It’s completely likely that development for Rainbow Six: Siege will be “completed” ahead of the game Due Process. It’s also completely likely that Rainbow Six: Siege will actually have a solidified release date when the time comes for it to be “completed”, as opposed to Due Process where it’s likely to be finished when it’s finished (whenever that might be). However, in the interim, Siege is just a demo. What’s more, it’s a demo that we don’t actually know much about other than that it’s a vertical slice of something Ubisoft hopes to achieve. On the opposite end of the spectrum we have Due Process. It’s not a demo; it’s not a vertical slice; it’s in alpha and it’s very playable. Right now.
Both Due Process and Rainbow Six: Siege are aiming to be team-oriented, tactical shooters with procedural destruction. In the case of Rainbow Six: Siege, they’re also gunning for dynamic physics systems to accompany said procedural destruction.
Both games offer high tech weapons and equipment, and both games put a lot into the planning and strategy phases before the action gets underway.
Once again, the big difference between the two is that Due Process is a real, playable game and Rainbow Six: Siege feels like the sort of thing we’ll see two years from now (after the inevitable delay that comes sometime in 2015) with heavily downgraded graphics and a Twitter war raging with the creative director over why the game had to be relegated to 900p at 30fps instead of 1080p at 60fps, and why the procedural physics were replaced with canned animations at specific set-points in a stage for breakaway material.
The reason why Rainbow Six: Siege is being talked about as if it’s at a disadvantage is because we see some real, unfiltered, unscripted gameplay of Due Process and all we have to go by with Siege is a vertical slice. In fact, you can check out Due Process below.
The graphics looks like the frozen diarrhea of Minecraft put into a red and blue ice-tray container and then shoved into a freezer that’s packed with dry ice; but the graphics aren’t important. Why? Because this is a freaking indie game and the graphics can be modded out for something more “realistic” if need be. For the naysayers, need I point you in the direction of Battlefield 2’s ENB mod? Or how about GTA IV‘s iCEnhancer? Or how about Garry’s Mod’s FA:S 2 mod? I think you get the drift.
Anyway, the graphics can scale if players choose to undertake that measure. What’s unique is the game’s mechanics… that’s what’s important. As an alpha the game supports wall breaching, physics-based damage calculations and bloody gunfights that end about as quickly as they start.
The white-room approach to the map design offers a ton of potentiality and tactical team operations depending on how big the engine will allow the levels to scale. The potential is ripe… ripe!
As noted in the preview over on Rock Paper Shotgun, the game sees the two teams making up their plans – one attempting to subdue the bad guys, while the other team tries to foil the subdue attempt – and carrying things out like classic tactical shooters such as Rainbow Six or Counter Strike.
The funny part about it is that we “see” the planning phase and execution phase take place in the demo of Rainbow Six: Siege, but we don’t actually see a real game to play. We see a borderline-scripted demo with high-quality character animations and dynamic physics models that are about as likely to make it into the full game on the home consoles as America was likely to win the World Cup.
The Metro hands-on preview gave me a bit of hope that Rainbow Six: Siege has some opportunity to live up to its own hype, but at the same time there’s plenty of doubt, especially after producer Sébastien Labbé admitted that…
“Almost any floor, almost any wall [can be destroyed]. Almost any object, as we are still in pre-alpha we still have a lot of work to do. This kind of destruction has been very hard for us to achieve but, yes; a big gun will make a big hole in the wall!”
Remember, this is AAA pre-alpha and it’s not running on the actual console hardware at the moment, so just like with Watch Dogs from E3 2012 or Star Wars: Force Unleashed before it… expect some heavy downgrades by the time the working builds for the home consoles begin to crop up. In the case of Due Process, expect some major upgrades, either from the community or the developers ala Starbound or Dwarf Fortress. By the way, isn’t it funny how that works between AAA demos and indie demos? One is constantly evolving while the other is constantly downgrading.
Now, this doesn’t mean that Rainbow Six: Siege won’t be good, it’s just that compared to an indie game where we’re seeing the real gameplay on display with tons (and tons, and tons) of room for improvement to take place, Ubisoft’s title is still sitting on a perch somewhere between “I’m excited because I miss Rainbow Six” and “Two years from now when this is in my hands the closest thing this is going to look to that E3 2014 demo is the cover art”.
In the meantime, you can follow the advancements of Due Process or attempt to join the game’s very, very, very early alpha testing phase by paying a kind visit to the official website.
TL;DR: Due Process already has its gameplay foundations set and will continue to grow from here on. Rainbow Six: Siege is on prototype status and is likely to get downgraded. Ubisoft will have to work hard to keep Rainbow Six from turning out to be another Watch Dogs.