R6 Siege:
Unlocking Operators - Defenders

A detailed guide to help choose which defending operators to unlock  in Rainbow Six Siege!

Introduction

Rainbow Six Siege has been out for many years, and with new seasons, new operators are released by Ubisoft. This gives us tons of options, which is excellent for R6 Siege longevity, but comes with a price – too many choices lead to confusion, especially for new players.

To help you with making sensible decisions on how to spend your hard-earned Renown, we created this R6 Siege unlocking operators guide for defenders.
Please treat this guide as a suggestion, because that’s all it is – operator recommendations for particular player’s playstyle and roles.
Defensive roles and playstyles will be different from those we separated in unlocking operator guide for attackers.
As the two primary roles on defense are anchoring and roaming, we will separate unlocking operators in R6 Siege lists to fit them.

ROAMING PLAYSTYLE

The roaming role usually fits the more aggressive players who tend to fill in the role of fragger.
Effective roaming plays require good map knowledge, advanced game sense, and a proper ratio of aggression-patience. Roamers tend to be the first line of defense by denying map control to the attackers in Rainbow Six Siege.
Thus, when choosing picks for roaming type of players, we focused on:
– fragging potential
– utility supporting roaming capabilities
– operator’s speed

ANCHORING PLAYSTYLE

Now, when it comes to anchors, the playstyle is more of a support operator.
Being an anchor does not mean that you won’t have a chance for fragging out. Unless your roamers manage to do all the killing, then eventually, you will have to get some frags. The situation in which you will do so and how you will spend the majority of the round will differ, though.
Anchors are more like support operators on defense. They either have access to ACOG sights (i.e., Doc) and hold long angles or provide powerful utility on the site (i.e., Mira).
Therefore, the priority for anchors tends to be the objective-based utility.

If you would like to learn details about operators, then we recommend visiting our detailed operators’ guides:

Additionally, we would recommend visiting our Defenders Rankings, where we ranked all defenders based on:

  • Fragging potential
  • Accessibility for new players
  • Utility importance

R6 GUIDE
UNLOCKING OPERATORS:
DEFENDERS

ROAMING PLAYSTYLE

Priority unlocks

The Rainbow Six Siege operators included in this section should be your top priority for unlocking as a player who likes to roam.

Jager R6 operator Elite art by r6siegecenter
BASE game operators:
  • Top fragging potential; 416-C is great AR on defense
  • Important utility supporting objective
  • Moderate difficulty; Mechanically simple, but potentially vital utility
  • 2-speed
  • Top fragging potential – MP7 is an excellent SMG, access to C4
  • Vital utility, but may require active usage (Bandit tricking) on the objective
  • Medium mechanical difficulty, with high skill ceiling;
  • 3-speed
DLC operators:
ELA
  • Top fragging potential; Scorpion is amazing SMG on short-mid range
  • Trap/Intel gathering utility that helps with winning gunfights
  • Mechanically simple to use utility; 
  • 3-speed
  • Cheap price – 10,000 Renown
  • Top fragging potential; Great SMG, Impact grenades, useful secondaries
  • Utility supporting roaming and getting frags
  • Moderate usage difficulty; Requires trickery mindset and game sense
  • 3-speed
  • Expensive – 20,000 Renown
  • Top fragging potential; Good primary weapon, secondaries are automatic weapons
  • Utility ideal for roaming – intel denial
  • Moderate utility difficulty; Requires game sense & good roaming skills
  • 3-speed
  • Moderate price – 15,000 Renown

Good Unlocks

The R6 Siege operators listed below are good picks for roamers. Once you’ve unlocked top picks and you want to expand your defensive roaming roster, then you should focus on buying below OPs!

Pulse R6 Elite art by r6siegecenter
  • Moderate fragging potential; Weak SMG but has access to C4
  • Intel gathering utility that allows for wallbangs and C4 from below
  • Difficult utility usage; Active usage with high-skill ceiling – map knowledge & communication needed
  • 3-speed
  • Base game price
  • Good fragging potential; Good primaries and access to C4
  • Intel gathering and preventing utility; Catches attackers drones
  • Difficult utility usage; Requires map knowledge and game sense
  • 2-speed
  • Expensive – 20,000 Renown
  • Good fragging potential; Peashooting MPX but a headshot machine with decent RPM, access to C4
  • Powerful intel gathering utility that may help with roaming and runouts, as well as C4 from below
  • Difficult utility usage; passive but requires great map knowledge for optimal usage
  • 2-speed
  • Cheap – 10,000 Renown
  • Weak fragging potential; M12 is terrible SMG, SPAS-15 is good for close range, Luison is the true primary weapon;
  • Great utility for sneaky roaming playstyle; does not do well against coordinated teams (higher ranks)
  • Difficult to utilize; requires great game sense and certain playstyle; High-risk high-reward roamer
  • 3-speed
  • Cheap – 10,000 Renown

Anchoring Playstyle

Priority unlocks

Rainbow Six Siege operators that are suggested as a top unlock for objective focused players.

Doc R6 Operator cartoonized by r6siegecenter
BASE game operators:
DOC
  • Good fragging potential; MP5 is the weapon of choice – 1.5x scope and easy to control recoil
  • Utility not objective-based but supporting the team; The only defender who can heal himself and other teammates
  • Easy to play; Does not require map knowledge nor game sense;
  • 3-armor
  • Good fragging potential; MP5 is the weapon of choice – 2.0x scope and easy to control recoil
  • Utility not objective-based but supporting the team; Buffs defenders armor and ensures DBNO (unless headshotted)
  • Easiest operator to play; Requires only to drop armor at the beginning of the round and pick one up for yourself
  • 3-armor
DLC operators:
  • Top fragging potential; LMG with 80 bullets and good RPM? Check;
  • Good intel gathering utility; 2 turrets that can destroy attackers’ utility and provide intel even through smoke
  • Moderately difficult utility; Simple to place, but difficult to utilize well
  • 3-armor
  • Expensive – 20,000 Renown
  • Good fragging potential; Primary SMG is good weapon, utility helping with intel to kill enemies
  • A great utility for anchoring; Provides intel and debuffs impacted enemies; Additionally prevents the plant
  • Difficult to utilize; Requires Lesion to stay alive for optimal usage (spawns mines over time), needs good map knowledge and game sense
  • 2-armor
  • Cheap price – 10,000 Renown

Good Unlocks

Rainbow Six Siege operators that are suggested as an unlock on defense once the top priority operators are bought.

Echo R6 operator cartoonized by r6siegecenter_final
  • Moderate fragging potential; MP5SD has access to 1.5x scope but the mandatory silencer makes it a bit worse option than MP5
  • A great utility for intel gathering and late-round situation; Can deny plant from a safe distance, drones are hard to spot
  • Difficult to utilize; Requires patience and advanced game sense;
  • 3-armor
  • Cheap – 10,000 Renown
  • Moderate fragging potential; Vector shreds in close range, but burns through mag quickly and low damage per bullet, access to C4
  • A utility that revolutionized defense in R6; Mirrors provide great value when used correctly
  • Difficult to utilize; Requires map knowledge to place Mirrors efficiently, not useful on some sites
  • 3-armor
  • Cheap – 10,000 Renown
  • Top fragging potential; AUG is great weapon on defense, ugly AF though!
  • Utility useful for objective play; Pulls attackers projectiles (i.e. grenades), similar function to Jager
  • Difficult to utilize; Generates MAG-nets over-time – requires good map knowledge and game sense
  • 2-armor
  • Very expensive – 25,000 Renown
  • Moderate fragging potential; Versatile primary weapons – DMR under the disguise of Shotgun with ACOG or SMG with 1.5x scope for an automatic option
  • Vital utility; Difficult to deal with breach denial potential
  • Difficult to utilize; Medium mechanical difficulty, with high skill ceiling for active denial
  • 3-armor
  • Expensive – 20,000 Renown

CONSIDERED FACTORS

Additionally, we took into consideration the following aspects:
  • How good operator is in their role
    Every operator fills in a specific role in the game. We took into account how good they are in their assignment.
    If you would like to learn about our categorizations of roles, then please check our guides for roles on attack & defense.
  • How much they cost
    Ubisoft set operator’s cost depending on how long time ago they came out in. Thus, the price for DLC operators is 10000, 15000, 20000, and 25000 Renown.
    For base operators, the costs depend on # of operators unlocked from their specific CTU and are 500, 1000, 1500, and 2000 Renown.
  • Difficulty
    This guide is intended mainly for inexperienced players. Hence the difficulty of using an operator properly will play a role in unlocking recommendations.
  • The universality of an operator
    A situational operator would not be recommended for a start.
    As a beginner, you are probably better off having operators that are good in most scenarios as you do not know the nuances of Rainbow Six Siege yet.

Continue your learning of
R6 Siege

Learn which attackers to unlock next

List of general tips for beginners in R6

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