Although Syphon Filter is a strange name for a game and only God knows what it actually means (or Sony in fact, as they made the game), the games have always been to a high standard and I loved playing the first two on the PSOne back in the day when the graphics were blocky, the framerate left something to be desired and a composite connection to the TV was good enough. Logan’s Shadow is the second game to come to the PSP, the first one being Dark Mirror, and once again it’s a solid action adventure that will keep you busy while it lasts.
The first thing I noticed is the strange but ultimately successful control system. I’ve always moaned about the PSP not having a second analogues stick and as a result, games such as Syphon Filter shouldn’t work too well on it. However, by using the triangle, square, circle and x buttons as a poor man’s d-pad which controls strafing and looking, and the shoulder buttons as aiming and trigger buttons, they’ve succeeded. At first it feels weird but after a while it’s apparent that some games can come out on the PS2 and PSP and both work.
The story line is full of the usual espionage you’d expect, though this time your boss’ motive are being questioned and you’re never quite sure if what you’re doing is for the greater good. I won’t tell you any more, but it’s fair to say the plot twists and turns like a twisty turny thing.
When it comes to weapons it’s the standard fare, you can make use of machine guns, Uzis, pistols, sniper rifles, C4 explosives, grenades and even grab someone if close enough and snap their neck by hammering on the X button. You also have a new suit which regenerates health if you find a quiet sport which negates the need to hunt for medical packs, although you will have to look for new armour.
As seems to be the trend at the moment there are a few moments in the game where you have to hammer buttons to open doors or press buttons quickly to complete an interactive cut scene which breaks things up nicely from time to time.
Locations and combat are also kept very varied. There are even levels where you have to fight underwater and take out vehicles such as APCs and helicopters which try to hunt you down from the skies.
To be honest, I haven’t tried out the multiplayer mode in Logan’s Shadow but it’s there again and should be as good if not better than the mode in Dark Mirror.
If you enjoyed Gabe’s first outing on the PSP you’ll like this one even more. It looks better, plays better and ha ssome incredibly exciting moments that may make people stare at you strangely on the train as you go ooh, ahhh and whoooooo!
Logan’s Shadow on the PSP gets an impressive 8 out of 10.