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Review Spinter Cell 3D (3DS): Finally a Splinter Cell on the handheld that is worth playing!

genre: stealth, action, adventure

The Splinter Cell franchise offers stealth gaming at it's best. It requires patience and some creativity to reach certain objectives. While you can play it as a shooter in some sections it is something I advise against because Sam Fisher is at his deadliest when he is surrounded by darkness. He is basically a ninja that is most effective when not seen. And frankly not really equipped to be played like characters in shooters even when that option is given. On the consoles and PC Splinter Cell already offered and still is offering the best gameplay one can imagine when it comes to stealth but on the handheld it failed to do so. Splinter Cell Essentials on the PSP looked promising but after only playing for a few minutes I was fed up with it. The controls made it unplayable. Then I discovered Splinter Cell 3D on the 3DS. Basically a remake of Chaos Theory one of the most appreciated parts in the franchise.

And how is Splinter Cell 3D?
First off you can't really compare it to the console or PC games because for that a handheld of course lacks the hardware. But honestly this game in the franchise is exactly what I hoped it to be on a portable device. The lack of superior graphics are compensated by the 3D effect which is not that strong but still is very nice to look at.  The controls are smooth and is integrated extremely well with the touch screen. Some sections of the game were altered and tweaked to make it work on the 3DS which was very welcome but may make it easier for the more experienced player. However you still are required to play Sam Fischer as he is supposed to. Which means old school style like you had to play him in the first two parts. Chaos Theory had added a lot of options and gave you more freedom and ways to reach your goal. On the 3DS you are a little limited but I was surprised to see that there were still alternative ways present if for some reason you could not pass a certain point. Example: In the Battery mission there was a camera near an elevator that for some reason I could not get through without activating alerts. I tried several ways and each way resulted in the same. Very frustrating. But then I saw on a playthrough it was possible to avoid that camera entirely by jumping up in the room next to the elevator and follow an alternate route. Then I realized that a lot of these missions were offering multiple routes. So for people thinking that the 3DS version is not deep enough, think again. Of course there were times that the enemies could hear or see you even when they weren't near but those moments are more exception to the rule and are also present in the console versions. I only noticed one glitch that was a little freaky. Two guys I put down before a save suddenly appeared again standing however still very much dead after I loaded that save. Not once did I get the feeling that this game was rushed or not had been paid enough attention it deserved. I read a lot of reviews that felt like it was or that this game was far inferior to the original. And all I can say that I think that is not the case. If you play beyond the earlier levels you will feel just as immersed as you would on the consoles or PC. This is one of the few handheld games that kept my interest through and through. And that is saying something because most titles on handhelds bore me after a while. One thing has to be said. You do have to like stealth and the mechanics that come with it. Definitely worth playing !

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