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Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell

Eurogamer has comments on Splinter Cell: Blacklist from Ubisoft Toronto's Jade Raymond, who discusses how the series has "stayed with the most pure approach to that stealth experience" over the years. Though she doesn't come out and say the game is being simplified for its upcoming installment, she does comment that there is a feeling among the executives at Ubisoft (surely hardcore gamers) that the Splinter Cell video games could be more popular but for their complexity: "One of the things that held it back is despite all of the changes that have happened over the years, it's still one of the more complex and difficult games to play," she tells them. "Even though we do have core fans who are like, 'Oh, I want to have more of this experience,' when you play any other game that has stealth elements, they're all a lot more forgiving than Splinter Cell." She goes on to talk of a "broader" experience which can allow for more of an action/game experience:

"We brought back the purest hardcore version, which is, you want to ghost through the level and get through it without killing a single person. Every single thing you want to do you can do in a non-lethal way. That requires the most planning and being the most strategic.

"You can even play that in Perfectionist Mode, which means if you want you don't have any of the added things, such as Mark and Execute, that make it easier.

"That's for those who want to plan it out and feel really smart, and, 'I'm going to use the Sticky Cam with the Sleeping Gas and them I'm going to whistle and the guy's going to come,' and do the full set-up."

By default, though, Splinter Cell: Blacklist offers a more "fluid, modern play-style", Raymond explained, which helps Fisher navigate the 3D environments without the need for as much interaction on the part of the player.

"You can climb up, do 3D navigation and jump over things without thinking too much or pressing buttons," Raymond said.

"Sam does it automatically. The Killing in Motion, being able to Mark and Execute while moving through the map, makes it much more accessible to more of an action gamer."

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17. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 14:05 Beamer
 
Jerykk wrote on Apr 23, 2013, 12:31:
combat should never be a viable option in any stealth game

And that's why I hate stealth games. I like screwing up and having that "holy crap holy crap holy crap" adrenaline chaos of blowing off heads and running for some ductwork and praying that the shots I'm firing land and they shots they aren't don't.

And then I get annoyed that I can just hide in a duct and wait. In better games I can't, so I pop out of the duct on the opposite side of the room and resume taking people out.

But I hate most stealth games. They always feel more like quicksave adventures than other games, and most stealth games are less about doing things right and more about doing them how the level designer hoped you would. Sure, you can go through a level a dozen ways, but a dozen ways that were programmed. This elevator works but that doesn't. Stuff like that. Thief games didn't do this, but man, the Splinter Cell and Hitman games I played certainly did.
 
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16. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 13:50 Flatline
 
Jerykk wrote on Apr 23, 2013, 12:31:
Mark & Execute is terrible and combat should never be a viable option in any stealth game but these days, I'll take what I can get. As long as they allow you to properly ghost your way through levels (no detections, no violence), I'll be happy. Based on what I've seen, it already looks better than Conviction in that regard, as Conviction was clearly designed with the assumption that you'd be killing everyone.

Also, publishers/developers, for the love of god, please stop misusing the term "ghost." It does not just mean "non-lethal." It means "non-violent." The difference between killing someone and knocking them out is pure semantics. The difference between neutralizing someone and avoiding them entirely is not.

I ghosted through most of Conviction as a matter of course.

I dug the increased mobility in Conviction over the old school splinter cell (I only played the first), and I don't see why a hardcore stealth game has to be a slow creeping game. That was Thief's bag more or less.

There's room for innovation in the stealth genre, but simplifying the game is *not* innovating. The very concept of a stealth game is to be cerebral and to think on your feet and outwit the AI instead of just shooting it.

That interview makes me want to cry. Why make Splinter Cell into an action game?
 
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15. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 12:43 ochentay4
 
Jerykk wrote on Apr 23, 2013, 12:31:
Mark & Execute is terrible and combat should never be a viable option in any stealth game but these days, I'll take what I can get. As long as they allow you to properly ghost your way through levels (no detections, no violence), I'll be happy. Based on what I've seen, it already looks better than Conviction in that regard, as Conviction was clearly designed with the assumption that you'd be killing everyone.

Also, publishers/developers, for the love of god, please stop misusing the term "ghost." It does not just mean "non-lethal." It means "non-violent." The difference between killing someone and knocking them out is pure semantics. The difference between neutralizing someone and avoiding them entirely is not.
Mark & Execute was so easy that I never used it. Totally out of place. Hitman Absolution has something similar and do not use it. Stealth games should be stealth.
 
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14. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 12:31 Jerykk
 
Mark & Execute is terrible and combat should never be a viable option in any stealth game but these days, I'll take what I can get. As long as they allow you to properly ghost your way through levels (no detections, no violence), I'll be happy. Based on what I've seen, it already looks better than Conviction in that regard, as Conviction was clearly designed with the assumption that you'd be killing everyone.

Also, publishers/developers, for the love of god, please stop misusing the term "ghost." It does not just mean "non-lethal." It means "non-violent." The difference between killing someone and knocking them out is pure semantics. The difference between neutralizing someone and avoiding them entirely is not.
 
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13. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 12:22 Jedi Master
 
Thief was a great series, although the first two games are VERY dated looking now (the first game is 15 yrs old) but the games still play great.
I just recently finished playing the first one, actually, and I'm now replaying Deadly Shadows. There are mods to improve their appearance a little and add widescreen support.
 
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12. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 11:54 ochentay4
 
Jedi Master wrote on Apr 23, 2013, 11:05:
Try out Chaos Theory. IMO it was the pinnacle of the the SC series. Pandora's Box wasn't quite as good as the first game, but in Chaos Theory they really got it right.
Then came Double Agent and really messed with things. Conviction was an ok game, better than Double Agent, but it wasn't really "Splinter Cell" any more than you could make a Command and Conquer FPS game.
Will do, as Chaos Theory is one of those games I always wanted to play but other games got in the way. After playing and finishing Borderlands 2, Tomb Raider and BioShock Infinite, I want to play a real stealth game, killing guys stealth is so rewarding! Other series I never got to play was Thief.
 
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11. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 11:05 Jedi Master
 
Try out Chaos Theory. IMO it was the pinnacle of the the SC series. Pandora's Box wasn't quite as good as the first game, but in Chaos Theory they really got it right.
Then came Double Agent and really messed with things. Conviction was an ok game, better than Double Agent, but it wasn't really "Splinter Cell" any more than you could make a Command and Conquer FPS game.
 
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10. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 11:01 Cutter
 
Not even retards find it complex. What's complex about hitting a button and watching a cutscene unfold every other minute. Unless the complexity is based on how hard it is to not fall asleep because it's so boring precisely because it's so simple. She must ask herself, 'How can I tell these suits that they're fucking retards who don't understand the first thing about games, without getting myself shitcanned in the process? Hrm.'

 
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James Woods: Oh that's fun. That sounds like you had a fun time. Where would I fit in with the fun time, huh? Where does James Woods fit into the fun?
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9. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 10:59 ochentay4
 
After playing Splinter Cell: Conviction, which I think it was a good game but not great, I played for the first time the first Splinter Cell, and man, I was impressed! It is excellent! Really fun, with good mechanichs! At 1080p with 8xAA and 16xAF at 60fps with VSYNC and the game looks fantastic despite being really old. Im hoping someone will make a game like it someday, not the crap that is being released these days.

Im not excepting that Splinter Cell: Blacklist to be like the first 3 Splinter Cell, but the game should be good on its own.
 
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8. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 10:53 Creston
 
So it'll basically be Splinter Creed, then?

Yeah, obviously every game you make MUST sell 30 million copies to be a success, so please, dumb everything down to the lowest common denominator.

Creston
 
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7. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 10:26 Ozmodan
 
It is a shame, too many developers are making their games too easy. Everyone wants to appeal to the instant gratification buyers.  
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6. Re: More Big Picture Details Apr 23, 2013, 10:19 Squirmer
 
All that THINKING and PRESSING BUTTONS really ruins videogames for me.  
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5. Re: More Big Picture Details Apr 23, 2013, 10:07 HorrorScope
 
Why don't they just start making movies?

Wait til Oculus takes over, all that complexity comes back in.
 
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4. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 09:59 Beamer
 
Verno wrote on Apr 23, 2013, 09:56:
It seems like all publishers want to chase the mythical everyman who just wants to mindlessly have the game play itself and reward him. Nothing wrong with options I guess but it seems like what eventually happens is that the options go away and you're left with just the action oriented stuff.

I've always enjoyed the Splinter Cell games but they've had a good long run now and I'm not sure the gameplay is whats holding them back.

Heh.

They should look at TV. Who's doing well in TV? Is it AMC and FX, who are making strong niche shows, or is it NBC and Fox, creating everyman shows?
Actually, that's an oversimplification. What's bolstering FX? Reruns of stupid crap made for the everyman. But the niche shows get them esteem, prestige, and bring in additional cash. Much like AMCs bread and butter is rerunning stupid everyman movies, and that gives them the cash to make a Mad Men.

Also: man, do I hate the Splinter Cell games.
 
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3. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 09:58 Acleacius
 
"complexity" isn't a word ever considered, regarding splinter cell.  
The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders.That is easy.All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.It works the same way in any country.
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2. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 09:56 Verno
 
It seems like all publishers want to chase the mythical everyman who just wants to mindlessly have the game play itself and reward him. Nothing wrong with options I guess but it seems like what eventually happens is that the options go away and you're left with just the action oriented stuff.

I've always enjoyed the Splinter Cell games but they've had a good long run now and I'm not sure the gameplay is whats holding them back.
 
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Playing: Fire Emblem, Diablo 3, Bravely Default
Watching: The Machine, After the Dark, Devils Due
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1. Re: Ubisoft: Complexity Holding Back Splinter Cell Apr 23, 2013, 09:51 RaZ0r!
 
Ubisoft Execs want Call of Duty: Splinter Cell. I'd hate to be in Jade's shoes.  
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