Recently I had the great honor and experience to preview Saints Row IV from the folks over at Deep Silver and Volition. First off going into this game I wasn’t expecting much, I had played previous Saints Row games but never got fully invested into the series. So for those that never played Saints Row before, I’ll tell you right now, you can defiantly jump into this game and not be lost. If you never played the game, you are in for a unique, crazy, fun and amazing experience with this game. There’s an aspect for every gamer, you like story and good cut scenes? Got it. You like exploring and open world? Check. You like leveling up your character or personalizing them? Made to order. I honestly feel like Saints Row IV might under the radar but will give the gaming community a swift kick in the ass and wake up call that the Fall/Winter of blockbuster games starts with them and they are going to be contenders for the GOTY title!
My preview starts with the signature beginning level for Saints Row, you start the game at which the quote: “Shit just got real!” Could be used appropriately. I don’t want to post any type of unwanted spoilers but have made a video that shows parts of the preview and does show some story elements:
If you did watch the video, I hope you enjoyed it. For non spoiler reasons I’ll touch on some points briefly below and give my closing impressions of Saints Row IV
The game plays is an over the shoulder shooter or Third Person Shooter, this is great for the experience you will have while completing task, exploring the world and even fire fights. The shooting is solid for the game. It’s nothing revolutionary but you can feel the upgrade from the previous game. An old but welcomed feature is the ‘weapon wheel’, this allows you to quickly pick a weapon from your massive inventory of guns, assault weapons and more. This all adds to your fluid crazy, funny, and action-filled experienced. The newest additions is superpowers and this makes the open world your playground. With powers that let run faster than a car and jump skyscrapers as easy as it is to skip, you’ll find yourself thinking: “Nothing can stop me, this is MAH city!” In addition to these abilities, you now have super-powered abilities you can use. You can use telekinesis to pick up objects and enemies, a fire aura that cloaks you in a barrier of fire, a stomp attack that involves a massive ground pound and last but not least an ice attack. This quickly reminded me of the game prototype but better!
This is an area that I believe Saints Row IV hits it out the park, but might go unnoticed due to the chaos and awesomeness going on around you. But when you take the time and appreciate the scenery, really absorb the options you have for customization and finally the way the reaction the world has to your actions. This game graphically isn’t ground breaking by any means but sticks to its bread and butter which leads to an amazing experience visually. Going back to the wide range of options to customize your character in Saints Row IV, frankly, they hit a home run with this. I haven’t been that interested in making a character since the early days of the Sims. From the option of blue to purple skin color, clothing and voice I really spent a few hours creating different characters and trying to replicate some people within the gaming industry. This in its own was totally fun and unexpected, I know the previous games let you do this and so have other games, but just something about how they present things to you was so smooth I just couldn’t stop wanting more.
I didn’t want to go to much into my experience as I strongly believe that this game is a must buy on day one. If I had to make one statement about this game: “F’n kick ass, GOTY here comes Saints Row IV”. That’s it in a nut shell, the variety of different things to do in this game could entertain so many gamers. At times I found only having a few quick minutes to play and I would explore the world to find new areas I had possibly missed while completing a mission or just randomly start unloading on the innocent by standards and taking on the cops and aliens like the one man bad ass army I am. This game is under the radar in many aspects and I believe as we get closer to launch, the gaming community will be screaming on top of its lungs on how awesome Saints Row IV is and how no one can’t get enough of it! This game in my personal opinion will have a good case and head start for the Game of the Year title. Tons of fun and replay value that any gamer could enjoy! If you have any form of common sense you will be at your locale gaming store the night of August 19th for a midnight release of Saints Row IV launching August 20th.