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Splinter Cell: Blacklist: Why The Hate?

Splinter Cell: Blacklist: Why The Hate?


By now you’re probably in one of two camps: those that like the look of the new Splinter Cell, and those that don’t (there is no middle ground: this is videogames, people).


We can see why fans of the series wouldn’t necessarily like the new direction. All that free-running, climbing, killing with impunity: it’s just Assassin’s Creed, innit?


In one sense, yes. There’s no denying the influence of Ubisoft’s other monster franchise, not just on Splinter Cell but also on Watch Dogs, the company’s new IP. What we’re saying is that we’re not sure that it’s a problem.


After all, those mechanics are popular for a reason: they work. They heighten the feeling of being a badass killing machine. And, when you get down to it Sam and Ezio aren’t too far removed: they infiltrate and kill for a cause they believe in. There were moments in the E3 demo where it looked like you didn’t have to kill everything that moves. It’s not like a new Tetris game suddenly having free-running blocks.


Some will weep for the Splinter Cell’s past, or at least their gameplay styles. To which we say: go back and play Chaos Theory. It still exists, and it is still by far the best example of classic SC gameplay. Better yet, it’s still good, and is available on PSN.


The thing is, franchises have to change (note we’ve not said evolve) and if they don’t they die. Singling out Blacklist as the moment the series changed would be disingenuous: Double Agent wasn’t brilliant, felt tired in its approach. And then Conviction ushered in many of the changes seen here, just not to the same degree.


What we’re saying is that while Blacklist might not be ‘your’ Splinter Cell, it is where the franchise is going. It hasn’t deleted previous entries and – this is a big point – it might actually bear more relation to classic Splinter Cell than you think.


Having said that: if Spies vs Mercs doesn’t return, then we can all get mad.

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  • Julius48

    The problem for me(and from reading forum comments) isn’t necessary that they have added new gameplay styles. Stealth fans shouldn’t be worried about this anyway, as it’s been said that stealth playthroughs are still in the game.

    The real problem for fans of the series is that this is no longer Sam Fisher. It’s a different guy with Sam Fisher’s name. Sam had a really unique gruff voice (coming from actor Michael Ironside) and now it sounds like its voiced by a college student. Its not the old Fisher we know, so its going to e difficult accepting this in the Splinter Cell story. In my opinion they should have gone with a new character and made Sam be in the background.

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  • Sean

    I was hoping for another Chaos Theory, which had it all, stealth, shooting lights, thermal & night vision goggles etc. Now it seams they are going like other games, but SC is not like other games, its better (or was).

    They tried this approach with Conviction and that was the biggest piece of crap ever. Its in my local game store at £3 (about $2)

    I like the fact that you can use your own voice but at least keep some of the traditional Splinter Cell as well. Why not have both!

  • John

    If I want to do parkour and kill enemies with a knife, guess what, there is Assassins’s Creed for a reason, are you telling me “Bigger is better?” That two IPs that have the same sort of direction is a good thing? This is Splinter Cell, not Assassin’s Creed. I wanted to get my stealth fix, not my shiv fix, Black Flag is going to fix that for me/

  • lloyd

    splinter cell is still splinter cell no matter what they change, it may have new playing styles but if it did’nt it would just be another back shelf game.