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Splinter Cell Chaos Theory multiplayer emerges from the shadows

Cooperative multiplayer blasts out of the darkness: new screens and info

Those stealthy fellas over at Ubisoft have snuck up and battered us over the head with another Splinter Cell multiplayer mode.

Splinter Cell Chaos Theory, due on Xbox and PC from March 4 2005, will not only feature head-to-head multiplayer but also a totally new co-op mode.

The versus mode that worked so well in Pandora Tomorrow is back, and better. The setup remains the same: you can play as a Shadow Net spy attempting to infiltrate an installation, or an Argus Mercenary sworn to protect it. As a spy you view the action in third-person, but as a mercenary your view is restricted to first-person leaving you susceptible to stealthy attacks.

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Everything else has been tarted up. The specially designed levels are all new and now include climate effects and destructible scenery. New weapons, gadgets and hand-to-hand combat moves are also promised.

New ways to taunt enemies will also make an appearance, adding an extra bit of flair to your domination. Whispering sweet nothings in someone's ear before we battered them was always our favourite part of Pandora Tomorrow's multiplayer, so we're well excited about these.

Best of all though, new 'cooperative' moves have been included so you and your mate can work more closely together to take down enemies.

These moves are even more important in Chaos Theory's new cooperative multiplayer mode. These missions take place on specially designed maps directly related to the single player story mode and the objectives tie into the plot. It's a bit like the Matrix game tying into the plot of the movies: you won't have to play the co-op missions to complete the single player game, but they'll flesh out the story more.

Working in a pair you'll have to infiltrate enemy installations using all the new gadgets and weapons available in the single-player game. Team work will be your best weapon, though - you'll be able to give your mate a leg-up on walls or pipes too high to climb on your own, or watch his back from the shadows as he hacks into a computer system.

The voice communication that worked so well in Pandora Tomorrow returns. You can talk to your teammates through your headset but anyone within range will hear you. Both multiplayer modes will work on Xbox Live, System Link or splitscreen.

Sounds good, eh? We're watching Chaos Theory closely and we'll keep you posted with all the latest intel.

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