I picked up “Splinter Cell: Essentials” for my Sony PSP about a week ago. It’s not great. While the gameplay is true enough to the popular Splinter Cell console series — lots of satisfying headshots! — the controls, and particularly the camera, are pretty bad. But what really kills it are the graphics; here’s a screenshot from the jungle level:
And here’s a screenshot from the enemy compound level:
And here’s a screenshot from the oil tanker level:
…my point is, the graphics in the game are dark. Way, way too damn dark, and as a result, it’s über-frustrating to attempt to play. This is the exact same dumb problem that plagued “Doom 3”, too; it’s all well and good to go “atmospheric” with your game design, and “Splinter Cell” is a game of light and dark where sneaking around in the dark is inherently part of the game — but the player should still be able to see what they are doing. At least give the player the option to pump up the gamma settings, because what’s fun about a game you can’t see when playing?