Ubisoft has teased that the development of the Splinter Cell remake will draw from the rich landscape of the franchise. Led by Ubisoft Toronto, the game will be rebuilt from the ground up using Ubisoft’s own Snowdrop engine – the same engine being used in development Avatar: Pandora’s Border, as well as Ubisoft’s upcoming Star Wars Game – to provide next-generation visuals and gameplay, and the dynamic lighting and shadows that the series is known for.
To learn more, we spoke with the three developers of the project – Creative Director Chris Auty, Producer Matt West and Technical Producer Peter Handrinos – about their connection to the series, what is being preserved and what made Splinter Cell such a revelation.
How do you approach Splinter Cell as a remake? What makes it a remake and not a remake?
Matt West: For me, a remake takes what you do in a remake and goes a little further with it. The original Splinter Cell was full of amazing and revolutionary things at the time it came out, 19 years ago. The gaming public now has an even more refined taste. So I think it should be a remake instead of a remake. While we’re still in the earliest stages of development, what we’re trying to do is make sure the spirit of the original games is still intact, in all the ways that define the game’s identity. The original Splinter Cell. So as we are building it from scratch, we will update it visually, as well as some design elements to match the comfort and expectations of the players, and we will keep it linear like the original games, don’t make it open world. How do we ensure that new fans can pick up the controller and jump right in, and fall in love with the game and world right from the start?
Peter Handrinos: From a technology perspective, if I had to summarize it in a few words about the difference, what we are doing is exploring and innovating here. We have a new tool and a new dashboard lifecycle to take advantage of, so technology is an area where we don’t want to be stuck in the past.
MW: The phrase “Sneaky Action Redefined” from the original game has really proven to be a real pole star for us. For example, we can apply that to what Peter just said, as long as we can prototype, innovate and test a few things. That goes well with our redefining how stealth feels for modern audiences.
Which aspect do you think is the most important to update? What is the core of this experience that needs to be preserved?
Chris Auty: Splinter Cell is a breakthrough in stealth – as Matt mentioned, it’s been “redefined invisibility” with a huge focus on perfecting that core gameplay above all and fulfill an ideal: become a ghost. It’s important for us to maintain a sense of mastery by assisting players to observe situations, plan, use their gadgets, and creatively outmaneuver enemies to deal with challenges. challenges they face. Ideally, they’ll walk out the other side without anyone realizing you’re even there. That is the essence of Splinter Cell.
MW: One of the things that in my opinion is really interesting about this project, is that the last two games we’ve all worked on are really big worlds. That means the economics of decisions are very spread out, while what I like about the Splinter Cell map is that every square inch represents intent. Every square inch is part of a selection, either directly making a choice, or having a direct division. That play density comes first in Splinter Cell and that’s going to be really important to us. The gaming experience we’re targeting is directly tied to what we want players to feel, to capture the essence back when we were all playing the original game.
SHIFT: Yes, and preserve what made those original games so compelling. We realize a huge part of Splinter Cell’s appeal is the impeccable planning, execution, and satisfaction you feel when you walk in and absolutely excel in every encounter. Seeing your proficiency displayed at the end of things, especially when you go through with no alarms triggered – it’s an important part of the Splinter Cell experience and we want to be sure that we are respecting that.
Splinter Cell is being remade in Snowdrop Tool; What does it allow you to do that was not possible 19 years ago, or is that not possible with other engines even now?
PH: Snowdrop is a proven modern AAA tool. It allows content creators and programmers alike to quickly try things out, see what works, and eventually find success. I think that’s one of its main advantages, allowing us to quickly find the modern equivalent of that core Splinter gameplay. Some of the other AAA tools out there don’t necessarily have this kind of iteration rate, and so this is really what gives Snowdrop an advantage when it comes to getting Splinter Cell up to speed on a modern engine.
Stepping back a bit, what was your first experience with the first Splinter Cell? What made it so special to you in 2002?
SHIFT: My background is in level design and leveling for the past 20 years, and noticed that back then – there could be clothes that come apart when I move through them and have some sort of realistic interaction, authenticity between me as a player and the world in which I am; seeing enemies move around, allowing me to plan and make different judgments based on where they are and what’s going on – that had a huge impact on me early on . Things like thermal vision and using it as a game element – these aren’t just graphical bells and whistles. They are really related to the experience.
From a team perspective, we’re all behind that philosophy, that what’s added is more than just eye-catching stuff. It is related to and affects the game itself. So it was a pivotal, decisive moment for me when playing Splinter Cell for the first time, seeing that technology and being blown away by it, and then seeing it incorporated into the game. It was a great moment and a beautiful memory.
Back to the present: How’s your team’s makeover at the moment – any veterans from previous Splinter Cell games? What chances Are there people who want to join the project?
PH: We would like to invite anyone who is intrigued by what we have to say to join Ubisoft Toronto. We’re building a new team, the same way we did when we started the studio. Technical leadership and opportunities are available across all different workgroups. But there’s a lot of vets here, so we’re going to have a really good mix of people who’ve worked on previous Splinter Cell games and the new team members that are coming in and bringing new energy and new ideas.
MW: It was a big deal that Blacklist was the first game ever to launch at Ubisoft Toronto. It’s in our DNA.
SHIFT: That’s a common quality shared by everyone who’s been involved so far and everyone we’re looking to bring back, it’s respect for the brand, for the game and its history. I know everyone who is currently working on the project has spent a lot of time researching, playing, reading and learning about the game, the characters, the story and what makes Splinter Cell so great. at its core.
Aside from what we’ve discussed, what’s most important to the reader from this announcement?
PH: A lot of time has passed since the original Splinter Cell, and even since the last sequel – enough time to miss an entire console generation. So now we’re going to take the time to explore what this means for us, for light and shadow, for animation, for games, AI, even even sound. We will ask ourselves, “where do we innovate? What not only fits the legacy, but also takes the game to a level we’ve come to expect, and where can we surprise players? “We wanted to give them something new, but still connect them with the feeling they had two decades ago, playing that masterpiece for the first time.
MW: I’m going to throw this out there: You have to have a slogan, and one of the things that we’re currently using as a slogan, from the very beginning, is the phrase “respect for goggles”. I love the goggles as an icon for Sam. We’re creating a game that will be modern but built on the rich history of the franchise. The game has rightly achieved its success, by being innovative and challenging, as well as a truly different experience from what was on the market at the time. “Respect and protect” helps remind us of the fact that we must do justice.
There are things that simply need to be remade from the ground up to perfect the modern gaming experience. However, with that, what do we need to do to absolutely preserve the feeling of the original Splinter Cell? We will draw the line between the spirit of the old and the comfort of the new, so that we can excite and surprise new players, but also ensure that when returning players of We picked up the controller, and they breathed a sigh of relief, saying, “Ahhh, they got it.”
SHIFT: It’s safe to say that a lot of the team is stealthy, and we take that seriously when it comes to those types of mechanics and the things we’d like to see in this game. And we are very, very conscious of what makes a classic Splinter Cell.
MW: We talked earlier about that dense world where every square inch matters because they are all a consequence of one choice or table setting for the next pick from the player’s point of view. So that kind of density, that encapsulated property that I think is palpable in the first trilogy – it will be one of the guiding lights for us as we move forward.
SHIFT: With this remake, we’re building a solid base for the future of Splinter Cell.
https://gamertweak.com/splinter-cell-remake-begins-development-at-ubisoft/ Splinter Cell Remake Starts Development at Ubisoft Toronto