That's right folks, Sam Fisher and Echelon 4 are back for more terrorist busting action! This time, they are up against a a terrorist group calling itself "The Engineers" assumes responsibility for the attack and announce that it was the first of a deadly countdown of escalating attacks (called "The Blacklist") on United States assets, declaring that they will halt the attacks only after the U.S. government accomplish the demand of calling back all American troops deployed abroad.
Now, this is very similar to the previous 5 games' plot of "There are the bad guys Sam, stop them by any means necessary!" This game is very much so formulaic of the rest of the Splinter Cell games, but that is definitely not saying that is a bad thing! Sam gets some cool gadgets, and you are free to go completely crazy and murder every bad guy in the face, or you can knock them out, or you can even avoid them completely.
There are 3 types of "experience" in this game that reward each of those: Ghost, which rewards pacifism, and non-lethal methods. Panther, which rewards players for stealthy kills and hiding bodies, and finally Assault, which is exactly what it sounds like; killing things dead, no one has time to be skulking around. Personally, I am a panther player, because I am a sniper rifle player, and frankly, they don't have any tranq rifles that I have come across yet.
They did introduce a new gameplay mechanic called Killing in Motion, allowing the player to highlight targets and take them out in quick succession while on the run. This is very helpful, even as a sniper player, you can highlight up to three enemies and take them out without aiming at all (it even counts as a "from the hip" shot, which really allows you to rake up the cash) this can be pretty easily abused, but it never makes the game "too easy" as you have to either KO or kill a certain number of baddies before it refreshes.
They also brought back Splinter Cell: Pandora Tomorrow's "Spies vs. Mercs" multiplayer, which makes me VERY HAPPY! I loved being a spy in SCPT and still do!
Now, playing the game on the PC with a PS3 controller mapped as a Xbox 360 controller really gives you everything you need in this, the fine control of a controller while having the ability to play with AMAZING details of my PC. That being said, I did run into an issue where DirectX11 crashed, and I had to bring it down all the way to DX9 in order for it to work at all, which makes me very sad.
Other than that, I am not having any arguments, and this game, outside of having a new VO for Sam (poor old Ironsides, I miss the grizzled old man, though the new guy isn't bad) this is carrying on with a great tradition set up from Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory (my first full playthrough of any SC game took place here), and I LOVE it. I'm really liking the fluid motion, gameplay, music, and even the kind of odd and holey plot. Easily a 8/10, mainly because the DX11 issue and the holey plot.