These are our picks for the best Defenders in Rainbow Six: Siege, as Ubisoft's tactical first-person shooter heads into its fifth year.
Despite heading into Year 5 of downloadable content, Ubisoft's support for Rainbow Six: Siege is showing no signs of hitting the brakes. It has been confirmed that this year will see six new operators, alongside a host of other new content for fans to dive into.
The first Season of Year 5 has been confirmed as being Operation Void Edge, and will see defender Oryx and attacker Iana added. The pair's abilities were completely revealed on February 15 and 16, at the Siege Invitational Event.
While impossible to predict the impact Iana and Oryx will have, Ubisoft are generally good at only adding balanced operators.
It should go without saying that this list is entirely subjective, and that you'll probably disagree. We're sure you'll let us know on Twitter that our list is "trash bro do u even play the game". We'd rather you didn't, but we're sure you will.
With that being said, enjoy our list of the five best defenders in Rainbow Six: Siege, as we head into Year 5. Note that the list is in no particular order.
Jager is a base operator, having been in the game since its inception all the way back in 2015. He is part of the GSG-9, Germany's elite fighting force.
A three-speed, one-armor operator, Jager's real strength is in his 416-C Carbine assault rifle, which makes him one of very few defenders to have access to an AR. This, paired with his three-speed, means Jager is exceptional at spawn-peeking.
However, if you don't fancy spawn-peeking and want to sit around the objective, his Active Defense System can keep you safe from incoming enemy explosives. While not as powerful as some other gadgets, it's a nice supplement to his incredible weaponry and desirable characteristics.
Despite multiple nerfs - most notably taking the ACOG sight away from his Carbine, Ubisoft haven't slowed this speed demon down yet.
Echo is almost the opposite to Jager. A three-armor, one-speed operator; roaming with this Japanese Special Agent would be out of place anywhere but Copper V.
Added back in November 2016 with Operation Red Crow, Echo's Yokai drones are incredibly powerful. Not only can they disorientate enemies with a focussed sound wave, but can also operate as two extra cameras that teammates can access.
While difficult to master, once you have a grip with his Yokai drones you really can wreak havoc against the attacking team.
Not only is his equipment incredibly strong, but so is his MP5-SD. A suppressed version of Rook & Doc's MP5, it boasts an ACOG attachment; a rarity for any defender. This, paired with his superb gadget, means his only weakness is his one-speed.
However, you shouldn't really need to use his speed given that he is designed to stick next to the objective and anchor.
Valkyrie is another DLC operator, added alongside Blackbeard in 2016's Operation Dust Line. She is a member of the infamous US Navy Seals - the elite fighting force regularly represented in popular culture.
At two-speed and two-armor, and equipped with an MPX SMG as her primary, she initially seems fairly average. However, her gadgets are where she thrives.
In a game like Rainbow Six, where information is power, she can make a team about as powerful as they can be. Her three Black Eye cameras offer far more expansive angles than regular cameras.
Similarly, the fact they are thrown means they can reach previously unseen areas of the map, and are unlikely to be shot out by enemies until they've been scanned at least once. She is a must-have on any defense.
Mozzie is, as his name suggests, a pest and a nuisance to any attacking operator. The ability of a defender to have their own mobile drones has long been sought after, and came true when Mozzie was added with Operation Burnt Horizon in February 2019.
While he doesn't have his own drones, his Pest Launcher enables him to hijack and control enemy drones. While he can't take them out of the map, the ability to have three moveable cameras as a defender is insanely powerful.
This is matched by his weapons. A choice of the Commando 9 or P10 RONI means he can operate at mid-range or close-range, and his Super Shorty shotgun as a secondary means he has breaching power for quick rotations and ambushes.
We wouldn't be surprised to see him nerfed in the near future, so get your hands on him while he's still as strong as he is now.
We finish our list off with another of the game's base operators. Smoke is part of the SAS, arguably the most infamous covert fighting force in the world. A two-speed, two-armor operator, he makes use of a secret concoction of toxic gas to poison enemies via remote detonation.
As they sound, these toxic grenades have a host of uses. They can be detonated on demand, so can be used to deter a push from a certain angle. Similarly, the cloud of translucent smoke they create does enough to obfuscate an attacker's view, so can be used to facilitate a tactical retreat if needed.
Finally, Smoke comes equipped with the reliable FMG-9 SMG, which has recently been buffed to make it a more viable option. If you don't fancy the FMG-9 though, he has the option of M590A1 shotgun, which can be used to break walls and find new angles for pushes - or just to throw his toxic grenades.
This, paired with his powerful gadgets, make him an incredibly useful and versatile defender, ideal for any map or situation.
That rounds off our list of the best defenders going into Rainbow Six: Siege's fifth year. Do you agree with our list? Let us know yours by tweeting us @Dexerto!