Saints Row IV
(PC and XBOX 360 Tested)
An amazing addition to
the Saints Row series! It doesn't take itself seriously, and you should
not either. Full of laughs and over the top humor that any true gamer
with a gamer’s humor will get and laugh out loud.
The Saints are moving up in the world. Now the
leader of the Saints is the big man himself, the President of the United
States. The over the top absurdity is still present, though this time
the developers have created a bit of a different story line that is,
well… out of this world to cloak itself in and make some sense of some
of the crazy stuff you get to pull off in Saints Row IV.
The game starts out pretty interesting showing off
that power in the Whitehouse and some of the missions that a President
has to order. So in some ways the game starts with a bang and builds up
into a crescendo of over the top craziness.
What can you possibly do to keep it fresh and
exciting for the Saints Row series after Saints row the Third? Well with
Saints Row IV throw in an Alien invasion, make part of the game in a
virtual world prison that the aliens lock you and your crew in, and then
mix in all the raunchy over the top craziness that makes for a
spectacular sand box experience.
No joke, our hero whom you can customize the hell out
of in clothing and hair and body type and features for that personal
touch (You can change the gender, ethnicity, clothing, hair, clothing…it
is insane genius to have such levels of customization.)
ANYWAY, our hero …is locked up in a virtual prison.
The place is a weirder version of Steelport.
That is where it gets even crazier, because in the
virtual world your brainy chick gang member helps you out enough to hack
in and assist you with getting outrageous abilities in the virtual
world. Your job to assist in this is by collecting data clusters that
help unlock abilities. With super speed, super jumps and some short
flying abilities you get the lay the hurt down on the alien scum.
Along with the insane super powers, there are several
bone crunching fight moves that never seem to get boring to pull off.
Mixes of wrestling and insane bone crushing moves that will bring an
evil grin to your face.
The game follows the same gaming structure of the 3rd
game. Challenge missions are back intermixing with the main story
missions. It’s a gleeful mash up of gaming here. With the super powers,
it’s like a super hero game, there is plenty of running and gunning, add
in some vehicle combat. Including space ship battles and you have a full
plate of gaming goodness.
It was not just enough to give the player super
powers, the designers cleverly decided to make the player have to use
those powers in skillful ways to meet goals in the game. This is where
some interesting plat forming takes place. Players as they traverse
throughout the virtual world have to capture huge tower structures. In
order to do that they have to wall jump, leap over great gaps and hit
platforms to reach the tops. It’s a simple but clever way to get the
player used to using the abilities the game throws at them.
Even with the super powers, the need for weapons does
come up. Along with the standard lead spitting pistols and machines guns
and shots guns, the more exotic tend to be just outrageously fun. Such
as the Dub Step gun. This thing fires out rays of energy that anyone in
the target area as well as vehicles is captured in its effect. Vehicles
bounce as if they are low riders and people start doing crazy dances
until they fall over. There are some other interesting special weapons
that I just refuse to get into here. Half of the fun of a game is
discovery. Oh boy are you in for some jaw dropping “I can’t believe they
included this in the game” moments.
Now as to the enemies with in the game. The rather
powerful Aliens known as the Zin. The Zin Empire is enough to throw
some interesting curves in the game. Admittedly it would become rather
boring only fighting the one Alien types, so never fear. The game
developers must have thought that too because there are several what I
call mini boss fights that throw different Alien types at the player to
contend with. So the challenges do keep coming and keeps the player
There are some weapons and game mission that had to
be dropped or neutered down for the Australian version release. For
instance our Australian gaming brothers and sisters won’t be getting
revenge on the Aliens for all those Alien Anal probes. Yes friends there
is a weapon that sticks it wear the sun don’t shine. It’s the
Rectifier…and yes, the animation for this thing is disturbing, but oh
such naughty fun to use. Never fear there are other crazy weapons that
are almost just as deviant fun.
The Black Hole gun, opening up a black hole and
having enemies sucked inside, Awesome! The dreaded inflato ray. This
thing causes the target to inflate and expand like a living bobble head
until they explode in a goopy mess. Plasma weapons and laser guns….
Thankfully the Aliens caused all of these new Over, OVER the top weapons
and gear to the new playground.
Saints Row IV has some pretty interesting graphics,
the world looks interesting and outright surprisingly beautiful. Light
bloom and lens flairs are used to great effect as well as distance
feathering of graphics in the distance lending a softness to distant
objects. These beautiful graphics seem to ride over and are just as
awesome looking in both PC and Xbox 360. (I did not get to check out PS3
version) Since much of the game takes place in a virtual world, it is
sometimes hard to figure if there is a graphic glitch or it was designed
that way because you’re in a virtual prison in the game. I only had a
couple odd pop in graphics while not in the virtual world prison, and
three stuck in graphics incidents, things went swimmingly after that.
Volition it seems has made a new standard in over the
top…no really I don’t think you understand… they went over the top
before. Now they had to raise the bar in standards as well, just so they
could go over the top of that.
Have fun, play games.