Having a certain pool of maps for a set period time, a competitive season, is not uncommon. To keep the game feeling fresh, players will see certain maps come and go for different seasons of competitive play. However, maps usually don't go away forever. While announcing the upcoming map pools, Rainbow Six Siege also announced that some maps would be removed from the game entirely to be reworked and some wouldn't be coming back at all.
Rainbow Six Siege has two separate map pools, or map playlists. One is for Ranked play and has fewer maps. The other is the Casual map playlist, which includes a lot more of the maps. The Casual playlist is sort of a "master" list for all the maps Rainbow Six Siege has on offer.
In this announcement, the Casual playlist will be limited to 15 maps to allow players to familiarize themselves with the new ones added to the game faster. Some of those removed from the Casual playlist will be reworked by the Level Design team, but some of those removed won't be coming back at all. The maps not returning have not been announced.
However, while those removed maps will not be available in the Casual or Ranked playlist, they will still be available for custom matches "for the time being." Eventually, they will be removed entirely because Rainbow Six Siege is "approaching the limit of our data sizes, and this will require a rework of how our maps are stored."
In addition to that announcement, Rainbow Six Siege's new season of Ranked maps won't include any of the brand new maps added to the game. Also, the Ranked and ESL Pro League map playlists will be introduced at the same time. This season, those two playlists include the same nine maps.
The last thing in their announcement is about the Map Preference system. For now, that system will be deactivated for all PvP multiplayer, except Terrorist Hunt. The system will return at some point, they just don't know when. They are currently exploring other ways to use the feature.
Rainbow Six Siege is currently having a free weekend until tomorrow if you're interested in trying out the game.
What do you think of some maps being removed forever from the game or even just the casual playlist? Are there specific maps you did want to see gone? Let us know in the comments below!