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Rainbow Six Extraction: Release date, gameplay, trailer, and more

Rainbow Six Extraction Release Date
(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Rainbow Six Extraction is an upcoming first-person shooter where players are tasked to halt an encroaching alien threat. It was initially revealed with a cinematic trailer at Ubisoft’s E3 2019 conference under the name Rainbow Six Quarantine. 

Due to the title “Quarantine” being criticized as tasteless during the COVID-19 pandemic, Ubisoft revealed the real title would instead be Extraction. And at Ubisoft’s E3 2021 event, we received new cinematic footage and our first look at gameplay. Here’s everything you need to know about Rainbow Six Extraction, including details on its release date, gameplay, trailer and more.

Rainbow Six Extraction release date

Rainbow Six Extraction is set to launch this month on January 20 on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PC, Stadia and Luna. For PC users, it will be available on both Ubisoft Connect and Epic Games Store. There has been no mention of whether it’s coming to Steam. It will also be available on Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass on launch day, making it worth trying if you weren't willing to spend the money to buy it.

Rainbow Six Extraction Release Date

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Rainbow Six Extraction will also be available on Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass on launch day, making it worth trying if you weren't willing to spend the money to buy it.

Rainbow Six Extraction gameplay 

Rainbow Six Extraction received a gameplay deep dive during Ubisoft’s E3 2021 conference. In this trailer, we learned about how the game works. It boasts Rainbow Six Siege’s gameplay foundation, and even features some of the operators from it. It’s apparently a spin-off to Siege, one in which dangerous alien lifeforms have come to Earth seeking to take over. 

Players will be approaching every encounter tactically by setting traps, scouting out a situation before engaging, and attempting to coordinate with other players to survive. Extraction will also feature a unique mechanic where a player’s operator can be taken out of commission if they’re captured by the alien threat. The player will then have to engage in a mission to retrieve that operator. It’s currently unclear what might happen if a player loses all of their operators — but we assume they will lose significant progress. 

Rainbow Six Extraction trailers 

Rainbow Six Extraction’s reveal trailer was shown during Ubisoft’s E3 2019. This was when it was still being referred to as Rainbow Six Quarantine, and the trailer possessed a more hopeless tone than what we saw from it during this past E3. This trailer showed the perspective of a downed operative in a claustrophobic, dim environment as the sound of some alien monstrosity could be heard in the distance. 

In the most recent cinematic trailer shown at Ubisoft’s E3 2021, Rainbow Six Extraction seems to have shifted tone. The game appears to be less focused on the terror of the alien threat, and moreso about the tactical nature of removing its presence on Earth.  

This trailer is action-packed and full of classic Ubisoft cheese, which will disappoint some fans after the darker execution seen in the original teaser three years ago. 

Rainbow Six Extraction operators 

Rainbow Six Extraction will have 18 operators to choose from. Nine have been revealed so far, and each has a unique ability. Operators aren’t stuck with one weapon as one might expect. By progressing, players can unlock additional firepower, although it’s unclear if an operator’s main ability can also change.

Rainbow Six Extraction Release Date

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Operator Ela can throw proximity mines, while Sledge can use a giant hammer to crush foes (or break walls). Alibi can deploy decoys to distract enemies; Lion has the ability to detect moving enemies within a certain range; and Finka can buff teammates and bring them back up once downed. Hibana can shoot denatable sticky explosives, Pulse can detect important objects or creatures, and Doc can fire a “health pistol” that can heal or revive teammates. And finally, Vigil can make himself undetectable for a short time. There are nine more unrevealed operators, and each will have their own unique ability.

Rainbow Six Extraction outlook 

Rainbow Six was known for its tactical approach to campaign-based military shooters, but Siege shifted this expectation by stripping the campaign away and focusing exclusively on player vs. player systems. Extraction intends to return to a world where players are working together to battle some sort of threat, but it’s now against aliens instead of terrorists.

We can only hope that Extraction keeps the tactical and contemplative spirit of the series intact with this new approach. There should be plenty of unique ways to tackle each situation, and the consequences of failure need to be felt. Rainbow Six Extraction should feel more intense than your average co-op shooter.