By Wayne Webb
Saints Row the Third is a very good game, but I can’t quite bring myself to label it a great game. It’s a sandbox game that features driving, shooting and missions aplenty all served on a giant bed of irony and tongue-in-cheek humour. Not for the easily offended or faint of heart, it is what it is – but occasionally gets tiresome.
The story picks up with the Saints (a ludicrously commercially successful gang) fighting it out with new enemies over a new city and from there it just gets silly with gunfights on planes, giant purple dildo weapons and a cast of deviants and weirdoes that are designed to be way over the top. That’s the games charm and its downfall. You cannot take it too seriously, but also you can get too much of it and after a few hours you start to wish that you had not chosen to work your character in the nude or in a gimp mask, because it just distracts from enjoying the missions and tasks that are littered generously through the campaign mode.
The side missions and main missions all add up to many, many hours of fun if you are into the murderous rage that treats life like grains of sand, casually cast aside. It is very gratifying to drive into a crowd of people and scatter bodies, or open fire on police or blow up buildings with little regard to consequences, because there are few. This is a joke and a fun one at that, so it satisfies your gaming and anti-social fantasies. After about the 20th cop you have shot, car you have stolen or hooker you have bludgeoned with a dildo the size of a baseball bat, you’ve had enough and you’re back to the outrageous story line that essentially asks you to do the same thing, but with a campaign and well delivered story in mind.
The graphics are chunky and cartoonish adding to the surreal notion of Saints Row, but now and then they get a little jumpy and look damaged, but the fun factor generally makes up for it.
Pros: Large world to roam, loads of things to do, unending action, loads of side missions and diversions. Funny, engaging and well thought out story.
Cons: It tries too hard to shock, graphics occasionally dodgy
4 Shacks Out Of 5