We've seen the trailers for R6 and Blacklist, we've played the latest that Ghost Recon has to offer.
What's one thing that they all have in common right now?
The way these games are played are all becoming pretty much exactly the same. Is it just my imagination, or is each Tom Clancy franchise slowly losing the traits that set it apart from the other ones?
The obvious differences are still there...
Sam Fisher is and hopefully always will be, apart from outside support, a solo act.
Ghost Recon is pretty much just that. Squad-based recon in various environments, fulfilling multiple purposes as needed. Kind of the Swiss Army knife of the groups.
Rainbow Six; as per Tom Clancy's original design, is a group with a lot of international latitude, dedicated to fighting terrorism.
But that's where the differences are starting to end.
The same cover system; albeit a groundbreaking and creative one, that we saw in Conviction was used in GRFS and it appears from the trailer, that we'll also be using it in R6: Patriots.
There is less emphasis on stealth gameplay in all three of the franchises; most notably Splinter Cell, since that had been considered the paradigm of stealth-action up until recently. But stealth and strategy was always an important factor in both R6 and Ghost Recon; mostly because the odds were not stacked in your favour, and the only way of besting those odds was to whittle your targets down to a more manageable level.
Who remembers staring at a blueprint of a building; to figure out where Price, Chavez and the rest of the crew ought to infiltrate?
Who remembers that feeling of panic when you lose one of your team members, knowing you weren't going to be able to get him back?
I sure do.
But these games are obviously being changed to accommodate a new generation of gamers.
Stealth and thoughtful approach is being exchanged for brutality and a more cinematic experience, in order to curry favour with a broader market.
This is all well and good. Perfectly understandable from a business perspective, but where do the action-thinkers go now, when we used to rely on the Tom Clancy games to fulfill our needs?
Are we supposed to simply drop our preferences and forget about the style of gameplay that we loved, in order to make room for this new generation of popcorn, call of battlefield lovers?
Or do we simply default to the games that are intentionally made challenging, like Demon's/Dark Souls and Dragon's Dogma?
I want to feel rewarded at the end, and I want to be able to improve my "score" based on things that are actually tangible, not on how many kills I've racked up.
Yes, I'm open-minded and willing to give Blacklist a shot.
But I don't want to trade the feeling of being challenged and thusly rewarded, for the feeling of being Beland's "powerful panther."