Rainbow Six Siege Operator Tier List: Best Attacking & Defending Operators in 2023

Attacking or defending in Rainbow Six Siege, this Operator Tier List has you covered.

Fenrir from Rainbow Six Siege Year 8 Season 2 Ubisoft

As we approach Year 8 Season 3 of Rainbow Six, there’s just shy of 70 operators for players to sift through. Naturally, it’s hard to keep track of them all and which are more viable than others. Here’s the ultimate Rainbow Six Siege Operator tier list, detailing the best attackers and defenders in 2023.

Operation Dread Factor has succeeded Commanding Force in Year 8, bringing Fenrir into the mix. There was also a Consulate rework and an Observation Blocker tool for defenders.

We’ve also seen multiple tweaks to the Operator pool, most recently with the Y8S2.3 Patch. It brought changes to the long-neglected Vigil (who now gives the same camera glitching effect as Nøkk). It also adjusted the latter operator, increasing the duration of her HEL gadget, but reducing its effectiveness and immunity to Alibi’s Prisma.

Before our tier list for attackers and defenders, we’re running through our favorite for each role.

Ultimate Rainbow Six Siege Operator Tier List

Best Attackers in Rainbow Six Siege Year 8

Attackers in Siege need to be powerful and adaptable, navigating defenders’ equipment while closing in on the objective. Throw in taking out opponents as you go and it’s no surprise that the best attackers are typically the most versatile.

Thatcher from Rainbow Six Siege tops our best attacker tier
Image Credit: Ubisoft

Thatcher is still our pick for the best attacker in Rainbow Six Siege. The SAS Operator’s EMP grenades have long been one of the best (probably the best) attacking gadgets in the game. Just throw one vaguely near enemy utility and you’ll take anything electrical out of action, at least in the short term. The response to his in-game viability has been a move towards banning him, especially in Ranked and higher-tier Siege. If he gets through though, he’s a must have on any attacking outfit.

As an alternate, we’re opting for Zero. His Argus Launcher, despite the nerfs it’s had since it was first implemented, is very powerful when it comes to information gathering. You’re also able to play more aggressively with his SMG, the MP7. If that doesn’t take your fancy, the SC3000K remains a standout weapon in all of Rainbow Six. The GONNE-6 and a Hard Breach Charge round off an Operator who’s a strong candidate whatever your playstyle and ability level.

Brava, Commanding Force’s Operator, is stuck in B-Tier as the playerbase figures out her Kludge Drones and how best they can be countered. Grim is also staying put in B-Tier. We’re yet to see a marked improvement in his performance despite the rework he received in Dread Factor.

Ace and Dokkaebi are both in A-Tier, even if the latter takes some practice to perfect. Finally, there’s a bump up to B-Tier for Nøkk, with the hefty buff to HEL duration ensuring she’s now on a par with some other decent if unspectacular operators.

Our full Rainbow Six Attacker Operator Tier List for 2023 is detailed below:

SAce, Thatcher, Nomad, Zero
AAsh, Dokkaebi, Hibana, Iana, Jackal, Maverick, Sledge, Twitch
BBlackbeard, Brava, Buck, Capitao, Finka, Flores, Grim, IQ, Lion, Nøkk, Osa, Thermite, Zofia
CAmaru, Fuze, Gridlock, Kali, Sens, Ying
DBlitz, Glaz, Montagne

Best Defenders in Rainbow Six Siege Year 8

Defenders need be robust and reliable; difficult for attackers to break down but multitalented enough to manage the wealth of situations Rainbow Six can throw up.

Jager from Rainbow Six Siege
Image Credit: Ubisoft via Twinfinite

Our choice for the best Defender in Rainbow Six Siege is Jäger. The 416-C Carbine is still an outstanding weapon among defenders, with most still restricted to a SMG of some sort. It’s long since proven it doesn’t need the old fashioned ACOG (2.5x) Scope to be a dominant weapon. Jäger’s firepower is complemented by his Active Defence Systems, which are incredibly easy to use and decent enough against enemy projectiles. Just throw them down around the objective and let them do the rest while you prowl and ambush unsuspecting attackers.

If you’re not fancying Jäger for any reason, our alternate is Valkyrie. Her Black Eye Cameras, despite some recent nerfs, still make you rich in Rainbow Six Siege’s most valuable currency: information. There’s no better tool to work out what the enemies’ strategy is and how they’re approaching your defences. She’s not all gadgets though, with her Nitro Cell and MPX SMG giving her more than enough to hold her own in gunfights. 

In terms of other attackers, we’re bumping Kapkan into S-Tier (although he’s being banned more and more), Castle moves up to B-Tier, where the recently added Solis remains. We’re keeping Vigil in B-Tier, with his Y8S2 changes yet to prove they’re enough to bump him into the lofty heights of A-Tier.

New Operator Fenrir stays in A-Tier. There’s potential for him to go higher as players glean as much as possible from his F-NATT Dread Mines. However, he could also fall as players work out how to counter them. That’s the beauty of Rainbow Six.

Our full Rainbow Six Defender Tier Operator List for 2023 is detailed below:

SJäger, Kapkan, Valkyrie
AAruni, Azami, Bandit, Ela, Fenrir, Kaid, Mira, Mute, Mozzie, Smoke, Wamai
BAlibi, Castle, Echo, Lesion, Maestro, Melusi, Pulse, Rook, Solis, Thorn, Thunderbird, Vigil
CDoc, Frost, Goyo, Oryx, Tachanka, Warden
DCaveira, Clash

There you have it – the ultimate Rainbow Six Operator Tier List and details on the Best Attackers and Defenders in Rainbow Six Siege right now. Be sure to check back in soon because, as new updates and operators drop, this list will change. Year 8 Season 3, for example, is set to bring a Korean Operator and Quick Match 2.0. We’ll be here when it drops.

About the author

Joe Craven

Joe is a writer and publisher based in England. He loves history, video games and football. As you read this, he's probably reading about an obscure war, playing a video game or moaning about Leeds United.