Today marks the 20th anniversary of Ubisoft’s much-loved (but distressingly absent) Splinter Cell series, and to mark the occasion the publisher has shared a smattering of concept art for its upcoming – but still “very early” in development – remake.
All this comes via a special 20th anniversary developer roundtable video, culminating in a look at the future of the franchise. There’s a brief mention of the Netflix animated series – which was announced last June and is still in the works despite radio silence since then – and, of course, a bit on the eagerly anticipated Splinter Cell reboot.
Ubisoft announced its reboot – described as a ground-up remake – last December, with producer Matt West saying, “We’re going to update it visually, as well as some of the design elements to match player comfort and expectations, and we are going to keep it linear like the original games, not make it open world.”
Little has been said about the project since then – aside from a job listing promising an updated story for a “modern-day audience” – but Ubisoft has now offered a fleeting update on its development during its 20th anniversary video.
During a conversation between key members of the development team at Far Cry 6 studio Ubisoft Toronto, associate level design director Zavian Porter explained the goal of the project is to create a “top tier-remake to push quality as much as possible that should help us set a good foundation for the franchise going forward”.
“20 years later,” creative director Chris Auty continued, “we can look back at the plot, the characters, the overall story of the game [and] make some improvements – things that might not have aged particularly well, small things – but the core of the story, the core of the experience will remain as it was in the original game.”
Senior game designer Andy Schmoll added the team has been “exploring new and innovative tech and ideas” as part of the design process, “as well as features and elements from the other Splinter Cell titles”.
Unfortunately, it sounds like the project is some way off, with Auty confirming the studio is still “very early” in production. “We’re still prototyping, we don’t want to rush anything, ” he explained. “We want to make sure that we absolutely nail the game, we do everything in the right way, and produce an absolutely stellar quality experience.”
To accompany this briefest of updates, Ubisoft shared some concept art (which you’ll find above), but that’s likely the last you’ll see of the Splinter Cell remake for now. The team says it’s “going dark for a little while” so it can “focus on making the absolute best game possible.”