A Twitter post today revealed the unannounced Smoke Elite Skin for Rainbow 6: Siege and fans aren’t happy. The leak comes just days after the reveal of the Lesion Elite, which was received with mostly high praise.
The post shows Smoke’s new Elite Skin and victory animation, while another YouTube video showcases the Elite weapon and gadget skins. Smoke appears in casual streetwear with an overarching theme of red and black.
The operator’s gas mask is also different—trading black lenses for transparent ones that show the operators eyes. Smoke’s hair flows freely, and not in an attractive manner. This Elite skin is seemingly a low point as it seems like a large departure from the gruff and sometimes menacing appearance of Smoke.
Fans are not happy with the Elite design and it shows in the replies to the original tweet. Siege has always faced a fair amount of backlash when it comes to the Elite Skins. Since Elites can’t be purchased with Renown—which can be earned in-game—and are only available through purchase of R6 Credits, fans can easily choose not to pick up the skin. But Smoke has gone without an Elite since the launch of Siege in Dec. 2015, and his Elite has been highly requested, so it’s understandable why some fans are upset.
The backlash is similar to the response Ubisoft faced with the IQ Elite Skin in April 2018. Both Elites seem to negate the feel of Siege by foregoing any tactical characteristics. Even with Lesion’s upcoming Elite, there are some tactical traits, but for IQ and Smoke, it seems the devs opted out of including any tactical realism. It remains to be seen if this leak is legitimate, but it is rather convincing.