Metascore
93

Universal acclaim - based on 46 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 46
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 46
  3. Negative: 0 out of 46
  1. 100
    Although featuring the most realistic and detailed graphics, lighting and animation you've ever seen with sound effects to match, it's still the gameplay that shines the most, combining a sublime mixture of stealth and combat with the most versatile range of moves, gadgets and tactics ever to feature in a stealth game.
  2. A perfect game; cinematic, compelling, exciting, and most importantly damn fun to play! Believe the hype it is this good.
  3. The masterpiece that is Splinter Cell gets under your skin and stays there for a very long time... The kind of game you do want to go through over and over simply because it is a delight to play around with... A true work of art.
  4. 100
    Realistic scenarios in realistic environments add to Splinter Cell’s tantalizing world of covert operations. With a strong overall package of incredible features, the stealth/action genre has a new hero.
  5. 100
    Featuring an acute attention to detail in every respect and more substance than fluff, Splinter Cell is the defining espionage simulation... A compelling, unforgettable experience.
  6. Wickedly ingenious. [29 Nov 2002, p.114]
  7. 100
    Now that Splinter Cell has arrived all other stealth-based titles should hang their head in shame.
  8. 100
    The reason why you bought an Xbox. It's dark, it's loaded with depth, and it's absolutely gorgeous. [Jan 2003, p.56]
  9. One of the greatest games of all time. Splinter Cell redefines what a game should look, play, and sound like. Perhaps most amazing is not that the graphics, gameplay, and sound are so good, but that they all blend together to form a whole so well.
  10. The amount of gadgets that work their way into the game is absolutely staggering, the feeling of playing James Bond will most definitely enter the minds of some gamers.
  11. The appeal of Splinter Cell shifts into the sublime when it's graphics and sound are taken into account. No other game thus far has managed to present such realistic looking gaming environments... ever.
  12. 98
    Simply amazing: From start to finish it will dazzle your eyes, ears, intellect, as well as your imagination.
  13. Features one of the smoothest, most precise, easy-to-use cameras that I have ever experienced in a game. This is perhaps the game's greatest innovation.
  14. 96
    This is the kind of game I imagined when I used to dream about the experiences next generation consoles were going to give us. Splinter Cell is one of the smartest games I've ever played.
  15. By fully intersecting its Xbox-caliber visual and audio presentation with wide-open stealth action gameplay, it submerges you in a gripping, nerve-pounding atmosphere that will leave you begging for more. [Dec 2002, p.50]
  16. The game's developers have done an outstanding job of pushing the Xbox to its full potential and the result is a game with incredible atmosphere and a fully immersive environment.
  17. The engrossing story blends perfectly with Splinter Cell's gameplay style, which can be best described as genre-redefining. And to top it all off, the visuals are gorgeous and completely intrinsic to the game's genre!
  18. Splinter Cell oozes cool and sophistication from it’s lead character through it’s many and varied levels, and very slick control scheme.
  19. 95
    The interaction between the player, Sam and the game form a symbiotic relationship that few games have achieved. Things like retinal scanners, fingerprint id's and sticky cameras will keep you spitting adrenaline on this 14 mission romp.
  20. Splinter Cell is as close to gaming perfection as you are going to get, you just have to be prepared for what's coming next.
  21. 95
    Featuring brilliant visuals, edge-of-your-seat gameplay, and some of the best voice acting around, Splinter Cell is one of the best single-player experiences to come out this year... The best game on Xbox. Period.
  22. The storyline is so in-line with the current international scene that it’s a little frightening.
  23. The second best game on the Xbox, and if first person shooters aren’t your thing, then I suppose it is the best. If you have an Xbox, you must have this game. If you don’t have an Xbox, buy the game anyway – it’s that good.
  24. Splinter Cell’s low-key approach to plot development is a refreshing change for those of us that would rather play our games than watch them, like "Metal Gear Solid 2" for that matter.
  25. Insanely hard. Even with your tightest game face and greatest skills, you’ll still wind up replaying a mission at least three or four times before you get the hang of navigating through each level’s shadows, finding specific hints, clearing newly acquired objectives and discovering codes that you’ll need to progress through.
  26. Its combination of great gameplay mechanics and simply astounding graphics easily outweigh its faults. Trust me, you will see the light.
  27. The painstaking detail in the architecture is a huge draw in making the game as believable as it is. Everything looks exactly how you would envision it in real life, with hallways, open areas, offices, courtyards, everything modeled correctly.
  28. It's as good as its nearest competition, "Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance," and in certain instances, like the deep realism and stronger focus on the action rather than story, is a better game.
  29. One of the best Xbox games out there, unfortunately, by the end it has been repetitive and linear a bit too long.
  30. Awesome in ways this space doesn't allow us to describe. [Feb 2003]

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