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September 5 2007
Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow - PSP Preview
Release Date Distributer Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price
15/11/2007SonySonySony Bend1-4$79.95

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Shooting from around the corner.
When you think about stealth/action/espionage titles you can probably rattle off the obvious - Metal Gear Solid and SOCOM. Many of you would probably forget to include Syphon Filter, somewhat understanding due to the lack of new titles in recent years. That changed last year though with a very respectible outing on PSP with Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror (which, for those interested, is heading to the PS2 later this year). We now have a second title coming to the PSP and it looks like outdoing the original in almost every way. Impressively the storyline in this game has been penned by DC Comics star Greg Rucka, writer of Batman, Gotham Central and Queen and Country.

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Better shoot that enemy nearby!
2007: the USS Mt. St. Helens is captured by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean. The government needs an agent to infiltrate the vessel and secure its top-secret cargo. Itís too sensitive a mission to send the military in and only one man can do the job: Gabe Logan. Loganís mission appears clear: to secure the contents of the shipís Cargo Hold 5 from the Somali raiders. But, as if this operation isnít challenging enough, Gabe is faced with the possibility that his long-term partner, Lian Xing, is a double agent. With his agency compromised and the US Government breathing down his neck, Gabeís resolve is tested to the absolute limit; not least when he also realises that a mysterious figure is shadowing his every move... He wants answers - and heís going to get them by doing what he does best - stealthy reconnaissance and ruthless elimination of his enemies.

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That's probably not a friend up there!
As with previous games this is a third person action title set across a wide range of environments. Youíll travel from the depths of the Indian Ocean to the deserts of the Middle East to prevent a revolutionary new weapon falling into the wrong hands. Impressively the game uses the Havok physics engine to create realistic reactions between the objects in the game world - most obviously that being gunfire and explosions.

In terms of new features Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow now includes underwater combat allowing you to explore and fight in sub-aqua environments with realistic underwater physics. To go with this underwater environment the development team at Sony Bend have added new weapons including spear guns and bolt pistols. Also new is the ability to use "blind fire" to provide cover in life-threatening situations and turn enemies into human shields with the new "grapple" feature.

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Targeting the enemy overhead.
Multi-player will also be strongly supported in Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow with seven large maps to play on. The development team are adding in 5 multi-player game modes, two of which are new to the franchise. Of the returning modes we can expect to see deathmatch, team deathmatch and rogue agent - nothing new there. The first of the two new modes is Sabotage which sees two teams trying to locate bomb codes and arm a nuclear wahead. The second new mode is Retrieval which sees you on a scavenger hunt looking for objects around the game map and returning them to base before the other team.

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Gabe Logan now swims underwater.
Graphically Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow looks pretty sharp - and appears to be a couple of notches above the visuals in the previous game. There are plenty of effects on offer, from lighting during night time missions, plenty of explosions, and with the Havok physics engine some realistic animations on both humans and objects within the game world. Music is being reportedly being composed by Iranian singer/songwriter Azam Ali who is probably best known for performing vocals on the Prison Break theme song and 300 soundtrack.

While much of this Christmas will focus on the success of the Playstation 3, the PSP is also in need of some big titles to continue to push sales of that system. Fortunately Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow should provide more thrills on Sony's handheld and is certain to generate more sales for the system. Expect this game to be released around mid-November.