Saints Row Review (360)

by May 1st, 2008
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GTA just got more gangsta

Another addition to the seemingly endless list of games, with a description that starts with ?It’s like GTA but?? I am going to attempt to challenge myself not to use this phrase in my description of the game. Saints row is a large scale, free roaming sandbox adventure game, set in the fictitious city of Stillwater. You play a nameless character who is recruited by a local gang who’s aim is to rise to the top and become the rulers of Stillwater. To do this, the ‘3rd street saints’ have to overthrow the 3 other gangs in the city through a series of missions and side missions.

The story missions are not particularly complex, and tend to involve running around after characters, stealing cars, assassinating people, reclaiming territory and other things you would associate with gangs of this type. I have to admit that I didn’t particularly like the premise of the game, and the fact that the main characters are the type of people I avoid like the plague when walking the streets did make me feel quite uncomfortable, seeing as this game is story driven. Saying this though, the missions are fairly well thought out, if a little on the easy side, and you may find yourself getting bored of doing the same predictable things for every mission.

This is where the side missions come in. There are several types of side missions, including activities such as stealing prostitutes from other gangs, escorting drug dealers to their clients, assassinating people, causing as much damage as possible in a time limit, and various others. These games may seem varied, but they get boring pretty quickly.

Overall, this is a very average clone of a very popular game.

Aside from car modifications, and some other activities such as holding up shopkeepers and overthrowing rival gangs’ strongholds, that’s about it. Unlike the game that shall not be named, there are not an awful lot of things that you can do aside from the story missions in this game.

Saints Row The graphics seem fairly good, although not excellent by any stretch of the imagination. The game seems very buggy in some areas, and some of the glitches such as disappearing roads etc? were reminiscent of Driv3r (Driver 3). These glitches don’t seem to affect the game in any major way, but can become irritating and give an overall feel of poor design to the game.

The soundtrack is mainly hip-hop based, but there are also a couple of radio stations playing rock and reggae by artists I’ve never heard of. I think at this point I should also mention the phone concept. This game contains a cell phone, accessed by pressing the start button, which allows you to call ‘Homies’ to back you up in a fight, or call an ambulance to heal your wounds. I’d just like to point out that this idea was used in saints row long before the new installment of the game that shall not be named (G.T.S.N.B.N. 4) was even announced, although I’ve heard that it has been integrated much more into the new installment.

Overall, this is a very average clone of a very popular game. It has no elements that particularly stand out as being excellent, but it does have a few good ideas and tricks up its sleeve that will keep you entertained for a couple of hours after you have finished the story missions. Overall, if you like to stand around on street corners listening to P-Diddy with your ‘Homeboys’, talking about the guy you recently stabbed for ‘rolling’ on your turf, you will LOVE this game. For the rest of us, I would advise getting the newest installment of ‘T.G.T.S.N.B.N.’, and if you haven’t figured out what that is yet, ask a gamer.

The Good: reasonably good graphics, good original elements
The Bad: rehash of GTA with some new elements, glitchy, spends way too much time exploring the ‘gangsta’ stereotype.

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Bronze Y AwardBronze Y Award
3.5 3.5 / 5
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Sam P

Sam, 21, recently graduated music & theology student. I live in Coventry, and currently work as a waiter in a hotel, which isn't the most glamorous job, but it's paying off my debts. My first experience of gaming was bubble bobble on the commodore 64, and I've been pretty much hooked since. I really enjoy the old point & click adventure games, and adventure platforming games in general.

About Sam P

Sam, 21, recently graduated music & theology student. I live in Coventry, and currently work as a waiter in a hotel, which isn't the most glamorous job, but it's paying off my debts. My first experience of gaming was bubble bobble on the commodore 64, and I've been pretty much hooked since. I really enjoy the old point & click adventure games, and adventure platforming games in general.