RPS Doesn’t Know What CTF Is

Rainbow Six Siege is a game in the Rainbow Six series. This much is obvious. So you could look to previous Rainbow Six games to get an idea as to what the new one will be like. This much is apparently not obvious to Rock Paper Shotgun. You know what also isn’t obvious to RPS? What Capture the Flag (CTF) is.

Siege’s E3 demo did leave a bit of a weird taste in some mouths, though, mainly because shoving around a lady in the team-based Hostage Mode like she’s the flag in capture the flag is kind of odd, even if you’re rescuing her.

In the Hostage mode, you play a law enforcement unit of some form breaching a location that has been secured by criminals, who have taken a hostage. Why did they take a hostage? Because they know it will slow down the law enforcement, it will make them hesitate a moment longer before taking a shot, it will decrease the odds of them blind firing into a scenario. The hostage has this effect on law enforcement because of their directive to preserve innocent life. The game mechanic involves a penalty of a loss if the hostage dies, and said hostage must be extracted from danger and secured, as the criminals can recapture that hostage.quake3 2014-06-24 21-07-52-60

What does this describe? Not at all CTF. In CTF you have two balanced teams in a symmetrical or near symmetrical scenario, each with a respective base. That base houses the flag of their team, and the objective is to keep it secured, and touch the enemy flag to their own for points. It is fun because it allows for both offensive and defensive play, team work, and heroics. If you’ve played, a game, in general, ever, you are probably familiar with this. If you write professionally about games, ignorance of this is deserving of mockery. If you write professionally about games and confuse a variant of CTF such as 1-Flag CTF, you are still deserving of mockery, noting the keyword of variant. If you write professionally about games, and are aware of this, and still compare a woman in a game to a flag in CTF, you are a disingenuous and manipulative clickbait shill.

Hostage mode does not resemble CTF, stop saying that, RPS, and anyone else using that idiotic line.

I’m going to insert some comments, mine will not be in bold and will be in brackets:

[He is reiterating the subject to give him time to think] I know some people asked about the hostage in the demo. [He is talking about the creation of the assets in this vertical slice] I mean, when we did that design we felt a lot of empathy with the hostage [We don’t know the make up of the team who created this hostage asset, but we do know that they felt empathy for this particular one, so they pushed forward with it to have something ready]. We wanted people to want to protect her [This is part of game design]. If the hostage gets killed a team loses the game, so we wanted players to care about the hostage so that’s the design we chose [I.E., they chose the one that worked best for them right then]. But we’re also gonna have male hostages. That’s part of the plan. [It really is simple, they only showed things they had completed enough to not look embarrassing for something as big as E3, this right here should have made this not a post]quake3 2014-06-24 21-08-12-60
that women are only for protecting/rescuing, that we naturally care about them more than men in that capacity.

Stop, stop, stop, stop. Stop. No really, stop it. Do you see what you did there? “only”. That is an incredibly specific thing to say, it is a more extreme statement than say, hate. Hate is a relative term, but only, only is objective. If it doesn’t match your description, bam, out. Gone. Only is taking a subject with breadth, depth, history, nuance, science, art, epistemology, ontology, a whole gaggle of other ologies, a murder of isms (isms are part of the Corvidae family, fun fact), and reducing it to something not merely three dimensional, or two dimensional, or even one single dimension. It reduces it to a single point, a single string. Just remember that going forward, when you describe an Other as having a position consisting of an “only” for something that isn’t a mathematical debate, you have gone beyond the land of straw men (or straw women) and into an eldritch alternate reality corn field where seemingly everywhere there is an effigy of my own moniker. Infinite Nebraska will lay before you. And in this alternate reality it will in fact be “only” corn fields.quake3 2014-06-24 21-04-22-60

Shortly after that, there is a description for how Ubisoft hopes to make the hostages believable. It sounds admirable. It sounds like a lot of work for each instance. Which in the case of a public demo means you are only going to see the most complete instance and no others. This is a game still early in development. This is not like Assassin’s Creed which is wrapping up, it is a new project. The fact that upon seeing a female character in a likely scenario for a combat scenario, your response wasn’t to recognize the threat of the scenario, but to wonder about the diversity of the staff and how many “tropes” they have succumbed to, is a bit alarming regarding how aware you are of video games. Rainbow Six has had male hostages, your own interview confirmed that this one will have male hostages as well. Combine this with your apparent ignorance of what CTF is, and I just don’t see why you are covering the matter.

I can’t demand a company change what it’s doing, but I can hope very, very hard for better in the future.

In the mean time, could you use your (clearly in need of being checked) privilege to speak personally with developers to ask them details about the game that we will be playing? We learned a little bit when the technical artist tried to pull the conversation on to a subject, and it was interesting. I would like to know more of those things, so I have an idea as to if they are developing a distinct title, or rather just getting out another release in this IP. Those things are why people went to RPS in the first place, and even if this sort of content was always intended, it was the focus on PC games that kept the attention of every person I’ve encountered who has read the site. Tell us about the games.

I have included in this post screenshots of CTF from Quake 3: Arena, a video game. Consider it a reference.