Splinter Cell: Neck-Breakathon

I’m going to assume there’s an achievement for getting through the entirety of Splinter Cell: Conviction by breaking people’s necks. Anyway, this walkthrough trailer is extremely detailed, showing off loads of the new takedowns, an interrogation function, the sticky cam, Sam’s goggles with their new cheaty wallhack feature, and some other man-violence. Oh, Sam, you sure know how to deal with a faceless enemy thug. Swoon. The game is apparently out in February.


  1. A-Scale says:

    Bloody hell, most of that looks tremendous. I particularly like the brutal melee combat.

    Also, looks like Ryan owes Vinny 50 bucks due to those night vision goggles (Giantbomb thing).

    • Heliosicle says:

      Yeah, it was obvious they would include it though

      and that was a stupid bet from the start though ;)

    • jameskond says:

      But wait my little grasshopper, they said ‘Sonar Goggles’ and the bet was for if the actually would have the function of seeing in the dark, but yeah we’ll hear more about it on next weeks Bombcast I guess xD

  2. Heliocentric says:

    Would like to try my second run through snapping every bad man neck possible.

    Will this game be an abortion? Its hard to tell.

  3. BruceWang says:

    Meh, Arkham Asylum > Splinter Cell.

  4. Eleven says:

    Please don’t use embedded Gamespot videos, they’re designed to be unwatchably small and have no fullscreen. Just link straight to the site if you must.

  5. Tyshalle says:

    To be honest I’m not terribly impressed. It looks good and polished and all that, but it feels like they’ve gone for a bit more of a shooter-y, action-packed feel rather than a methodical, very calculated sort of stealth game. One of the best things about Splinter Cell has always been how you really needed to stay hidden and take people out without them knowing you’re there. If they spotted you, you were dead.

    Here it seems like you’re going to be trading bullets back and forth, except you can take a lot more damage than they can, so you can pretty much just soak up some damage while you dispatch three dudes at once, as we saw. I’m not a fan. Doesn’t mean it won’t be an entertaining game anyway, but I think I’m going to miss the days where your spine tingled with anticipation at getting close to your kill, knowing that if you messed up at all here you were dead.

    • Mundus says:

      Agree, as a youngster playing the original SC I hated it but then I recently bought the games on Steam and absolutely love the tension and tactics one needs to consider in every situation. The following games kept the same formula while still evolving and growing, so it’ s kind of sad to see Sam one-man-army-ing his way through a level.

      I still have hopes for the game though, just not in the same mindset I have while playing the previous games.

  6. Mundus says:

    Sounds cool but most of the time it looks like the game plays it out for you. It’s just you pressing a button and Sam going into Inspector Tequila mode.

    Still, it looks fresh and unique and I’ll still probably have a blast playing it, although I kind of miss the low key stealth from the older games. looking forward to it!

  7. teo says:

    So… there’s no aiming in this game?

  8. neems says:

    Doesn’t look like Splinter Cell at all. Be interesting to see how it turns out.

  9. Dracko says:


  10. Sparvy says:

    So if you run away they stand still shooting at your last known position for 5 minutes until you run up behind them and beat the crap out of em? Is that some new amazing AI technology or just a new inventive way of making AI just as stupid as before?

  11. Guy says:

    Suffers from the Ubisoft syndrome of trying to make a game into a movie. Its all very sexy and cool but why can’t I be the one doing the cool things rather than the cutscenes?

  12. Vandelay says:

    “This room is pretty crowded… so I’m going to take a much more offensive approach.” err… What? But of course, a couple of guys by themselves need to be killed stealthily (with explosives) but a whole room full of bad guys needs the one man army to drop down right in the middle of them and shoot them all in the face (note the hostage in the background, so this is a doubly good plan.)

    Pretty much tells you everything you need to know about this game. It ain’t Splinter Cell.

    Oh, and the interrogation thing was in Chaos Theory. It may not have gone into a cutscene, but it was in Chaos Theory.

    • Shalrath says:

      “Pretty much tells you everything you need to know about this game. It ain’t Splinter Cell.”

      This is the ‘vegas’ of this series. Which means it’ll sell 10 times what the original did, unfortunately.

      I like a lot of the stuff in it, but the plays-for-you fights are… odd.

  13. V. Tchitcherine says:

    Ah, so Ubisoft are ruining yet another once-commendable franchise? This mark-exexcute system and the ridiculous necessity to overstate your ‘last known position’ (my, just like any other stealth game just far less naturalistic because it takes so much THINKING to deduce where enemies last saw you) are very odious signs that point to a possible abortion of a game comparable to Prince of Persia; Oh Sam, I was once as tall and handsome as you.

    Ubisoft are the destroyer of incredible ideas, game engines and their own artists.

  14. Howl says:

    I don’t know if it was due to the dodgy video quality but the game’s framerate looks pretty bad for an action game. Hopefully the PC version will fix that. The new Sam is seriously tasty though. I think I could cope with 15fps for a few hours of watching him man-handle thugs.

  15. autogunner says:

    the original aiming and shooting in splinter cell 3 was wank, ontop of an otherwise perfect action game – this seems to be a improvement – sam does all his acrobatics and special moves at a contextual button press – why not shooting?

  16. Anthony says:

    Being as I am a diehard lover of Chaos Theory, any sequel that’s not like that does tend to irritate me, as I tend to think that title was a perfect storm of game development.

    However, I actually get what they’re doing here with making the game more about active progression rather than skulking around in shadows for ten minutes waiting for the AI to switch back to idle. They definitely need to show more actual stealth and enemy avoidance, but in terms of action-y manshoot I like that Sam is a little more effective than he has been in the past.

    That, and the Bourne-esque bits make me feel funny in my man parts.

    • D says:

      I completely agree with you. I think when the first info came forth about this game, I accepted the death of old-SC and realised that they’re not ever going to make it as good again anyways. So I’d rather have a good new styled action game than endless poor attempts at living up to the series previous glory. I’m also sure that eventually we’ll get new and better stealth games, done right.

  17. Junch says:

    I agree with Bruce Wang that this looks a bit like Arkham Asylum except without a cape and ugly thugs. Or guns. But they should get Liam Neeson to voice Sam Fisher and then this will be Taken, the movie game tie-in.

    And be better than Alpha Protocol.

  18. WilPal says:

    So basically, you just mark people then press a button to kill them?


  19. Soobe says:

    Batman AA clearly raised the bar, will this follow suit or stumble?

    • D says:

      You seem to have a lot of built up anger towards this game. I like that. But dissing bats in the same breath.. not cool dude.

  20. sigma83 says:

    People, people.


    Have it.

  21. Glove says:

    The missions where you were stripped of the Fifth Freedom in the original Splinter Cell and Pandora Tomorrow were so much more interesting than the “shoot/elbow these men in the head to progress” of the later games.

  22. Mal says:

    Actually, you can use the quick-kill thing on the people you mark only after you get a stealth kill while the marked enemies are in your line-of-sight. So yes, I do think that’s great (or at least innovative) gameplay, bro.

    • D says:

      This is new info to me. It definitely adds a layer to the gameplay mechanics of it, possibly nicely building up a risk/reward system of going for risky stealth kills in order to get a lot of cool quick ones.

  23. 1stGear says:

    I’m skeptical. The main thing that threw me off was when the narrator said “We need to take a stealth approach to this situation”. Uh, pardon? Splinter Cell was about ALWAYS taking a stealth approach. Sam wasn’t a one-man army that could shoot his way through a terrorist compound. So Conviction is officially recieving a jaundiced eye.

    Oh, and ignore Dracko. He lurks in the shadows of RPS, waiting to leap out and tell everyone why a popular game is bad and why everyone who disagrees with him is stupid.

    • megaman says:

      For me, it was when he said “this room’s packed and we need a less stealthy approach” when I thought: Wait, what? Jeez, he detonated an explosive in the last room. What exactly is stealthy in that? And how is this not going to ring alarms through the whole level?

    • James T says:

      Heaven forfend that someone not toe the party line.

    • Dracko says:

      P.S. I like a lot of popular games. What are you on about with that one?

  24. Jebus says:

    So what is left to the player? If all you have to do is press a button from time to time (and move.. ok, you have to move yourself) i could just as well rent a bourne dvd. I could even watch it with the controller in hand and pretend im playing jason.

  25. fuggles says:

    So the stealth approach is to drop down, break a neck and shoot two thugs, the offensive approach is to throw a flash bang, drop down, break a neck and shoot two thugs.

    I get this now.

  26. Radiant says:

    That looked awesome.

    I’m very impressed that they found a way to signify what the AI is doing/thinking rather being shagged senseless by unforgiving psychic enemies you have to guess at.

    Hopefully more games use this last known position shadow mechanic.

    • D says:

      It stands out to me as a little unnessesary. I suspect the ghost marker is to (on some level) convince the player that the AI is reacting appropriately. Really Good stealth game AI would fight the player strategically, reposition itself to easily defendable positions, try to get good line of sight, try to cut off the players assumed route or hell even just go stand with its back to the wall. I’ll bet you money that this ghost marker system is to impress on the player “Its okay they’re just slowly going forward, THATS WHERE THEY SAW YOU LAST SEE?”

      Otherwise I’m actually cautiously optimistic about this, it looks like it could be fun in an entirely non-splinter-cell-esque way.

  27. Angel Dust says:

    I personally don’t mind this more wham-blam Jason Bourne like approach but what the fuck is up with projecting the mission objectives onto the actual environment? Plastering “RESCUE THE SCIENTIST” on a wall is a seamless storytelling technique? Hopefully you can turn it off.

    • Andy says:

      Can’t help but agree with you there. How many times do we have to scream suspension of disbelief at designers until it sinks in.

    • Vandelay says:

      Everyone seems to compare this new style to the Bourne movies, but I really can’t agree with that. The original design of Conviction was like the Bourne movies, this is just a generic action game. Bourne was never a one man army, taking down everyone he saw. He would run, create diversions, constantly move. In Bourne, the idea was more about making as much noise to create confusion and paranoia to escape without being noticed.

      If they had of stuck to their guns and made the hobo-Splinter Cell game, this would have been much more interesting and original. Obviously, it ended up being too hard.

    • D says:

      Those messages actually come across very well with me. I simply consider the alternative, a big old HUD window popping up to obscure my view (and also suspend my disbelief). I think its a very stylized way of conveying Sams inner thought.
      It also has the added bonus of already knowing what you’re looking at when you see the message, so changes in objectives could unintrusively be pushed simply by looking at relevant objects, say f.x. an unexpected guard post on a road – “NECK SNAP GUARDS”.

      Do hope it’s on a fade timer though.

  28. poop says:

    aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah hardcore pc types always complain about dumbing down but this game has a fucking autoaim vats mechanic

    • D says:

      Hm. Is your point that people are not complaining? Or is it that this game is not coming out for consoles?

    • Dracko says:

      So did Fallout 3 (With Zack Snyder slow-mo to boot!), and the PC crowd fellate the Hell out of that turd.

    • Thants says:

      Well, it was more of an RPG than an FPS. Now you’re just looking for something to be offended by.

  29. MrRud says:

    i think this approach is too mechanical and repetitive, i hope the challenge is gonna have more variety….
    stealth games (with Splinter Cell in primis) are essencialy puzzle games: you have a situation and you have to solve it adapting to the enviroment, numer of enemies etc. with the mark mechanic the game is headed to a infinite look-mark-action loop. hope is not gonna turn this way ….

  30. Butler` says:

    Anyone else think this is leaning over into “looks great, but plays boring/repetitive?” territory?

    • Dracko says:

      That’s Ubi’s modus operandi since 2003. How is this still a surprise to anyone?

  31. Corrupt_Tiki says:

    +1 to the “I think the hobo sam looked better” comment. I want to struggle and fight brutal and hard, not mark and instantly bukkake people with lead.