Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Game review: Saints Row: The Third

I had been looking forward to this one since the day I finished Saints Row 2 for the third time. It took Volition 3 years, but they came out with the game I had been hoping for.
The Third brings back the over-the-top craziness of Saints Row 2, as well as several new features, each contributing to the fun factor of the game.

The game takes place in Steelport, a few years after the events of Saints Row 2. Unlike the last game, the Saints aren't starting from scratch. Within a few missions, most of the gang has already established itself in Steelport. The game revolves around the Saints' war with the Syndicate, a rival gang and corporation. As per usual Saints Row fashion, the player will find themselves performing many ridiculous tasks in order to undermine the efforts of the Syndicate. These include running around in a building full of enemies naked, fighting your way through a small zombie apocalypse, and fighting in a lucha libre style wrestling match. Did I mention that Burt Reynolds is in the game? As himself?

Gameplay is very similar to previous games, with slightly more realistic combat and driving mechanics (well, at least by Saints Row standards). Popular Saints Row 2 vehicles have returned, including the AB Destroyer and Magma. New vehicles include the STAG VTOL, several types of tanks, and a flying bike. At first glance, weapon selection has been significantly reduced, but most weapons have different stages of upgrades, and there are several new special weapons, such as the RC Controller and Reaper UAV drone.

A newly implemented gameplay mechanic is the upgrade system. Players can choose to purchase a large variety of upgrades for their character, weapons, vehicles, etc. Some upgrades can only be unlocked after certain missions and activities, but most are available immediately, provided you have the cash to pay for them. A fully upgraded character is nearly invincible, and a fully upgraded gang is something to fear.

Saints Row: The Third brings a lot to the table, and I have high hopes for the future of the franchise.

Catalyst King's Rating

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