Metascore
85

Generally favorable reviews - based on 90 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 84 out of 90
  2. Negative: 0 out of 90
  1. Conviction is the best installment in the series. The developers took some major risks in design and presentation that paid off, resulting in a game that's at once approachable and complex, and arguably the current last word in stealth adventure.
  2. 100
    Why Sam has stepped out of the shadows and is on full out attack makes complete sense in context with the story, so if you can accept it for what it is and not dwell on the fact that it isn't what you've come to expect in a Splinter Cell title, you'll no doubt agree that Conviction rivals Chaos Theory as the best title in the franchise's history.
  3. This might not be the biggest Splinter Cell in the franchise but is by far the best and gets my vote for most innovative action game of the year.
  4. Every bit of the lighting and digital-effects are top-notch and we can only dream about what the next game will look like, it’s just so damn polished looking.
  5. Splinter Cell Conviction has turned the series upside down for the better, ditching the archaic gameplay of old which to be frank has gotten stale. The all new action stealth approach feels so much better and a lot more rewarding.
  6. Whether you’re an action nut, stealth gamer, or somewhere in between, Splinter Cell: Conviction has all the ingredients to take you on an unforgettable thrillride.
  7. 95
    Splinter Cell: Conviction is a game you have to play. Not only has Ubisoft managed to breathe new life into the franchise, but it has also succeeded in offering a wonderful action-stealth game for fans and newcomers. Not only does it excel graphically and sound-wise, but on top of that – one tends to forget all too often these days – a giant leap forward gameplay-wise. Definitely worth a purchase.
  8. Splinter Cell Conviction isn’t the most astonishing game you’ll play but when you put the final product in perspective, there’s no doubt in my mind that Ubisoft Montreal managed to create the second best game in the Splinter Cell franchise.
  9. A great candidate for the title of best game in the series thanks to brilliant graphics, great attention to detail, a very immersive story and some well thought-out gameplay innovations. A must for every stealth action lover.
  10. 93
    It was a huge risk deviating from the trial-and-error style that made the series famous, but it paid off. Splinter Cell Conviction is awesome.
  11. Splinter Cell: Conviction is quite different from its predecessors. Less trial-and-error, more tactical and action based stealth. Sam Fisher became the ultimate killing machine in the renewal of the stealth genre.
  12. An exciting campaign, sweet Revenge kills, bad-ass interrogation sequences and an incredibly addicting co-op mode make Conviction one of the best Splinter Cell titles to date.
  13. 92
    The main thing, though, is the remarkable and bold focus - none of Assassin's Creed 2's endless tutorial or ridiculous minigames, or indeed of Arkham Asylum's irritatingly blocked routes and hollow collectormania. This reborn Splinter Cell just gets on with it: it has the courage to pick one thing, the fantasy of being a hi-tech manhunter, and do it as well as possible.
  14. A bit short for one player, but with an impressive cooperative mode which compensates for. Simply put, Sam Fisher has in Conviction its best iteration since the first entry of the series.
  15. If you’re a fan of coop gaming action this is your game.
  16. 91
    All of the narrative and story-driven dialogue is beautifully pitched throughout, making the plot meld seamlessly with the gameplay.
  17. Hardcore fans of the series will no doubt hate the new direction Splinter Cell has taken, but the game is much improved and those wanting some action and silent tactics goodness will be pleased. Conviction does not rebuild the genre, but does a great job increasing its scope.
  18. The new style and direction of the Splinter Cell franchise may not thrill all the fans out there, but it's a fact, that this was a much needed bold fresh adrenaline jolt.
  19. An easier gameplay doesn’t mean a worse gameplay, especially when you have so much more on offer in terms of storyline, action, interaction and graphics. Splinter Cell: Conviction marks a new beginning in the Splinter Cell series.
  20. In both the main campaign and a rich two-player mode, the trademarks of Clancy’s military fantasy world—espionage, conspiracy at the highest levels of government, surgical application of deadly force—come to life with unrelenting suspense.
  21. Arguably the best in the series. Better sneaking mechanic, one of the best cover systems ever, and pacing on a level unlike anything you've experienced in a stealth game, all while keeping it accessible to new players.
  22. Splinter Cell: Conviction is a return to form for the series after the slight hiccup that was Double Agent, and anyone that's put off trying out the game at this point would do well to give the series another chance.
  23. 91
    Conviction's stylish presentation and intuitive cover mechanics prove that Ubisoft can make a highly polished product, but for the amount of game you get, the price seems sorely inflated.
  24. With an engaging story, impressive presentation and voice acting, and a variety of multiplayer game modes, Conviction has a lot of quality worth experiencing.
  25. Splinter Cell was in need of a refresh and that's exactly what Ubisoft has delivered. Conviction manages to tweak the tried and tested formula without ruining the stealth gameplay, delivering some of the best action gaming I've played this year.
  26. Splinter Cell Conviction opted for an approach with more action while offering the stealth that attracted the fans in previous games. The new mechanics make the gameplay more accessible, fluid and deadly.
  27. Splinter Cell is back with new gameplay mechanics and a great title. If you were waiting for a stealth game with fast paced mechanics and a cool main character, buy this game immediately. Conviction has a great multiplayer experience, and a short but intense campaign. Our uncle Sam is back again, and we love him!
  28. Gorgeous visuals and a brilliant cast make Splinter Cell: Conviction a terrific, if a little short, singleplayer-experience. The Co-op modes bring loads of entertainment for shadowy agents and novice spies alike. Fisher's latest comes highly recommended.
  29. The development of the story and the game provides not only die-hard fans of the series with a new and refreshing take on the Sam Fisher story, but it also provides new players to the series a rich and extremely satisfying gameplay experience.
  30. Splinter Cell: Conviction isn't the series' high point, but it does get the franchise back on track. [May 2010, p.89]
  31. Although not a perfect package, Splinter Cell Conviction is a great game that offers a great single player experience as well as a solid cooperative game that all combines into another must have action game.
  32. 90
    A game that more than makes up for the protracted wait, with both a fantastic single player campaign and brilliantly worthwhile multiplayer component to boot.
  33. 90
    The game is one of the best Splinter Cells I have ever played, and I feel that Ubisoft has really made a solid game.
  34. Fast, brutal action that shines in single-player and co-op. A terrific series reboot. [June 2010, p.81]
  35. Sam Fisher is back with a vengeance then, leaner and meaner than ever before. Splinter Cell: Conviction, like Fisher is also rather lean in terms of narrative-based content, but there's more than enough going on in multiplayer to make SCC well worth the asking price.
  36. It isn't perfect and it doesn't stand out so much as to make it the be-all, end-all of stealth games, but Conviction has definitely put the Splinter Cell series back among the genre's elite.
  37. Gratifying predatory battles, a unique visual exhibition, and a variety of engrossing game modes makes Conviction an absolutely solid experience that nobody should feel disappointed in.
  38. Conviction is one of the most polished experiences available this year, and certainly one everyone should see through to the end.
  39. A genre and series defining game for action fans to enjoy and appreciate.
  40. This is a game that everyone really must play and, hopefully, other developers will pick up on some of the ideas in this title, mainly the excellent cover system. Be sure not to miss out on Splinter Cell Conviction.
  41. Faster, Harder, Fisher. The new Splinter Cell is more action-oriented and offers an atmospheric presentation and high tension. Some will miss the traditional stealth gameplay, others welcome the fresh ideas.
  42. Splinter Cell Conviction may still demand patient planning but when a well-conceived scenario pays off and the air fills with the cries of frightened soldiers, the sense of empowerment becomes palpable – indeed outright addictive.
  43. Explosive tactical knee-grazing and smash action. Breathes new life into the stealth genre. [June 2010, p.82]
  44. With Conviction, the Splinter Cell series expertly keeps pace with the way stealth games are ploddingly evolving. It even throws in a few flourishes all its own. The result is a great stealth game that's well worth experiencing, even for newcomers to the series.
  45. Conviction can't be the perfect epilogue for the saga. The new Sam Fisher's adventure is well structured, with a fluid and fast gameplay and an intricate and addictive plot but it has several technical glitches and imperfections. But if you don't mind about these problems, you'll play Conviction from the start until the end and will appreciate every single part of its gameplay.
  46. It’s a more accessible and cinematic experience that may turn off some Splinter Cell purists. If you’re only in it for the single player story, a rental will suffice, but with a good-sized co-op campaign and a more focused multiplayer suite, Splinter Cell fans have excellent reason to get re-acquainted with Sam Fisher this summer.
  47. It gives some of us a chance to release a lot of the pent-up energy from having to chill in the shadows for years, and any time you get to let the beast out and stop hiding, it feels good.
  48. Some people will hate Splinter Cell Conviction just because it’s different – you know what, it’s there loss. Bar a few pacing issues and a little too much emphasis on gunplay towards the end of the game, Conviction nevertheless delivers a fantastic experience that is great when played alone and nothing short of terrific when played with a friend.
  49. Conviction is the perfect evolution for Sam Fisher's series. The gameplay is smooth and dynamic, and even if the graphics are not the best of this generation, this last Splinter Cell delivers some serious action.
  50. 87
    Splinter Cell: Conviction is a game that will keep you on the edge of your seat for at least eight hours. The new direction that is chosen is a good one, even though the ride could have lasted a little longer.
  51. The single-player story is short, but it's filled with a lot of great moments. The co-op multiplayer helps to give the package a lot more bite.
  52. It offers a clever Deniable Ops mode, a co-op campaign that’s equal or superior to the solo section, and best of all, a solo campaign with lots of excellent missions in unique locations threaded by the series’ best narrative.
  53. Fisher never wanted to come back to Washington, D.C., and resume his Splinter Cell lifestyle, but with a very good (although short-lived) and very good-looking single-player story along with another strong co-op mode (both offline and online) gamers will be more than pleased with Fisher’s stealthy combat return.
  54. Conviction moves the series in a couple of new directions, with new elements that are well thought out and polished. It doesn't do anything groundbreaking and sometimes abandons these fresh ideas for much shallower out and out gunning, but it's consistently solid and satisfying throughout.
  55. Splinter Cell Conviction deviates from the original series in quite a substantial way, but keeps its soul is intact.
  56. 85
    Anyone whose interest ends at the single-player or the co-op campaign could potentially set the game aside after a little as five hours. Those who fall in love with the new gameplay will find more than enough reason to return to the shadows.
  57. Many will enjoy it for what it is, and others will hate what Ubisoft did to their stealth series. There's no doubt about it: Conviction is a massive divergence from the normal formula. Stealth takes a back seat, and the trial-and-error gameplay has been replaced with something much more akin to the recent Batman: Arkham Asylum.
  58. There's no doubting that Splinter Cell: Conviction is a great game, but it's a game that ultimately loses its way towards the end. It's almost like a 200m hurdle champion falling at the last hurdle, but still bumbling to his feet to make the finish line in a more than respectable time.
  59. Splinter Cell: Conviction is an exceptional game that packages together some entertaining content. The fun co-op multiplayer pads the short single-player out nicely.
  60. Splinter Cell Conviction changes the rules of the classic espionage saga, being really consistent with Sam Fisher's story and the background. Some great co-op modes improve the overall value, shaping a funny half stealth half action/shooter that will probably disappoint the old fans, but it still delivers some good gameplay.
  61. Great story telling, novel and exciting new abilities, and a well presented package make Conviction a worthy entry into the Splinter Cell series.
  62. Its flaws stand out in the short singleplayer campaign, and its tail end relies too much on the gunplay that the game otherwise relegates to a begrudging last resort. But when it hits its stride, the environments unlock the player’s tactical ambitions in away that is truly empowering, launching you between shadow and light, discretion and aggression.
  63. The emperor is wearing tense, compelling and entirely seductive clothes. It's just a shame his outfit is from the 2005 collection. [Issue#95, p.102]
  64. Whatever stance you take, though, the game's biggest problem is its length, coming in between five and six hours, depending on skill and just how important it is to you to complete the levels with absolute precision.
  65. While co-op kicks an unholy amount of ass, the Fisher campaign wasn’t the drastic departure from the series’ punishing trial and error we were all expecting.
  66. Splinter Cell Conviction might not have the longest or greatest single-player campaign, but it makes up for this with a substantial selection of alternative modes.
  67. We haven't had so much fun with a new Splinter Cell game since 2005's phenomenal Chaos Theory. [Issue#58, p.82]
  68. Ubisoft took quite a few gambles and not all of them paid off, resulting in a gripping thriller with a few potentially bothersome missteps. If you don't mind a little Jack Bauer/Jason Bourne with your Sam Fisher, you'll enjoy the ride.
  69. Conviction manages to make stealth a mass market feature. Mark and execute is a fantastic addition. The co-op missions are the highlight of the game. It’s just too bad the singleplayer lacks big, open missions like in the old games.
  70. The fifth entry in the Splinter Cell franchise is finally here and introduces a way more action oriented gameplay experience than what we're used to. It takes a while getting used to and does enable a run and gun approach. Less stealth, less gadget and more action. While it's not the Splinter Cell of yore it's still a great action experience and the cooperative campaign is great fun.
  71. A necessary reboot that fights accusations of dumbing down with an artful mix of stealth and violence.
  72. The criminally short solo-player campaign... can be beaten in around five to six hours. However, for all its shocking brevity, the campaign’s story is utterly engrossing; it may be completely preposterous, but the story hits harder and resonates more than those of previous Splinter Cell titles.
  73. Conviction is one of the best games in the series, with a new and brilliant control scheme. Sam Fisher's last adventure is one that all Xbox 360 shouldn't miss.
  74. Ubisoft really went the extra mile to give the Splinter Cell series a true reboot with Conviction. Sam is angrier, the gameplay is much smoother and the story more fast paced, plus it has a lot of nice multiplayer options in it as well. Old fans might miss the old Splinter Cell from time to time, but Conviction really is a great game that can be recommended to both new and old Sam Fisher fans.
  75. Splinter Cell: Conviction is faster and more action oriented than previous games in the series. It's getting closer to a third person shooter, but Conviction has not lost its unique Fisheresque soul. This is great entertainment.
  76. It's hard not to feel a twinge of disappointment if you're a fan of the series. Sam's newest adventure doesn't offer the challenge you may be expecting, and recent stealth-action hybrids like Metal Gear Solid 4 and Batman: Arkham Asylum provide much more satisfying single-player experiences. Yet stellar storytelling, fantastic co-op play, and rewarding executions make Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Conviction a legitimately great game that delivers frequent surges of excitement.
  77. Appeals to a whole new crowd that grew up on creating distractions, using every single gadget in their inventory and dragging bodies into shadows. If Conviction is evidence of where Ubisoft is taking the series, they are about to win over a lot of new fans and potentially upset a portion of those already loyal.
  78. The crescendo of the plot builds to a ludicrous point - the influence of (now canceled) 24 is extremely apparent, but as the one-man-army that is Sam careens towards his final goal the narrative goes a little over-the-top - not Metal Gear lunacy, but certainly a climax uncharacteristic of the series.
  79. Conviction is a good game, faithful to the series, with great visuals and a perfect mix of action and stealth. But the solo experience is extremely short, there are several AI flaws, and all of the multiplayer game modes are just for up to two players. Good ideas, but it's not as polished as previous entries.
  80. The most accessible Splinter Cell game yet. It gives you the firepower to shoot your way out of your mistakes, but also makes the stealth side of things fun, rewarding, and significantly easier than just attempting to run around and shoot. Its only serious issue is that it doesn't feel especially substantial or replayable.
  81. You'll find Splinter Cell: Conviction a rewarding experience if you're buying the game for its co-op modes. On the other hand, if you're diving into the action expecting a complex and innovative single-player mode, Splinter Cell: Conviction might seem like a letdown.
  82. There are plenty superb moments as the unleashed 'Sam Fisher' to make picking up 'Conviction' a worthwhile investment. However, the lone wolf gamer should keep in mind that the single player campaign is fairly short, so you will need to head online if you want a little more out of your experience. Now that the lockdown its over, lets get Sam back on that leash, and back to the basics.
  83. Splinter Cell: Conviction is a fun game to play for most of the time, frustratingly disappointing at others. It’s far too easy, has some poor AI, but above all it’s just not expressive enough. Cool as it may be, visually and conceptually, you can only get excited about infiltrating another warehouse or mansion in the dead of night so often.
  84. 75
    Splinter Cell: Conviction features an engrossing campaign and superb co-operative mode. Ubisoft has implemented some serious changes to advance the series and create a worthy stealth-action game.
  85. At its best, Conviction is played as a high-stakes puzzle game, taut and thrilling when everything is going your way. But when cover is broken, the floodlights go up to reveal a mediocre shooter. Perhaps the greatest irony of all is that Splinter Cell: Conviction appears brightest in the dark.
  86. Overall Splinter Cell: Conviction is a let down for long time fans of the series, but as a game in its own right it is worthy of your attention.
  87. It would be sad to ignore this new Splinter Cell for its small flaws, because the game is unquestionably fun.
  88. There's a sense that in an attempt to appeal to a wider audience, i.e accessibility, Ubisoft has appealed to the lowest common denominator. We enjoyed the Splinter Cell series for its complexity, but like Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six before it, such elements have been removed completely.
  89. As for the solo game, Conviction is likely to appeal to more people than any Splinter Cell game to date, which is a shame because UbiSoft has replaced the heady silent stealth play with a middling third person shooter.
  90. Conviction is just a casual-oriented actioneer with simplistic gameplay mechanic and big-budget production values.
User Score
7.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 525 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 113
  2. Negative: 19 out of 113
  1. Jul 11, 2011
    9
    No one will stop Sam Fisher, nor do you. Slick control is perfect for stealth and combat, strong voice acting gives life to the awesome story and the flashy black and white ( in the shadow) adds cool effect to it. The multiplayer is appealing, i set more with the co-op mode, versus is sometimes frustrating , but it adds tension. Conviction never felt so good Full Review »
  2. HarrisB
    Apr 19, 2010
    3
    Look at all these Xbox Mags. They always give Big Points to fairly hyped games, no matter how bad they are. Even the Xbox Gamers dont care about this stupidity. Maybe they are just glad to have another shooter game of its kind. If you are a demanding gamer stay far away from this one. It will be underwhelming for you if you are 10 years of age or older. Full Review »
  3. Feb 24, 2012
    5
    I have been a massive fan of the Splinter Cell series, beginning with the first title that was released for the original Xbox. My play through with Splinter Cell: Conviction was, to say the least, average. It's the kind of game where developers take 1 step forward and 2 steps back, despite their passionate effort in 'reinventing' the genre. Length: "Splinter Cell: Conviction's" story mode will last the average player an upwards of around 6-10 hours, depending on the difficulty (mind you, this is not the same "lengthy" duration they claimed and boasted in their interviews. The Co-op portion of the title will last approximately 3-4 hours, again, depending on the difficulty. The rest of the multiplayer length is relatively subjective, because it really depends on the person playing and whether they truly enjoy it or not.

    Controls: Excellent. Some issues with trying to climb up and some such but other than that, the controls were very solid.

    Sound: Again, also excellent. Single Player Story: Not too much peep out of me for this part of the game. It's a pretty interesting storyline, but I wish they did a few things differently. In short - and without spoiling too much - it's just obnoxious playing as Sam Fisher one moment, and than being thrown into Diwaniya, Iraq as a completely different person. It just derails the narrative focus of the game for the sake of telling a side story that is completely irrelevant to the main plot of the game. Co-op Story: Interesting to say the least. It really reveals a lot of the interior motives of a certain someone in the single player story, but only if you play the co-op campaign first. The ending was truly a disappointment although my friend and I had a pretty good laugh the first time we played the ending. Gameplay and design: Now, this is where it gets really nitty-gritty. The game-play and overall design of Conviction is quite clear, it's meant to be played as a run and gun, Jason Bourne on speed style game. There are a huge amount of key and refining features missing that made the originals so damn good. The knife, whistling, controlling your light exposure and movement speed, Night/thermal vision goggles, moving and hiding bodies, hallway split jumping, etc. Big and small things like the ones I mentioned above are just completely eradicated from Conviction, all for the sake of making it fast paced, something the Splinter Cell series is *not* known for. Enemies are just thrown into each section of the level, each one being in a convenient spot for players to make full use of the Mark and Execute feature. So much is sacrificed for one feature, and quite frankly, it's just disgusting to see a title stripped of it's roots and garnished with mediocrity.

    The exclusion of key features is one thing, but the illusion of the stealth in conviction is also another. I couldn't shake the feeling that Conviction was not designed with the originals in mind. For all intents and purposes, Ubisoft felt it would be a good idea to force players into unavoidable gun fight scenarios with little hope for pure stealth. The addition of the Sonar Goggles is more of a burden than it is a boon. Special enemy types are later equipped with these very same goggles, further eliminating the use of stealth mechanics and forcing players to draw their guns and mark/execute their way to victory. These same goggles also completely eliminate the use of one such gadget, the sticky camera (which had it's smoke feature replaced with the explode feature).

    I can go on about how this isn't a true sequel to the Splinter Cell series but this review has to stop at some point and I'm just sick of having to juggle why Ubisoft felt it necessary to try and reinvent the wheel. For me, this title in the series is a 5/10. In short, as a Splinter Cell title, Conviction is complete trash that spits in the face of it's predecessor in hopes of garnering the undivided attention of the fast-paced shooter crowd. As a 3rd person shooter with some stealth elements, it's an average game. Make of that what you will.
    Full Review »