How many people has Sam Fisher killed? That's a question a group of Splinter Cell fans have tried to answer.
The answer, according to a reddit post from user TK-576, is 493 - and 472 of those are from the divisive Splinter Cell: Conviction.
Here's the breakdown:
- Splinter Cell (2002): three kills
- Pandora Tomorrow (2004): 10 kills
- Chaos Theory (2005): three kills
- Double Agent (2006): five kills
- Conviction (2010): 472 kills
- Blacklist (2013): 0 kills
Now, of course the methodology is important here - and is already a point of contention in the thread. According to TK-576, this kill count is supposed to reflect Fisher's canon kills. So, the original Splinter Cell's kill count is three because in that game Fisher is forced to kill three people. All other enemies can be avoided, if the player wants.
It's a similar deal for all the Splinter Cell games except Conviction, which stands out like a sore thumb as Fisher's John Wick moment.
Over to TK-576:
"In prior Splinter Cell games, you have the option to avoid killing NPCs completely, except non-optional targets like President Nikoladze in the first game, Norman Soth in the second game, etc. Canonically, these are Sam's only confirmed kills.
"But Conviction has multiple sections where the game doesn't even allow you to progress unless you kill everybody in the area. To date, it's the only Splinter Cell where pacifist runs and ghosting aren't possible."
TK-576 went for consistency in the approach to Conviction, they said, and avoided enemies where possible: "If we could consistently play and replay sections and reliably avoid enemies each time, then we avoided those enemies in our 'official' count. This happened in four sections across three chapters, where hordes of guards appeared and the safest choice was to simply dash like a madman to the exit!"
There's also the insistence that Sam's takedowns in Conviction are always "magically lethal" (except in Lincoln Memorial). In Conviction, TK-576 explains, a takedown usually results in a John Wick-style bullet to the head of Fisher's enemy. But while you can holster your gun before a takedown, other NPCs will call out their unlucky friends as dead once Fisher's had his way with them.
"Canonically, the only time takedowns aren't lethal is Lincoln Memorial, when President Clinton Caldwell tells you to use non-lethal takedowns to avoid killing police officers," TK-576 says.
The video below documents TK-576's Conviction kill-count. It's quite the spectacle.
The work highlights the change the Splinter Cell series underwent from its inception to where it is today, which appears to be cameo appearances in other Ubisoft games. It began as a hardcore stealth game in which Sam Fisher could and should avoid confrontation. By the time Conviction came around, Splinter Cell revolved more around playing as an apex predator who would hunt down and kill his enemies.