I've never hidden that my favorite PC-series game is Splinter Cell. From the beginning, I've enjoyed this series to the max; creeping around the shadows, avoiding guards, and taking out cameras with well placed and silenced shots into the lenses. It is the best stealth-based game series EVER!
With the release of Conviction, however, I'm afraid that the things that make this game great have begun slipping away and it makes me, a fully grown man with a family, want to cry.
The ONE thing that this series has maintained throughout the years is its stealth components. You can literally go through any of the games and if played correctly, only actually take-out a few people. The rest can be avoided, knocked out, or simply disregarded at will. In fact, it's rumored that you can go through several of the games without killing a single person. The stealth components have only gotten better over the years, giving you more options and greater and more realistic ways to avoid your enemies and complete the missions with complete anonymity.
Conviction, however, does away with MOST of the items that make this series great. As the GS review states - the stealth components have been stripped down and the game has gone from being a stealth-thriller to a run-and-gun with stealth option. On top of that, it seems as though they spent more time on the multiplayer portion than the single player (aside from the actual storyline).
This angers me to the point that I could almost be violent.
First of all, SO many games are going the route of multiplayer; whether it be MMO or otherwise. The "trophy system" is implemented everywhere, and creates an environment of competition with every other player on Earth. Instead of competing with myself and bettering my own game for my own benefit, I'm now forced to compete 'scores' with hundreds of people I don't know.
On top of that, gaming companies are all jumping on board the multiplayer train. GONE are the storylines that kept you involved for a couple dozen hours of play. Now, single player games are short and (rarely) sweet, while the multiplay options soar!
I'd hoped that my Splinter Cell wouldn't go that way... My hopes have been more/less crushed.
Now the game forces you to engage just about everyone you come across. Don't get me wrong, I understand WHY Sam is now the way he is, and a certain amount of violent vengeance is expected; however the OPTION to sneak past the majority of your enemies to get to your objective is gone. The game basically forces you to kill kill kill.
I could go on all day, so I'll conclude with this before I gain too many enemies: The run-and-gun way of play is such a "young man's" game. I don't like it. I play this game for the Splinter Cell experience, not the Metal Gear experience. I'd much rather be avoiding cameras than bullets. There are so many other run-and-gun games out there. They could've left my sweet Splinter Cell alone...
My heart weeps at the direction the series is going...