Ubisoft’s Splinter Cell series has been dormant since the release of Splinter Cell Blacklist in 2013, but protagonist Sam Fisher is about to make his way into another Tom Clancy game. As part of Ghost Recon Wildlands’ free “Special Operations I” content update, Fisher will be making the trip to Bolivia.
The mission will send Sam Fisher to Bolivia to investigate the leak personally, with the help of the Ghosts already in the region. Presumably, the operation will require a little bit less noise than the Ghosts are used to, which is slightly ironic considering their name.
In the full announcement, Ubisoft revealed the event will be live from April 10 until May 2, and from April 12 until April 15, the game will be free to play — this means even those without a copy of Wildlands can join Fisher on his mission.
A trailer was also released alongside the announcement, packed with Michael Ironside’s voice-over work. Fisher’s sarcasm and dark humor appear to be back in full force after being mostly absent from Blacklist, though his equipment seems to be lifted directly from that game.
You won’t be playing as Fisher in the free mission, but will be assisting him as he infiltrates a “heavily guarded camp.” Upon completing it, you gain access to Fisher’s famous three-lensed goggles, and those who purchase the Year 2 content pass will also receive Splinter Cell-themed guns and Fisher’s karambit knife.
The event also adds the new Echelon class to the multiplayer Ghost War mode. This class uses a sonar pulse to spot hidden enemies as well as weaponry and gadgets inspired by Splinter Cell. It’s available for purchase using the game’s Prestige currency and is also included in the Year 2 pass, where it’s available a week earlier than it is for others.
The inclusion of Fisher in Ghost Recon Wildlands only adds more fuel to the Splinter Cell rumor fire. Last month, an Amazon Canada listing for “Splinter Cell 2018” was briefly made public before being removed. At E3 2017, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot acknowledged the series’ passionate fans and said the company “not forgetting” Splinter Cell, but offered little in the way of concrete details on a sequel.
In 2016, we heard reports that Michael Ironside would be returning to the Fisher role, though this has been the first official confirmation. He was replaced by fellow Canadian Eric Johnson in Blacklist, as the part required full-performance capture and Ironside was already over 60. The decision was met with criticism from fans who viewed Fisher and Ironside as inseparable.
Presumably, Ironside won’t be doing his own stunts if he returns to voice the character in a new game, but he is a method actor.
Ghost Recon Wildlands is available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
Updated on April 9: Added information from the full announcement, including a new trailer.