I was a bit late to the Saints Row party, picking up the second game as a Platinum Hits title for Xbox 360 last holiday. Why? The game’s overzealous “supah gangsta” approach was silly, but I had fallen in love with developer Volition’s last game, Red Faction: Guerrilla, my favorite game of 2009. In the newest Game Informer mag, all is revealed about Saints Row: The Third, which will probably end up being my most-anticipated game of this holiday.
Saints Row is essentially everything that Grand Theft Auto 4 wasn’t: SR was fun, GTA4 wasn’t, SR had awful art direction, GTA4 was gorgeously consistent, SR had you spraying down entire neighborhoods with poop (literally, poop), GTA4 had annoying NPCs that kept calling you to go to the strip club or fast food joint to keep them happy. Saints Row also featured the most robust co-operative mode I’ve ever seen in a game, allowing you to go so far as to play a mini-game with a friend that required you to run in front of moving cars and break yourself for insurance money. The game featured an abundance of mini-games and side missions (including demolition rallies) and allowed for insane player and vehicle customization.
I could go on and on about Volition’s “kitchen sink” approach to their sandbox gangster game, but it excels primarily because it was intended to be a fun game that never took itself too seriously, always giving you something incredibly different at a moment’s notice. Fortunately for players of the first two games, this new one starts you at the top of the organization with tons of cool perks from the get-go, instead of working from rags like every other open world title. I can’t wait to see how this new game fares.