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The "Magic Box Trick" is a glitch in Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain and the main method of gaining access to the game's Beta Weapons, which are an "unofficial" part of the game and were dropped during the game's development.

In addition to being able to obtain normally unattainable weapons and equipment, players can use this technique to acquire great weapons on very low levels (equipment which otherwise needs to be unlocked by typical means), this method can therefore immensely aid players to get certain ratings (such as Tactical Explosives Specialist), not to mention that weapons with abnormal (much larger) magazines will be available for use.

Essentially, the objective is to make certain special weapon crates give you a different weapon which is not normally included in them (note that the trick only works with certain weapon crates).

Box Trick

Step 1 - Where are the special weapon crates located?

First of all, certain "special" weapon crates are necessary to perform the trick, look for crates which try to "remove" your weapon instead of surrendering a new one (the kind of crates in which the agent can deposit the weapon of the same kind).

For example, let's suppose our Agent is carrying a FA-MAS, upon interacting with a crate it will normally give the player the option to pick up additional ammo, those are the standard crates, which won't work for this trick. What we are looking for is a crate which, upon interaction, will not show any available weapon (in other words, it will have an empty "Available" item window).

The box locations are:

Carthage 2: A total of 5 magic boxes in this level.  

  • The first magic box is located in the C-4 train area: when you get to the train area there will be a small stair case walk up that and there's the first MB (magic box)  
  • The second is in the same area it's the shotgun box on the left side of the train.  
  • The third M.B. is in the power room it's the one on the bottom left corner of the room  
  • Go to the room with the three pipes where the guys keep coming out of; jump down in the water. Take that little tube and go all the way until you reach this room that has three boxes. There's a shotgun box that's one of the two that is in there.  
  • Same room as the 4th is the SG-36 box that's one too. 

Belarus 2: 1 M.B. in this level. It's located in the room with all of the things you can climb on A.K.A. the scaffolding room. The magic box is located on the very top one. There's a RPK already in there.

Tokyo: The magic box here is located in the 2nd garage area (where the big black van is also where you first begin your expedition through Murukawa Tower.) It's a little left of the van in the shadows. 

Yemen 1: Every box in the arms bazaar is a magic box. EVERY ONE OF THEM!!!! (but only in the market)

Minsk: Every DSC-1 case is a magic box; don't try the regular boxes because they're not magical. 

Step 2 - Weapon Selection

Equip your agent with a FA-MAS assault rifle (through the pre-mission Equipment Selection screen or by capturing one from the enemy but not from that specific crate). That particular crate generally surrenders a FA-MAS assault rifle (if no Back weapon is carried, or if a different back weapon is carried) but for the trick to work we cannot take one of the firearms from that specific box); the objective being to obtain the same type of weapon which is included in that crate after interacting with it.

Step 3 - How does it work?

Essentially, the box will "convert" its usual weapons (FA-MAS in this case) to the weapons we want depending on the number of rounds which are left in the magazine of our own rifle.

  1. After carrying a FA-MAS and getting to that specific crate in Carthage 2, opening the interaction window should show that nothing comes up under the "Available" option;
  2. If you have your FA-MAS with a full 25-round magazine press X, your weapon should have "vanished";
  3. Interact with the weapon crate yet again and note that it contains something;
  4. Press X to obtain the weapon (null), if you use it it won't show any weapon;
  5. Pause the game (Start button) and go to 'Equipment' (alternatively press and hold the Left directional button and highlight the new weapon);
  6. Press Down (directional button) and drop the weapon.
  7. Pick it up again (it should show up on your back).
  8. You can now use it as another weapon.

The crate is now "full" with this weapon (null), the XM29 OICW.

The reason the crate spawned this weapon (and "converted" its stored FA-MAS) was because of the number of rounds in the magazine (in this case - 25).

If you had 24 rounds it would spawn an MGL with an unusually large 24-round capacity (check the list below for the number of necessary rounds and the weapon it will spawn, note that the freshly spawned weapon will have the number of rounds corresponding to the number of rounds left in the magazine before it spawned).

Step 4 - Increasing the Array of Possible Obtainable Weapons

Since the FA-MAS has a limited 25-round magazine, it won't allow the player to obtain the weapons which require more than 25 bullets in each magazine, meaning that to obtain a weapon such as the Flamethrower (requires 158 rounds left in the magazine) it is necessary to obtain a weapon with a much larger magazine.

This is where the M249 (with a 200-round magazine) comes in:

  • Repeat the following steps but this time leave the FA-MAS in the crate with a 20-round magazine (fire 5 rounds and make sure the magazine has 20 left).
  • Obtain the M249 SAW machine gun and the number of possible obtainable weapons increase dramatically (because of the 200-round magazine).
  • (Optional) If you need additional ammo to reload the freshly-obtained weapon make sure you drop your current one and pick another one from the box (you can collect its ammo, allowing you to reload the machine gun's 200 round magazine).
    • After you have reloaded the M249, drop the reloaded weapon and choose the one from which you obtained the ammo.
    • Drop the empty weapon in the box and pick your loaded machine gun.
  • Fire the number of rounds to match your wanted weapon (see list below), for example let's suppose you want an M134 Minigun (93 rounds).
  • Fire until you have 93 rounds in the M249 magazine then drop it in the crate again.
  • Obtain the Minigun and go to the equipment screen then drop it, then pick it up again.
  • If you need extra ammo (which is understandable, given the M134's wild fire rate) repeat the first part of step 3, only with the Minigun.

Significant notes

  • Not all weapons which are able to be spawned in the crate are 'Back'-carried ones, in fact, equipment encompassing all the five categories of weapons which one can carry can be also obtainable (for example an 'Auxiliary' weapon such as the Helico 960 Submachine Gun or the Five Seven pistol which is a 'Sidearm'), make sure you drop the weapon of the corresponding type (if you're carrying it) to pick the new one up. The weapons can be seen with a corresponding category in the table below.
  • In the European (PAL) version of the game, other types of weapons (such as Auxiliary or Melee weapons) cannot be spawned through a crate which spawns a Back-carried weapon (such as the FA-MAS crate which was mentioned earlier).

Nonetheless, it's still theoretically possible to obtain other weapons via special crates corresponding to the specific type of weapon (for example, in the PAL version it's still possible to obtain a Desert Express .50 by using a crate which normally spawns handguns (such as the Desert Sniper .44 or Jerico-9 in the Arms Bazaar in Yemen 1); the same is true for Auxiliary weapons (such as the Uzi crate in said Arms Bazaar). The main problem is that there's no weapon with a large enough magazine to allow the player to spawn sidearms which require a larger number of rounds (such as the Makarov which requires 85 rounds in the magazine).

If a Back-carried weapon crate is used to obtain an auxiliary gun then it won't simply spawn the new weapon which was supposed to appear (outside of this, obtaining Back-carried weapons functions normally).

  • Certain special crates will require the player to drop more weapons of the same kind in order to spawn a new gun, an example is the special weapon crates in the Arms Bazaar in Yemen 1 (the player will need to pick up some extra Uzi SMG's from the enemy, then drop them in the Uzi crate in the bazaar; 5 weapons are required until the box can generate a new weapon), the same applies for the Jerico-9 and Desert Sniper .44 crates (though these are more limited by the number of rounds in their magazines).
  • Certain special boxes can be themselves "converted" to spawn other types of weapons (this is particularly useful in the PAL version of the game), for example if the player drops enough Galil Assault Rifles on an empty Uzi crate in the Arms Bazaar, it will be able to spawn back-carried weapons (potentially including the M249).

Weapon List

Here's a list of the currently known Magic Box obtainable weapons. Make sure the number of left rounds on the magazine match the specific weapon you want the box to spawn and note each weapon's corresponding category; also note that, depending on the game version, some crates might not spawn weapons as usual:


Number of Rounds Left in the Magazine
Spawned Weapon
Weapon slot
0
M16
Back
1
Desert Express .50
Sidearm
2
Beretta 92F
Sidearm
3
M16 A1
Back
4
M4
Back
5
Uzi
Auxiliary
6
Uzi 45
Auxiliary
7

 Tec .45

Auxiliary
8
Tec 9
Auxiliary
9
Jerico-41
Sidearm
10
G 53
Auxiliary
11
Heckler and Koch G11
Back
12
C-36 Rifle
Back
13
SG-36
Back
14
C8 Rifle
Back
15
SG-8
Back
16
Mark 23
Sidearm
17
G51 A3
???
18
MC 36
???
19
M1 Super 90
Back
20
M-249 SAW
Back
21
M4 Carbine
Back
22
MAK-10 10mm
Auxiliary
23
Mak 32
???
24
MGL
Back
25
Objective Individual Combat Weapon System
Back
26
ShotHammer
Back
27
PSM
Sidearm
28
RPG-7
Back
29
SSG 550
Back
30
Advanced Combat Rifle
Back
31
ABRAM 2000
Auxiliary
32
Air Pistol
Auxiliary
33
M82 BFG
Back
34
AK-47
Back
35
Beretta 93R
Sidearm
36
Combat Shotgun
Back
37
Biz 9
Auxiliary
38
SSG 550 Sniper
Back
39
D229
Sidearm
40
SKS
Back
41
SMAW_Old
Back
42
Helico 960
Auxiliary
43
China Type 56
44
China Type 67
45
Colt .45 M1911 A1
Sidearm
46
CZ 75
Sidearm
47
CZ Mach-9
Sidearm
48
Desert Eliminator .357
Sidearm
49
Dragunov
Back
50
FA-MAS
Back
51
FN FAL
Back
52
SSP 90
Auxiliary
53
Galil AR
Back
54
Galil SG-1
Back
55
G-17
Sidearm
56
G-18 MP
Sidearm
57
G-20
???
58
G 33E
Back
59
G 33 SG-1
Back
62
PPK
Sidearm
70
M16K
Back
71
MDS A4
Auxiliary
76
FAL SG-1
Back
77
Scorpion
Auxiliary
78
Close Assault Weapon System
Back
79
Heckler and Koch PSG-1
Back
81
SKS SG-1
Back
82
M1 90
Back
83
Desert Sniper .44
Sidearm
85
Makarov
Sidearm
86
HK_MSG90
???
87
Spectre
Auxiliary
88
Tanfoglio_Ta90
???
89
USAS 12
Back
90
RAS-70
???
91
UNP 45
Auxiliary
93
M-143 Minigun
???
94
(Uzi)
Auxiliary
95
AK-47
Back
97
SG 36
Back
98
(UNP 45)
Auxiliary
99
Base
???
100
Combat Shotgun
Back
101
C8 Rifle
Back
104
Jerico-9
Sidearm
105
AK-74 SU
Auxiliary
106
92F
Sidearm
107
G11
Back
108
RPK
Back
109
VSS-Special
Back
110
Shot Defender
Back
111
Stava SG-76 H-BAR
Back
112
Mark 23 SD
Sidearm
113
SR-15
Back
114
AU300 Mod-R
Back
115
Marz FMG
Auxiliary
116
Vek R4
Back
117
M16 A2
Back
118
Sawed Off
???
120
M79
Back
122
Riot Shotgun
Back
123
Riot Pistol
Sidearm
124
TH3 Blaster
Back
125
Stava M85
126
MDS-7
Auxiliary
128
DSC-1 Thermal
Back
130
Slug Defender
Back
131
AU300 SMG
Back
132
AU300 HBAR
Back
133
Helico pistol
Sidearm
134
CZ-58
???
135
C3 Assault Rifle
Back
136
G-22 SD
???
137
Grenade Launcher-69
???
138
M4_M203
Back
139
SPAS-15
Back
140
SPAS-12
Back
141
MDS SD2
Auxiliary
142
MDS A3
Auxiliary
143
Slughammer
Back
144
MDS-K PDW
Auxiliary
145
SKSM
???
146
Sweeper 12 Gauge
Back
147
US M60 E3
Back
148
VSS-DU
Back
149
Stava B1
???
155
Dragunov_Snow
Back
157
SP-57
Sidearm
158
Flamethrower
Back
159
SMAW
Back
161
Shovel
Melee