Ubisoft’s Rainbow Six Extraction is upon us, and leagues of gooey, messy aliens are getting ready to erupt into our world and make things very hard for Tom Clancy’s special agents.
The three-player co-op objective game is the first big AAA release of 2022 and as players get ready to jump in, here’s everything you need to know to do just that. What’s great is that even if you don’t plan to buy the game, Ubisoft seems intent on making the game as easy as possible to play without actually making it free-to-play. It’s clear the company just wants you to be playing the game somewhere.
Because it is so open, though, there are obviously a lot of questions about how and when the game can be played, the state of the demo, crossplay, Game Pass, and more. There’s a lot to get your head around, so here is everything you need to know about jumping into Rainbow Six Extraction.
When does Rainbow Six Extraction come out?
Rainbow Six Extraction is set to release on January 20, 2022, on all platforms worldwide. The game is coming to PS4, PS5, Xbox Series S/X, Xbox One, PC, and Google Stadia and should be released simultaneously on all platforms across all regions.
As for the time of launch, the game will be released at midnight GMT across all regions. (That's 4pm PST and 7pm EST.) You can view a live countdown clock on the Ubisoft store to get the exact time.
Is Rainbow Six Extraction on Game Pass on Xbox and PC?
Rainbow Six Extraction is coming to Game Pass, significantly lowering the bar for entry for many players. It will launch alongside the game on January 20 meaning there is no delay for jumping in with friends who have purchased the title.
What’s more, Rainbow Six Extraction is not just available on Game Pass for Xbox consoles, it’s also available on Game Pass for PC. This means, no matter where you are a Game Pass subscriber, you will be able to download Rainbow Six Extraction.
Does Rainbow Six Extraction have Crossplay and Cross-Progression?
Yes, Rainbow Six Extraction comes with both Crossplay and Cross-Progression enabled. You will be able to play with your friends no matter where they are. As a nice bonus, you'll also be able to float between platforms at your leisure, as your progress will be saved no matter what platform you hop to.
While the timers are attached to your account, this means that even if you're playing the game on Game Pass, but wanted to try it on PS5 with a friend, they could send you a Buddy Pass and you’d be able to play over there for a while, moving between the two platforms at will.
What’s a Buddy Pass and can your friends play Rainbow Six Extraction for free?
Actually, yes. Rainbow Six Extraction is offering a system it calls the Buddy Pass, which will allow you and your friends to play the game even if they don’t own it.
You can invite up to two players with the Buddy Pass, meaning you can get a full team together to play. With a Buddy Pass, your friends will have access to Rainbow Six Extraction for 14 days, as long as they play with you.
Your friends will have access to everything you’ve completed previously in the game, and you can all play unrestricted. So for two weeks, as long as they play with you, your friends can play the entirety of the game.
However, there is even an option for players who don’t own the game to play on their own for a couple of hours. A trial version is being offered to new players.
Can anyone play Rainbow Six Extraction for free? Does Rainbow Six Extraction have a demo?
Yes, although, somewhat limitedly. A trial version of the game is being offered that will give players two hours of free access. Players will be able to play almost unrestricted to get a good sense of the game. The only things they won’t be able to access are post-launch content and Maelstrom Protocol Mode. And they can't buy things in-store.
The nice thing is that players with a Buddy Pass can combine it with the trial. They will be able to play with the person who gave them the Buddy Pass as much as they want but also have a two-hour trial to play away from the group. The trial timer will pause whenever they are playing as part of their Buddy group.
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Patrick Dane is TechRadar Gaming's Guides Editor. With nearly a decade in the games press, he's been a consistent voice in the industry. He's written for a plethora of major publications and travelled the world doing it. He also has a deep passion for games as a service and their potential to tell evolving stories. To wit, he has over 2000 hours in Destiny 2, over 1000 in Overwatch and is now deeply into Valorant.