After years of disappointment, Splinter Cell fans on Twitter went into meltdown last night. It appeared that several senior Ubisoft developers were collaborating on a new game, and planning to bring it to E3. As it turns out The Division 2 creative director Julian Gerighty was just trolling everyone. Wasn't he?
With a resident Splinter Cell fan on staff, we naturally got a bit excited last night when we saw the news. But in the cold light of morning, perhaps while these Ubisoft chums are nursing hangovers, there was plenty of room to be suspicious. How could several key Ubisoft veterans be working on Splinter Cell together, when each has their own projects? Especially considering that both The Division 2 and For Honor are live service titles still going strong with new updates. Even more suspicious is the idea that Gerighty is about to pull in creative leads from other major Ubisoft brands — including Ghost Recon: Breakpoint, which was only announced a week ago.
GameInformer reached out to a Ubisoft spokesperson, who said the tweet was "obviously" a joke: "We do not have any announcements at this time."
Assuming the tweet's contents are untrue, we're still not clear whether this was a calculated jab at Splinter Cell hopefuls or a messy, drunken mistake.
After apparently screaming at Gerighty to turn his phone off in a private message, Ubisoft's PR Associate Director lamented the state of his emails:
But here's the thing — what if it is true? Not the specifics — we can't accept that five major creative leads are gambling on resurrecting a brand — but Gerighty's joke may have been prompted by general discussions on the future of the franchise. Looking at the photos, Gerighty really did meet up with those senior colleagues, so who knows what else was on the agenda.
Compared to last year, Ubisoft's leaky reputation has been largely patched up. Maybe this was a calculated move to pump some sort of hype into Ubisoft's corner ahead of E3 — it's a strategy that they've employed recently with a Viking-era Assassin's Creed game teased in The Division 2.
Or maybe it's just a hard-working creative lead blowing off steam with friends, and cracking wise on Twitter in the process. If so — we salute you, Julian Gerighty. You nearly had us.
Check out our Best Xbox One Third-Person Shooters Available in 2019 article for a compilation of other great games in this genre.
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