Splinter Cell Blacklist review

(Xbox 360 / PS3 / PC)

The daddy of all stealth games is back, with its unique blend of tip-toeing around, wanton violence and more gadgets than all the James Bond movies combined. Read on to find out just how much fun you can have with the lights off…

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Along with the Assassin’s Creed series of games, Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell is a big money maker for Ubisoft. Ever since the first game was released back in 2002, gamers have been gripped with its hearty combination of stealth and action. The latest title in the franchise, Splinter Cell Blacklist, is the sixth in the series and as you would expect, delivers more of the same gameplay as before, yet with a few new twists to keep you on your toes.

One of the biggest twists is the fact that the game’s protagonist, Sam Fisher, has an entirely new voice. No longer does fan favourite Michael Ironside lend his gravelly tones to stage, and as a consequence Sam sounds a lot younger now. Whilst this may irk some veteran players, there is plenty to put a smile on your face.

Not only does Sam sound a lot younger, but he is arguably more versatile than before, and whereas past games either focused heavily on sneaking about, and others were more action-orientated, this time around how you play the game is pretty much up to you. You can play the waiting game and slyly edge past opponents when they are not looking, or instead go in all guns blazing and shoot the bejesus out of them.

As you progress, you have the opportunity to purchase upgrades for weapons, equipment and abilities, all of which will heavily affect the way you play the game. Sam himself is a doddle to control, and the online Spies vs Mercs multiplayer option makes for a fine accompaniment to the plot-driven solo option. Missions are plenty and varied enough to keep you coming back for more, and even when you have completed them the replay value is sky-high as there is always a different way to play through them.

 

Mark Pilkington

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