Download: Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow
When Dark Mirror was released last March, they were surprised at how impressive the title was. By taking Gabe Logan away from the consoles and putting him on the PSP, Sony Bend not only created an wonderful adventure, they showed off exactly what the handheld could do, in the hands of a skilled team. Excellent controls, deep multiplayer with voice chat and a complex cinematic storyline made what easily was two of the best titles of all of last year. In fact, when they bestowed the Game of the Year award on the title, they weren't sure if a follow up to Dark Mirror would be as lovely.
Fortunately, those concerns were unfounded. Logan's Shadow not only is a worthy successor to Dark Mirror, it is a much better title. There is a ton of new gameplay elements within the single player, such as new combat tactics, underwater combat and action sequences that improve on the quick paced action of the original title. Multiplayer has not been left out either, with two new game modes, new and adjusted maps and more balanced matches. The result: a deeper experience that surpasses Dark Mirror in every way.
The story of Logan's Shadow takes place soon after the events of Dark Mirror, and two time again calls Gabe and his team to defeat another terrorist group that has managed to get its hands on some risky technology that threatens the world. Of work, things are seldom as simple as that sounds, when it becomes apparent that over that group wants its hands on the weapon; not only does the U.S. need to get its hands on the device, but the Russians and Chinese have sent agents to track its location. Things get worse when Logan's long time partner, Lian Xing, is accused of being a double agent and working for the terrorist group he is targeting. With the Agency closed down by a vindictive bureaucrat, Gabe and his fellow agents have to track the steps of the terrorists and prevent their designs before it is late, defeat the rival country's soldiers and get down to the bottom of Lian's apparent "defection."
As far as actual gameplay, much of it is similar to the play of Dark Mirror. This is not a bad thing at all, considering that it had some of the tightest control for a PSP shooter ever made. That is including the solid balance between spy gadgets and weapon loadouts with the directional buttons, and smart context sensitivity when it came to leaning against walls or leaning around objects to make shots. However, it appears that Logan went back to the Agency's schools for new training, because they has a quantity of new moves that are available to the agent. The first two is a brand spanking new protective suit that regenerates his health. While you'll still need to acquire flak jackets to reduce destroy (in fact, the game pokes fun at the idea of "regenerating armor,") you don't have to continually focus on tracking down medical kits as long as you avoid incoming fire. You also now have a brand spanking new grenade avoidance technique that will pop up whenever an explosive has been tossed your way, alerting you to the hazard so you can dive in the opposite direction and minimizing or eliminating any destroy entirely
Like previous Syphon Filter titles, the number of twists, suspicious characters and flashback sequences within the story provides a massive amount of depth to the tale. However, this is and a story of revenge and retribution, as Gabe finds himself settling elderly scores with a terrorist, avenging the death of a team member and going to extremes to clear his partner's name and regain control of his department. While Dark Mirror went in to Gabe's past with his past relationship with Addison Hargrove, this two focuses on Lian's secrets, some of which forces Logan to re-evaluate what they thinks of his elderly partner. The script that was penned by Greg Rucka and John Garvin is nicely paced and complex, and provides an intense arc for the widely known agent to travel through. Even better, it sets up a giant cliff hanger ending that you won't see coming at all that makes you wonder what Sony Bend is going to do to resolve Logan's story.