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Splinter Cell: Conviction Insurgency Pack Review

by William Schwartz

IMPROVISE. ADAPT. OVERCOME. The first wave of premium downloadable content has recently been released by Ubisoft. The Insurgency Pack is a four map pack which expands the already robust Deniable Ops multiplayer component of Splinter Cell: Conviction. Playing the roles of Archer and Kestrel, the Insurgency Pack is filled with the same adrenaline pumping stealth action hybrid gameplay that we have come to know from the original content in the game. The premium downloadable content features four new areas where you can battle both terrorist organizatons and each other. The new locales include San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Portland, and New Orleans.

Being a multiplayer add-on to the game, “Insurgency” adds a great deal of value to Splinter Cell Conviction.  You can play the new maps by your lonesome in the Hunter and Last Stand modes, or you can go online grab a partner and go at the objectives together in those modes, as well as the head to head mode Face-Off. Being that the level of quality carried over near exact from the campaign, if you’re not playing Deniable Ops over Xbox Live you’re definitely missing half the fun with Splinter Cell Conviction.  If you are playing deniable ops but possibly got bored with the six levels that shipped with the game, Insurgency spices up the game at just the right time.  Knowing that the multiplayer experience is already top-notch, deciding on whether the new maps are worth it boiled down to level design, environment, and fun factor.  Staying true to the roots of Splinter Cell you are gonna be headed off into hidden laboratories, left for dead prisons, decrepit warehouses, and the like. The environments in the maps are nailed perfectly whether you are listening to the wind rustling through the corridors of an underground crypt or the chatter of a patrolling sentry just before you pull him over the edge to his death.  The maps are just as interesting to explore as any other that have shipped with the retail title because they are varied.  You will find yourself in a various number of situations that display the quality and the time that was put into the level design. The maps work extremely well with all of the game modes whichever your poison.  It’s pretty clear that this pack was not a rushed money grab on Ubisoft Montreal’s part.  As well as varying difficulty levels to choose from added achievements to the game and the multiplayer component lead me to believe I’ll be playing these new maps for some time to come.

It was surprising that no new game modes were added to the mix in the Insurgency DLC.  It seems that there would be endless possibilities that these large sprawling maps could offer.  A throw back to Double Agent where objectives must be gathered and returned for safe keeping while playing against another user controlled Spy seems like something that could be doable.  I mean there are a ton of possibilities open to the creators I am sure.

If you were looking for any fixes to the minor flaws that Splinter Cell Conviction has they aren’t included in the DLC.  You can still shoot through walls when marking and executing target, and this is one of the flaws that makes the game a little less convincing than it should be.  The enemy A.I. still has it’s moments where guards will fail to notice a comrade getting shot in the head right next to him but can spot you with pin point accuracy when taking out a light.  It’s not a deal breaker for the game as these flaws have already been recognized and accepted for what they are..part of the game.  Personally, I was hoping for an update on some of these things with the first wave of premium content.

I was under the assumption that there would be an added Co-op story to go along with the deniable ops missions.  Very much a fan of the series, I was looking forward to more of the Clancy goodness from the narrative.  To find that the levels had no story backdrop was a little dissatisfying.  Does it take away from maps from a a technical standpoint, no, but it could have made them that much better.

If you have Splinter Cell Conviction you would do well to pick up the Insurgency Pack for $10 or 800 MSP.  There is a great deal of value for anyone that loves the multiplayer component of the game.  This is a quality DLC piece that is at or exceeding what is already on the disk.  New Orleans is arguably my favorite of the bunch and might be the best Co-op map of the game entirely.  The content is priced right, at ten dollars, it could likely extend your play time  by many hours via Xbox Live or Rogue. If you don’t own Splinter Cell Conviction and own a system capable of playing this remarkable title you should probably pass on the next title you were planning on buying and pick it up with the DLC as well.

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Splinter Cell: Conviction Insurgency DLC

  • Available On: Xbox 360, PS3, PC
  • Published By: Ubisoft
  • Developed By: Ubisoft
  • Genre: Stealth
  • US Release Date: May 2010
  • Reviewed On: Xbox 360
  • Quote: "If you have Splinter Cell Conviction you would do well to pick up the Insurgency Pack for $10 or 800 MSP. There is a great deal of value for anyone that loves the multiplayer component of the game."
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