Rainbow Six Siege artwork for Operation Velvet Shell

Besides the usual balance changes and content updates, Rainbow Six Siege's upcoming Season 3 patch will also bring with it some major technical improvements. First and foremost, Ubisoft will be creating a new foundation for future patches that will reduce their size, reduce loading times across the board, and in general make the whole patching process a lot simpler and less prone to problems. Unfortunately, given the severity of these changes you will need to redownload a rather large amount of data, up to 42GB for the PC version with ultra textures.

That would be the short version, but if you're interested in the full breakdown of what Ubisoft is changing and why they're doing so, you'll find the full explanation right below. Have a look:

"In the Y2S3.0 patch, we will be making some changes to how our data is organized, as well as how we generate patches moving forward. With this new patch, we plan on resetting the foundation that future patches are built upon, and establishing the Y2S3.0 patch as the new baseline that we will update the game client from. As a result of resetting the baseline, we must replace a significant number of the existing data forges. This is why the Y2S3.0 patch is as large as it is.

All game data is stored in what we refer to as a “forge”. This is a compressed archive containing other files. When we need to modify a file that is part of a forge, we simply download a new forge that contains the new file without replacing the original forge. This simplifies the patching process, and reduces the download size. Over time however, it leads to a lot of wasted space on disk, as there are more and more modified files.

In the Y2S3.0 patch, since we changed many existing textures, we decided that we need to consolidate our forges. The impact of this will result in a smaller overall footprint on your hard drive, taking up less space. By consolidating our patches and data players will see a reduction “seek time”, which means faster load times for all players. While it is difficult to determine an exact loading time reduction percentage for PC due to the variety of configurations, consoles will see about 10% faster loading times for matches.

Additionally, we have taken advantage of the fact that we are replacing all our forges to upgrade the compression algorithm used. This will reduce the overall size of all future patches by approximately 12-15% and will have an improvement on loading time as well."

The patch will also bring with it improved texture quality for all PC players, no matter if you're playing on low or ultra. What this means in gameplay terms is that you will see a slight increase in quality for character textures, as well as a massive increase in the quality of environmental textures. Due to all of the previously mentioned data improvements these changes should arrive without any sort of negative effects, so don't worry about having to downgrade your settings in order to maintain a stable fps - this one's on the house!

More information will be coming in the near future, so if you're interested in following Rainbow Six Siege's development I would suggest you hop on over to the official blog.