In this post, I explore what everyone can do to improve their rank on Rainbow Six Siege.
I feel like I don't qualify to write about this - because the highest rank I've achieved in the game is about 100 points off diamond (thus Platinum 1) - however I also feel very qualified to talk about this given that when I moved to PC I finished the season in Gold 3 and have steadily climbed the ranks since.
TIP 1 - QUE AS A 5 STACK
This one is about as essential as you can get, if you are feeling like you can't climb the ranks because of the idiot people you keep getting matched with, chances are that they're feeling the same way about you!
Communication in Siege is absolutely imperative, therefore its immediately obvious that a team with even just 1 random person thats not in the group can struggle against an organised 5 stack.
From experience, the way that I've personally improved my rank is to que with people who are slightly better than me and try to enable them to be better. What I mean by that isn't being carried, I mean droning for them, sitting on cams, giving information and trying to be the all round best player for the team. If I que with two ranks or below, I'll generally just play fragging operators and try to impact the team that way.
As an example, I'm now queuing regularly with Diamonds and good competitive focused players. The benefit of this is that whether we win 4-0 or we lose 4-0, I get to learn and experience a level that I'm not yet at. I get to challenge myself to improve to match that level, I learn from their good (and bad) habits which allows me to replicate (or avoid) them to improve myself.
TIP 2 - KNOW EVERY DEFAULT
I can't actually stress how important this is at all. Knowing every default strategy, plant spot, defender locations etc is so vital to the success of any one given round it is incredible. People think that generally, the team that wins is much better than the other team, wrong. The team that wins is the team that executes the intended strategy the most effective.
Of course there are nuances, however if we take a map like Border - this map is so static and stale yet people still misunderstand how to do certain things on it - such as getting rid of the bandit on armory wall or efficiently taking Break Room/CCTV. There are default strategies and ways of doing things on every map, they're default for a reason and if you can do them better than the enemy - you probably win the game. Its as simple as that.
This also lends itself to point 1, if you're not in a full stack - or worse - you're solo queuing, keep in mind that doing anything but the default strategy without communicating that to your team means that it will likely be ineffective. Usually strategies revolve around all 5 people working with synergy, thats unlikely to work in any kind of Solo Que/less than 5 scenario.
TIP 3 - PLAY AROUND YOUR TEAM
This applies to both 5 stack and Solo Que scenario's. More so if you're a Solo Que though.
Play operators that enable others within your team and aren't selfish operators to play. This means you can basically play any operator that gives value to your team. Doc/Cav/Nokk/Amaru and so on don't add much value to most teams, so I'd stay away.
If you're taking tip number 1 and rolling with it, only play in 5s and making sure the majority of that 5 are better than you, then I'd recommend limiting your pool of operators to about 8. 4 on each side as follows;
Lesion - his mines are invaluable for info, they also allow your team to decipher information for themselves if your communications are lacking.
Echo/Maestro - unless there is a dedicated Echo/Maestro player in the stacc, this is a good one. With echo banned most of the time, you're likely on Maestro duty, make sure to put your evil eyes in good places and don't lose them unnecessarily by zapping people - their value is the info/late round denial.
Bandit/Mute/Mozzie - all of these allow you to add value but also simultaneously play your own game without too much reliance on you from your team mates. The only caveat to this is if you're bandit tricking, make sure you can first and you communicate with team.
Valkyrie - similar to the above, Valkyrie is a set and forget operator. (You can forget if someone in your team is on cams!). Allows you to play around on your own plays and also has a valuable C4!
Breach team - I'd actually say to avoid this if you're first starting out with higher rank players or if you're not 100% on the timings/how to breach. I know it seems simple, throw a thatcher and then breach. However if you are comfortable, having a dedicated Thatcher/Thermite (or other breach) player within the team is a bit of a godsend.
Capitao - the forgotten hero of ranked. It allows you to do all of the things you want and play solo, it also gives them long range smokes for any execute. Capitao is the best flexible operator in my opinion if you want to improve.
Nomad/Gridlock - these two encourage teamplay, but are also set and forget. For example coming back to default takes. Lets say you're playing Coastline and we know we're going for a default billiards/aqua take and plant. Having a player that knows how to play gridlock/nomad in these scenarios to counter flanks and their defensive plays is invaluable.
IQ - This one is very obvious, again it doesn't require a great deal of team gameplay (but you should definitely communicate everything) - having an IQ that can go underneath (or above) and just shoot every trap, ADS and any other electronic items brings so much value to the team.
TIP 4 - COMMUNICATE WELL
This one is obvious, but its wild at how much people still struggle with this. If you're using any of the following words in your callouts - you're not calling well. (I've probably missed a few too!)
Other there - Left - Right - In the room - On my X - on Ping - He's roaming - behind there
So basically, anything that isn't very specific, isn't going to allow your teammates to play around the call. I try to avoid saying Left or Right, because its subjective and people still get confused. For example - two guys are pinching on one defender in Reading Room on Kafe, you have a cam and you say "he's on the left as you walk in". There are multiple problems with that but the main one is, if they're going in two separate doors that call is only right for one of them. What I prefer to say is "he's crouched in the far north west side" - this allows both players to play off the call. I try to use the compass as much as I can to help my team, some don't and prefer to be descriptive, both fine as long as you hit the right result.
The only time that I use left/right is when I am calling for one person (last alive or I let them know I'm calling for them) and someone is very close left or right of a particular object. For example you've breached the Garage wall on Consulate, there is a bandit staying stiff on the Garage wall and Thermite is looking to go in and plant. I can call "Thermite - Bandit is prone hard left of breach".
In my mind, you need to be as descriptive as possible with calls, whilst also being short and succinct. Here's how I think calls should be
Operator - if you know what operator it is, if not just say 'One' or 'One guy'
Location - specific location call out, if you don't know the default call for that area, say the area of the room according to the compass (IE North West reading)
Side of door/breach - if applicable as per the above
Position - prone/crouched/standing
Any other info - are they shotgunning? has ADS? Holding pixel?
Example - "Doc playing CEO bullet holes to meeting at crouch height". Allows the guy Visa stairs to prefire the rough area he is.
Finally on this topic, knowing default calls for certain places on maps can make all the difference. People have different calls for all sorts based upon teams they've been in/what they've picked up but knowing the popular slang calls will be a huge bonus. For example Heaven/Hell on Kafe. Long/Short on most maps. Zulu/90/Harry Potter areas on most maps. Being able to differentiate staircases and not just say "main stairs" probably helps.
TIP 5 - PLAY WITH CONFIDENCE
Finally, one that I think is mega important and I think even diamonds/top players can learn from, is to commit and believe in what you're doing/what you're achieving. I'm at the point now where I'm playing vs Pro's and solid players day in day out.
Never so much in my life have I seen good players fall apart when they come up against professional players or big name players. Its like they lose all confidence in their ability - when this happens they tend to second think, they tend to hesitate and that often costs them their life in the game.
Previous rounds shouldn't determine what you do in the current round, and actually backing off of gunfights can be more detrimental than taking them and dying. If you're 0-5 and in the 6th round you make a big play because you've remained confident, then you're doing it right. Don't be afraid just because its gone bad for you for a few rounds or that you're vs a pro or whatever. Be confident in your ability. If you'd have tried it in the first round, you should try it in the last .
Siege is equally about the mind and mentality as it is about gunskill and strategy. Often teams lose the game before they start because of mentality. This is the same with players thinking, "I'm playing bad, I can't aim" etc. If you believe that, you're going to be playing bad. One important thing that I've picked up from top level players, is that they'll criticise if stuff goes bad, but they will reset and start again with a fresh attitude the next round. If a player (or themselves) make a big play, they will go nuts. How many times have you watched top players on stream and they're saying "I'm insane". Theres lots of evidence/proof that saying things like this outloud (affirmations) lend themselves to increased performance.
We've all been on a team with the guy who sits on the roof the whole round or hides on cams all round whilst doing nothing, who then gets 2 exit frags and complains. Most teams would prefer the guy who dies trying to make a play and who enables his/her team than the guy mentioned above.