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Monday, 26 April 2010

Jonesing for Splinter Cell

I haven't posted anything in a while, I thought the next thing I would put up was my review of Darksiders for the 360. It has taken me much longer than anticipated to complete though so for that you will all have to wait!

As I have previously expressed on here I am a ma-husive fan of couch co-op. Even the most terrible games can be epic fun when your playing in the same room and on the same screen as a buddy; so when a really good one comes along it’s worth talking about, even just for a little bit.

Splinter Cell: Conviction is that really good game. I haven’t played anymore of the single player campaign than the initial interrogation because that is where the demo starts, and for me; where it ended. I took no joy in smashing a man’s head into a sink or through an occupied toilet’s door. It was altogether wrong and didn’t seem to fit with what I loved about the first Splinter Cell game – super stealth. Sam Fisher’s (Splinter Cell's lead character) Jason Bourne style makeover had already made me dubious about how seriously this game was going to take it’s stealth origins so this start to the demo was enough to push this game right to back of my list of things to play. Behind Russian Roulette even. That was until a mysterious man (my mate Sam) invited me to play the game on co-op in realistic mode. Not one to refuse a challenge and always up for double teaming AI I accepted and I spent the next two nights thoroughly wrapped up in a world of Sonar vision and co-operative executions.

The co-operative mode only consists of four campaigns of which I have completed the first three and each of which took at least four hours to do. Sixteen hours of co-operative content, not bad at all. Best of all though is that while playing co-operatively your character is independent of your buddy’s. There are few points on each level where both players are needed – each level ends with a door so with a lock so mighty that a single crow bar isn’t enough – your combined force is just enough and throws you into a fire fight, which in this game is a terrifying concept but it is a nice way to break up the play between pulling people off ledges and slide tackling them down stairs. But just because the game isn’t forcing you to work together doesn’t mean that you can’t and the game is cleverly engineered to reward you for doing so. For example: the game has this feature called executions, this enables you to mark targets with the shoulder button (up to three) and then kill them all with a single press of Y. If you do this with a buddy though you share targets, so if there are two dudes I can mark them both up and hit Y, on my buddy’s screen it flashes up to tell him what I’m doing and he can hit Y too meaning both targets will go down at exactly the same time as oppose to the first come first served basis you are restricted to on your own. Playing co-operatively in this game is a clear advantage, your buddy isn’t a burden as in Army Of Two or Fable II, it’s because of this independence that the game is so fun to play with a friend because it is totally up to us how we help each other out. You go along the pipe and I’ll shoot the lights as you go  or I’ll run past this guy so he looks at me then you grab him from behind leaving me free to hack the terminal etc.

I find myself longing to play the final part, and if you haven’t played any parts than what are your parting at?!?

1 comment:

  1. Do you remember mickey and donald and toe jam and earl. There was another early coop game that I forget. Fun times. What were the first coop