Sam Fisher is back and he's on a mission to find his daughter's killer. Arguably gaming's most intimidating interrogator, players will use Sam's expansive arsenal of moves to unravel a conspiracy filled with twists and turns. There's a lot to love in the franchise's latest chapter, so here's what we thought of the Xbox 360 and PC exclusive:
Jeff Splinter Cell: Conviction is the best game the franchise has offered in quite some time. After a few delays, the final product has definitely been worth the wait; though we wish the fun would have lasted just a little bit longer.
While most Splinter Cell games have traditionally focused heavily on stealth mechanics, Conviction lessens the sneaking around, which ultimately allows the game to flow much more smoothly. The art of not being seen still plays a major role in the game; you just won't find yourself crawling from cover to cover the entire time. Probably the best improvement to this aspect of the game is the black-and-white to color dynamic: when Sam is hidden, the world goes black and white, when he can be seen, it's back to color.
Perhaps most notable this time around is the game's new expository system. Conviction skips a lot of the conventional cutscenes we're used to and instead opts for an innovative environmental-projection packaging where video and mission objectives are artfully displayed on walls, vehicles, and other objects. This, too, helps the game skip along and we really enjoyed the seamlessness it was able to provide. This is by far the best narrative of any Splinter Cell game.
We also really enjoyed the execution currency system. For every sneak-attack melee kill you perform, you're granted the ability to take out multiple targets in one gorgeous cinematic sequence. This really encourages the player to take advantage of Sam's skill set and be creative.
New fluid action, design improvements, and better gameplay make Splinter Cell: Conviction a definite must-have for fans of the franchise--we're just a little disappointed the single player campaign ended as quickly as it did. There's plenty of replay value in the solid co-op game mode, so those looking for an added incentive to buy can find it there.
Scott: It's been quite a while since I visited any sort of Tom Clancy game, which I find funny because I remember a time not so long ago when the market seemed Clancy-supersaturated. Though it's great to see Sam Fisher back, I'll admit that the intricacies and patience of the stealth series never matched my gung-ho style. Conviction is a smoother action experience--more of a living Hollywood movie than the tactical games of past. On the other hand, this moves Conviction further into the immersive action/shooter territory already occupied by shooters that are getting, to some degree, ever more complicated. … Read more