Return To Home Page
January 10, 2004
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3 - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
18/3/2004UbiSoftUbiSoft Shanghai1-8 $99.95

Click To  Enlarge Image
There's plenty of detail.
Tom Clancy is a terrific author. His novels are filled with detail and historical accuracy, and usually tell a pretty impressive story as well. Many of his books have made terrific movies such as Hunt For Red October, Clear and Present Danger, and most recently Sum of all Fears. Several years ago now he started up a development company called Red Storm and unsurprisingly the games had a military slant to them. Indeed it could be argued that the games are among the best on the market. Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six 3 has already proven itself as a PC and XBox title, and now it's heading to the Playstation 2 - with several enhancements.

Click To  Enlarge Image
Inside a prison.
The year is 2007, and the world stands on the brink of a terrifying global conflict. As the United States is caught in an embargo-induced oil crisis, terrorist attacks against American interests - and citizens - escalate. Venezuela, which still supplies the United States with oil, also becomes a target. As unrest grows in America, protests rock the streets of Caracas. And while the shadow of terror looms, madmen plot even greater acts of murder and destruction. No place is safe, no border secure in this hour of fear.

Only one bulwark stands between the world and the threats that now face it: RAINBOW, an international task force dedicated to combating terrorism in all its forms. A top-secret organization consisting of the best field operatives the United Nations has to offer, RAINBOW is the most potent weapon in the world's arsenal. Backed by the most sophisticated technology available and trained to the limits of human capability, they are our best hope in the war against terror.

Click To  Enlarge Image
Gorgeous explosions...
Being developed at UbiSoft's Shanghai studio, the team responsible for the excellent port of Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell, this game is being enhanced for the Playstation 2. Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six 3 for the PlayStation 2 gives players the opportunity to command an elite, four-man international anti-terrorist squad. The game takes place with 15 missions (the original PC and XBox games only had 14 missions - PS2 owners get a bonus level) in different locations around the world from countries such as Holland, Canada, Switzerland, Croatia, Venezuela and the United States.

As UbiSoft claim this is a first person tactical action title and that is promoted through the ability to command 3 other teammates during a mission. Adding to the realism are the numerous weapons and gadgets on offer. Rainbow Six 3 includes a massive 30 weapon such as assault rifles, submachine guns, shotguns, sniper rifles, pistols and 10 gadgets including gas masks and flash bang grenades to use during the missions.

Impressively, Rainbow Six 3's AI will apparently be improved. Enemies will now grab hostages and use them as shields for instance which should add a new dimension to the gameplay, and some more realism - something which Tom Clancy games are rarely short of.

Click To  Enlarge Image
Atmospheric lighting.
One of the major additions to this title is the ability to use the USB headset as a voice-activated command system. Thisallows you to shout commands at your teammates rather then going through tedious the menus. Team mates will also respond back to you. The headset works in both online and offline modes, although if playing with other humans their responses to your commands may vary quite a bit.

Another addition is the split-screen multi-player mode on Playstation 2 allowing two players to play at the same time on the multi-player maps, some of which have come from the Athena Sword Expansion Pack from the PC. Online multi-player maps are also confirmed for the Playstation 2, and with this game due out in the same month as SOCOM II there will be an interesting battle for online dominance. This online gameplay will allow up to 8 PS2 owners to battle through a series of maps in 3 different gameplay modes.

Click To  Enlarge Image
Your squad is covering you.
Looking at the surrounding screenshots you could be misgiven for thinking that these are from the PC or XBox game, but I can assure you these are the PS2 screens, and impressive ones at that. The developers have used an enhanced version of the Splinter Cell engine which includes some fantastic lighting routines to give the game even more realism and a rock solid 30fps. Rainbow Six 3 also includes around 12 minutes of cinematics directed by Marco Brambilla, the Director of Demolition Man. The game also includes Dolby Pro Logic II support.

Rainbow Six 3 has been in development since May 2003, which means porting this game has taken almost a year - that's almost the entire development life of some games. This time has ensured that UbiSoft Shanghai have drained every cycle of power from the Playstation 2 with stunning results. The graphics aren't too far removed from the XBox game and with 2-player split screen mode, more maps and better AI this game should be the pick of the bunch. Expect a release in March.