Last week Ubisoft announced that it will implementing some visual changes in Rainbow Six Siege to ready the game for an Asian release. While fan reaction to the news at the time was negative, it was taken a bit further over the weekend as PC players have begun review-bombing Rainbow Six Siege on Steam.
Recent reviews on Steam have all been largely negative and most of them cite similar grievances, namely the planned aesthetic changes for a global version of Rainbow Six Siege which will bring the series to Asian markets, most notably China. To meet with Chinese legal standards, which are strict enough to add changes to games like PUBG, Ubisoft is removing visuals of violence, sex, gambling, and skulls. A lot of the reactions are calling the move censorship.
The subreddit for Rainbow Six Siege is equally negative over the recent news of the change, with a lot of recent comments talking about how players plan on uninstalling Rainbow Six Siege. "I'm out, uninstalled today, after literally two years and eleven months. Fuck your dumb decision, Ubisoft," writes u/alterexego.
However, Ubisoft maintains that both content and playerbase will still be region-locked after the move for a global version. In an update by one Ubisoft community manager in the subreddit they said, "While our goal is to maintain as close a parallel as possible between builds, we will also not compromise the core integrity of the gameplay and mechanics as they exist currently." That means there will be branched builds that are region-locked.
Presumably this is to navigate global gambling laws which have different opinions on things like cosmetics and loot boxes, which Rainbow Six Siege features. Player worry over cheating once region-lock goes down appear to be unfounded as of right now. However, fury continues over the planned visual changes which appear to be one element that will be pushed to the global build.
overall, expanding Rainbow Six Siege's audience globally will help the game, which has been growing steadily since its rather slow launch in 2015. Now Rainbow Six Siege posts strong growth annually and is touted by Ubisoft as a game as service success story.
We will see how Rainbow Six Siege handles its transition to a global stage and whether something like a minor visual overhaul will hurt the playerbase.
Thanks, PC Gamer.