A very notable fact about Conviction is that the single player story is told by Victor Coste, narrated in the past tense. Three years after the events of Splinter Cell: Double Agent, Sam Fisher is contacted by his former colleague, Anna “Grim” Grímsdóttir, and is told that a group of hit-men are closing in on his position. Sam then follows a lead to find the man who killed his daughter. This begins Splinter Cell: Conviction. In Ubisoft’s new third person stealth shooter, Sam, working alone, must face Third Echelon, a top secret NSA black-ops sub-division that he once worked for.
As with many Splinter Cell games, there is heavy emphasis on light level, when Sam is in a lighted area, his enemies can easily spot him. When Sam is in a darkened area, colors fade and he is, essentially, invisible. Instead of your allies and colleagues contacting you with direction, instructions are displayed on walls and floors, as if shown by a projector only you can see. Also implemented into Splinter Cell: Conviction is the Last Know Position feature. When Sam is spotted, and breaks the line of sight of the guard that saw him, a white silhouette marks his last position, and guards will go looking for him there. This can easily be put to strategic use by moving to an area with a good line of sight to the silhouette, or moving around the area where guards will come looking for you. Additionally, Mark and Execute is a fresh component of your deadly arsenal. Once you perform a silent take down, you will gain the ability to tag enemies. An arrow will appear above their head, either gray or red, red if they are within your range. Different guns have different amounts of tags, and pressing the execute button will instantly kill all tagged guards within range.
Conviction brings faster paced action, and dose not have you waiting around for guard cycles to change, which was a major turn off for alot of potential fans. Guards are now on patrol according to a random AI generator, so each level is different every time. One problem I found with certain levels was that it was relatively easy to sit in a corner and shoot any guards that found my slowly accumulating pile of bodies, until i had cleared the area of baddies. The only other part i did not like was a level where Sam has a flash back to the Gulf War. In this level there is almost no stealth involved, and I found it very unnecessary. On to a better note, getting consecutive silent head shots or death from above’s will earn you achievements, and are very satisfying. Weapon stashes throughout the game allow you to upgrade and switch weapons during your quiet assaults on enemy strongholds. Moving quickly from cover to cover, strategically taking out guards and sneaking around will always be an experience to remember, and this game does just that. With single player, co-op campaign, and multiplayer, Splinter Cell: Conviction has a high replay value.
Splinter Cell: Conviction is definatly the start of a new era in stealth games, and I can recommend it for a gamer looking for a challenge. It can also be picked up by someone who wants create their own spy story and take on top secret embassy and underground bases in their own way. The story is very compelling, as Sam is motivated by personal revenge rather than being thrust into situations by Third Echelon. I thoroughly enjoyed Splinter Cell: Conviction, and I hope you will too.