Review by UltrosSquidLord
"A fun experience, but at a high cost"
Not much to say here, the graphics aren't anything to complain about. Picture Saint's Row 2 with a more cartoony vibrant look, and there you go.
It has some good music/songs trouble is not as many good songs as Saint's Row 2 had. Still there's really nothing to compare to being in the heat of action, and having songs like power, and need a hero playing in the background. The voice acting seems to be good for the most part, although a lot of the interactions just aren't that interesting. (more on that later)
What story? you shoot enemies, and the next mission pops up. Seriously though, there really isn't much of a story to speak of, at least it doesn't interest me very much. Not to mention the fact that it kind of ends on a cliffhanger, was it meant to have DLC to wrap things up? Anyway unlike Saint's Row 2 where you feel like some badass psycho taking out anything that stands between you, and your goals, here you play the role of a lame anti-hero.
Where you feel like nothing you do in the story really makes much of an impact, and I definitely miss the Gang storyline where you had to take out the three enemy gangs in a seperate storyline for each one. Here it's not nearly as interesting, the three gangs kind of clump together, and most of them get wiped out way too early on. There really is no dramatic conclusion between you, and the enemy gang boss, as seen in previous titles, or anything cool like that.
My other problem with the story is that it forces you to do "activities" to advance the main storyline. Which just seems redundant, and makes them less fun to play than when they were optional. Oh right, and they kill off my favorite character like right off the bat for no reason whatsoever, that alone should take off five points in my review. (it doesn't but it should) There's also an apparent lack of personality in some characters to the point that I can't believe it's the same person from Saint's Row 2.
For example in Saint's Row 2 Shaundi was the calm mellow stoner of your gang, in this one she never makes a reference to pot, sex, or anything that she did in Saint's Row 2. Instead of the calm/mellow dispostion she seems to have an angrier more driven personality, minus the humor. It's like this is an entirely different person with the same name as the one from SR2, and nothing else. That's definitely character/personality disintegration, which is not a good thing.
This feels like more of a step back than foward. I'll admit there are some improvements, but they are easily overshadowed by all the things that we have lost. I will start with the activities, first off, all of the good activities have been inexplicably removed (no, I'm not kidding) the only activity in this game I can say I really enjoyed was the Genki activity. Even worse the game forces you to do activities to get through the game. Almost all of these activites were more fun in SR2, the fact that the game forces you to do these just makes them seem like more of a chore, than when they were optional, and for fun.
I just really feel like this game had much more potential than it really capitalized on, this just feels like a dumbed down shinier (by which I mean they try to make it look better when it's really not) SR2. I mean we have been waiting for a sequel to SR2 for so long, and this is all we get? I haven't been this disappointed since I found out Santa Clause wasn't real. Although, I will admit I did enjoy playing this game (once I got past the disappointment.) I recommend you play with a buddy, because it's a lot more fun that way than it is solo.
Oh, and there's that one level where because of the "lag" you phase in, and out repeatedly making it impossible to take cover. Needless to say this is something that should never be done, challenge should be fair, and reasonable, not cheap, and stupid. On that note replaying SR2 I have noticed an element of challenge present in that game that isn't present here. As a result there is less of a sense of accomplishment playing through this game than there was in SR2.
Oh, and the game is considerably shorter, and has much less replayability than SR2.
In spite of the setbacks I still think that this is a fun game to play, I would at least give it a rental, especially if you were a fan of SR2. Although the game by itself may not keep you interested long, unless you want to invest in some DLC.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 06/29/12
Game Release: Saints Row: The Third (US, 11/15/11)
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