Screenshot: In-game footage of terrorist hunt mode in Rainbow Six: Siege
Written By: Elijah Moon Blackwell
Literally the worst sight to see while in-game.
Recently I picked up Rainbow Six: Siege to play with some friends. I haven’t played an online shooter in a long time. I was excited to get back into some multiplayer shooter action that wasn’t coop or killing my friends over and over again.
It was time to join the online arena and battle players from across the world. Then I was quickly reminded why I ran to classic video games.
I don’t want to sound like the “back in my day” type old man gamer that we are all sick of hearing. You know this type right? “Games were better in my day” or “I was a gamer before you so I know more” and all the other statements that can drive you insane? I’m not going to go that route. Instead, I’m going to explain why public multiplayer and modern day video games make me more angry than anything else.
I realize that multiplayer focused games are not a new concept. However, the rise of multiplayer only video games really kills me.
The difference is that multiplayer focused games still have some singleplayer content. Anytime someone mentions multiplayer, I tend to think Arma or Call of Duty. The thing those games tend to have in common is a lack luster campaign and bot support (though Call of Duty didn’t get bot support till Black Ops).
When the fan base dies there is at least something to return to, something to play when you want to remember a map, weapon or goofy mechanic.
What happens when you try to connect to a multiplayer only game? You will get a server error message and your game is rendered useless. Such a thing happens with MAG on ps3.
Some tell me that games like Day of Defeat let you create a LAN server and explore the maps yourself, but with no bots there is nothing to shoot at and it becomes a game of just wandering around.
Because Arma comes with bot support, mods thrive. The amount of singelplayer mods for Arma 1, 2 and 3 is astounding, making that game’s lifespan an eternity.
So, if you didn’t catch on, the biggest problem with multiplayer only games is that they have an expiration date. Eventually the game will die. A lot of players will argue with me that if a game is good, there will be a cult following and there will still be servers. Let’s put this to the test. Battlefield 3 is one of my favorite multiplayer focused games of all time. What are the servers looking like?
Not one full server. Not one. I captured that screen at 6:45pm.
At least Battlefield 3 has a campaign. However it walks a very thin line of being multiplayer only. Due to no bot support, a few years from now, you may never experience a multiplayer game again.
Earlier I mentioned it being a “rise” in multiplayer only. Using battlefield as an example, let’s look a brief timeline.
Battlefield 2: No campaign, some bot support, in game mod launcher and manager. More bots can be added by editing config files if one does not want to download mods.
Bad Company: A console only battlefield with a fleshed out campaign and (at launch) only 1 game mode for 24 players. No bot support.
Bad Company 2: A PC and console release with a fleshed out campaign and more modes in multiplayer. No bot support.
Vietnam Expansion: Multiplayer only, no bot support.
Battlefield 3: Campaign that unlocked stuff in multiplayer, fleshed out multiplayer, 0 mod support. No bot support.
Battlefield 4: See 3
Hardline: Short campaign with a bad multiplayer, no mod and bot support.
See the the trend?
Battlefield 2 can be revisited in all modes of play and Bad Company has a pretty good campaign that most people remember it for but the later games will come and die and gather dust.
I look to my right at the collection PC games and so many games I see that had large multi players come with packaged bot support or a really good singleplayer campaign and have a variety of mods available on the web.
Just in case you were curious, here is a select few of the titles:
Enemy Territory: Quake Wars
Unreal Tournament III
Operation Flashpoint (aka Arma)
And I could keep going but I think I made my point.
So how does Rainbow Six: Siege bring this issue up? It is practically online only. You have to connect to the online servers to play as everything you do contributes to your online profile such as the in-game currency and leveling.
The 11 singleplayer missions are training missions preparing you for multiplayer. There is no replay ability unless you want to beat it on the hardest difficulty.
Terrorist Hunt solo is probably one of the hardest things to do when first starting out. The difficulty doesn’t change and it will kick your butt up and down the halls of whatever map you are on. What’s worse is there is no AI teammates. 100% on your own.
So a decade from now, assuming Ubisoft doesn’t shut down the servers (without making it offline accessible) you get 11 training stages with solo terrorist hunt. No campaign, no mod support, not bots……yay.
I guess we should enjoy online while we can right? Because we are forced to if we want to enjoy the beautiful looking shooter.
Random Players Suck
Way before CD-ROM Fossil became a thing I flocked to classic games because they tended to last longer. If I wasn’t playing the newest strategy game like Hearts of Iron IV, I played classic shooters when I was in a mood to shoot things.
Why? because when you none of your friends are online or have the same game you do, multiplayer experiences can suck.
After sitting in Matchmaking looking for a Terrorist Hunt group, a guy left right before the match started.
The problem with this is that the game rewards you for playing with a full crew, it also makes the game easier (theoretically) and go by faster.
But this is trivial compared to the bigger issues. The one in particular are players who are trolls.
When I play with my friends, we fill every slot which means we have 0 chances of running into a team killer or some other troll on our side of the match. When I played solo, I ran into more trolls than I can count. Several people were not present at the controller when the match started leaving me with yet another useless teammate.
I don’t mind the children screaming “I —- your mom” or whatever, that can be muted but the above paragraph made me lose my mind.
So if I am feeling some Siege, I got to either put up with the toxic community or play the very few missions available to me. No bots, no mods and no way to take a breather from the madness. At least with Black Ops I could do zombies or play with bots or do the campaign or something.
I imagine some readers will run to the comment section to explain that Rainbow Six: Siege is a “competitive” shooter so of course it isn’t meant for singleplayer (which makes me laugh because counter-strike is “competitive” and has bot/mod support). However I still wish more singleplayer focused shooters, or just include some bot support, existed in recent years. Far Cry, Arma and DOOM are some of the few that are laying around. I don’t count Call of Duty because over the years those campaigns got more and more forgettable.
I’m leaving out hackers and other variables that ruin online experiences but I am sure my point got across. Classic games are timeless and can always be enjoyed due to mod or bot support. Some have both, which is even better. Gone are the days of long campaigns such as the original Medal of Honor series. Gone are the days of plots so good you actually finish the singleplayer while focusing on online play such as the early Halo games. Gone….gone…..gone.
My classics? Are here to stay.