Average User Score: 8.1Dec 2, 2011This is simply a smashing success. It's upsetting that some of the vehicle customization options from the previous installment are missing,This is simply a smashing success. It's upsetting that some of the vehicle customization options from the previous installment are missing, but the game is leagues beyond it's predecessor as far as stability and polish goes. This is easily in the top-5 2 player campaign co-op games of all time. It's always compared to GTA, and although the premise and genre is identical (terrorize a city while taking it over), that is where the two diverge. Saints Row is an over-the-top, satirical thrill-ride. It's not meant to be film noire-esque, with complex moral issues to be explored. It's a crazy, action packed game that does not take itself too seriously. It is by no means Fable-esque in it's tongue-in-cheek attitude and humor, but it has great voice talent, superb graphics and animation, and enough secrets and side missions to keep you busy for hours.
I cannot stress enough the strength of this game lying in the multiplayer. The addition of a friend is incredibly seamless, and every single facet of the game is available while playing together. Putting your wife's character through the windshield while frantically evading both rival gangs as well as police, SWAT, and the National Guard is hillarity that must truly be experienced once in anyone's lifetime.
There are minor issues with the console interface, as almost every game released these days is plagued by, but they are inconsequential in comparison to the vast majority of other contemporary releases.
If you are expecting a GTA clone, you will be disappointed. If you are a hard core GTA fan that insists on comparing this game to GTA, I would highly recommend simply steering clear.
If you want to cause havoc and mayhem in an enormous, fully fleshed out open world, especially with a friend, there simply is no other substitute to date.… Expand
Average User Score: 6.5Oct 28, 2011This review covers the single player game, patch version 1.3
Due to the absolute incarnation of atrocity that the first installment in thisThis review covers the single player game, patch version 1.3
Due to the absolute incarnation of atrocity that the first installment in this series ended up being, I refused to purchase this game outright. After playing through the introduction, however, I was more than pleasantly surprised. I had no qualms about purchasing the full release. It should be noted that the 1.3 patch fixes MANY of the issues noted in the negative reviews on this board.
The Good: You have good character customization options, with 3 main skill sets (melee, ranged, and magic) as well as 3 supporting skills, Assassin (sneak, lockpick, etc), Crafting, and General skills (resistances, etc).
The character model options are a mixed bag, as you are locked into playing a male character with a specific voice, and not much to work with body wise. However, the facial options are on par with the state of the art and with the games amazing graphics you can really create a very impressive face.
The game doesn't hand-hold the player anywhere near as much as most modern titles, hearkening back to better days. For example, fast travel is not magical instantaneous transport to any point on the map. You utilize a network of teleports, which adds greatly to the immersion. This is balanced by the fact that not only are there many destinations, you can also acquire personal teleports to place where you desire. You can initiate teleport from anywhere in the outside world.
Combat is intense, and difficult against enemies your level and higher (and sometimes even lower level). However, by employing actual player skill, you can hold your own in many situations where you would fail in simple number crunching games. In melee, blocking is critical if you wish to survive.
Character interactions with quest NPCs is great. While some might consider this a "con", the game departs from a pure RPG in that your character will respond to dialogue with his own personality in many cases, and will also make decisions based on his personality. While there are plenty of opportunities to make choices, many of the games interactions are scripted. I, personally, found this refreshing - I actually got mad at the way the character handled a situation with an investment - but other players may not like it.
The graphics and physics are, as yet, unmatched by any cRPG to date. With the wave action taken into account, it is arguably better than any video game water yet made. The big release of the defacto-ruling series of first/third person RPGs comes out next month (November 2011), we'll see how it stacks up. I won't get into too much more detail on this, as I do not put much stock in form over function, but you won't be displeased by the eye candy.
The sound is great, and the music is even better. I wouldn't put it up for any industry awards, but they are very well done.
The crafting systems (for upgrading items, brewing potions, and creating magic spells) are some of, if not the, best to date. The interface is smooth, and the possible combinations are amazingly varied.
Lockpicking is very nice, though a little too easy. The highest level locks can be a challenge. The nice part is, you can tailor this to your personal skill level by deciding how many points you'd like to put in the lockpick skill.
The Not So Good:
The game suffers from the same "consolification" syndrome that the majority modern titles inherit. The interfaces and controls are hampered accordingly, with issues like multiple actions being assigned to the same keys. This is simply inexcusable in a PC game, which offers far greater control abilities and far more precise view control than a console controller (as far as FPS/TPS goes that is). The spacebar (default) is the greatest offender as it is tied to jumping, the "use" action (including mounting your horse), as well as affecting combination and special attacks in combat. Right mouse button is almost as bad, as you use it both to sprint AND to sneak. If you right click while standing still, you sneak (which automatically draws your dagger if equipped, which citizens and guards take offense to). If you right click while moving you will sprint (which can cause you to bolt off a cliff or ledge).
Arrows move far slower than their medieval contemporaries.
Camera is (rarely) annoying when close to objects, or when the game switches to a cinematic view of a melee swing, which can cause you to immediately face away from your opponent.
Horse controls are improved over TW1, but still subpar. The removal of horseback combat was a bad move.
All in all, this is a superb game in need of just a little more polish and improved controls. While I feel that naming the game after the steaming pile that preceded it was a bad marketing move, if TW3 is a much of a leap forward as TW2 is, it will be a scroll-dethroning game for certain.
For FPS/TPS action RPG fans, I give this a 9.5. I highly recommend at least trying the demo!… Expand