|System: PSP||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Sony Bend||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: SONY||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 2, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-8||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Matthew Walker
When you are looking for a cool calculated hero adventure game, usually you will look for the latest Solid Snake or Sam Fischer game. In part, this is because of the mentality and dedication of gamers to the respective franchises of those two decorated heroes. However, there is another male lead character among the same list, Gabe Logan. When the first Syphon Filter title arrived on the original PlayStation, Gabe was already stacked against tough odds by challenging Snake's first PlayStation title. As the years continued, it seemed, despite developer's attempts, Syphon Filter always seemed to play third or fourth fiddle to other titles. Therefore, is there any hope for Gabe ever getting the recognition he deserves? I can't say for sure, but if the future adventures of Gabe are going to be like Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow, I am certain there's more to come.
Logan's Shadow tells the tale of traditional adventure - revenge, no holds barred action, and twists that would rival an M. Knight Shyamalan movie. Taking place shortly after the events of Dark Mirror, Gabe and his team must take on another terrorist group. What makes it even more interesting is that the weapon the terrorist group is threatening the world with is a highly coveted weapon. So much so that the United States government is not the only ones after it, China and Russia also have high interest in the weapon. The story dives deep into the mix when Gabe's long-time partner, Lian Xing, is accused of being a double agent. Information suggests he is working for the same terrorist organization that he has been tracking. Ultimately, the Agency is closed by a bureaucrat who could be described best with a few colorful words. It is up to Gabe and the rest of his team to take down the terrorists, prevent the weapon from falling into the wrong hands, and get to the bottom of Lian flipping sides. For all of the comic book fans out there, fabled comic writer Greg Rucka co-pens this adventure. He brings his style and flavor to the series and manages to keep the pace at break neck speed. Literally, this installment into the Syphon Filter series has everything, including a nice cliffhanger ending that will leave you anticipating the next installment.
I cannot rave enough about the controls for this game. Too often, I have played PSP titles and things just didn't seem quite right when it came to playing your handheld adventures. I never got the chance to play Dark Mirror, but if what I have heard about the controls on that game is true, then Logan's Shadow is just as good, if not better. Everything works well with the pacing of the story. Gabe's new additions also add to this game. One thing that I really liked was the inclusion of a pseudo regenerating armor. Not like the new craze of everyone having high tech armor that replaces the need to find health packs, or in this case, flack jackets. Instead, this armor system relies heavily on you taking cover and preventing the damage from happening. You won't have to focus on wasting time to find a flack jacket as often as you have in the past, which is a great thing and aides the pacing of the story immensely.
In addition to the new armor, you will also have a few new combat techniques to use. One of these is the blind fire option. Instead of the usual required poking your head out of the corner move, you fire above or around the corners like a wild man and cause your enemies to take cover themselves. This tactic is extremely useful when you're reloading or moving locations. Another combat tactic may be viewed as a bit immoral, but hey, this is war. A grapple move allows you to drag your enemies around and even use them as human shields. However, it will not be a walk in the park to acquire this extra "shielding." Several times, you will have to follow the on screen button cues to repress the enemy's struggles, thus adding a level of realism. A few levels will require you to take Gabe to the depths of water to show off your combat skills. Trying to use weapons other than the spear or bolt gun will have a slow reaction time that could be the deciding factor in a heated battle.