Playtester Reportedly Leaks Splinter Cell Battle Royal "Hunters"

A playtester has reportedly leaked details regarding a now-cancelled Splinter Cell Battle Royale from Ubisoft. Here is what they were planning to develop.

Splinter Cell BR
A Splinter Cell Battle Royale, genius or stupid? | © Ubisoft

Splinter Cell might feel like it could only ever work as a single-player experience, but in defense of Ubisoft, they have made co-op and PVP modes in Splinter Cell before. The co-op was far more successful than the PVP mode, Spies vs. Mercs (pictured above), but it's not like the PVP mode was entirely without merit.

However, the early Splinter Cell games were developed at a time when Ubisoft were far healthier. Nowadays, they're stuck trying to push Skull & Bones out to the world while their other franchises dwindle (with the possible exception of XDefiant). It should come as no surprise therefore that the Splinter Cell Battle Royale project failed, but the recently leaked details about what could have been are still fascinating.

Note: The Splinter Cell Remake is still being developed as far as we are aware, and is unconnected to this Battle Royale project.

  • If you're a long-term Splinter Cell fan, the novels could become your next guilty pleasure!

The Splinter Cell Battle Royale Project

A user on 4Chan, who claimed to be a playtester for the Splinter Cell Battle Royale project, recently leaked details about the game. That thread has since been deleted, but screenshots were uploaded to Reddit's GamingLeakAndRumors subreddit, where it has gained even further traction.

It was going to be called "Splinter Cell: Hunters". Here are some of the most interesting details described by the playtester:

I was a play tester for the currently cancelled Splinter Cell: Hunters, A Third Person PvPvE Battle Royale.

First you chose your "Spy Operator" Your class basically, Then you and your partner spy player spawn during the night at the edge of a square slice of the -"Washington DMZ", the one and only map available during the play-test, armed with only a starting knife. Your task: to locate and kill one of the 4 High Value Targets in a compound somewhere on the map, securing the cache they drop afterwards. Once you've killed the target and grabbed a cache you're given an option to extract with your partner. The catch is that up to 30 other players in duos are competing for the same assassination targets.

Now the most interesting part was when you died, dying wasn't the end of your game instead you became what the game called a "Merc". You were basically a kitted out armored soldier with either a sniper, LMG, or Ballistic shield with a pistol (You spawn at an outpost and chose). You basically get to walk along with the bots hunting spies. Playing as a Merc was way different because you weren't as nimble as the spies, you couldn't vault fences, climb wall pipes, or sprint as fast but the mercs had an area wide ping as their ability that would mark spies for them temporarily, this had a long cooldown. As a Merc your goal was to kill a spy, possibly even your duo partner, and when you did you would respawn as a Spy.

Gameplay wise, it was okay, the shooting felt kinda floaty but the executions/assassinations were fun to pull off and satisfying. Definitely not a "run & gun" kinda game, running and gunning was heavily punished.

Ubisoft has not yet commented on the claim, but we will update this article as soon as we hear any evidence that conflicts with or corroborates the leak.

What did you think of that description, would you have played Splinter Cell: Hunters? We aren't convinced, but there is certainly at least the kernel of a good idea in respawning eliminated players as part of the enemy force in a PVPVE game.

A battle royale was always going to be ambitious for Ubisoft, especially given the state of things:

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