After refusing to do anything meaningful with the Splinter Cell licence in the years since 2013’s Blacklist: Aftermath, Ubisoft seems to haTve heard the fans’ plaintive cries because it’s decided to bring sneaky spy Sam Fisher back in a new remake of the original 2002 Xbox classic.
Ubisoft Toronto — the developer behind Splinter Cell: Blacklist and, more recently, Far Cry 6 — is spearheading the remake. And don’t get it twisted: This is a remake of the original stealth-action title, not a remaster. In an Ubisoft blog post, producer Matt West suggested that gamers have an “even more refined palate” now. As such, the studio is “building [the project] from the ground up,” including updating visuals and revitalizing design elements, in an effort to better suit modern players.
It’s plausible for a remake of such an old game to stray further afield, like perhaps going open-world, but West said in the blog that the game will retain its traditional linearity.
“One of the things that, from my point of view is really exciting about this project, is that the last couple of games all of us have worked on have been really big worlds,” West said. “What that means is that the economy of decisions is very spread out, whereas what I love about a Splinter Cell map is every square inch represents intentionality. Every square inch is part of a choice, or directly offers a choice, or has a direct ramification. That density of gameplay is at the forefront in Splinter Cell, and that’s going to be really, really important for us.”
The project’s focuses, as technical producer Peter Handrinos put it, are “exploration and innovation.” And according to creative director Chris Auty, the remake will serve as a “solid base” for the franchise’s future.
Ubisoft Toronto is still in the early stages of development, so there’s not yet word on a release window or which platforms the Splinter Cell remake will launch on. All we know is that it’s coming and the studio is looking for talent.