Saints Row (2022) – Game Review

Saints Row Details

Developer: Volition

Publisher: Deep Silver

Game Series: Saints Row (2006-)

Platform: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox, Xbox S/X , Stadia

Release Date: August 2022

Age Rating: 18

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Saints Row (2022)

I have been a fan of Saints Row ever since I first saw my uncle Jordan driving to the church on Saints Row 2. His vehicle a purple phoenix with knuckleduster spikes, spiking out of the rims. I soon fell in love with the story of Saints Row 2. Afterall who wouldn’t? You awaken from a coma in an island prison similar to Alcatraz and escape in the first mission. This is what also started the trend of the best starting missions of any video game. One that Saints Row The Third still reigns supreme on, outclassing all the others in my opinion.

Story of Saints Row (2022)

The story of Saints Row starts with an over-the-top action-packed missions as always. In which The Boss starts their first day for Marshal, a private military company. In which you end up letting Unfortunately, your new job sees you clashing professionally with two of your three roommates. Neenah who is a part of the Los Panteros and Kevin who is affiliated with the neon donned Locos. Unfortunately, you get fired on the job for questionable priorities when you choose to prioritise human life over property.  It all gets worse when Eli is shot at a locos party due to a shootout between both the Locos and Los Panteros. Which lead to Kev and Neenah cutting ties from their factions.

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The three of you plus Eli decide to start your own gang. To “be your own boss”.  Deciding to use a rundown church as your HQ, the Saints are reborn! You then proceed to fight for resources in Santo Ileso against the other gangs. Eventually you are pulled into marshal politics and find yourself with the opportunity to get revenge on your old boss. The plan to have the board members loose confidence in him forcing marshal to distance themselves from Atticus. Afterwards you celebrate at the church only to be betrayed by a psychotic Nahualli. He even makes Kev wear a shirt! Where would this madman stop? Luckily, The Boss tracks down Nahualli and with the help of his friends and Snickerdoodle the cat they all overcome Nahualli. Ending his betrayal.

Pros of Saints Row (2022)

Firstly I loved the return to form. Yes, they don’t land everything they tried but you can see the directional change back towards the tone of Saints Row The Third rather than Agents of Mayhem, or Saints Row 4. The gameplay is solid, I loved the driving. The vehicle customization is once again outstanding, giving the player various options. I loved the new specialization mechanics. These added more personality to all the weapons and vehicles. I also found myself swapping out weapons to unlock the different specializations.

Cons of Saints Row (2022)

The is a lack of “boss” battles though in the new game, you don’t even take out Sergio. The BLANK does. The final fight with BLANK is a good enough mission in itself yet Saints Row had various over the top missions and climatic ends to various antagonists. However, Saints Row falls flat in this area.

Analysis of Saints Row (2022)

For the most part, the story of Saints Row is a more grounded, down to earth character driven story like the first three games. With missions allowing you to do extravagant stunts at times, but still remain plausible in the world set up. I loved the train mission. It was the perfect amount of over-the-top action-packed fun, yet still remained relevant to the characters and the stories. Criminals robbing trains has a long rich history for example: Breaking Bad did it on the small screen, in games it was done perfectly by Rockstar in Red Dead Redemption 2.

The is technically three factions yet again in Saints Row, However Marshal is a private military company that seems more like a rehash of Saints Row: The Third’s STAG. I did like how three of the main characters were once a part of each faction, I liked the humor of the interactions this caused. Unfortunately, the actual gangs/factions seem more like poor imitations of other games with the Locos looking like they came from Watch Dogs 2.

Summary of Saints Row (2022)

The new “Boss” (player character) resembles the same laidback, relaxed, goofball attitude they exhibited in earlier games, yet the supporting cast falls flat. Especially compared to the likes of Julius, Shaundi, and of course the king of crime himself ,Daniel Dae Kim himself, Johnny Gat. I did however find myself laughing at Kevin, perhaps he will be the new Peirce? Unfortunately, this is the first game not to feature Jonny Gat and it does feel somewhat empty without him as he was the last connection to the original game.

The Nahualli was a breath of fresh air. He was eccentric, mysterious, badass, and an overall alluring character in the game. It was a surprise to see him take down Sergio instead of you, Saints Row doesn’t usually shy away from letting you put in the last blow. Usually in some epic mission or boss fight. Yet due to the overall lack of “bosses” to take down I feel like I was robbed an epic encounter. Nahualli’s betrayal at the end wasn’t something I saw coming and I was pleasantly surprised. The tone went from pretty weird to Saints Row weird in an instant, as you face Nahualli, the winner keeps your FRIENDS!

To summarize I think we will have to finish Saints Row after all the DLC have dropped to see the overall product we will be left playing. However, unfortunately at the moment Saints Row does a lot right, but also feels empty whilst lacking the same characters we have fell in love with. The ones we are left with are not that all amazing when compared to Julius, Gat, Troy, and more from even just the 1st game.

Overall Rating: 7.5 – Respectable!

Platform Played On: PS4

Game Time At Review: 23 Hours

Recommendation: Yes

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