Saints Row is a multi-million selling franchise with about 10 million copies sold of all three games combined thus far. It’s a parody on Grand Theft Auto, never taking itself too seriously. Saints Row and Saints Row 2 have been met with many great reviews, and gamers are absolutely in love with them. This is further shown when Saints Row 1 & 2 were re-released in a bundle pack for the Xbox 360 exclusively in all their Platinum Hits glory. Yeah, that’s right, the first never did make it to the Playstation 3 and our admission into the Saints began with the second; so us Sony boys will remain jealous of those Microsoft buggers! Curse you!
When Saints Row: The Third was released, the reviews were still positive. However, there were those who weren’t as amazed by the presentation, often saying that the game was a step-down from its predecessors. I personally enjoyed The Third equally, with 50 hours poured into it and counting. A lot of complaints were based around such features as the ability to become invincible. Okay, I completely agree with this because if you collected all the collectibles scattered around Steelport and completed all the activities, you would be indestructible for the last few missions, completely destroying the challenge. What this does in my opinion is put everything on the story. Without challenge—what drives us hardcore gamers the most—you’d only continue if you were curious of how the story would evolve. The plot in Saints Row: The Third was predictable for the most part, but Volition, Inc. did try to implement what I call the “Moral System” which we’ve seen in such games as Mass Effect. This added a bit of unpredictability but didn’t change the overall story much.
The other complaint concerned immersion, which makes some sense. When someone loses a friend, or a good friend, that loss affects them and changes their character for a while. They become depressed and sullen, which isn’t something you saw much of here. The Saints did lose someone, but it seemed that they were more interested in getting revenge. That’s believable for me because if a loved one was killed that I knew, I’d be vengeful. But you never saw much emotion beyond that, which made these characters seem like robots with no feelings. To me, that took away from the immersion.
Another complaint was the gangs:
- The first Gang that you meet is called The Morning Star. This is a very legitimate gang in my opinion as they strike me as a mafia sort of group. I guess The Saints pissed off The Mafia or something. But this definitely was one of the better gangs in this game.
- The second gang are The Luchadores. Now this was a little bit weird for me and didn’t seem that convincing. I don’t remember the last time that I saw Luchadores killing people with 9mm’s and AKs. I do remember seeing them in the WWE though; they relied more on suplexes then AKs though.
- The third gang are The Deckers. They were tech-savvy punk-like individuals. To be honest, they didn’t seem that intimidating at all. Actually, they seemed kind of like little kids who are trying to appear badass to impress.
Saints Row 1 & 2 had gangs you could believe to see in the streets, which made the story more fun. Another complaint was the activities but I actually enjoyed them a lot (except Heli Assault; that was a pain). I didn’t like how they continued the main story in these activities since they are completely optional. So if you chose to just play through the main story, you’d have holes in the plotline. Personally, I really loved the Genki activities, as well as The Genkibowl DLC, although I thought the latter ended too abruptly.
Now, what would make Saints Row 4 a great experience and return it back to the hearts of fans? Well, I compiled a wishlist and I wanted to share it with you readers, and maybe get some input from you folks!
- Immersion — As I mentioned, The Saints are people and I would have loved to see them struggling with a loss as well as wanting revenge. Usually, when people lose someone and are so determined for revenge, they have a moment when it just gets to be too much that they ultimately break-down.
- Better gangs — I would love to see a return to the Saints Row 1 & 2 type of gangs. I have never played the first, but I have heard that the gangs were well-done and not over-the-top random.
- More customization — One of the bigger complaints was the fact that Saints Row: The Third had a fair amount of clothing shops, but most were Planet Saints. And they had the same inventory, which took away from the variety. There was also a few other different stores but the customization was a smaller selection then 1 & 2. The Third did see the inclusion of a female lead, but they still need more women’s shops as I found that a lot of the clothes, while unisex, would suit males better.
- Acitivity side stories — What I mean is, have the activities have their own mini-stories to them. For example, if something is mentioned in the main plot line but not really explained, it would be awesome if it were explored by activities, thus increasing the world’s lore and making the game more engaging.
- No invinicibility — 10% less damage from bullets is fine; it gives players something to work towards. But I think cutting that off at 30% would be plenty. It makes the character tougher to kill but make still able to die, keeping the challenge intact.
Those’re all the improvements I can think of that would make Saints Row 4 the best yet. And we may not have long to wait as an ex-design director suggested that Saints Row 4 could be out as soon as August. I would like to see this proven false, seeing as how Grand Theft Auto V‘s possible September 17th release date could provide some unwanted competition. They’d sell a good amount in a month, but they’d ultimately be overshadowed the minute GTA5 hits store shelves.
Whenever it is released, I’m very excited to see what Deep Silver, the franchise’s new publisher, can put into the franchise. Dead Island was a massive success with upwards of 5 million copies.
So BagoGames readers, what do you guys think? Do you agree with my wishlist? Do you have some things that you would like to add? Drop some ideas in the comments below or on Facebook and let’s chat!