A Ubisoft developer working on the upcoming Splinter Cell remake has explained that the game would support a full pacifist playthrough with no necessary kill targets, should the player decide to pursue this line of progression. The long-awaited remake of the original Splinter Cell aims to take inspiration from the franchise’s roots, but the developers don’t seem to be afraid of making necessary changes in some instances.
With almost a decade having gone by since the release of blacklist, the cargo Splinter Cell game, fans of the franchise have been eager for a new entry that would lean more heavily towards stealth, rather than combat. Up until Conviction, SC games had featured rather punishing combat systems that effectively forced players into stealth gameplay, which forms the very core of the franchise.
So far, everything points to Ubisoft making the right choices for the Splinter Cell remake. According to the recent anniversary interview with Senior Game Designer Andy Schmoll, killing enemies is going to be completely optional, and “[the developers] want to give the player a few more opportunities to de-escalate some of those situations.” Schmoll also explained that the studio is looking to improve the moment-to-moment stealth action “that was so special in the original.” Chris Auty, the creative director working on the game, also participated in the interview, explaining that the remake’s improved flexibility will be accomplished by introducing a wider variety of gadgets and movement abilities than was present in the original release.
Historically, Splinter Cell has always been a very highly regarded stealth game franchise. Focusing primarily on stealth rather than combat, players needed to discover alternatives to shooting people, making each new encounter essentially a puzzle to solve in real time. Sometimes, encounters called for advanced agility options, such as protagonist Sam Fisher’s iconic split jump. Other times, however, players needed to rely on shadows, which could be created by destroying lights, using EMP-based tools, and other similar gadgets.
The fact that the developers aim to double down on these features suggests that the Splinter Cell remake could be better than the Prince of Persia remake, which has seemingly been severely mishandled during its production. Enabling a full pacifist playthrough feels well in line with what a Splinter Cell game ought to be about and may alleviate some concerns that franchise veterans may have about this remake.
Now that Splinter Cell has turned 20, though, fans were hoping that something would be done with the franchise, and a remake of the original title may provide the perfect starting point for a new series of core stealth games in the future. The specifics are, of course, still hazy this early on, but the information coming from Ubisoft definitely seems promising at this time.
The Splinter Cell remake is currently in development.
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