So it was while I was happily playing away on Ghost Recon on my new PC that I heard about Splinter Cell creating waves over on the Xbox.
I managed to get a hold of a copy of the PC version through a friend and really enjoyed it. The true Splinter Cell obsession didn’t start right away though. In fact, Pandora Tomorrow came and went and I didn’t even check it out.
But then something happened. I was round at a mate’s house when he decided to draw the curtains and turn out the light. This would have been somewhat worrying if he hadn’t then booted up the Xbox, tuned up the volume and proceeded to show me Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory. And I was blown away. It looked amazing and this was truly the way it should be played.
By this time, I had bought myself a PS2 and so the next day I went out and bought Chaos Theory. And then the obsession started. There I was in my front room, curtains drawn and a small sound system doing its best to vibrate the walls – playing Chaos Theory over and over. Hours spent in the dark. Superb.
I went on to buy Pandora Tomorrow both for the PS2 and the Gameboy Advance. I got Chaos Theory again for the Xbox (once I’d got the 360), the mobile phone and the DS (a terrible version!).
When Double Agent was released for the 360, I also bought the Xbox and PS2 versions! I have to say, as good as the 360 one is, the story is told much better in the 6th gen version and if you’re a fan, you should check it out.
Then all when quiet for a while. I moved on to other games and there was no sign of a new Splinter Cell. Not until 2007 when we were greeted with this:
A hobo Sam Fisher. The gameplay video for Splinter Cell Conviction was interesting. A new take on the franchise. A bold step in a new direction. But then it disappeared. There were delays and rumours that the game had been scrapped. Thankfully, this was only partly true.
Splinter Cell Conviction remergedat E3 2009 with a whole new look that put the hobo to shame. With the Mark and Execute and Last Known Position features, Sam Fisher was made into a predator, slick and efficient. When the game was finally released in April 2010 - Brilliant story-telling, amazing gameplay and a superb co-op campaign to boot ensured that Splinter Cell Conviction rose to the top of my Xbox 360 titles and became one of my favourite games of all time.
And it looks like the sequel – Splinter Cell: Blacklist could well do the same. I’ll leave you with these demo videos, showing two different approaches to the same mission. Enjoy.