"I'm not gonna stand out in the open...I don't have any armour..."
-Maggie Powers when fighting the Spetsnaz copter in Syphon Filter: Logan's ShadowA flak jacket is a vest that protects the wearer from most bullet-oriented weapons. Its strength is indicated by the blue ARMOR meter in the trilogy. It was supplanted by a blue bar, without an 'armour' mark, in The Omega Strain, Dark Mirror and Logan's Shadow. Flak jackets have appeared in every Syphon Filter game and the player always starts each mission with one equipped - except for some missions in Syphon Filter 2, Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror and Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow (the latter two of which will only carry over partial flak jackets in story mode). While more common enemies or opponents in the first few missions of the games do not generally wear flak jackets, more advanced foes, those in later missions, or significant (named) characters have one. Flak jackets can be found in equipment containers and can also be picked up from downed terrorists.
Since flak jackets protect the wearer from bullets, it's a necessity for the many dangerous missions Logan is assigned. However, it is important to know that flak jackets do not last forever. One too many shots will cause the flak jacket to lose its functionality and it will no longer give you the extra protection. This applies to enemies who wear flak jackets as well; however, it is always easier to aim for the head if you encounter a terrorist wearing a flak jacket. If you kill an enemy wearing a flak jacket with a headshot, you'll be able to pick up their flak jacket and use it for yourself. However, if you kill an enemy wearing a flak jacket by shooting until the bullets go through, you won't be able to pick up their flak jacket; plus, you will have used extra ammo to kill them. You could also try aiming at the enemies' limbs to subdue them.
It should be noted that while the flak jacket does protect against bullets, it does not protect against fire or explosions. If you get caught on fire, the fire will literally melt right through your flak jacket. If this happens, roll immediately! If the flak jacket (ARMOR) meter is full, you'll be lucky to still have your health meter intact. You won't be so lucky if you're flak jacket is more than half-empty, however. Likewise, if you kill a enemy wearing a flak jacket with an explosive, you can take their flak jacket.
There is a weapon, the K3G4, that fires bullets that penetrate flak jackets. If you find one, save it just in case you are ambushed by a mob of flak jacket-wearing terrorists. If you use it, don't worry about not being able to get the flak jacket after you kill them - you'll still be able to get it.
- Keep rolling to preserve your flak jacket as much as possible. This is more integral to Syphon Filter, 2, 3 and Omega Strain than in Dark Mirror and Logan's Shadow.
- Hide behind cover when you foresee the need to. On harder difficulty levels, enemies can instantly drop you even when you have a flak jacket. Keep watching for the 'Danger' meter and 'Headshot' icon. (In Omega Strain, watch the red section on your radar since this warns you of enemy attack or bonfires)
- Make it a priority to search each level carefully. You are bound to find some hidden crates that miraculously contain flak jackets.
- Try to kill enemies either with headshots or the K3G4 to preserve flak jackets. The taser will 'bounce' off armoured enemies, making it useless, and don't use explosives unless you have no other choice (eg, enemies bunched together) since that will destroy flak jackets.
- Enemies in later missions (PHARCOM Elite Guards; Senate Building etc) will mostly carry flak jackets. The best way to kill them quickly is to use the wall-peek manuever (get something to hide you, then go into manual aim and lean out) and spray their skull.
- In the latter 3 games, the M82 BFG or Barrett M82A1 can puncture armoured enemies even without a headshot.
Attacks that drain health through the flak jacket
- Laser mines
- Toxic sludge
- Tank cannon
- MB-150 gas darts
- Being run over by a train
- Falling from a height
Locations of flak jackets
- Inside the bank where you need to protect a CHA officer
Syphon Filter 2
Syphon Filter 3
Costa Rican Plantation
C-5 Galaxy Transport
Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain
Carthage, Michigan: Quarantine Zone
- In the room with the bio-weapons gear is an armour crate
- Before you scan the tissue samples, one of the tables has a flak jacket
Carthage, Michigan: Warehouse District
Carthage, Michigan: Carthage Mall
Mazyr, Belarus: Krivorozhstal Mill
- Outside the slag pit is a train guarded with a CDP patrol. Kill him and you can access a flak jacket.
Mazyr, Belarus: Belaya Vezha
Sana's, Yemen: Arms Bazaar
Sana's, Yemen: Taherir Palace
- When defending Zohar, the palace catwalks have a limited amount of flak jacket crates
Minsk, Belarus: International University
North Atlantic: Lorelei Salvage Rig
- On Level 3 you will find a few weapons crates and a flak jacket.
- Before you go to Level 12 there is a flak jacket container.
- There are armour crates scattered around Level 12 itself.
Tokyo, Japan: Murukawa Tower
Taguang, Myanmar: Irawaddy Basin
Zurich, Switzerland: Niculescu Funds Tower
Kiev, Ukraine: Chechen Terrorist Base
Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror
Insertion Point Alpha
- Bottom of the distillation pit
- On the platform where you first begin
- After using the RTL from the first platform, drop down and search the area
- When you have acquired the key card from Jack Miller, use it to open the room B1
- Near the elevators is a locker
- On the platform where you begin
Syphon Filter: Logan's Shadow
Pirates of Somalia
Sea of Darkness
Into the Deep
Depths of Darkness
- Flak jackets have appeared in every Syphon Filter game.
- In the original 3 games, Gabe's standard character model always showed him wearing a dark blue flak jacket.
- Pavel Kravitch, encountered on Level 1 - Georgia Street of the original Syphon Filter, was the first enemy in the Syphon Filter series to wear a flak jacket.
- Although in game the flak jacket acts only as a bullet proof vest, it is however, meant to only protect you from minor explosive damage in real life.
- In some instances, flak jackets are scripted to provide literally complete protection against attacks to force the player to find ingenious weapons that kill a certain enemy.
- Notably, these examples include Erich Rhoemer (even headshots are ineffective against him), Anton Girdeux (same as aforementioned), Jason Chance (same as aforementioned) and Mara Aramov (same as aforementioned).
- The Omega Strain is the only game in which the player's armour has a numerical value.
- It is also the only game in which armour value can be increased if a reward is unlocked.
- In Dark Mirror and Logan's Shadow, as well as some Syphon Filter 2 missions, the player can have a varying amount of armour depending on how much damage was inflicted on one from the previous mission.
- In the former two games, the armour value can only be carried over in story mode.