Jeremy Jastrzab
24 May, 2007

Splinter Cell Conviction Preview

360 Preview | PALGN tries out a fundamentally different Splinter Cell title.
The announcement of a fifth Splinter Cell title isn't likely to have surprised anybody, but what may surprise fans of the series is the fact that Splinter Cell: Conviction is very different from its predecessors. We went hands on with Conviction and even though the game feels different it's still fundamentally Splinter Cell.

After Ubisoft Montreal finished with Chaos Theory a couple of years ago, the series was sent to the Shanghai studio for the fourth installment, Double Agent. During that time, Ubisoft Montreal was actually hard at work on the fifth game, Splinter Cell: Conviction, which is scheduled for release exclusively on the Xbox 360 (at the moment). The game itself is set a couple of years after Double Agent and Sam Fisher has now become a wanted fugitive. Fisher has been wrongfully accused and is out to prove his innocence, whilst avoiding the authorities.

Conviction looks to take many steps in order to reinvigorate the series, both for fans and for those who have previously disliked the series. Firstly, the whole “light and shadow” mechanic has been thrown out the window. It is now a matter of keeping yourself hidden from the crowd and from sight, rather than keeping in the shadows. Furthermore, since the NSA is now after you, instead of supporting you, your entire arsenal of gadgetry has been completely removed. Now you'll need to rely on an ability to improvise in certain scenarios. It's not a matter of expending Sam's moves, but more of a matter of expanding them to account for more open and improvised situations.

Spot the hobo.

Spot the hobo.
Despite the fact that Sam now looks like your regular hobo, the role that he takes in Conviction places him in a situation where he’s akin to Jason Bourne. With the light and shadow cast aside, your going to have to take more of an active role with your stealth. The development team has created a system where Sam can pick up any object that has been placed in the game and move it as he wants. For example, Objects such as chairs and tables can be used to barricade doors or to

The environment is much more open than before. NPC’s might start reacting unfavourably if you are too rowdy or noticeable. You're also equipped with a detection meter that alerts you if a cop has spotted you. This gives you a chance to disappear into the crowd or to lure the cop away. Rather than your standard tutorial the game will even begin by giving the option of running "Memento" sequences. These "flashes" give you a suggested way of going about your business.

In previous Splinter Cell games, Sam was a little bit submissive as he really had no way of fighting back if spotted. Thankfully, in another Jason Bourne-esque move, the combat system has been revitalied so that Sam has numerous quick and powerful melee moves to make sure that rough encounters don’t last too long. You’ll still have weapons but unless you want to cause a ruckus, you’ll need to be sparing with their use. Ubisoft has also confirmed Conviction will have a multiplayer mode, but they haven't revealed anything more on it just yet.

Get ready for a whooping.

Get ready for a whooping.
Splinter Cell: Convicton is shaping up very nicely. The prospect of playing a character on the edge is rather enticing. There was a situation in the game where Sam blows up a hotdog cart in a corner and scares off all of the citizens. Cops come running towards the scene and Sam needs to take out the police individually in order to make sure he isn't disturbed. It felt a little bit different doing this with Sam Fisher, there's no doubt Conviction will appeal to stealth and action gamers alike.

In terms of the visuals, Splinter Cell: Convicton is shaping up to be the sharpest looking game of the series so far. Double Agent looked like it held onto its previous generation roots but this time around, it looks like the team are taking the game all the way. Not only is the game extremely detailed, but with additions such as adaptive animations, it looks to take visuals and hopefully gameplay to a level that can be considered "next gen".

Splinter Cell: Convicton looks like a genuine first step in reinvigorating the Splinter Cell series. The mechanics look to have been tweaked the right way and the premise behind the game is compelling. Furthermore, the game is back in the hands of the studio that put it on the map in the first place, which can only be a good thing.
Splinter Cell: Conviction looks to take the series in a bold new direction. And so far, we like it.

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6 years ago
sounds promising, Nice graphics as usual.
6 years ago
dAMN...looks like I gotta get back into the series (I have them all except the last one double agent) so that means buying double agent for the collection.
6 years ago
Sam looks like the invisible man from Heroes
6 years ago
While I do like the way it sounds, I PRAY they do not scrap the good name with some generic killer =/
6 years ago
If its good as PALGN claims, then might it be worth shoplifting it.
6 years ago
This formula certainly looks like it will work while appealing to Splinter Cell fans of old aswell as newcomers who weren't satisfied with the pitfalls of gameplay in earlier Splinter Cell titles.

Let's hope it's done properly.
6 years ago
You were supposed to be able to barricade doors similarly using random objects in HL2. That sentence in the article seems to finish somewhat abruptly too.
6 years ago
Ooh, hobo action. Sounds like some John Clark from Without Remorse action.
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