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Rainbow Six Mobile just got me excited for smartphone games again

Rainbow Six Mobile
(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Ubisoft is bringing a version of its hit tactical first-person shooter Rainbow Six Siege to smartphones. And while a release date has yet to be revealed, it could be one of the most compelling upcoming mobile games and a good excuse to get a flagship phone like the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra

On Twitter, Ubisoft posted a short video of Rainbow Six Mobile, via the new Rainbow Six Mobile account, and I have to say it’s seriously caught my attention. 

From what I can tell it will play much like the console and PC version of Rainbow Six Siege despite lacking the “Siege” part, in that it'll put players in 5 vs 5 games where one team is breaching a building and another is on the defensive. 

Unlike the main version of Siege, matches are set to be shorter with them slated to be three-round bouts, presumably in keeping with the dip in and dip out nature of smartphone gaming. And the range of maps and operators are set to be a lot smaller at launch than Rainbow Six Siege.

Rainbow Six Mobile

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Yet that’s not a bad thing, as new players will stand more of a chance to learn the mechanics of the tactical shooter and understand the strengths and weaknesses of the main operators. These appear to be Caveira, Bandit, Smoke, Valkyrie, Mute, Ash, Sledge, Twitch, Thermite, and Hibana, going by the posted key art for Rainbow Six Mobile. 

As such, that means players will have time to familiarize themselves with the primary and secondary weapons of the main pool of operators rather than get overwhelmed with choice. And unlike Call of Duty Mobile, Rainbow Six Mobile looks set to use all the same tactics — such as drone use and placing breach charges — as the main game, meaning this'll be no simple run-and-gun shooter. 

Rainbow Six Mobile

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

What’s intriguing here, is rather than port Rainbow Six Siege over to smartphones, Rainbow Six Mobile has apparently been made specifically for Android and iOS. That would suggest it could be a rather well-optimized game that can take advantage of the power of phones such as the iPhone 13 Pro, while providing touchscreen controls that are intuitive rather than fussy or complex.

It also looks rather attractive, too, with graphics that certainly don't look far off the PS4 and Xbox One version of Rainbow Six Siege; we really are entering a time when smartphones can deliver proper console-quality graphics. I’d love to see how it runs on the Oppo Find X5 Pro I’m currently testing, as that’s got the powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 just waiting for a game to push its power.

Rainbow Six Mobile

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

While there are plenty of battle royale shooters on iOS and Android, notably PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds and Fortnite (on Android at least), there aren’t many tactical FPS-es that require smarts as well as a quick virtual trigger finger. So Rainbow Six Mobile could be a breath of fresh air for smartphone first-person shooters; I’d be especially keen to team up with five friends and take on the world in tense quick-fire battles.

What’s more, Ubisoft is letting you register now to try it out early, though when exactly isn’t clear. Nevertheless, if you are looking for a compelling argument to get a powerful flagship phone or even one of our picks for the best gaming phone, then Rainbow Six Mobile, and indeed the upcoming Apex Legends Mobile, could be a reason to splash the cash.

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.