I picked this up a couple of weeks ago for a tenner. Not bad.
And tbh, it's worth it.
Graphically, it's very nice. I don't like the new sam. He's older but also younger which is weird. He's more physical, quicker, stronger despite being close to retiring age.
Voice acting feels slightly more real but good god, it's terrible. Yawn. Fisher has no character and no dynamic to his voice. Don't mind Briggs, and i think Charlie's a twat (but that at least hints at personality), and Grim's boring too. I've yet to see any hint of the old dynamic between Grim and Sam (i strongly recommend you play the start of CT's Bank level if you can't remember it, and hear their little conversation).
The gameplay itself.... well at least you can complete some levels without disturbing a guard, but it feels like going through the motions. Some of the animations are nice but it feels too overpowered. Fisher can climb and shimmy faster than he should (I actually nudge the stick slightly to make it more realistic) and yet he runs like a 60 year old.
Weapons - has the Five seveN been removed from this game? More so, does anyone else miss the SC20K? They had the 3000 in conviction and the 40K in Blacklist, but it's just a gun. No multi launcher - to me that was one of the cornerstones of Splinter Cell. No real thermal vision, either, just a crap filter to the sonar crap (which i don't mind but i miss the original).
At least NV's back I guess.
I really haven't played that much tbh. I've just completed the mission in detriot i think, in that department store-cum-underground complex. New Sam Fisher really bores the pants off of me. Ironisde left because A) Ubisoft wanted a younger actor (they can put it how they want, i think they thought Ironside was too old) and B) Ironside was becoming less content with the violence in the games. But imo, Ubisoft should have done whatever they needed to keep Sam. His voice acting has always been superb - from the simple grunts to his sarcastic comments. Ironside is Fisher. End of, for me. No ironside=no fisher.
What i think they should have done, is bring in this new guy as a new character, a new splinter cell. Fisher could still be head of 4E (that name itself annoys me), but he'd instead do Lambert's old role, with Grim being tech support again.
The interchange between Fisher and Lambert, or between Fisher and Grim in the first three games was one of the things that made SC great for me. Little quips, retorts, sarcasm etc. So much character. Unless something big is going to happen in the voice acting in Blacklist, so far i've seen next to zero charisma. Hell, so far only Cobin (is that his name?) shows any kind of emotion. For what it's worth, that was a good moment haha.
But thinking about this, I don't know how I would fix this game. Try to emulate Chaos Theory? Little point in that but i felt that Double Agent was a decent entry in the series, but ultimately that presented the first blow that is killing SC in my eyes - Lambert's death. It was one hell of a moment in gaming when that happened. From Sam's "Sorry, old friend" in the PS2 version, to the actual deed in the 360 version... I can honestly say it felt like I was losing a friend then. And i knew i was responsible.
After DA, though, SC died for me. I remember seeing the original Conviction, and i actually liked it. Combine that with the traditional stealth, and i actually thought it'd be a winner. Fisher's a fugitive, cops seek him, hide from them etc.
But even then, it felt like they were reinventing something that didn't need it.
And saying all that, am i the only one who hates the new "duck walk" crouch that Fisher does in C and B? It looks awkward and i don;t know, but i prefer the old body positions. I miss the split leg jump, too.
A step in the right direction? Yes, Close to old SCs? No. They need better voice actors - they need Ironside for fisher, end of - they need to bring back some of the old features. As mentioned, Lock picking, computer hacking (granted, it's slightly archaic to have passwords to door locks on the computers), i even liked the EEV and remote hacking in CT.
Also in CT, i spent 20 minutes playing with the enemy. PSST, then creep away. Guard's confused, then shrugs it off.... HEY, guard's baffled now. Same thing. HEY - now the guard's on edge, and he's starting to get scared. I moved around this little basement, turning off the light, whispering, throwing bottles, running, turning on the light etc.... that was fun. As said, Blacklist feels like you're rushing to the next objective. I don't use the distract voice thing much because it feels too risky. Also, can't we recover sticky cams we've fired? At least we can carry bodies, i guess, but hey. The SC20K needs to return imo, and like i said, if they wanted a new actor, i wonder if having Sam as your boss and you play this new guy would have worked better....
I liked conviction, though, but i didn't love it. I loved PD, CT & DA. I really liked the first game. But Conviction felt more like 24 than Splinter Cell. And blacklist feels more like Conviction than the other games.