Rainbow Six fans have been waiting a while for Rainbow Six: Quarantine. Ubisoft teased the co-op tactical zombie shooter during E3 2019, only for it to be delayed by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The planned 2020 release date came and went, but the project is far from abandoned. It now appears that Ubisoft will soon begin testing for Rainbow Six: Quarantine.
Fans who signed up for the closed beta recently began to receive clandestine invites to participate in a technical demo for an unnamed game. While there is no official statement from the developers, it is pretty clear from the text of the email that the game in question is Rainbow Six: Quarantine. The messages inform perspective testers that “you have been selected to participate in a technical test for an upcoming three-player, tactical co-op Tom Clancy experience.” Unless there is a new three-player co-op Ghost Recon no one knows about, it is pretty clear what game the email is describing.
Ubisoft then asks testers to choose between the PC, PS4, and Xbox One. According to the message, the studio will provide further instructions in later emails. Ubisoft also requires testers to sign a non-disclosure agreement before joining. In what may be another added layer of security, Ubisoft is only inviting a fraction of the volunteers to participate in the beta. The company probably does not want any more Quarantine gameplay footage finding its way online.
For anyone who missed the announcement, Rainbow Six: Quarantine is the upcoming zombie-themed spin-off of the popular Rainbow Six: Siege co-op tactical shooter. Specifically, it expands on the extraterrestrial zombie plague from Siege’s “Outbreak” event. The new game will feature many of the same characters from Rainbow Six: Siege, as evidenced by a few familiar faces in the 2019 teaser. Quarantine hopes to set itself apart from other zombie shooters by carrying over Siege’s emphasis on precision shooting, teamwork, and destructible environments. Ubisoft hopes to release the game by the end of September.
One open question, however, is the game’s title. Ubisoft settled on the name Rainbow Six: Quarantine long before the current pandemic. COVID-19 was a significant factor in the game’s delay and is still active across the world. Ubisoft releasing a game called Quarantine during a viral pandemic might be seen as bad taste by some. This matter came up during a quarterly earnings call. Ubisoft executives indicated a desire to change the name before Quarantine’s release later this year.
The name Rainbow Six: Parasite leaked as a possible alternative title. However, while Parasite is, in fact, the project’s codename, Ubisoft has not confirmed it as the final title.
As a landmark gaming franchise, the two Left 4 Dead games laid the groundwork for an entirely new subgenre of the co-op shooter. The defining traits of this subgenre involve hordes of weak enemies supported by a few unique special ones, all controlled by an AI director that manages pacing in real time. The AI director, a major selling point of Left 4 Dead, makes sure that players always feel challenged but never unfairly so.
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