"Not only is Saints Row: The Third more efficient, but it handles better. Vehicles drive more smoothly, animation is more fluid and takes full advantage of high definition, and each scenario stands on its own. I'll gladly trade the ability to wear a tie with my hoodie for quality activities, less repetition, and improved mechanics any day."
Saints Row: The Third (SR3) keeps one important detail in mind: the meaning of the word 'sandbox'. It invokes the spirits of the sandbox, those who love to frolic, play, laugh, and hit random people in the face with a spiked baseball bat. It isn't overly concerned with spinning a human yarn, pushing games as art, or appealing to realism. SR3 trades realistic driving physics for the ability to cause people to explode with a single punch. It takes away stringent excitement-demeaning punishments, like having the cops perpetually on your tail, so you can steal a top secret plane-helicopter hybrid and rain missiles on the new fictional city, Steelport. This isn't to say that it's a title without any consideration for smooth mechanics or challenging situations. No, SR3 is not a wimpy imitation of the real world; it's a balls-to-the-wall, tongue-in-cheek romp with killer missions complimented by stellar distractions. It's a veritable playground of insanity.
Blazing from one checkpoint to another whilst gunning down random gang members isn't enough. Volition needed to push the envelop further and dance all over the corpse of plausibility. Rather than relying solely on genre standards like racing against the clock or raiding a warehouse, SR3 takes you down such avenues as invading a bordello while naked and drugged, making for difficult marksmanship. You'll have your share of gunfights and car chases, but you'll also battle against snotty cyberpunks in virtual reality, leap off a building to escape an explosion, engage a professional wrestling champ/organized crime lord in a body-crushing bout in the squared circle, and gun down goons while free falling sky high above the city. Each mission is not one objective, but a series of two to four strung together with a decent variety of mission styles, giving each one its own identity. As such, no mission is a repeat of a previous one with added difficulty.
Community review by JoeTheDestroyer (December 04, 2011)
Rumor has it that Joe is not actually a man, but a machine that likes video games, horror movies, and long walks on the beach. His/Its first contribution to HonestGamers was a review of Breath of Fire III.
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