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Mixed or average reviews- based on 341 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 59 out of 341

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  1. Aug 22, 2013
    Being described as the most ambitious Splinter Cell yet by Ubisoft, Splinter Cell: Blacklist, despite being overall an Ok game, falls short as a true Splinter Cell experience.

    The saga was known for having stories with memorable and charismatic characters, high political tension and some dark humor. The plot in Splinter Cell: Blacklist instead, is uninspired and cliched (Conviction
    would have been a perfect conclusion for the series) and the characters, including Sam Fisher (if you can call him Fisher) himself, are as interesting as a cardboard, which is a letdown keeping in mind Double Agent and Conviction were big steps forward in narrative terms.

    Sam Fisher is totally messed up. In Blacklist, he is no longer the ultimate badass who uses a twisted sense of humor to intimidate terrorists and has a sense of companionship and loyalty. He's now an unlikeable jerk with no humanity. His voice acting is dreadful (Michael Ironside is deeply missed). The new actor phones in his performance and gives the impression he's thinking "just give me my paycheck already."

    The gameplay is a continuation of Conviction, and in some times, it's a straightforward shooter, which is the complete opposite of what Splinter Cell should be. It's like suddenly Sam Fisher stopped caring for being a spy. The animation is quite smooth, but unrealistic (Sam Fisher doesn't move his legs when moving through pipes, and you can't believe a man in his fifties moves like Spider-Man).

    Splinter Cell: Blacklist is another case of dead horse beating since it doesn't add anything special to the otherwise excellent stealth action franchise.
  2. Aug 22, 2013
    In the title it stands "Splinter Cell", although it doesn't feel like Splinter Cell. It feel more like
    Splinter Cell: Conviction vol. 2. The characters are flat and boring without any depth. But, in the defense of Splinter Cell series, the characters had never any real depth in the series. Sam Fisher doesn't feel like Sam Fisher any more. The way he talks and moves is different and not
    different in good way. He sounds like a guy without any conviction, without any real threat in his voice. He always moves quickly, even when he "sneaks". He climbs fast too, like a spiderman, and it looks kind of ridiculous and very unrealistic, since he is an old man. I felt right from the beginning that it was different from previous Splinter Cell series. More action oriented, which defies the whole idea of what Splinter Cell series is all about. I see this new trend in more games now. I understand why Ubisoft made this approach. They wish too appeal too wider audience, I get that. But on the other hand, they are in danger of alienating fan boys who like this game for the slow sneaking pace. When I play this new Sam Fisher now, I felt like I was playing an inexperienced boy scout playing sneaking and shooting for fun. Not like the bad ass Sam Fisher with his deep voice that gave him character and with his black sense of humor that suited Sam Fisher character perfectly. There are a lot of new options in the game. There is a lot of new gadgets available for purchase. But is it a good thing. It can be, but it's not because of the new costumes or new fancy that you can buy and upgrade. It's the tension and excitement of sneaking that made this game series great. Some people may like this "freedom to choose", I guess. But too much choice can make it as an unnecessary distraction. I'll be honest. I haven't play the whole game, but I don't think if I have patience to get through the whole game. I got tired of this fast pace action shooting game, with sneaking elements, very fast. I understand that this game have some appeal, but it's not for me. Call me old faction, but I like sneaking and hiding in the shadows, the Sam Fisher way, the old way. Expand
  3. Aug 21, 2013
    Great production and it feels and looks slick but it seems I have grown so very tired of the 'Murica fights the terrorist' trope and I just can't go back.
  4. Aug 22, 2013
    Great production and it feels and looks slick but it seems I have grown so very tired of the 'Murica fights the terrorist' trope and I just can't go back.
  5. Aug 24, 2013
    The Splinter Cell series has changed in a negative way and this game just makes it more obvious. Stealth, the ability to jump, nothing around to climb and a linear path. Unfortunately, that is not the Splinter Cell that I grew up with. Glad I just rented it instead of purchased.
  6. Aug 29, 2013
    Host migration Host migration Host migration. Every second match cannot be finished due to technical issues. Don't buy this game if you want to play the MP. Very annoying
  7. Sep 9, 2013
    Sam Fisher is dead. What you play in Blacklist is nothing but a cardboard cutout that looks, sounds, and acts nothing like the original character.

    The gameplay as well is just cut and pasted directly from Conviction, trying to be more of a Transformers film than something like Ocean's 11.
  8. Aug 21, 2013
    This review is only for the online multiplayer, which is the only reason I bought it. I wouldn't have paid 60 bucks for a rehash action spy game which looks exactly like Conviction.

    I really liked Pandora Tomorrow totally new and innovative spies vs mercs. It was a huge step forward in bringing suspense and fun to consoles in it's day. Chaos Theory made great improvements to that online
    play. Spies had to play cautious and sneaky. Although kills could be done, it was a careful move that had to be made. Double Agent went down the wrong path. Remote hacking, the more techno look. It was bad. This one ups(or downs) that one. Dumbest thing ever in SC??? Spy one button insta-kills. Run near a merc from any direction, press a single button, almost faster then a merc can shoot you down and you get a insta kill.

    Merc's being considered the hunters are a total joke. Spies are so overpowered in their ability to run from any direction and insta-kill its just a horrible idea from whatever person thought this was good. I am done buying Splinter Cell games. They killed the best multi-player concept with silly and dumb gameplay and managed to do worse then the worst spies vs mercs offering they had put out until now.
  9. Dec 12, 2013
    Do not be persuaded by the pro-blacklist "stealth revisionists". Those who are willing to make compromises to prolong the life of the stealth genre, if it can even be called stealth in a few years. Revisionism is dangerous, our precious stealth genre will only detract more & more from stealth & water the genre down, turning into nothing but an action game with gadgets.

    The game's most
    disgusting feature is the "win" button, which lets the player kill every single thing in an area with the press of a button, usually without getting detected as well, the player even does this while running.

    As if that was not enough, the game adds in alternate pathways which lets the player avoid combat, which the game calls "Stealth" or "Ghost". Pure insult.

    Some people may argue that the game can be played like chaos theory or sar but when you look at it, any game can, & blacklist certainly wasn't designed to be played that way. Imagine trying to play a Call Of Duty game like Chaos Theory, sneaking around & knifing people in the back. It would not work at all.

    If you have any love for this series left, then please, do not purchase the game, don't encourage ubisoft to release more nonsense in the franchise. Air strike's, win buttons, & head on cover shooting has no place in Splinter Cell. Give this game a 0 & spread the message.
  10. Sep 5, 2013
    Splinter Cell: Blacklist is a huge, huge disappointment. To start, the most glaring and evident problem is the fact that Sam Fisher is no longer voiced by Michael Ironside. The voice actor they got to replace him has the personality of a carbon blob he doesn't even try to mimic the original actor. The performance is sub-par and incredibly distracting it makes you wonder who the guy you're playing is supposed to be and when you get to take control of Sam.

    Next, let's talk about optimization. The game starts in windowed mode by default and this setting can be changed but will reset every time you close the program. Why, Ubisoft? Why? Crashes are frequent enough to disrupt saves and annoy you temporarily, but otherwise the client seems to run okay when you're not actually doing anything within the game, such as when you're adjusting settings, which you'll have to do upon each and every launch because they reset.

    Controllers are just barely supported. There's no variable run speed tied to the angle of the joystick. You go from a dead stop to full on sprint no matter how much or how little you tilt the stick. The d-pad opens the radial menu, but I experience a bug where the menu wouldn't stay open long enough to select anything if I can't switch from lethal to non-lethal takedowns, how can I possibly complete the mission?

    The PC keyboard controls are atrocious. The cover system was perfect in Conviction. Sam stuck to walls and objects perfectly until canceled. Now, Sam will move into cover when you tell him to, but will drop out of cover if you try to move in a direction the game doesn't like.

    The player character feels sluggish and unresponsive compared to Conviction. Tactical movement and stealth have been replaced by an Assassin's Creed-esque parkour and climbing gimmick that exists only as an obstacle to level progression.

    The story is cliche and uninspiring America versus The Terrorists yet again. This time, we have a geriatric former spy (I say former in the sense that he no longer does anything espionage related) turned supercommando that almost makes me wonder if the developers drew inspiration from the main character of Metal Gear Solid 4.

    I have no interest in multiplayer, I haven't even gone online yet so I won't comment on that aspect of the game, but from my understanding the popular Spies vs Mercs game mode is back in and many people are enjoying it despite some connectivity issues that have arisen.

    All in all, this game is a huge slip from Conviction. I liked Conviction. The way you were led through the content was consistent with the story you're not a spy anymore so you don't have to play by the rules. The gameplay was hard and fast, but also fluid, stealthy and tactical. Blacklist forces you to continue the same style of gameplay without the same sense of purpose it has gone beyond telling a story and has delved into the mad realm where the only thing that matters anymore is catering to the audience who only cared about the fast-paced action gameplay, the so-called "Call of Duty" demographic.

    If you enjoyed Conviction for the gameplay, you might enjoy this new sequel as well. If you are a fan of the series from the original game on to Double Agent, you will probably be disappointed. If you didn't like Conviction, then even more reason to stay away. I would advise caution when going to purchase this game no matter what you liked. If you have a console, rent it first.
  11. Sep 14, 2013
    Horrendous load times. Unconceivably horrible controls. Voices drop out of sync. Unsure whether or not to consider this a Splinter Cell title.

    The game feels like it was rushed and the cheap/junky Unreal Engine brings nothing to the table besides bad physics, bad motion, delayed... everything, stitched materials, and a nice cup of regret for spending $70 on such a massive pile who's
    sole purpose of creation was to suck as much money from the series as possible while spending as little as possible and continue doing so until they run it into the ground.

    TL;DR: Ubisoft TORONTO, Unreal Engine, terrible controls, doesn't really feel like a Splinter Cell game despite the characters and atmosphere (11 veteran to the series). Don't buy this game if you liked the earlier games in the series, and if you already have.. sorry (Ubisoft isn't hehe).
  12. May 9, 2014
    so-so, the game starts some nice, but it becomes tiring, boring and difficult
    rarely the ubisoft disappoints, but this is a exception
    this is a little poor game
  13. Dec 27, 2013
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This game is not what I have expected at all. When I finished Conviction and loved it, I was pleased to hear that Blacklist was soon to be made. I got it just two days ago and I learned that wanting this was a mistake.

    Unless you are a hardcore fan of the Clancy series, this game will probably not even touch your interest. I found myself bored with the campaign, I found myself skipping the cut scenes whenever I could. The game play started to be repeated, basically kill or sneak around all the opposition in different settings.

    Splinter cell Conviction is better then Blacklist ever will be. Conviction has moments of shock and awe. Like for example, in the Third Echelon level on Conviction. Sam approached the desk, a little talk went on between him and the receptionist, then Sam detonated the explosives on the lower floors of the building.

    I never saw a moment amazing like that in Blacklist at all.
  14. Jan 26, 2014
    Wow what a disappointment multiplayer is. They threw out the original genius behind Double Agent and made this another crap fast paced game to appeal to the CoD audience. What makes this game bad? The Spies no longer feel like spies. Spies now have guns, not only guns but machine guns. Spies now have to stand directly next to a terminal to hack it, instead of being able to hack faraway with their spy device.
    Spies can no longer hack out lights and barely any lights can be shot out.
    Level Design is bland and boring, with no more tunnels, lights and barely any zip lines. Just expect to jump on top of crates and hide behind walls.
    Spies can just instantly stab and kill Mercs. Instead of having to take them out stealthly and choke them. In double agent you could even talk to the Merc as you choke the life out of them.
    So basically all you do now is run around, stab Mercs and jump on random platforms.

    It was too bad, because the good part is now you can customize your character. But that doesnt matter because the gameplay is boring. Companies have forgotten what great game design really is and why their older games were great.
  15. Apr 17, 2014
    Dear Ubisoft now as this is unfortunately the only platform people like me, that play the games and love them, can get at least the hope of getting some thoughts out to you ... let me clear my throat :

    Couple of things need to get done in the new Splinter Cell 7 :

    I. SLOW IT DOWN AND USE A NEW ENGINE, like the Unreal Engine again and implement rolls, lock-picking, and MOST IMPORTANT
    the ability to move in DIFFERENT SPEEDS, not only in two ...

    II. Remove THE COVER-SYSTEM ... Whoever thought that this is a good idea ... it may is, but not in this cind of game ... it works in a game like Gears of War but not in a third person stealth game, that has more to offer than stupid action shootings ... in fact it DECREASES FREEDOM for the player ... because he is bounded to that stupid covers all the time and not able to move around freely ...

    III. REMOVE ASSAULT GAMEPLAY ... because it is a stealth game and not a Tomb Raider Action Adventure ... seriously noone wants to play a stealth game in assault mode ... so in the name of godfather ... REMOVE MARK AND EXECUTE AND SONAR GOOGLES ... I would love you only for that ... and remove that possibility to buy thousands of weapons or pick em up and to just shoot anyone ... it is senseless here in this particular game ...

    IV. REMOVE EVERY SINGLE SADISTIC TENDENCY OF SAM AND THE GAME ITSELF ... as it just teaches wrong ethics to the youth and feels wrong and senseless ... games dont have to be brutal to be good guys ... and Splinter Cell has the philosophy to dont hurt anyone, to do it the professional and unbloody way ...

    V. REINTRODUCE THE POSSIBILITY TO CATCH AND CONSULT ENEMIES ... as that was a core feature of Splinter Cell in every game that used to be Splinter Cell ... it is an important feature and a nice gameplay element ... besides that think about reintroducing computers, doorcodes, retinascanners, some new cool stuff, too ...

    VI. THINK ABOUT EFFICIENCY ... like if a new gadget or an alternative path is not efficient, nobody will like to use it because it is senseless if there is a more efficient way ... like the Hack System in Chaos Theory was way to dominant ... it was to easy to use it instead of getting a doorcode or something, so that it actually destroyed many great gameplaypossibilities just because it made them not efficient anymore ... same thing for alternative roots ...

    VII. THINK ABOUT REALISM ... so dont make Sam talk loud into the mike while he is hiding behind enemies like in Chaos Theory ... and dont let him come to close to the enemy like in Chaos Theory, too ...

    That are some core basics, that you should think about ... that I as a first hour fan of Splinter Cell, a hardcore fan of the game, would like you to think about ... peace and love !
  16. Mar 3, 2014
    I was excited for this release.. But was disappointed.
    Choices on how to play, ghost, panther, assault- more flexibility much like crysis or far cry.
    Customising Sam was great.
    A fair bit of content.

    Way too hard.
    Bad graphics, this wasn't a 13 game.
    Screen tearing.
    Bad facial animations.
    Bad and pointless story.
  17. Aug 23, 2014
    after playing through this game (in a day i might add) i was enjoying it, up until i got the last level. not revealing anything but it is the worst last lever of a game ever, who ever came up with it should be taken outside and shot. Not only is this level stupidly difficult to do with a mouse and it would also seem the antagonist has eyes on the back of his head and is able to see you through walls. this completely ruined the game for me, i haven't finished that level nor do i ever plan to. i payed 50p for Blacklist, it wasn't worth it. Expand
  18. Jan 2, 2014
    There's so much wrong with this game... in terms of multiplayer. Single player is fun, but doesn't feel like a traditional Splinter Cell game, Chaos Theory 2.0 this is not. In addition Michael Ironside isn't Sam Fisher, so he ends up sounding angry a lot of the time, and it again detracts from the overall experience. The characters feel somewhat likable however they are largely forgettable, however graphically this isn't 2013 material, but they are passable. Multiplayer however is not. Spies Vs Mercs fails across the board in terms of design and gameplay. There are few modes, and even less that work well. There's an endless amount of cheese that just feels game breaks and the mechanics aren't there. It's like the developers didn't even play the game before release. I don't like this game and can't give it something positive, however the single player is sound, even though it doesn't feel like a Splinter Cell game whatsoever, the multiplayer is so heartbreakingly bad, I can't accept this. This isn't a Splinter Cell game, not by any means. However there is some cheap fun to be had here, even if it is guilty. Just don't expect to find it in the multiplay Expand
  19. Feb 3, 2014
    Me and a friend bought this game together in order to play through the co-op and mercs vs spies together, but Ubisoft's notoriously bad combination of Uplay and poor server connections made it near impossible for us to play together. As we scrambled to find solutions, sure that no company could allow an ongoing issue as big as the inability to connect to any friends on THEIR MANDATORY GAME DISTRIBUTION PLATFORM our hearts sank as we found out that people have been reporting this problem for around 6 or 7 months now. Obviously no headway was being made by the devs, so we set about to find a solution ourselves. About 2 hours of work later we both said screw it, no game is worth this much work when for years we haven't had issues playing any previous games together. There are about a hundred different forum posts about this, so I know that the problem is widespread, but Ubisoft forum managers always just claim that customers should contact customer support, which simply tells you to mess around with your firewall settings and the like, which is just general speak for 'we don't know what's going on, try some basic stuff to try and fix it while we do nothing on a more complicated level like trying to rewrite any game code or fix how our modems and servers work'. The software for smooth, clean co-op connection has been around for like a decade, only adding to our incredible frustration at not being able to fulfill the primary purpose for which we bought the game. Sure, you can fix the issue with a combination of firewall exceptions, port forwarding, deleting certain programs and a whole lot of other work, but it just isn't worth it when literally no other game has made me do this before. I feel cheated, and almost like I should be refunded for the unfinished product which no one is doing anything about to fix. While looking up fixes I found people claiming that this very issue happened with previous Ubisoft games for years and NO ONE FIXED THEM. I rate this a 0 not because it is a bad game, but because it was literally unplayable and unfinished to the point that I felt that I deserved my money back because I didn't want it going to a company with such terrible customer support or response to such issues. Expand

Generally favorable reviews - based on 58 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 51 out of 58
  2. Negative: 0 out of 58
  1. Sep 23, 2013
    Most will likely find it a fairly inoffensive time-consumer. But it is a new low for the series. [Issue#139, p.90]
  2. Sep 18, 2013
    Meaty chunks of great stealth game book-ended by identity breaking flourishes. [Nov 2013, p.56]
  3. Sep 17, 2013
    The design mantra, it would appear, is to offer you as much freedom as possible. [Issue#102, p.70]