Pros Graphics, weapons, story, A.I
Cons Complicated story, learning curve for newbees
Summary If your a first person shooter lover, I know what your thinking, I don't have the patience or time to play a stealth game. I think Ubisoft (www.splintercell.com) was thinking of you when they developed this game. The newest rendition of the Splinter Cell series has brought a fresh game play and new worlds to explore through the eyes of a super-spy. The most common complaint of the previous Splinter Cells were focused on the linear game play and the annoying alarms. Oh those alarms!!! Splinter Cell Pandora tomorrow although a stunning game visually inherited those problems. While Pandora tomorrow was released out of Ubisofts Shanghi office, the talented and award winning Ubisoft Montreal was hard at work on making "Chaos Theory". Chaos Theory as taken the Tom Clancy series to new heights in all elements of game play and production. Once again, you play super-agent "Sam Fisher" in 10 missions to help prevent a computer virus that will spread and send missiles uncontrolled ; or something like that. The games mission are so enjoyable one forgets the main plot behind the game. Beyond a strong story line which is synonymous with a Tom Clancy game ; Chaos Theory improves in overall graphics, sounds, physics and AI.
-The graphics engine in this game creates one and if not the most cinematic game I have ever seen or played (including Doom 3, Halo 2, and Chronicles of Riddick) on a console. This was all made possible by a new graphics engine designed for next generation consoles in mind.
-The sound engine is amazing from the radio of some Merc or the change in weather.
The physics engine is real, when you drop a body on a object no longer does the body fall through the object. The environments are destructible and obey the rules of gravity and physics.
-The A.I is reminiscent of Chronicles of Riddick. They move, dive, jump and duck; while showing and acting with real emotions.
The above noted changes are great but what makes a game is the gamplay. Chaos Theory allows one to choose what type of game play: stealth, mixed stealth and assault or assault. This provides for a great experience because each individual choice changes the flow of the game . In addition, the game is open ended and allows one to play the game and complete missions in a number of different ways. Like Doom 3 you can play the game over from any saved location.
This encourages the user to play the games from a number of different ways. If you want to pull a Halo and shoot your way through, go ahead the game supports. But if you want to sneak you way through the missions you'll find this the more preferred approach.
Chaos Theory is a stunning game by all sense of imagination. Graphically it provides a glimpse of next-gen graphics and game play. The pace of the game is almost perfect and allows a gamer to immerse into the character of Sam Fisher.
I highly recommend and I give this game a 9.3 out of 10. I would place this game in the category of a Doom 3, Halo 2, Chronicles of Riddick category as far as ratings.
Pros Realism in working for the Pentagon: Jameson Thottam
Cons Good to have XBox Live - Jameson Thottam
Summary Jameson Thottam splintering off the beaten path with the third installment
Splinter Cell (a Tom Clancy project) began in 2002 with the X-Box version of Splinter Cell - the game that blew gamers away by graphical shadowing alone. The game was intended to be the first "true" stealth game and rival the Die-Hard-like competitor Metal Gear Solid. In some ways, even then, the game seemed revolutionary. Sneak in the cloak of shadows and through the gaps of broken light in silence to destroy enemies was basically what Splinter Cell was about. Despite the neat gadgets the game had (surveillance cameras that dispersed gas, guns that fried electrical units), the game seemed simple; in fact it was simple in a linear interpretation. When the game ended, there was no real reason to go back through the game, even if it was an instant classic. So, out came Pandora Tomorrow, two years, later that tried to expand Splinter Cell. In some cases, it did; larger levels were built, the lighting was better adjusted, and it even featured multiplayer. But, once again, when the time came for the game's completion, Pandora Tomorrow fell shallow - even with the multiplayer. So, out comes Chaos Theory; a game where they expanded the levels even larger, readjusted a few things, and added a few perks to enhance the gameplay and make it worth a second, or third, go through. Did their attempt succeed? Yes it did. So much that it not only impressed me, but made me realize that UbiSoft is the next major contendor in third-party manufacturers and may just be the next Rareware (although Rareware is a second-party company, but you know what I mean...).
Gameplay 5 (out of 5) : James Thottam
You are top stealth agent Sam Fischer, who is reprising his role of serving the U.S. Government way beyond his deadline for retirement. You are twice the age of the new recruits who you serve, but the Pentagon values you more than the other men. Why? Well, its easy to say that your record of killing people exceed even your commander-in-chief, you have survived two other world-threatening missions and above that, your a very dangerous killing machine who doesn't sleep. You smell, see, taste, hear, and feel death around you, its in your blood to kill for the good of decent men and you can't accept life any other way than offered to you by your career. You are Sam Fisher. The Chaos Theory has been assigned to you and you will not fail your mission; it's in your blood, it's why you were born to live.
Putting you in the Mood: Jameson Thottam
That's the overall attitude the game puts in you. That is what successful games do, puts you in the mood and makes you believe you are that character until you get a game over and restart and reenact through the same belief that compels you.
The newer installment has been redefined. The levels are huge, complex levels with different niches and ways to get past it. For instance, you can go through crawl spaces to get around an obstacle, fall from catwalks to knock out guards, or just go ape-wild with your machine gun and blast them. It's truly up to you. A few levels do seem linear; especially the post-apocalyptic Seoul stage; where you have to follow building top upon building top across a city of destroyed structures and, when you get past the buildings, you have one-way alleyways to worry about:, but then again, you can follow the route either on ground or through fire escapes and zip-lines.
From Start to Finish: Jameson Thottam
At the beginning of the stage there are very impressive GCI rendered cut-scenes about sudden incidents that will cause you to pursue the particular mission given to you by Colonel Irving Lambert. After a briefing is made, you are given the option of three types of weapons to enter; Stealth (has weapons like the sticky camera, silent pistol, and combat knife with limited ammunition), Assault (You are given grenades, machine guns, etc.) and William Redding's Recommendation (The amount of weapons and weapon types that best suit's the chosen level). I usually choose stealth because A, I love it, and B, I am trying to get passed the entire game undetected (which means not killing anyone). Though I don't think B will be possible, sense the bosses recognize you. But even so, it's still a challenge. If you don't want to use your weapons assigned to you, you can always use natural entities (as of rocks or wine bottles) to hum at their heads. Be careful though on how you aim an object; a few times I totally missed their head and they instantly pinpointed from where the bottle was thrown.
Thinking about the AI: Jameson L Thottam
Yes, the A.I. is more advanced in this version. They hold conversations with each other, cough, and even struggle for their lives from your deadly grasp. With their impressive realistic natures, comes more enhanced protocols. The enemies in the game can now sense something out of the ordinary, are able to notice you from across the yard if you are exposed in the light, and gain a funny feeling if you follow them. Meaning, you can make the slightest noise and they turn and shoot you. So, this game really pushes you to the limit and demands you to be quick with the toes if you intend to go about the game as a stealth figure. They will even call out reinforcements or walk out of their jurisdiction to investigate whatever disturbance. A few times, I was sniped out by someone who noticed me in the shadow from an upper floor of the building; I guess the scope of their sniper rifle has a night-vision lens.
Ending the Game: Jameson Thottam
At the end of each level, you are offered statistics on how you performed in the stage (how many people you killed, how many times you were noticed, etc.) and a percentage grade is given to you; which is not only challenging to get 100% on all stages, but through harder difficulties it is even more tricky). Do not ask me what happens when you get an overall game completion of 100%, because I haven't yet reached that, I am at 97% in the easiest difficulty. I, having been pulled into the (complete the entire game and receive a special prize) have been fooled too much into the ploy; I am not expecting much of out this supposed conspiracy, but it Chaos Theory alone is just so spectacular that I have no problems replaying it again for the umpteenth time.
Training: Jameson Thottam
If you get bored of the main game, there is a training mode, and online play via XBOX Live. But I will be frank with you, I don't have an XBOX-Live and couldn't even afford to have one even thought I would like to add in a review on how Chaos Theory runs online. Yet, I'd rather play the single player campaign anyways, it serves a breath of fresh air in the gaming world.
Graphics 5 (Out of 5): Jameson Thottam
I don't know how well the enhanced Ninja Gaiden: Black looks because I haven't had the chance to try it out (though I got annihilated by the boss of the first stage of Ninja Gaiden for XBOX, so I am in no rush to try it's revamped version), but I should feel safe to say Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory renders the best graphics I have seen out of the XBOX. It is twice superior to that of Pandora Tomorrow and rivals the visuals of Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay. Between the expression of fear seeping out the faces of the enemies held hostage, the tarps swaying lightly with the wind, the leaves of ferns and blades of grass drifting back and forth by the breeze, and the moistened glow of the nightlight running up Sam Fischer's suit give one of the most realistic console atmospheres I have played yet. The only problem with Splinter Cell, is don't the A.I. drones notice the three round beams (from the visors attached to Sam's crown) glowing in the dark? I found that a bit perplexing. But either than that, the colorization of the levels (most importantly the golden stage of Hokkaido) are beautiful and vibrant.
Sound 4.5 (Out of 5) : James Thottam
While the soundtrack is on the border of non-existent, every natural sound (waves rushing upon the rocky surf of the lighthouse stages, the gusts of rain catapulting with the gales, and even the range of other people voices (as they are down the hall or in another room) all sound true to it's nature. The gadgets sound high-tech and the rapid firing of the guns blare at a full Dolby Digital 5.1. If there are fans who dig sound effects, this is your game.
Replay 5 (Out of 5) : Jameson L Thottam
With over a dozen intricate ways to kill your target, I don't find any two experiences through a single stage will be enacted in the same way, there is just too much happening. There is the "Save anywhere, anytime function", which I humbly adore in any game, included in Chaos Theory. While some of the missions are hard, this game screams to be made into a movie. What with safe-cracking, hacking into a bank's security system, taking over Japanese conspirators, defusing bombs, being hunted by hovering robotic sentry units, finding dozens of secret passages in the game, and actually racing to destroy a nuclear weapon before it hits land... who would want more out of a video game? Although this game is far from epic, it the adventure can be fun and quick, intriguing and slow paced, suspenseful, or whatever you want it to be. It is Sam Fisher's life you are playing and, just like your own life, you can experience it however you want to with the understanding of the consequences involved with the actions you take. Although I haven't played it online, I heard it was pretty awesome. There is also offline Co-op, I haven't tried it however; don't have any friends close by who are still interested as I am in playing video games... But, it doesn't matter. The Single-Player campaign will last you a good few weeks or, if you like it as how I do, Chaos Theory will last you a very long time.
Overall 4.75 (out of 5) : Jameson Thottam
I know I haven't gone into critiquing the controls. They are the same as what is found in Pandora Tomorrow, except now they have a hanging upside down move and you also get to decide if you want to crack their neck or knock them unconscious (I don't recall if you were given the option in the previous installment). But anyhow, Chaos Theory delivers and makes you feel as if you are actually working for the Pentagon. A classic XBOX game that is worthy to be in anyone's collection. I can't wait until I can continue my fictitious career of Sam Fischer in the Splinter Cell sequel coming out on the XBOX 360, if I could actually afford to buy an XBOX 360 later on in the future. Here's to hoping...
Pros Absolutly Everything
Cons Too Short level wise
Summary This Game is awsome if not the best ever
Pros KNIFE!!! Graphics, Storyline, mulitple paths, character's personality
Cons Can be easy on easy setting, so realistic, it's scary at times...:P
Summary I own all three Splinter Cells, and Chaos is the best. THe graphics, the fluidity, everything. There is only a couple times were you get to cut through materials with your knife, but it's still sweet. Some people say that you can only use special kills in specific spots, but honestly, i use them a lot (such as hanging by legs and snapping someones neck, beneath ledges and grab guys). The CNET review is BULL. Game is better then what they rate it. At least for XBOX. New gadgets come in handy often. The ability to stike someone down with your bare hands, or knife, is very convienent. If you wanted more 'action' then the first two games gave you, this is the game for you. Sniper and shotgun attachments for SC2k prove that, it's not quiet with them at all. Even if you can't be lethal, which happened in one part of like the 7 levels i've gone through, it's a lot easier then the first two cause your hand combating is much better and attachments for gun are much more useful.
Mulitiplayer is sick, wish there could be maybe 3 v 3 instead of only 2 v 2. Still great, not much improved, but Mercinary's can have Shotgun, Rifle, or SMG, and a lot of other stuff, such as flares, Frag's...etc.
GREAT GAME!!! Get if you like tom clacy, even if you weren't a big fan of the first two, you can be much more confrontal in this game, alarms don't matter or bodies found.
EXAMPLE-I killed ships' captain , and needed to interigate him to find someone on board. Lambert got mad, and Sam said, i guess i'll just search the whole ship myself. Nice to see all the different ways to attack different objectives...Halo 2 and Chaos Theory are tied for first in my mind, but that's like comparing apples and oranges...
Pros Another action packed series from no other then Tom Clancy
Cons nothing but FUN, FUN, FUN
Summary for all the Tom Clancy fans this one is a MUST BUY.... as for Mr.Clancy Please don't stop making them keep them coming....