Tom Clancy’s Rainbow 6: Patriots is the cancelled sequel to Tom Clancy Rainbow Six Vegas 2. It was being developed by Ubisoft Montreal with additional development support by Ubisoft Toronto and Ubisoft Red Storm. It was going to be released for the PC, PS3, Xbox 360 originally, then was planned to be released for the PS4 and Xbox One.
The game was a first person tactical shooter with squad mechanics and third person cover based mechanics. It was first planned to be released in 2013, before being delayed to 2014, and then finally being cancelled to be replaced by Rainbow Six: Siege. On the game’s themes of modern “eco-terrorism”, creative director David Sears said:
Terrorism has evolved, and so has Rainbow 6. In Rainbow 6 Patriots, all the team play, tactics, and realism that fans of the series love have been coupled with an exciting new narrative direction. This adds an unprecedented level of humanity that will make Rainbow 6 Patriots an extremely tense and immersive experience.
Rainbow 6: Patriots would have tackled a domestic terrorist group called “The True Patriots”, a populist militia group who have taken it upon themselves to act as judge, jury, and executioner on behalf of the ‘victims of Wall Street corruption’. Some of them were intended to be former military servicemen and women, who returned home from fighting abroad to discover that their country had abandoned them. The leader of The True Patriots was a man named Jonah Treadway, an influential figurehead planning to cause havoc across America; targeting New York in particular.
As we can read on Kotaku:
The most interesting-looking thing about the story is how it will be presented from a variety of perspectives. 80% of the campaign will be played from the perspective of the counterterrorism team Rainbow 6 (Who have changed their name from “Rainbow Six,” as it was in past games). The remaining 20% will be played from the perspective of other characters, from innocent civilians to first responders like ambulance drivers and firefighters, to even the terrorists themselves.
New mechanics that were be added to Patriots included faster rappelling maneuvers that allowed the player to sprint down the line whilst firing their primary weapon. Another enhancement to gameplay was the removal of the “snake cam”, which was replaced with a system dubbed “Observe, Plan, Act”. OPA, combined with improved A.I. allowed the player to plan detailed breach orders and enact them as a trained counterterrorism unit would.
Enemy AI in Patriots had been subject to a complete overhaul. The enemies for example were tougher to kill; according to Ubisoft the average lifespan of enemies in previous games had a lifespan of about four seconds, in Patriots that was closer to 40 seconds. Also, enemies would act as realistic as possible. Some enemies would trip and fall when under heavy fire, or drop a magazine while reloading their weapon.
Multiplayer would have had a mechanic where both teams used a virtually generated map called the sandtable to study the map to plan out tactics and enact them. The sandtable made it possible to assign various routes, positions, and tactics to button shortcuts that can then be called up on the fly during an actual match. After planning tactics in the sandtable, players enter a matchmaking lobby, which continues the focus on immersion by looking like the belly of a jump-jet (VTOL). As each player enters the “lobby,” they’ll have a seat across from the other players and wait to be deployed within a map via fast roping in from the said VTOL.
As we can read on Wikipedia:
After finding “reason to believe that someone may leak [their] preliminary target gameplay footage“, Ubisoft chose to prematurely announce the game through a trailer on November 4, 2011. It was stressed that the trailer showed a pre-rendered concept created in 2010 of what a level in the final game might appear like, rather than footage of any current game build.
Development was troubled when Ubisoft Montreal has removed Creative Director David Sears, Narrative Director Richard Rouse III, Lead Designer Philippe Therien, and Animation Director Brent George as part of a team restructuring. As we can read on GameInformer Ubisoft Montreal CEO Yannis Mallat said that in spite of the restructuring, the vision that creative director David Sears created was intact.
David Sears said he wasn’t fired from Ubisoft, as he explains:
“To paraphrase Mark Twain, I’m not dead, and Rainbow is still very much alive,” Sears said. “I’ve watched the forum comments, and one of the things that’s really important for everyone to understand is senior management and the editorial group challenged me to create something plausible, relevant, and that touches on the current fears of the U.S. citizens to the point that I was almost surprised myself we were taking these creative risks. They are still behind it. I spent time working on it because I love it, but there comes a point where you give the vision to everybody and they embrace it and start telling me what the vision is now.”
Another problem with development of Patriots was the release of the eighth generation consoles (PS4, Xbox One), E3 2013, Ubisoft confirmed that the game remained in development, but would now be produced for eighth generation consoles.
As Ubisoft’s North American bossman Laurent Detoc explained:
“We had a core team. They had a good vision. They got started, and then the game wasn’t working. So [they had] to start again. There’s an editorial group in Ubisoft, a big group, very influential. If the game is not good enough, they say it’s not good enough. Most of the time, the team will say, ‘yeah, I know.’ But sometimes they want to continue in a direction where you say, ‘no, it’s not going to work. Rainbow had to be remade. Now they’re going to have the benefit of the new consoles, if and when it comes out. It’s one of those examples where you try, it doesn’t work, you try again. If it doesn’t work, we’re not going to bring it to you.”
In June 2014, it was announced that Rainbow Six: Patriots was officially cancelled and Ubisoft decided to restart development with Siege.
Article by Matt Redmond