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Review: Spinter Cell Conviction


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Author: WNxWind

Splinter Cell: Conviction

Platform: PC

Genre Category: FPS

Date of Release: 4/10


Publisher: Ubisoft

Developer: Ubisoft

Rating: A

Official Site URL: http://splintercell.us.ubi.com/conviction/

Splinter Cell: Conviction Review

by WNxWind 4/3/10

I may be one of the few people who never played the originally critically acclaimed Splinter Cell game, it just did not seem like something I would be interested in. After endless other Tom Clancy games, some caught my eye a bit but I never decided to dig in and really give them a shot. Then I watched the trailer for Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction. I noticed a rugged angry looking Sam Fisher, not a stealthy all in black with bright green goggled Sam Fisher. The graphics looked superb and the stealth is now handled by real-time shadows. Along with a new “execute” game play mechanic I was sold, I will go into details about the new game mechanics and how they work below.

The game starts off with Sam Fisher alone sitting at a table outside where a waiter hands you a tray with a cell phone and blue tooth attachment, Grimm is on the other line and Sam almost seems angry as to as how he was found, she quickly directs him out of trouble as forces engage the market area in search for you, the game picks up fast with action right from the get go. Sam Fisher is one pissed off man, his daughter had been killed by a hired driver and he wants to find the man that killed her, his anger is apparent in his poise. The first scene of gun play you are in a black and white screen meaning you are covered by shadows, once you sneak behind the enemy and hit the “C” button, you will commence a melee kill (or if you have a pistol a stranglehold head shot). Once you have performed one of these techniques you are able to use the “Execute” mechanic, brand new to the game. This is perhaps my favorite aspect of the game. Depending on the gun you are using you have so many bars representing how many people you can execute at once, you hit “Q” while targeting each enemy to “mark” them, and lets say the first pistol allows you to execute three, you mark three enemies then hit “E” which instantly shows you shoot each enemy in the head one by one without them being able to fire back or dodge out of the way, an element of surprise that kicks ass. The only pain about this is that you need to kill one enemy with melee every time you want to use the execute ability. The game is set up so this is easily done, especially in levels where you are stealthy climbing up pipes and dangling above which allows you to hit “C” again and use the “death from above” ability which re-enables execution.

The black and white shadowing is the first time the series has used anything like this, it Is a brilliant idea and really allows you to feel the fact that you are hidden. You can shoot out lights, use EMP, or be simple and turn off light switches to be vanished into the shadows of darkness, you can see the enemy but the enemy cannot see you. If you are spotted lets say by firing and missing and the AI notices your location, an outline of your body will be placed where they spotted you so you can quickly move desk to desk, or car to car to flank around as they slowly attempt to engage where they think you are hidden. The AI is not stupid, especially if you play on the hardest difficulty “Realism” mode. “Realism” mode I must admit was far too much for me to handle and in many situations the “Normal” mode is too much at times, for the majority I played on “Rookie” which still shows amazing AI and reaction. The beauty of the graphics during the shadowed scenes are UN-rivaled, lets say one lone hanging light is dangling from a wire and swinging back and forth due to the explosive chaos that had just taken place, parts of the screen will become full color again where the light shines showing you you need to get your ass back into the shadows. While I've covered a lot about the shadows, its a half and half type of situation many scenes of the game actually take place out doors during the day, which makes it much harder to hide but much easier to throw remote mines and watch your enemies explode.

The soundtrack is on pace with the game-style but nothing revolutionary, although the sound effects are superb, sounding as real as they can in a video game. Sound plays a key role, especially in a mission where you have to use three different cameras swapping between each and zooming in to catch a conversation of two people to have it recorded and sent to “Grimm”, they constantly walk around making you change camera and figure out which one you need to use in order to zoom and hear the audio, and if you catch too little of the conversation your only hurting yourself, luckily I only missed a few words out of the mouths of the characters during my transitions but I imagine this scene can be rough on some people. Listening to the enemy is just as important as killing the enemy, you need lintel and that's where the brand new Interrogation system comes into play.

The interrogation system could have been a lot more than it is, no matter what you get the answers you are looking for just by pressing “C” every time they refuse to answer, eventually they spit out the information along with a few teeth, rarely do you spare their lives after the interrogation. What makes this mode interesting though is while you have the person by the neck talking you can move around and use the destructible environment to your advantage to how fast you get these answers out, for example standing in front of a stack of TV's will send the captives head directly into a television screen shattering the glass leaving blood everywhere, a much better tactic than say just slamming his head on a desk. Kicking the enemy through glass Is my favorite during interrogation. Even though they could have done a lot more, I am satisfied with the system and I am sure you will be as well.

As far as guns go you have endless pistols to choose from, I mainly use the Five Seven due to its 20 round mag, and right now I am using the M4 as my assault rifle with silencer upgrades and upgrades for more “executable targets”. From the AK-47, P90, UMP, MP5, Scorpion, Uzi all the important guns are there along with plenty of awesome gadgets such as the Remote Camera which allows you to place it somewhere and then watch the feed back to you. Remote Mines, Hand Grenades, EMP Grenades, Flash Bang etc are all at your disposal. Another neat feature is with a piece of broken glass you carry around, when crouched you can look under neath doors to see the enemies behind the door before you kick it in and blast them to pieces, or silently find a way to infiltrate through the air duct, or around the windows of the building a favorite of mine. Also to be noted around each level you'll find “Weapon Stash” boxes where you'll refill all your gadgets and grenades along with ammo, and allow you to upgrade guns or pick new ones.

I'll briefly summarize the options of multilayer which I may add is very addictive and stable with lots of players to frag with during co-op.The Co-op online game modes allowing you and buddy to tackle special missions designed for it. A player versus player multiplayer couldn't work due to the mark and execute mode along with you leaving your outline when spotted, it would be a pain in the ass to get mark and executed in multiplayer over and over. So instead you pair up with buddies online and go through co-op missions which share your execute markers allowing you and someone else to target and execute the waves of enemies on the fly at a fast satisfying pace. It's one of the best Co-Op out there in gaming right now, where Modern Warfare 2 let you down in Co-Op, Conviction makes up for it ten fold. With that said to be honest I don't think gamers buy a Splinter Cell title for its multilayer fragging, leave that to games like Battlefield: Bad Company 2.

Overall this is the most mature Splinter Cell to date, attempting to attract a new audience with Sam Fisher's new gritty appearance and bad-ass attitude with slim to no ability to control his temper. The gun play is great and excelled with the “Execute” ability. The stealth is revolutionary due to the shadowed stealth being created by the lack of light. The sound is top notch, guns do not sound as realistic as in say Battlefield: Bad Company 2, but they sound better than most FPS or Third Person Shooters on the market today. One big turn down with the environment is sure you can hop over a desk and send all the computer parts and documents flying to the ground, yet shooting at it or throwing a grenade will leave the desk in perfect condition, this baffled me and took down some game play points cutting out of the hard edged realism that Conviction is going for, with that said the graphics at times do stun the player and you have many “ooh! Aah!” time moments of satisfaction from either a beautifully architecture d building, or the chaos during a firefight the graphics more than satisfy. As a quick note some people will love the flashback playable level that takes place on the "Bridge of Death" during "Operation Desert Storm" in Iraq. Overall if you are like me and was never really a stealth fan, this could be the game to change your mind. If you've already been a Splinter Cell fan, this one might be the best to date.

Graphics - 9.0/10

Game-play- 9.0/10 (was an 8.5 but the Co-Op Multiplayer brings it up to a full 9)

Sound – 9.5/10

Overall – 9.0/10

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The Five-seveN is hands down the best gun in the game. Also it's not an FPS :P Great game though. I still think the first game is by far the best in the series however. Also visibility depending on light is nothing new at all. That has always been in the series, not to mention it played a role in the Metal Gear Solids, and even in games such as Oblivion and Fallout 3. The game is most certainly fun, nothing revolutionary about it however.

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Well just how they executed it this time, its probrably the best way they could have possibly executed it. Its just too bad I can't get any Co-Op players on PC to play... makes me wish I got it for console. I know its a third person shooter, the editor must have put "FPS".

but yeah I gave it an 8.5 at first, but bumped it to an inflated 9.0 due to co-op. Great game with good replay value aside from Co-Op. Glad you liked one of my reviews. Next I have Red Dead Redemption coming.. which as I already said is my first perfect 10 for a video game... Hell I thought I beat the game, Until I realized I had to do something (a mission from a stranger way at the end) in order to REALLY finish the game and get the credits to roll, that difference made the game leaps better for me of an already amazing game, but the closure you get if you do end up REALLY finishing it and getting the credits to role brought tears to my eyes, especially with the music. It'll probrably be a LONG review.

but hell 50$ a review isnt bad money.

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Wish I could get paid to review games. I'd have more games and more people to complain to.

if you ever became a reviewer for a well known website Erik, i'd make it my new mission in life to become the president of SEGA and convince everyone at the company that Ubisoft has the right idea and we'd make dozens of Sonic spin-offs for DS.

i hope you enjoy reviewing both the Amy and Cream versions of the Sonic date sim. still wondering what the 3DS is capable of? great ready to see things you can't un-see.

(and the Big the Cat fishing sim)

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if you ever became a reviewer for a well known website Erik, i'd make it my new mission in life to become the president of SEGA and convince everyone at the company that Ubisoft has the right idea and we'd make dozens of Sonic spin-offs for DS.

i hope you enjoy reviewing both the Amy and Cream versions of the Sonic date sim. still wondering what the 3DS is capable of? great ready to see things you can't un-see.

(and the Big the Cat fishing sim)

Eh, I'd give it a 3 and then go play Sonic 3 and Knuckles

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Why is there a letter and number grade? That's a bit of overkill.

And interrogation has been apart of Splinter Cell since the original. You needed to do it to advance in some areas, like getting a passcode off of a guard or a retina scan. Conviction waters it down and I'm pretty sure the whole "throw people up against shit until they give you information you need to advance in the story" has been in other games before, like Godfather.

I want to say True Crime used it too, but I'm not willing to subject myself to that game again just to double check.

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Also Using images that ultimately were never apart of the game makes me question whether you actually played through it entirely or played through it at all.

One other problem is that if you did play it especially if on the PC then you should not have had any trouble picking out your own screen shots from the game.

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