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Impressions: Splinter Cell Conviction

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If anything is clear about the new look of Splinter Cell: Conviction, it's that Sam Fisher is a changed man. After losing his daughter in what was believed to be an accident, Sam learns the tragedy was planned as a personal attack. Cutting all ties with the secret government organization Third Echelon, Sam goes on his own in search of revenge. This is the beginning of Badass: The Game ... Splinter Cell: Conviction.

We had a chance to sit down with Splinter Cell: Conviction and learn the ins-and-outs of Sam's latest adventure. Have questions about what you saw at the Microsoft Press Briefing? Then you have to read this.

Gallery: Splinter Cell Conviction | 20 Photos

Behind closed doors we were shown the same demo that was given during the Microsoft Press Briefing, but we had the added benefit of having Splinter Cell: Conviction's producer Alexandre Parizeau personally guide us through the changes made to the series.

As the demo begins Sam is interrogating a man he believes to be responsible for his daughter's death, quickly the culprit knows he's unable to deal with the weathered soldier and gives Sam a name. The real man responsible. Zooming in on a bloody sink, the camera pans out to reveal the mansion of the man Sam now searches. His mission, kill the man responsible. The entire sequence is in real-time.

Conviction changes a lot about how Ubisoft Montreal wants to tell the Splinter Cell story. Rather than pop-ups within the HUD, objectives are displayed directly onto the environment. Other story elements use the projection concept as well. As Sam runs up a wall to enter his target's home, a projected animation of his daughter's grisly murder flashes ahead of him, almost as though it's projecting his thoughts and what is driving him to move forward in search of revenge.

Splinter Cell: Conviction is one of the most impressive games here at E3.

Much like Rainbow Six Vegas, Splinter Cell: Conviction uses a tagging system; however, in Conviction the feature is used to quickly snap to tagged objectives or enemies allowing Sam to engage. It's an action heavy feature that is essentially Sam's win button, but thankfully Sam's uses are limited. From what we've seen, the game does a good job of telling the player how the enemy AI is reacting to the action. If Sam is spotted in a certain area and slips away from enemy sight, a white outline appears to tell the player where the enemies think he is. This allows the player to regain the upper hand and coordinate a stealthier attack.

Splinter Cell: Conviction feels like a more natural step for the franchise. Rather than turn Sam into a rebel in hiding (as the original footage showed), Ubi has made this Fisher an action hero in search of revenge, stalking from the shadows. There is no doubt, Splinter Cell: Conviction is one of the most impressive games here at E3 and we cannot wait to see more.

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