There’s a lot of new stuff and some massive system overhauls arriving with the Rainbow Six Siege Solar Raid update. And while it may not feature the most exciting new operator, the quality of life changes and the arrival of Ranked 2.0 could see a resurgence of interest in the long-serving multiplayer game.
Join us as we run through all of the key changes, including ranked overhauls, a new operator and map, changes to operator speed ratings, new elite skins, drone customisation, crossplay, a battle pass overhaul, and much more.
Operation Solar Raid release date
The Rainbow Six Siege Operation Solar Raid release date is December 6, 2022. As usual, there will be a test server period of a couple of weeks preceding this.
New operator: Solis
The new Rainbow Six Siege operator is Solis. She’s a two-speed, two-armour defender with a gadget that allows her to spot attacker gadgets through walls. This gadget works on a cooldown and when you’re using it you can’t shoot or perform other actions.
Solis can pick between the P90 and ITA 12L for her primary and has the SMG-11 as a secondary. Her secondary gadget choice is between Impact Grenades and the Bulletproof Camera.
When Solis activates her gadget only she can see enemy gadgets, but if you hold the F key on a specific gadget you can scan it so it’s marked for the rest of your team, too.
New map: Nighthaven Labs
The new map for Operation Solar Raid is Nighthaven Labs and it will come to all playlists. This map is set on a remote tropical island and is where the Nighthaven faction does all of its research and development. The external areas are brightly lit and sunny, while inside you’ll find ultra-modern fabrications and very clean lines of sight.
There is one bomb site in the small basement area, two bomb sites on the ground floor, and one on the first floor. The basement is described as small and compact, with a few external entry points, while the standout feature of the first floor is a catwalk that surrounds the ground floor warehouse area. There’s a total of five staircases connecting the three floors, plus plenty of external entry points, so expect a good navigational flow.
The new map, and indeed all new maps going forward, will be unbannable during its debut season.
Ranked 2.0 is finally arriving in Y7S4. The overhaul scraps much of the traditional components of the current ranked system like placement matches and MMR locks that prevent you from queuing with friends. In the new system, every player starts at the lowest rank – Copper V – and grinds their way to the top by playing matches.
Your rank changes by gaining or losing ranked points, and each division requires 100 Ranked Points to progress. MMR is now defined as ‘skill’ and while it doesn’t determine your placement, it will still affect how quickly you gain and lose Ranked Points. Skill is a hidden value across all playlists, and carries over to new seasons.
There are now eight ranks you can earn, and each one – with the exception of Champion – has five divisions within it. For every new division you reach, you’ll unlock an additional reward that’s granted at the end of the season. These could include charms, operator backgrounds, alpha packs, or even skins.
While the reputation system has been in the game for some weeks, it’s been hidden from view. With Operation Solar Raid, the system is entering beta and there are a number of new features to watch out for in the front end.
Now, you can find your reputation standing in-game. There are five reputation standings, which fall into three categories. From lowest to highest, they go Dishonorable, Disruptive, Respectable, Esteemed, and Exemplary. The first two fall into the negative category, Respectable is neutral, and Esteemed and Exemplary are Positive.
While there are some penalties in place right now, the full list of penalties and rewards based on your standing is set to arrive in Year 8.
Crossplay and cross-progression
PC players can finally play with Luna players… yeah. Crossplay and cross-progression are arriving with Solar Raid, but the impact is very limited for the PC playerbase who can play with Luna players.
The impact is far greater for console players, who can finally play with friends across Sony and Microsoft consoles. There is an opt-out feature in the game’s settings menu if you don’t want to be put into lobbies with other consoles, but it should drastically reduce queue times. This includes older-gen consoles, so Xbox One and Series S and X players can queue with PS4, PS4 Pro, and PS5 players.
Cross-progression also means that linked accounts will now have a total pool of Renown and R6 Credits.
New battle pass
Much like the new Modern Warfare 2 and Warzone 2 battle pass, Rainbow Six Siege’s Solar Raid battle pass will let players pick their own path to progress through, so if you want to get all of the cosmetics for your favourite operator first then you won’t have to grind out the complete pass.
The new system rewards you with a Battle Token for every tier you complete, and you can spend that token on the tile of your choosing. It looks like you’ll still have to follow some set paths, but there’s a bit more freedom here.
Premium pass owners still get all of the exclusive benefits they did before, including store discounts, early access to new operators, and exclusive pass rewards.
This one has been soft-launched to the PC playerbase already, but it looks like Siege is finally getting a new anti-cheat initiative called QB. There are no details on how the system works or if it is even completely active, but it’s something.
Iana 2B elite skin
It was leaked ages ago, but the Iana 2B elite skin is coming to Rainbow Six Siege Operation Solar Raid. There will be an additional elite skin release during this season, but it’s not known what that will be yet.
Operator speed changes
ADS movement speeds are about to be equalised for every operator in the game, so if you’re aiming down sights as Ash you’ll move around as fast as Rook. This change is intended to make gunfights more predictable and lessen the advantage three-speed operators have in combat. This does not affect any other movement speeds.
Alongside this tweak, Dokkaebi and Sens will change to three-speed operators while Osa will become a one-speed.
Drone skins are ready and will start rolling out gradually over the coming months. The first drone skin will be in the new battle pass and is a green skin themed around the new Ghosts faction, however, more skins will arrive in the store and in seasonal events.
And there you have it, every major change coming to Rainbow Six Siege Operation Solar Raid. If you’re new to the game check out our list of the best Rainbow Six Siege operators to figure out which characters to unlock first.