Following multiple successful forays into console gaming, the Splinter Cell series had every right to kick back, relax and iterate the ever-loving life out its lucrative stealth formula. Instead, developers Ubisoft took the daring decision to revamp the series, eschewing wall-straddling stealth in favor of Conviction‘s more action-oriented approach (read the full review here). Now, with the game’s sequel, Splinter Cell Blacklist appearing to reconcile the series’ previous play styles, Game Rant suits up to take a sneaky peek at the title’s co-op credentials, a feature we’ve been excited to learn more about.
Focusing on the collaborative efforts between series veteran Sam Fisher and newcomer Isaac Briggs, the latest Splinter Cell Blacklist trailer is bursting with back-and-forth chit-chatter, twin takedowns and slow-motion melee galore – embracing the game’s multiple combat styles. Old favorites like the ledge pull down, wall boost and over-the-counter combo all mark their return.
Possible additions to the formula include a Call of Duty-style breach system, as well as a tantalizing bait-and-blast dynamic as indicated by the trailer’s early moments. Fisher, now played by actor Eric Johnson who takes over the physical motion capture role as well as the voice previously played by Michael Ironside, is shown casually perusing his surroundings when an eagle-eyed sniper takes aim at the tri-sighted spy. With Fisher’s brains set to paint the patio, Briggs appears just in time to thwart the shooter, though whether this kind of action will be easily replicable by players is, as yet, unknown.
Conviction’s controversial target-marking system, known as ‘Mark & Execute’, also musters up a brief appearance, as Fourth Echelon’s leading men are forced to neutralize an all-out ambush in record time. Just how this time-slowing, killing in motion functionality will play out amongst two or more individuals is hard to fathom without playing the title, players essentially act in unison to achieve the effect.
In terms of multiplayer content, the trailer touts a return to Splinter Cell’s unique Spies vs. Mercs mode (coming with new and classic variants), one that traditionally favors the use of masked, nameless spies over Sam and company. Given the trailer’s sudden loss of visual fidelity at this point however, it’s safe to assume that viewers are not only watching multiplayer, but multiplayer that at long last includes the Silver-haired sleuth.
[Click to see full-size poster]
With 4 co-op mission types, 14 multiplayer maps and both online & split-screen play available, Blacklist may yet sleuth its way into a few best-of lists.
Splinter Cell Blacklist steps out of the shadows on August 23, 2013 for the PC, PS3, Xbox 360, and Wii U.