splintercellblacklist

REVIEW: 'Splinter Cell: Blacklist' Makes Stealth Exciting For Gamers

In a bid to celebrate life, we take an in-depth look at Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Blacklist, which is guaranteed to have something for gaming fans around the globe.

Those familiar with Sam Fisher have noticed an awful lot of changes in his life / career since first hitting the scene in 2002. The Splinter Cell series has allowed gamers to course through the shadows in this light and dark-based stealth game, which grew to iconic status with 2006's Double Agent. Consistently one of Ubisoft's flagship franchises, the man with the trifocal goggles returns with a few new tricks in his latest outing, Blacklist.

When a mysterious band of evil doers dubbed The Engineers put into action a large scale series of terrorist attacks, it is up to Fisher and his newly minted Fourth Echelon base to prevent these multiple attacks as the clock ticks down. Before each mission, you are able to choose and customize your weapons, gadgets, and gear while aboard the Paladin. Blacklist encourages gamers to play uniquely in three different modes: Ghost, Panther and Assault. Ghost is the super stealth non-lethal way, Panther is when you flex your lethal options and Assault is the all-out noisemaker at the party.

Boasting the dopest coffee table to be ever used in a video game, players are able to engage others online, tackle side missions and more in the S.M.I. (Strategic Mission Interface). This well integrated tactical world map even allows you to access co-op missions and the popular Spies vs. Mercs multiplayer. The enemy A.I. also gets a boost of improvement, as they will investigate noises made, follow your path and even kick down a door with gun's a-blazing. These elements make the experience of playing your way more tense and rewarding. The return of the "Mark and Execute" system from Conviction is much appreciated. By tapping the Right Bumper, you can keep your play style in check smoothly.

Along with the great gameplay, Blacklist is also another testament to the storytelling genius of the Tom Clancy brand of political thrillers. Gamers watch as the president handpicks Sam Fisher to lead Fourth Echelon into battle and stop the terrorists by any means necessary, which means there are exciting plot twists and turns throughout the story.

A gripe that was made during gameplay was that the whole cover system can be somewhat awkward. During one mission, you had to navigate Fisher in this dark loading area past a bunch of guards without being seen. The light and dark-based element, usually a point of fun for hardcore fans, was made cumbersome due to the sensitivity of the Sixaxis. Another problem emerges when the style of play you've chosen has been taken away from you by the developer. In numerous missions during the later stages of the single-player campaign, you're left with no choice than to dance to the developer's tune.

Ubisoft is no slouch when it comes to offering visual experiences. Navigating around shadowy areas and past enemies show off the game's crisp and fluid character movements. Casual fans may not even notice the departure of Michael Ironside as the voice of Sam Fisher, due to Eric Johnson wonderful vocal talents.

All in all, Splinter Cell: Blacklist gives you your money's-worth and more. In-game currency allows you to upgrade Sam's threads / gadgets between mission and online, while optional Dead Drops and side challenges allow you to bolster your funds. Add to that another host of missions (14) that you can play with a friend, "Spies vs. Mercs" multiplayer battle mode and a horde mode, and you are presented with an engaging experience that will prove just how changed a man Sam Fisher is.

Don't believe us?! Watch the trailer for the game below:

Splinter Cell: Blacklist is available now for the PC, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Wii U.

From the Web

More on Vibe

VH1

Jacob Knight Steps Out Of His Father Shadow And Into Real Estate On 'Love & Listings'

Breaking into a new career can be tough for anyone, but Suge Jacob Knight is ready to concur the world of real estate in VH1's latest docu-series, Love & Listings.

In the official trailer, we meet Knight known to his friends as Jacob. As the son of the notorious Suge Knight, Cali native has dived into sports, music and fashion, but Jacob is ready to try his hand at real estate. While working on his real estate license, Jacob teams up with Agents of LA's Tai Savent, where he's able to use his celebrity background with work with the likes of Jermaine Dupri, Brandy, Ray J, Vanessa Simmons and more.

Joining him on his real estate journey is Taylor Schwartz, a rookie ready to make her own splash into the game. The eight, one-hour episodes will also include other budding real estate agents of color who are looking to overcome their own bouts of drama.

The series also features Zac Diles, a former professional football player, Ajani Scott, a part-time waitress struggling to become a real estate agent and Andrew Clinkscale, one of the top agents at a popular Beverly Hills agency.

Rounding out the cast will be Samantha Barrette an L.A. transplant moving quickly up the real estate ladder, Erik Miles, a lawyer-turned-real estate agent, entrepreneur and realtor and luxury real estate titan, Alexander Anu.

Love & Listings is executively produced by Entertainment One (eOne), Creature Films and Purveyors of Pop (POP), and produced by Relevé  Entertainment. Tara Long serves as executive producer for eOne with Mark Ford and Kevin Lopez for Creature Films and Nate Green and Matt Anderson for POP, alongside Holly Carter for Relevé.

Christopher Costine and Sean Matthews also serve as executive producers. Concept by Releve’s Holly Carter.

See the trailer along with the rundown of the entire cast below.

Zac Diles

Diles is a former professional football player and has since suited up for a new type of game: real estate. After eight years playing ball, Zac has built a network of clients out of his former teammates (and adversaries). Zac’s love for the ladies (including other agents) often gets him in trouble. Despite being in a relationship with Kat Tat from VH1’s Black Ink Crew: Chicago, Zac finds himself caught between his current girlfriend Kat and fellow cast member and ex-girlfriend Samantha, who is determined to get him back.

Ajani Scott

A part-time waitress struggling to fulfill her dream of becoming a celebrity real estate agent, Scott moved her hustle over to the world of real estate to make some money while she builds her professional network. Seeing her potential, veteran agent Erik Miles has taken Ajani on as an apprentice at his own agency. The stakes are high as Ajani learns to put her money where her mouth is, which jeopardizes Erik’s A-list clientele.

Taylor Schwartz

Despite her young age, she is a force to be reckoned with. She has the charm, smarts and beauty to reel in new clients, but her fiery temper often lands her in hot water, leaving her career in jeopardy. Working under Tai’s wing, Taylor begins to wonder if the “grass is greener” when fellow real estate competitor Andrew Clinkscale offers her a position.

Andrew Clinkscale

Clinkscale is a top agent at one of Beverly Hills’ most prestigious real estate agencies. However, Andrew wasn’t always on top. He grew up through the foster care system and was homeless twice in his life. He’s seen the bottom and is determined to never go back. Andrew’s professional and personal life soon collide as romantic rumors with another real estate agent begin to arise. Will the swirling affair rumors around the engaged “golden boy of real estate” bring him down?

Samantha Barretto

Barretto recently moved to LA and has quickly moved up the real estate food chain by joining one of the most prestigious agencies in Beverly Hills. While running in the same industry circles as her ex-boyfriend Zac, Samantha’s feelings for him begin to heat back up and start to affect her professional life.

Sarah Scheper

After overcoming personal struggles, Sarah has embraced her sobriety and turned over a new leaf in LA. While Sarah quickly becomes the queen of Beverly Hills real estate, her reputation is threatened when she begins an on-again, off-again relationship with Jacob which leads to friction between him and the other agents.

Erik Miles

Miles is a charming lawyer-turned real estate agent, a one-stop shop with his own imprint at a West Hollywood agency. The son of a successful athlete, Erik is willing to take risks to close deals which often pays off... but sometimes blows up in his face.

Tai Savet

Savet is eager to break bread (and the bank) with his unique LA-based brokerage firm as the go-to agent for the biggest names in show-biz. From Tai’s perspective, the future is bright and primed for expansion, especially with a roster of hip millennials on his team, including Taylor and Jacob.

Alexandre Anu

Anu is a real estate titan at of one of LA’s premiere brokerage firms and continues to grow his elite clientele. All of his listings are high-end luxury properties with an extensive client roster of A-list celebrities and top business executives.

Continue Reading
Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images for Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures

Lashana Lynch Reportedly Lands Role As First Black Woman '007'

Actress Lashana Lynch is poised to make history, according to new reports. The Daily Mail states the 31-year-old thespian will reportedly take on the role of "007" in the upcoming Bond 25 film. This will make her the first black woman spy to command the role since the franchise's decades-long inception.

Lynch's character (Nomi) is central to what is being described as a critical scene. She'll reportedly star as a secret agent who takes over the alias (007) while being tasked with bringing James Bond (Daniel Craig) out of retirement for a new mission, E! News adds.

"There is a pivotal scene at the start of the film where M [played by Ralph Fiennes] says, 'Come in 007,' and in walks Lashana who is black, beautiful and a woman," a film insider said to the Daily Mail. "It's a popcorn-dropping moment. Bond is still Bond but he's been replaced as 007 by this stunning woman."

Bond 25 is directed by Beasts of No Nation's Cary Joji Fukunaga and co-written by Killing Eve's Phoebe Waller-Bridge. The upcoming motion picture will premiere in April 2020.

Lynch was nominated for Female Performance in Film at the 2019 Screen Nation Film and Television Awards. Her breakout movie was Captain Marvel where she played Maria Rambeau. Lynch also played the lead role in Shonda Rhimes' period drama series Still Star-Crossed before it was canceled after its first season in June 2017.

Continue Reading
Courtesy of Lion King

Chiwetel Ejiofor Proves The Real Star Of The 'Lion King’ Is Actually The Villain

The bad guy makes the movie what it is. He tests the parameters of your empathy, understanding, and grace, forcing you to see what you’re made of.

This particular bad guy lets resentment fester and rumble in his belly, as his mighty and righteous brother merits admiration and reverence from faithful servants. When it comes to brains, he knows he has the lion's share, but it’s the permanent mark in the shape of a dagger slicing above his left eye that reminds him his brother is the sole proprietor of brute strength.

It's this same villain who deputizes himself among the others also tired of begging for whatever's left to orchestrate a felony so sorrowful, it plucks at your Adam’s Apple, pushing your screams and cries back into your throat because what’s done cannot be undone.

Chiwetel Ejiofor’s embodiment of the deceitful Scar is just that: a wondrous amalgamation of pain, defeat, rejection and will bursting onto the big screen in Disney’s live-action remake of the Lion King. Jeremy Irons’ 1994 version of the antagonist, while still deceptive, encapsulated a bit of theatrics and bounce. The only telltale sign of Scar’s venom was his flowing jet-black mane. Ejiofor’s 2019 portrayal is bloated with greed, anger and the need to control. The use of the word “bloated” is hyperbole, of course, as on-screen Scar is thin, almost emaciated and physically hungry for the dominance he feels he’s owed.

There’s no need to rehash the 25-year-old film. Moviegoers can be reassured to know director Jon Favreau stayed true to the movie’s heart. He often replicated important scenes detail for detail, including the quintessential opening sequence with the sun rising over the Pride Lands as zebras, antelope, rhinos and other wildlife assembled to meet and bow to the future king.

And while we know Mufasa dies, his live-action death stings even more.

As Hans Zimmer’s “To Die For” thunders, the wildebeest come running down into the gorge and your 10-year-old self tells Simba to run. Hope is still a possibility after Mufasa saves his cub and leaps from the stampede onto the rocks and climbs to the top. Then your 34-year-old self soothes your inner child, because what happens next—the grave offense Scar commits—is irreversible.

But what most miss about Scar, even after 25 years, is under all of his deplorable ways lies his one admirable quality: ambition.

Scar saw himself among the greats and envisioned a kingdom under his rule. He let nothing get in the way of his chosen destiny, including his weak older brother. Scar couldn’t and wouldn’t settle for being a knight, or a duke or a lord. Scar wanted to be king, so much so betrayal and murder were mere casualties in the race to rule Pride Rock.

Who among us has ever gone after our future with more reckless abandon?

Ejiofor understood this insatiable need to ascend to the greatness Scar believed he possessed, and he channeled that with his voice. The east-London native’s lilt took on whatever emotions needed to give way to Scar's true intentions.

Whether it be the flat, emotionless way he dismissed Simba into the den. (“I don’t babysit,” he sneers) or the way he let his words dangle in the air as he covertly described life as Mufasa's brother ("Others spend their lives in the dark...begging for scraps"), Ejiofor’s reinvention of Scar is more than just a voice over. It’s the inflated and arguably updated blueprint Irons left behind.

Ejiofor showed that to embody Scar meant more than reciting lines from a page. It meant whatever couldn’t be expressed through physical emotion seen on screen had to be demonstrated in the inflections, whispers, and passion of his voice. Scar’s lustful desire to outshine his brother and his brother’s memory was on full display whenever Scar was on screen and Ejiofor zeroed in on that, even from behind a microphone.

With fervor, and indignation Ejiofor’s portrayal of Scar proved why, without him, Simba would be nothing. Without Scar, Simba wouldn’t have to face his biggest foe or know how to. While Mufasa taught him compassion, loyalty, and love, Scar taught him to fight. Scar is a liar and a cheat and will stop at nothing to get what he feels rightfully belongs to him. And yet, as vile as Scar is, he's also the unintended teacher.

Ejiofor knew that deeper than his fury and his jealousy, Scar was more than just a bad guy. Scar was an instructor who made Simba and audiences examine themselves and Ejiofor’s performance underscores that. Does it feel good to give Scar his flowers? Of course not. I wouldn't spit on Scar even if he were on fire. But let’s face it, there would be no Lion King if Simba didn’t have to fight for his throne.

So to Scar and to all the bad guys who help us roar a little bit louder, thank you for the unintended lesson.

Continue Reading

Top Stories