Video With Conviction: Ubi Talk New Splinter Cell

By Jim Rossignol on July 1st, 2009 at 7:15 am.


“Prepare, execute, and vanish,” say Ubi Montreal of their new Splinter Cell philosophy. That, apparently, is the best way to explain the way Splinter Cell: Conviction will retain stealth options while boosting the action quotient. While standard sneaking allows you to prepare your approach, you’re going to be going through fairly ostentatious action sequences, before slipping back into the shadows. Hide and seek with neck-breaking, then. Also, “Mark and execute” is the new central motif – the tagging system which we saw in the E3 trailer – allows you to mark out enemies before you engage, allowing Sam to have the upper hand in the first moments of a fight. Anyway, go take a look at the developers making earnest hand-gestures about their game concepts below.

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67 Comments »

  1. The Innocent says:

    Well, I suppose I’m hopeful. The automated combat worries me. It looks like you’d be badass for approximately four or five goes with the “MARK AND EXECUTE” thing, and then wish for something more, but at the same time there’s something visceral about it that I like.

    Also, I hope it has good length. Chaos Theory was one of my favorite games, but it could have benefited from around 50% more playtime.

  2. Dracko says:

    Bhazor, what of Castle Wolfenstein?

  3. Wooly says:

    “Is no-one else seeing the Assassins Creed comparisons here? If I see Fisher leaping between drainpipes or hurtling over rooftops, my scream of “OMFG ITS JUST AN ASSASINS CREED MOD!” will deafen all those monks who spend hours in the mountains listening to the universe fart…”
    Don’t forget the “dynamic stealthing” by blending in with crowds!

    “Splinter Cell invented action stealth? Fuck off.

    Hell the first Metal Gear was in 1987.”

    I think you must mean *Thief* in 1998!

  4. D says:

    Man I’m so glad that developer at the end told me that they’re trying to make a game that everyone will like, else I might not have figured that out, like, ever.

    The great thing about SC is that every game (of the old ones obv.) start out as a trial and error frustrations, but end up as masterfully handled moments of improvised chaos. I don’t think I’ll enjoy this new re-imagination as much, but I do also like my actiony and explosiony. RIP awesome stealth series.

  5. superking208 says:

    ‘Splinter Cell defined stealth action.’
    Have a seat, sir.
    Looking Glass would like to have a word with you.

  6. Bhazor says:

    Reply to Wooly

    Nay the original Metal Gear used a very primitive line of sight system and leveled alarms. It also included patrols security cameras and all that other gubbins. Thief was in fact predated by (among others) Tenchu by around 9 months. However, Thief was among the first to penalise for any deaths and have predominantly non violent objectives. Calling Thief the first stealth game is like calling Burnout the first arcade racing game, it may be the most polished or successful version but it’s certainly not the first.

    But anyway their claim in the video is utterly, stupendously wrong.

  7. Brer says:

    More specifically according to preview coverage elsewhere, they’re still tweaking it but right now you need to do a melee takedown (lethal or non-lethal) in order to recharge the “mark and execute” move, and the number of people you can mark varies by weapon. If you watch one of the E3 Developer Playthroughs you can see him mark two people in the mansion without having the move “charged” (the dots in the lower right hand corner are grey, not red), drop down and do a neck-break on a third, which refills the gauge and turns the “marks” above the two other guys heads from grey to red, allowing him to execute the move.

    In a sense it’s not really all THAT revolutionary in the sense that it’s really just an evolution of chargeable special moves from many games.

  8. Gravey says:

    I usually get my panties in a knot when people mention the great stealth games and completely neglect Thief. But in this case, the Ubi guys were saying “stealth action”, so assuming that “action” means the protagonist is equipped and expect to live after a face-to-face fight, I’ll let them off the hook on this one. I’ll argue that Thief is the original and best pure stealth game, a mechanic or philosophy which no other franchise has totally invested in: sneak-or-fight versus sneak-or-run.

  9. Bite says:

    Ubisoft actually brought SC:C back to the drawing board because they felt the game was too similar to Assassin’s Creed (what with the social stealth and combat aspects). The moves I’m seeing here still belong to the standard gamut of what Sam Fisher is capable of, just considerably sped up. I’d like to see a man in his fifties navigate a ledge with that kind of mobility and swiftness.

  10. Marlowe says:

    So they want to turn Splinter Cell into an RTS game where you control just one unit? Click on this location – Sam runs to it – click on a bunch of bad guys – Sam kills them – click on a building – Sam blows it up.

    Sound like Ubisoft have put everything into reverse history wise – Rainbow Six started out as a game where you plotted the movements of four squads through a map, setting waypoints and commands (like ‘Frag this room’ and ‘blow yourself up defusing the bomb’) and once you’d tweaked it to perfection you hit the Execute Plan button, sat back and watched your men get slaughtered when some Tango you’d not foreseen popped up behind them with an MG as they traversed a room.

    They ditched all of that for the FPS approach with no pre-planning and now they want to restore something like it in SC?

  11. Toby says:

    I would point out to all the angry men that presumably you don’t need to use the auto targeting gubbins if you don’t want to. I would however second the complaint of the Ubi slide into on rails action; POP was such a disappointment. AC was great the first few hours but I’ve never been able to play through it again, knowing the hours of repetition that lay ahead.

  12. Adventurous Putty says:

    @Brer: Sounds interesting. Link, please?

    And I think I’ve rambled about this game enough in another thread, so I’ll just shut up about it. Needless to say, the crying over “dire oversimplification” and “betrayal of the genre” and “console dumbing-down” are (though perhaps warranted) at best premature and at worst kind of fanboyish.

  13. Dracko says:

    Marlowe: They already did that with Assassin’s Creed.

  14. Subject 706 says:

    “A game that everyone will like” – meaning, it’ll be watered down, and at best mediocre.

  15. lra2or says:

    I’d just like to say that you gain an auto target opportunity once you’ve performed a stealth take down. Also, the colour of the dot above the persons head is an indicator of the chance to hit (white is a definite, red and other shades are percentages).

    So it’s not an always on “I win” button.

    As I see it, it’s just another tool to be used (or not). It looks to be a much more fluid fast paced game than previously and personally I can’t wait!

  16. Dracko says:

    Ira2or: Yes, we saw the footage too.

  17. lra2or says:

    Whoops didn’t see the comment above. That’ll teach me not skim read!

    Has any information on the multiplayer side of things been released yet?

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