When it was first released in 2002, Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell focused on the military operations of the fictitious government organization, Third Echelon. Since 2006's Splinter Cell: Double Agent, the story of the franchise has shifted from the overall mission objectives to the character of Sam Fisher himself.
During a one-on-one interview with Ubisoft producer Alexandre Parizeau during E3 2009, Joystiq asked why the franchise has shifted focus to the character of Sam. According to Parizeau the answer is simple, after dealing with so much trauma throughout the series, Ubisoft Montreal wanted players to see how Sam's methods have evolved, which led to shaping Conviction's dynamic and offensive stealth gameplay. "He's not going to be the same person when he reacts to situations as he was when he was working for Third Echelon. It's a completely different scenario," Parizeau told Joystiq.