The Best Tom Clancy Games From The Franchise’s Golden Era


In immediately’s gaming panorama, the Tom Clancy title provokes decidedly blended responses. While Rainbow Six Siege earned its place as probably the most recognizable multiplayer shooters in current reminiscence after a rocky launch, its success is outweighed by the key slip-ups of the Ghost Recon franchise and the disappearance of the Splinter Cell video games. Even if developer and writer Ubisoft insists that the franchise just isn’t lifeless, it’s clear that it’s a shadow of its former self, missing the arrogance, engagement, and experimentation of the video games that made up its golden age.


Although Ubisoft is planning to remake Splinter Cell, it might be comprehensible if some followers did not get their hopes up. Ubisoft’s design philosophy has modified significantly within the final 15 years, and it is laborious to see them recapturing the spirit of the unique Splinter Cell trilogy. When these video games had been launched, the Tom Clancy title represented a excessive bar for modern gaming; Rainbow Six and Ghost Recon laid the blueprint for the trendy navy shooters that might comply with, whereas Splinter Cell was probably the most iconic stealth franchises of all time. Revisiting among the franchise’s greatest video games might shine a light-weight on how future Tom Clancy video games ought to – however most likely will not – method their materials.

Related: Ubisoft’s NFTs Will Only Make Its Games Even Worse

Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter 2 Was Ahead Of Its Time

Before Ubisoft was cancelling Ghost Recon Frontline or stuffing NFTs into Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, its sequence of squad-based tactical shooters helped to carry the trendy navy setting to the gaming mainstream. The Ghost Recon video games all the time centered round a extremely skilled Special Forces squadron – the ‘Ghosts’ – and emphasised sluggish, tactical gameplay by giving the participant command over a squad of AI teammates. There is little question that the sequence hit its apex of high quality and recognition with Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter (GRAW) and its sequel, which took the sequence into the close to future even earlier than Call of Duty: Modern Warfare launched in 2007.

By ditching the sequence’ tactical roots fully, Ghost Recon and the Tom Clancy video games usually have gotten pointless, and nowhere is that this extra evident than within the console model of Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter 2. By firming down the sequence’ punishing gameplay, and emphasizing immersion and cinematic storytelling, GRAW 2 stays a rounded expertise that hits laborious for informal and hardcore gamers. The design of its UI is evident and straightforward to select up, permitting on-the-fly decision-making to flourish by means of its squad mechanics. Meanwhile, its close to future setting by no means went excessive, permitting it to maintain a critical and grounded tone all through.

Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory Is A Perfect Stealth Action Game

A man about to sneak up on a soldier on a tower in Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Chaos Theory

It is troublesome to emphasise how necessary Splinter Cell was to the event of the stealth motion style, taking heavy affect from the gameplay of Metal Gear Solid and infusing it with a grounded, critical tone. The presentation of the unique Splinter Cell trilogy is so singular that it’s straightforward to invest on how Ubisoft can mess up the Splinter Cell remake. Its graphical presentation, particularly in using lighting, performed with visibility mechanics in ways in which no different video games had finished earlier than. Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory is probably the most refined and full sport within the sequence, and its moody environment permits gamers to really feel fully immersed within the position of Sam Fisher.

The nature of Splinter Cell’s gameplay is inherently rewarding; efficiently sneaking previous or clearing a troublesome room of enemies takes endurance and forethought, components which have been sorely lacking from all of Ubisoft’s current Tom Clancy outings. Chaos Theory is broadly thought-about to be the very best sport within the sequence as a result of it brings these parts to the forefront, delivering each an intense marketing campaign and a novel tackle multiplayer. However, Splinter Cell returning to the Tom Clancy franchise after eight years isn’t the massive announcement that the majority followers had been clamoring for. After Chaos Theory, the sequence started to neglect its roots, leaning extra into action-orientated gameplay. While Splinter Cell was nonetheless stable even as much as 2013’s Blacklist, pinpoint give attention to stealth gameplay is what’s wanted in a reboot, and there is skepticism that Ubisoft can ship.

Related: Good Tom Clancy Games Are Gone Forever

Rainbow Six: Vegas Was The Ultimate Tactical Co-Op Game

A screenshot of gameplay from Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Vegas 2.

In an identical vein to the Ghost Recon sequence, the Rainbow Six video games introduced the trendy setting to the forefront however transplanted its gameplay from a warfare setting to a counter-terrorist one. The give attention to a world anti-terrorism squad allowed Ubisoft to take the gameplay to distinctive city locales like metropolis streets and suburban interiors, producing a paranoid, claustrophobic environment. While definitely embodying this spirit, Rainbow Six Siege‘s weird crossovers and cartoonish tone are a world away from Rainbow Six: Vegas, which introduced stark realism to an in any other case outrageous setting.

Rainbow Six: Vegas and its sequel pioneered among the most recognizable points of recent shooters, particularly loadout kits and character customization. Like Ghost Recon, it additionally had a give attention to squad gameplay, and toned down a few of Rainbow Six’s most hardcore points however made up for it with a wonderful multiplayer suite that includes maps like Villa and Murdertown, which ought to nonetheless carry again reminiscences for individuals who performed Vegas and Vegas 2 on the time. Furthermore, the Las Vegas setting – which may, within the flawed arms, make the intense tone really feel frivolous – blended completely with the tactical gameplay by means of gorgeous visible presentation and life like stage design, making the mishmash of outlandish Ubisoft IP in Rainbow Six Extraction really feel like much more of a kick within the tooth.

FinishWar Was The Weirdest (But Also Coolest) Tom Clancy Game

Helicopters fighting enemy ground forces in Tom Clancy's EndWar (2009)

For an outlandish Tom Clancy sport that also embodies the spirit of the franchise, Tom Clancy’s FinishWar is not like every other. Taking place throughout a fictional World War III, FinishWar innovated on the real-time technique style by introducing a novel microphone-based mechanic. Players may command their squadrons by barking orders by means of their mics; a mechanic that, whereas messy, was extremely enjoyable, and goes to point out how Ubisoft has misplaced its aptitude for innovation previously decade. The large-scale, frenzied battles of FinishWar, which included orbital strikes and digital warfare, took the Tom Clancy franchise into a brand new path with out compromising on its centered, hardcore tone.

With Ubisoft studying the flawed classes from its slew of cookie-cutter open-world video games, it appears nearly not possible that it’ll return to the recent and creative spirit of FinishWar, or the Tom Clancy franchise on the whole. Rainbow Six, Ghost Recon and Splinter Cell started as well-defined video games that carved out influential niches of their respective genres, however all three slowly turned extra generic and pointless as time handed. It’s nonetheless properly price revisiting all of the video games from Tom Clancy’s golden period by means of Steam or backwards compatibility, one thing that Ubisoft might want to take into account.

More: Why Ubisoft’s Splinter Cell Remake Actually Might Work


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