More Reviews
REVIEWS Dokuro (PC) Review
Dokuro makes the jump from handheld to PC, but does it help or hinder this unusual platformer?

About Love, Hate, and the other Review
Simple feelings. Complex puzzles.
More Previews
PREVIEWS Evolve Preview
With multiplayer action set as its focus, Evolve surprised us earlier this month by introducing a single-player campaign mode where you can switch between mercenaries.
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES Kalimba
Release date: Out Now

Persona 5
Release date: 12/31/14

Motorcycle Club
Release date: 01/01/15

Atelier Ayesha Plus: The Alchemist of Dusk
Release date: 01/14/15


LATEST FEATURES Downloadable Content Walks the Line Between Fun and Frenzied in Middle-earth
I don’t even care all that much for the Lords of the Rings brand, which makes the content falling under Shadow of Mordor’s Season Pass a pleasant surprise.

Ugly Christmas Sweaters for Gamers
If this awful trend is going to persist, you may as well do it your way.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES Black Friday 2014 Video Game Deals Buyer's Guide
Looking to score the most bang for your buck the day after Thanksgiving? Well look no further! Our Black Friday guide is just the tool you need.

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP KevinS
RIP Ralph Baer (1922-2014)
By KevinS
Posted on 12/07/14
RIP Ralph Baer (1922-2014) I really, really hate writing obits. I really do. But I take it as a personal honor to be able to say good things about the men and women I respect, whether in this industry or just in my life, and Ralph Baer is the reason all of this exists in the first...

Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow Review

Greg_Damiano By:
Greg_Damiano
12/14/07
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Action 
PLAYERS
PUBLISHER Sony 
DEVELOPER Sony 
RELEASE DATE  
T Contains Language, Violence

What do these ratings mean?

Me, and my Shadow.


Syphon Filter hero Gabriel Logan could use an attitude adjustment, but maybe he has good reasons for being so arrogant: Murderous jerk-terrorists have just stolen a devastating bomb, and his long-time partner Lian Xing has gone MIA. Fortunately, Gabe’s terrible luck translates into a fun globe-trotting adventure for your PSP, so grab your taser and your goggles and let’s shoot the place up.

click to enlargeGabe’s second run on the PSP is a short and sweet third-person shooter, full of stealth kills and black ops missions. The gameplay succeeds thoroughly and benefits from a solid set of solo and multiplayer features, even if the graphics and story are a little shaky.

The first thing I noticed about Logan’s Shadow was the extremely comfortable control scheme. Like its predecessor Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror, the basic control scheme uses X and the other main face buttons as your surrogate second analog stick. Your only real buttons for using ziplines and doors are safely tucked onto the d-pad,. I was immediately able to line up headshots on my PSP Slim, and the economy of context-sensitive buttons promotes methodical action over twitchy finger gymnastics.

Gabe’s mission includes a number of fun surprises: there are boats to sabotage, tanks to command and prisons to infiltrate. As I shot spears into frogmen in the ocean depths, I felt like James Bond in that badass underwater fight from Thunderball! It isn’t God of War, but the sub-bosses and interactive object minigames hit a great rhythm with the standard stealth-shooter segments.

Enemy soldiers also show a nice balance in A.I. difficulty, possibly weighing a little on the easy side. Gabe dies pretty quick, and sometimes the A.I. hides and moves around a lot... eventually you get enough time to take a shot, or sneak up for a knife kill. The surprises lose their steam by the last level, however.

Logan’s Shadow has a few rough spots, none of them are serious enough to wreck the experience. Your arsenal is large but almost every gun feels like the same automatic rifle. Boss characters barely speak their first lines before you gun them down. Irrelevant, depressing subplots and clichéd attitude make the story the weakest part of the game, and Gabe is as arrogant, uninteresting and unlikable as ever.

click to enlargeIn spite of these faults, Logan’s Shadow is a very playable PSP shooter. Your high-tech goggles highlight enemies and interactive objects, so it’s nearly impossible to get lost. Cover is fairly simple and easy to use, or you can run and gun around enemies at an acceptable risk level. The experience-and-skills metagame encourages sniping and other play styles, it’s a little unclear but after beating the game once, there are enough bonus weapons and goodies to make you consider replaying your favorite missions.

Logan’s Shadow has a few sweet goodies tucked away, like a cute behind-the-scenes look at level production, and bonus missions beyond the main story. You even get an impressive preview build of Syphon Filter: Tactical Ops, with online play and a functional level editor. A level editor in a PSP shooter! If you dig the Logan’s Shadow multiplayer, try your hand at making some maps before tossing $15 down the Playstation Network well.

Local and online multiplayer modes follow a separate reward scale, for playing and completing games like capture-the-flag and set-the-bomb. Logan’s Shadow has complete support for friend lists, messages and clans, plus I was delighted to find an active, well-behaved chat channel and plenty of games to join. My only gripe about the multiplayer is the lack of visual feedback: I couldn’t tell if I was landing hits, so I started aiming high and trading headshots with the enemy team as we frantically danced around.

click to enlargeThe animation in Logan’s Shadow is generally bare, as flat and blocky as any other forgettable PS2 title. In-game characters move well and aren’t totally stiff, but the environments suffer from dull, monotonous color palettes. However, the pre-rendered cut scenes are especially clear and crisp.

Sounds and music also come through loud and clear, and the voice actors do a great job with their dozens of sometimes-cheesy lines. The music cues aren’t too memorable but the sound effects are spot-on, especially when you brutally electrocute some poor sap with Gabe’s taser.

Logan’s Shadow has a number of unique little moments, like tossing taser darts around a corner or pushing a merc into a stove, that make up a fun, portable adventure. I do hope Gabe lightens up a little at some point, but if you still need a gift for some special PSP owner, Logan’s Shadow is a top-notch stocking stuffer.
B Revolution report card
  • Great-feeling handheld shooter
  • Lots of spectacle, variety
  • Solid multiplayer deathmatch
  • Visual meh
  • Gabe’s story is a downer

More from the Game Revolution Network




comments powered by Disqus

 


More information about Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow