Rainbow Six Siege’s Operation Steel Wave is live

The operation brings two new characters, a reworked map, and a new gadget.

Image via Ubisoft

Rainbow Six Siege‘s Operation Steel Wave has entered the live servers after a long stint on the Test Server. Players from all platforms can finally use Ace and Melusi, explore the reworked version of House, and trick enemies into stepping into the new gadget, the Proximity Alarm.

But that’s not all that’s new. Steel Wave also brought several balance changes to fix some mistakes and to fit the new gadget into some of the operators’ loadouts and made hefty adjustments to the ACS12 shotgun. It’s a long update, but here’s what’s coming with it.

New Operators: Ace and Melusi

It wouldn’t be a new Siege operation if there weren’t any new faces—and Steel Wave brought in a new character for each side.

Image via Ubisoft

Ace is the latest hard breacher in Siege alongside Thermite and Hibana. The two-speed, two-armor operator uses the S.E.L.M.A. hydraulic charges to cut holes through even the thickest of walls—as long as its within the range of a toss. It’s a mix of Thermite’s Exothermic Charges and Hibana’s X-KAIROS, with a unique mechanic that can provide a change of pace in gameplay.

The Selma has three sequential explosions that will each take out a section of a surface. If the defenders allow the gadget to detonate fully, it will leave an operator-sized hole that the attackers can burst through. If someone stops the Selma, however, it will only cut down a part of the surface, like an X-KAIROS pellet. It’s not enough to breach through, but it can provide lines of sight for both teams. Its pattern is also predictable, which lends defenders a hand in intercepting it and using it to their advantage.

Ace is armed with the AK-12 or the M1014, can choose between Smoke Grenades or Breach Charges, and has a P9 as a sidearm. Smoke Grenades offer more utility for breaching, but an extra pair of Breach Charges gives him an extra punch to manipulate the map without expending his unique gadgets.

Image via Ubisoft

Melusi, on the other hand, is a defender that attackers are going to hate. Her gadget is the Banshee Sonic Defense, a device that sticks to walls and lets out a loud sound cue when an attacker passes through it. Any enemies within its range suffer a slow effect that grows in intensity the closer they are to the center. Defenders can also take advantage of the loud sound cues to pinpoint the locations of their adversaries.

Melusi is a three-speed, one-armor operator, which offers flexibility in her playstyle. She can roam and fortify far away sites, using the Banshee as a mixture of an alarm and a barbed wire to delay attackers, or she can stay close to the site and use her unique gadgets to guard the objective and its surrounding areas.

Her loadout contains Legion’s T-5 SMG or a Super 90 Shotgun, alongside Impact Grenades. Although Melusi can use a deployable shield, players shouldn’t get too used to it. Ubisoft exchanged the shield for C4 explosives to “prevent putting extra pressure on attackers and specific attacker utility.” The change should reach the live servers alongside the first patch of the season.

Reworked House

Image via Ubisoft

Ubisoft gave House an extreme makeover as part of its plans for Steel Wave. Players will notice that the house is cleaner and refurbished, but don’t let that fool you—the rework changed both the form and the functioning of the map.

The new House contains a new section on the south side, according to Ubisoft. The expansion has two rooms on each floor, connected by a stairwell, as well as two new bombsites in TV Room and Music Room.

Ubisoft also fixed old parts of the map with the rework. Players can only destroy one of the garage doors and there’s a new barricade that will “give a different access option, while still making a Defuser plant harder,” according to the patch notes. The former Workshop evolved into a Girl’s Room, complete with a walk-in closet.

The rework also enhanced the destruction of most floors, “so vertical play will be a lot more viable,” and the Living & Training Bombsite was removed to give more space to Master Bedroom and Boy’s Room.

New Gadget: Proximity Alarm

Image via Ubisoft

Steel Wave is bringing in a new intel-gathering tool. The Proximity Alarm will create a distinctive sound cue to alert defenders whenever an enemy enters its radius. The throwable gadget will stick to surfaces, so defenders have to be smart about its placement to conceal it from attackers.

The Proximity Alarm will replace the secondary gadget of a handful of operators. Castle, Caveira, Goyo, Rook, Wamai, Tachanka, Mira, Oryx, and Recruit will be able to carry the new device into battle.