The fifth – or sixth installment if you include the PSP game; Splinter Cell: Essentials – installment of the Splinter Cell series continues with the sequel to Double Agent, called Splinter Cell: Conviction.
The story picks up three years after Double Agent as Sam Fisher no longer works for the secret branch of the NSA, Third Echelon. Fisher is located overseas by a former collegue and told that his daughter, Sarah Fisher, is still alive. Fisher investigates the possible lead and learns that not only is his daughter alive but his former employer is planning an EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) attack on Washington, D.C. and will use the cover of darkness to assassinate the President. The Vice-President takes over and make Tom Reed the hero after the attack as the VP shows more favoritism towards Third Echelon where as the president does not.
Where have we heard this plot line before? (Insert any season of 24).
Besides the 24 reference to the plot, game developers had to change the visuals of the game to make sure this wasn’t a sequel, even though it is. Game play is decent with some improvements to game-playing visuals like having the screen change from color to black-and-white to show that you’re hiding from guards and having the objective goals of the mission display inside of the game like on a building, walls, and the floor instead of an on-screen graphic.
Developers also added in-game movies showing flashback film from previous Splinter Cell titles, in case you forgot what happened in previous games. It sounded like a great idea but only added confusion to the game.
Even with the new enhancements, developers took away key moves from previous titles that made the game stand out above the rest; like jumping, whistling to attack guards and many -if not, all – of the special moves Sam Fisher performed that made the game stand out above the rest like doing a split between two buildings.
But what was taken away, new items were replaced.
Added was silhouette spotting; when guards spotted your location, your spot is outlined and gamers can either stay in spot and hope to shoot everyone coming towards your location or move to another spot and shoot the guards as they move towards your silhouette.
Overall, the game is enjoyable but should be called a sequel to Double Agent and not labeled as a new game. The new features do not make up for the ones lost and the plot can be confusing as flashbacks appear during the game to reference previous events in past Splinter cell games. Also, the storyline to the game is confusing as well as the game starts at the ending sequence before going to the beginning point of the game.
But credit should be giving to Ubisoft for not naming the game – Splinter Cell: Double Agent 2.