is being increased significantly across the board. Damage has been increased by as much as 41% depending on the weapon.

I have to say I love all the data Ubisoft provides for Rainbow Six Siege, it can be fascinating for fans to take a look at. What are your thoughts on the changes coming in this week? Any major areas that you think Ubisoft has overlooked?