The game development company Ubisoft is well-known for its Splinter Cell franchise that launched 19 years ago. It was one of the company’s first forays into the world of stealth-action shooters, and it all but defined a generation of gaming. Personally, I vastly prefer the stealth genre that Splinter Cell ushered in over the fast-paced run, die, respawn of some modern titles. Well, Ubisoft Toronto just began rebuilding the game from the ground up. That’s right, Splinter Cell is being remade, though it’ll be a bit different from the remaster. So, what all can we expect, and more importantly when can we expect it? Let’s take a closer look at the Splinter Cell remake.
Splinter Cell remake will use the Snowdrop engine
In a multi-person interview on the Ubisoft blog, we get a close look at what we can expect in the upcoming Splinter Cell remake. The interviewees are creative director Chris Auty, producer Matt West, and technical producer Peter Handrinos, and they detail their connection to the Splinter Cell series, what’s being changed, what’s being preserved, and why the game defined a generation.
The team goes on record saying that they chose the term remake instead of remaster as it’s something that goes a bit further. The original Splinter Cell came out 19 years ago, when gaming was a completely different landscape. The Splinter Cell remake isn’t just going to be the original game with remastered graphics, but a completely rebuilt game from the ground up. Though in the early stages of development, and trying to keep the spirit of the game intact, the team is undertaking a massive technical overhaul here. The team is doing “exploration and innovation” with this remake thanks to the Snowdrop engine as well as a new generation of consoles and graphics cards.
Ubisoft’s Toronto team isn’t just going to completely overhaul the game and make it unlike what we know and love about Splinter Cell, however. The developers are going to preserve what made Splinter Cell unique in the first place: stealth redefined. There were so many unique things in Splinter Cell that set it apart from the competition, and now that we have nearly 20 years of advancements and improvements in technology, the game is only going to be that much better.
A tagline the team is using throughout the early stages of development is “respect the goggles.” What goggles, you might ask? Well, if you’re unsure, just take a look at the Splinter Cell packaging. Sam Fisher has an iconic pair of night vision goggles that are paired with an equally well-known sound whenever they activate. Splinter Cell wouldn’t be the same game without these goggles, and the team realize this symbol has to remain in the game in some way.
While we don’t know exactly when the Splinter Cell remake will come to fruition, I’m ready to wait as long as it takes for the team to deliver a solid gameplay experience. One of my favorite series of recent memory is Ghost Recon: Wildlands. I tried Breakpoint, but nothing scratches the stealth itch like Wildlands does. The recon (both with binoculars as well as drones), trying to ensure bodies are dropped away from other enemies, being stealthy as you walk into an area…it’s all awesome and thrilling at the same time. Splinter Cell, at its core, is the same concept on a smaller scale, and that’s something I’ve been wanting for a long time.
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