Splinter Cell: Blacklist, the latest Sam Fischer adventure and first without Michael Ironside voicing the aging agent, drew attention at E3 not only for its brighter, more open environments and action-packed gameplay, but a torture scene in which players controlled Sam Fischer as he brutalized an enemy combatant for information. The controversial scene has since been cut.
Andrew Wilson, a Producer on the title, was quoted as saying that those complaining may have been “missing context,” but notes that they’ve “scaled a lot of that back.” Then, he unambiguously said that “that scene is not there anymore.”
Was this a prudent decision? Certainly the torture scene in Blacklist hadn’t ever reached the level of controversy and public outcry that 2010’s Medal of Honor did with its since-cut playable Taliban faction. The concern surrounding Blacklist had more to do with its apparent move away from the series’s traditional stealth. Wilson asserts that this isn’t the case, and that the E3 demonstration was just to get people excited for the game and not a valid indication of the game’s overall direction. Either way, we’ll find out August 20 when the game hits North America.