• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

How would you "fix" Splinter Cell?



Fix meaning, to get the franchise back on track in terms of financial viability.

The Splinter Cell remake has been confirmed, but it's likely a test for Ubisoft to see how strong the IP still is in the modern market.

To date, there have been 7 Splinter Cell games made and the franchise has officially sold 31 million copies according to Ubisoft. That's an average of 4.5 million copies per game release.

How would you shake up the series so that there's potential to sell 10+ million copies?

 

Lady Jane

Banned
I don't think there is a way to fix Splinter Cell in the current market. Like RTS's, the mass appeal for the stealth genre is gone. For Splinter Cell to make money, it can't be the Splinter Cell we know (first three games).
 
Last edited:

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
Why would I be interested in making a game like this more commercial? I'd rather the opposite and have it be the Dark Souls of sneak 'em ups.

Making it a more commercial game with really good game play did wonders for Phantom Pain. We can talk shit about its story short comings all we want, but it by far and wide the best playing MGS game.
 
I don't think there is a way to fix Splinter Cell in the current market. Like RTS's, the mass appeal for the stealth genre is gone. For Splinter Cell to make money, it can't be the Splinter Cell we know (first three games).

So if Ubisoft puts you in charge and says "Here's this AAA budget, we want you leading our team in Quebec. Do what you can to make this franchise pop again..."

You're response is just "It can't be done?"
 

Jigsaah

Gold Member
Spies Vs. Mercs PVP 2 v 2, 3 v 3. Modeled after Pandora tomorrow and Chaos Theory respectively. Co-Op through the main campaign. Not some side story BS.

No spies killing Mercs from the front...a la Blacklist, that shit was dumb. No way for Mercs to see through walls. EM vision was complete bullshit. No active Camo for spies. You got the shadows, use that shit.
 

DaGwaphics

Member
I don't know about the financials, but my biggest recommendation would be to get back to giving the player a tool set and then letting them decide when and where to do anything with them. The later games were too scripted as far as the game prompting you (sometimes forcing you) to handle situations/enemies in very specific ways. The first few games were much more of a sandbox.
 

Arachnid

Member
Give it to Arkane or IOI. Preferably IOI. They would knock it out of the park.

I know that's unrealistic since it's a ubisoft property though. Truth is there is no fixing it. Ubi doesn't give af about the property outside of pimping it out to their live service games for easy cash. It's gg for us bois
 

intbal

Member
Dead franchise.
Without Sam it's not Splinter Cell.
Without Michael Ironside, it's not Sam.

Same reason there is no Duke Nukem without Jon St. John.
Same reason there is no Master Chief without Steve Downes.
 

Grildon Tundy

Gold Member
With the surprise blockbuster success of Elden Ring, Splinter Cell could do well to do the Ubisoft thing--meaning copy its formula outright to spice up their played-out open world style.

I'd want to play as Sam Fisher, dropped into the capital city of a third-world country and its outskirts. A colossal screw-up from leadership leaves you cut off from your team, their intel, and all your equipment. You start from scratch. It's an open-world experience where you know from the start that you have to take out the dictator in his big fortress/skyscraper/mansion/whatever in the middle of the city, but how you get there is up to you. Non-linear storyline with a dozen ways to reach that goal, New Vegas-style.

Exploration is rewarded through unique story beats and equipment to help you get closer to your goal. NO SKILLS LOCKED BEHIND PERK TREES. All moves open from the start, but your equipment is what opens up new opportunities of approach. The only map icons you'll have are the ones that you marked yourself. Stealth is required throughout, since you're fragile. The power fantasy and sense of progression comes from connecting with different supporting factions and gaining access to better equipment rather than Sam Fisher suddenly remembering how to do a jumping wall split after having been an operator for 20 years.
 
Last edited:
Hear me out...open...world.

But nah, I think an open environment style like Hitman could work or sniper elite...make each mission far more customizable and the sections massively interactive. Not in a "put on the clothes of the opps" but ways you can hack to enter the building...will you scale to the top or go through the basement. And the impact you have on one mission impacts the next. Intel you gather in one map can help you with security points in the next. Get a code in one map for a blind spot in the other, or youkill too many guards in one map the next level has twice the guards and cameras...no difficulty adjustment. All interconnected and your way of playing impacts the gameplay not just the story.
 

Apocryphon

Gold Member
The premise is to put your feet in the shoes of Ubisoft. A company that wants to continue growing their major IP.
Sure.. but outside of the fact that they own the IP, why do I care about Ubisoft? Even if I did, it's nonsense that everything these companies put out needs to sell 10 fucking million copies. Literally look at what has happened to Assassin's Creed following this line of thinking.

I'd rather have a smaller budget and less commercial Splinter Cell that's basically Chaos Theory but harder. No reason why that couldn't be considered successful. But sure, put a fucking team of 300 on it 😂
 
It can be done. It just won't be what fans of the original trilogy are going to like.

Let me pose this theoretical to you in a different way...

Ninjas have kidnapped your family. The Ninjas tell you "The only way you're going to see your family again is if you take this 200 million dollars + Ubisofts most talented AAA studio + 4 to 6 years and make a new Splinter Cell that sells 10+ million copies."

The Ninjas do not care about fans of the original games (for whatever reason).
 

Lady Jane

Banned
Let me pose this theoretical to you in a different way...

Ninjas have kidnapped your family. The Ninjas tell you "The only way you're going to see your family again is if you take this 200 million dollars + Ubisofts most talented AAA studio + 4 to 6 years and make a new Splinter Cell that sells 10+ million copies."

The Ninjas do not care about fans of the original games (for whatever reason).

Copy the Siege model and apply it to a Spies vs Mercs format, MTX's and all.
 
Last edited:
I think the solution is try to be the best stealth game it can be and not try to dip their toes in every genre to cater to everyone. It will find Its community and the community will support it.

Maybe the answer lies in it being a smaller budget game and reassess the expectations and grow from there instead of aiming for 10M sales and end up being disappointed. It is unfortunate but also very true that stealth is not as appealing as it once was. If they go all in on the stealth aspect and the game reviews extremely well, people might be inclined to give it a shot for fear of missing out. Seems like a lot of people tried Elden Ring because of the buzz around it when they seemingly never drank From Software's cool aid before.
 

DaGwaphics

Member
I think the solution is try to be the best stealth game it can be and not try to dip their toes in every genre to cater to everyone. It will find Its community and the community will support it.

Maybe the answer lies in it being a smaller budget game and reassess the expectations and grow from there instead of aiming for 10M sales and end up being disappointed. It is unfortunate but also very true that stealth is not as appealing as it once was. If they go all in on the stealth aspect and the game reviews extremely well, people might be inclined to give it a shot for fear of missing out. Seems like a lot of people tried Elden Ring because of the buzz around it when they seemingly never drank From Software's cool aid before.

Good point. That's what's been going wrong with TR as well, the games were doing well commercially, but not enough for the huge budgets they had. Be realistic when building it.
 
Splinter Cell is definitely in my top 5 franchise (minus Conviction) and Spies versus Mercenaries back in Pandora Tomorrow / Chaos Theory remains to this day the best gaming experience of my life and that was almost 20 years ago. Fuck, I'd pay full price for a remaster of SvM on current consoles / PC.
 

Bragr

Member
Realistic: A game with a short 5 to 6-hour campaign with a heavy focus on an Escape From Tarkov type of multiplayer where players are entering hostile territory trying to get loot with an upgradable Homebase and a battle pass for spy outfits and the like, the novelty and marketable aspect here is that you can use spy techniques like shooting out the lights and using night vision and stuff like that, instead of being required to go in guns blazing, and it's not as hardcore and unforgiving as Tarkov.

What I want: Something like Double Agent.
 

TexMex

Member
Ubisoft has repeatedly said that Splinter Cell has been dormant because they haven't figured out a new gameplay idea to bring the franchise back.

IE: They haven't been satisfied with the last few Splinter Cell games performances.

You asked for our opinion not Ubisoft's.
 

Apocryphon

Gold Member
Let me pose this theoretical to you in a different way...

Ninjas have kidnapped your family. The Ninjas tell you "The only way you're going to see your family again is if you take this 200 million dollars + Ubisofts most talented AAA studio + 4 to 6 years and make a new Splinter Cell that sells 10+ million copies."

The Ninjas do not care about fans of the original games (for whatever reason).
So just Splinter Cell in name then but sell it to people who historically couldn't give a shit about the series? Can't we just have great games without the insane AAAA focus and stupid sales goals?

Somebody said model it on Escape From Tarkov and I'd definitely be in for something like that but it wouldn't meet the ridiculous criteria laid out in the OP so there is no point drilling into what that could be like. Top thread.
 
So just Splinter Cell in name then but sell it to people who historically couldn't give a shit about the series? Can't we just have great games without the insane AAAA focus and stupid sales goals?

Somebody said model it on Escape From Tarkov and I'd definitely be in for something like that but it wouldn't meet the ridiculous criteria laid out in the OP so there is no point drilling into what that could be like. Top thread.

They made 3 - 5 games for "people who care about the series".

It wasn't enough.

And who's to say people who loved the series before wouldn't also love the reinvention?

See: Breath of the Wild, Elden Ring
 

Apocryphon

Gold Member
They made 3 - 5 games for "people who care about the series".

It wasn't enough.

And who's to say people who loved the series before wouldn't also love the reinvention?

See: Breath of the Wild, Elden Ring
Wasn't enough for what? Ubi's profit margin? The first 3 games are better than anything that came after. They fucked up Assassin's Creed, Far Cry, and Ghost Recon already. I'd rather they didn't fuck with the IP chasing lofty sales figures.

What to do with the franchise is a more interesting question than what you have proposed is all I'm saying. I don't care what it sells and would rather they massively reduced the budget to stay profitable than build a game with the specific intent of reaching stratospheric sale goals.
 
Last edited:
This is probably going to sound like a cop-out but, just go the Capcom route and remake all four PS2/Xbox era games(SC, Pandora Tomorrow, Chaos Theory, Double Agent Version 2). Theoretically this should keep budget costs down because you've already got the design and a codebase there. They "only" would need to rebuild the assets and implement some mocap for the animations. This strategy has been a massive success for Capcom so, why not?
 

Apocryphon

Gold Member
This is probably going to sound like a cop-out but, just go the Capcom route and remake all four PS2/Xbox era games(SC, Pandora Tomorrow, Chaos Theory, Double Agent Version 2). Theoretically this should keep budget costs down because you've already got the design and a codebase there. They "only" would need to rebuild the assets and implement some mocap for the animations. This strategy has been a massive success for Capcom so, why not?
To generate revenue sure, but we do still want a new Splinter Cell game.
 

TexMex

Member
In the OP it is stated...

"How would you fix Splinter Cell...Fix meaning, to get the franchise back on track in terms of financial viability."

And my answer was, it doesn’t need fixing. I disagree that it needs fixing. I’m not sure how else to phrase it for you. English a second language?
 

Aion002

Member
A good single player campaign lasting 8 to 15 hours for the old players, with multiple difficulty options and optional weekly challenges.

A live service portion with coop missions, that rewards weapons, gears and skins. The coop missions are challenging and requires teamwork. Maybe even bring back the spies x mercs and add a horde mode with pvpve, kinda like that Gambit mode from Destiny 2.
 

supernova8

Member
Take it away from Ubisoft and give it to Kojima. He's obviously the best at making stealth games. He's arguably the only guy (with Konami behind him at the time) that has been successful in making stealth games beyond the PS2/Xbox era. Also with a lot of the game mechanics (at least when the franchise first started out) was about lighting and shadows, Splinter Cell seems like the perfect game to show off "proper" ray tracing that actually makes a difference in game.

When I say "proper" ray tracing I'm not sure what I mean but maybe just something better than the shit we see at the moment where the RT makes hardly any difference and you have to watch a Digital Foundry video to notice it.

Alternatively, Ubisoft made that Thief game a while back...it didn't get raving reviews but it wasn't exactly slated. Seems to have been an OK game, so I reckon they have it in them if they stop fucking around with silly skins and mtx.
 
Last edited:

Barakov

Gold Member
If all they're going to do is make a quasi-third person shooter with some AC trappings tacked on and call it Splinter Cell then I hope they don't even bother. To make a stealth game that SC is known for they're going to have to accept that 10+ million might be out of reach.

I'd be more interested that they'd make a Chaos Theory successor with a smaller budget with gameplay for what the series is known for. This has been said a thousand times but not every game needs to be a open world AAA behemoth of a game.
 
Top Bottom