Review by demidevilman

"Stealth acrtion redifined........ to be boring as hell"

What can I say about this game. I can say a lot unfortunately very few of them are nice. The game is just another game in a long line of stealth espionage games that have been released, since the overwhelming success of Metal Gear series move from NES to Playstation. The problem is that this game really has nothing to distinguish it from the other knock-offs, well at least nothing good. All the game has going for it is the ''Tom Clancy'' name and a ridiculous over rating by Official X-Box Magazine. Lets start the list of flaws.

Graphics- 7.
I really can't knock the graphics, I didn't notice any real flaws or glitches. The only problem I have with the ''look'' of the game is that the levels are very plain and boring. There doesn't seem to be a whole lot of detail. You would think that a defense ministry building would have better looking walls than the one in the game.

Sound- 6
It's kind of hard to give a rating on the sound of the game since there was hardly any music. When i first heard the music come on I thought to myself, ''Brilliant!! They have music that corresponds to the atmosphere of the game.'' Basically if an enemy was drawing near the music would kick in, and depending on the level of confrontation the music would very. I soon came across a problem with this. The problem was that as the music chimed in, it would drown out the sound of the enemies footsteps, thus making it kind of hard to know where he was coming from. The other problem with music was that it never changed, adding to the monotony of the game.

Story- 3
You are Sam Fischer, The Splinter Cell. You alone have the 5th freedom, You alone have the right to spy, steal, destroy, and assassinate. Sounds good right, unfortunately this isn't true. You don't have these rights, well you do but only when you are told that you can. You alone have no freedom yourself, you have no mind at all. You are Sam Fischer! A mindless robot with no will or mind of your own. You are just a pawn in a game of international chess.
You are a lone man fighting what should be a war. Killing agents from another country would be a major international incident, and would probably result in a war. As usual there is the normal cliche of ''If you are caught the government will disavow any knowledge of you or your actions.'' so cliché.

Controls- 7
I can't complain that much about the controls for this game. When it comes to X-Box controls I am quite forgiving knowing what the programmers had to work with and believe me it isn't much. I don't think they made use of the buttons that well but the controls were ok. I would like to have seen the crouch button be the left thumb stick button, and a few other things. I think that the buttons could have been re arranged to make them more convenient.

Game play/fun factor- 2-3
The game play is terrible. Game play is very rigid and strict. The levels aren't very open. The paths have been predetermined, and there is no deviation from the path. In the other espionage games, the levels tended to be open with many different routes to the desired goal. The thing about the game is that it IS a STEALTH espionage game, no deviation form the stealth. In the metal gear solid games the object wasn't to be stealth but to get to the end preferably in a stealth way. That is not the case in SC, stealth is the first priority. And it's just to tedious to be stealth 100% of the time. It involves to much thinking to do it right.
If you don't get it right it might not show up until you are several saves ahead of where the problem is. I remember that I was on the second mission, where you have to enter the defense ministry south wing. Well I was crawling along the gutter and I drew close to the window when the alarm went off. I now had to restart. I spent about 2.5 hours trying to figure out what was wrong. I finally went online and looked at a faq, it told me I had to go back and check to make sure the other guards were hidden. This never occurred to me since I ''tested'', using the stealth gauge, whether it could be that someone had seen me. As I drew closer to the window the gauge went up as I moved away from the window it went down. They should have made it a timed thing. I nearly broke my fist hitting the walls and my bed post out of frustration, my fist is still sore.
The other problem that I had is why didn't they make it so that you could pick up the enemies weapons. I had a serious ammo problem in the game. I always ran out of ammo and could almost never find more. If the game is supposed to be espionage, why not use the enemies gun, it would eliminate the risk of a forensic gun match, and in the forensics if you used the enemies gun then the forensics would show what appeared to be a double cross. Why do i mention the forensics issue?? I mention it because the Tom Clancy game series are supposed to be as realistic as they get and if you want to be stealthy you don't leave an ''American'' bullet in a foreign body, and believe me they could trace the bullet back to an American military issued weapon.

Replay factor- 0
There is no replay factor, at least not for me. Once i have beaten this game I'm getting rid of it. The game is just to tedious to play.

Overall-4
I am mystified by the fact that this game got a 9.6 rating from Official X-Box Magazine, the highest rating ever. What the hell were the reviewers at OXM smoking when they rated this game. I really cannot recommend this game to anyone but the hardest of hardcore gamers. Game play is boring and tedious. If you can get past the tedious monotony of trying to stay in the shadows and can resist the urge of killing people then it's a great game.


Reviewer's Score: 4/10 | Originally Posted: 12/12/02, Updated 12/12/02


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