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9/7/2023
First Person Shooter Rainbow Six

Rainbow Six: The Birth of a Gaming Legend and Its Impact on the FPS Genre

The legacy of Rainbow Six officially began on August 3, 1998, as a novel.  It was the second book featuring the character, John Clark.  This time, instead of a recurring role from the 1993 Ryanverse series, Clark was the main hero of the story.  He, along with Domingo “Dom” Chavez, teamed up as a father and son-in-law team in what became one of the most popular video games at the time.



Shooting For Rainbows

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In 1998, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six was released as a tactical shooter video game by Red Storm Entertainment.  First, it was a game for Microsoft Windows before it appeared on the consoles of Dreamcast, Game Boy Color, Mac OS, Nintendo 64, and PlayStation.  The game’s storyline was based on Clancy’s novel and was the first installment of a series which were based on an underground war against terrorism.

As soon as video gamers got their hands on Rainbow Six, most who had access to the Windows version became hooked.  As for the console versions, not so much as there were a series of issues that didn’t make it quite as fun.  When Rainbow Six was first published, it was considered an important milestone in the history of first-person shooter games.

Joining the original release were two expansion packs.  The first was Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Mission Pack: Eagle Watch while the second was Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Rogue Spear.  Both of them were released in 1999.  In 2011, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Shadow Vanguard, was released as a mobile game remake.



Rainbow Play

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Players have the option to play Rainbow Six in single-player mode or multiplayer.  The characters they worked with were each impacted by realistic factors such as getting killed by a single bullet.  In campaign mode, the player had to complete a series of missions as the storyline progressed along the way.

In multiplayer mode, there are options on how gamers wish to play.  They could team up as cooperatives or square off against each other in deathmatch and team deathmatch modes.  The realm of Rainbow Six had the secret intelligence agency known as “Rainbow” go head to head against the eco-terrorists known as “Phoenix Group.”  Working with a series of NPC characters that would hand out the missions, the player’s objective was to prevent the global extermination of the human race that was intended to be carried out at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.  “Brahma” was supposed to be an Ebola-based virus that would unleash a pandemic that would wipe out almost every man, woman, and child on the planet.

The design of Rainbow Six was inspired by movies such as Mission: Impossible and The Dirty Dozen.  Its success saw over two hundred thousand copies sold the year it first came out.  In 1999, the PC Gold Edition was released which sold over three hundred thousand copies in the United States.  Going into 2002, the original game and the Rogue Spear expansion pack collectively sold well over four hundred thousand copies.


Rainbow: Call of Duty

Thanks to the success of Rainbow Six, another first-person shooter game would follow in the footsteps of this iconic video game.  The Call of Duty series published by Activision began in 2003 when the Infinity Ward development team would be the first to start one of the most popular video game trends in history.  Very much like Rainbow Six, Call of Duty featured a single-player campaign with a main character and a war-like storyline.  It also had multiplayer modes that included Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch.  

Can we credit Rainbow Six as the grandfather to the Call of Duty series?  Technically speaking, yes.  As mentioned earlier, Tom Clancy’s popular game and novel laid out the groundwork for developers to capitalize on a formula that worked.  It’s still one that works today as there have been many first-person shooter games that have flooded this particular genre of the video game industry.

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