Zero Punctuation: Saints Row 4

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Saints Row 4

This week, Zero Punctuation reviews Saints Row IV.

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I'm still convinced that Saints Row 2 was the crown jewel of the series. SR1 was showed it could compete with the GTA series, SR2 showed it was more than just a GTA clone and could excel in its own right, then SR3 took it off the rails and SR4 ran it down an embankment into a river. I hope this is the last we'll hear from the Saints.

I own SR2 and SR3 and don't like neither all that much (SR2 being the most terrible PC port ever in existence doesn't help).

I respect the games, but I'm surprised how popular is the notion that SR = FUN FUN FUN. Okay, I guess running around with a pink dildo and causing silly mayhem is fun in a way, but I'm a little troubled by it.

I hope not all the developers will follow this path now and we'll continue to get also some serious games with context and story. Which can also be lots of fun.

Edit/added: I don't actually have a problem with the game itself or it's maturity/lack of, but I find weird how every reviewer states it's FUN. Every review of every SR game continuously repeats the word: FUN. And I'm not saying it's not (if you're into that kind of thing), but I don't like the idea that only such wacky games are supposed to be fun.

I get a lot of fun out of hardcore simulators, but try to find the word 'fun' in any ARMA II/III review or discussion.

BTW shouldn't the subtitle for ZP be "This week, Zero Punctuation critiques Game X." instead of reviews? Since Yahtzee calls himself a critic.

So, it's better than Saints Row: The Third and is more grounded? FUCKING SOL-... no, it's still not really convinced me that the game's worth playing. I don't want to see them taint Saints Row 1, when they did it to 2 enough in The Third. I might get it eventually when I feel like I've ingested enough illegal products to do so. Edit: I'm also quite intrigued by how it's apparently hard, because I was laughing my bum off when you mentioned Saints Row: The Third having any difficult whatsoever.

Shame the series can't make up it's mind on what to name the sequel.
Original name
2
The Third
IV

I've no idea what they possibly do next.

SgtFlaman:
I'm still convinced that Saints Row 2 was the crown jewel of the series. SR1 was showed it could compete with the GTA series, SR2 showed it was more than just a GTA clone and could excel in its own right, then SR3 took it off the rails and SR4 ran it down an embankment into a river. I hope this is the last we'll hear from the Saints.

While I do enjoy SR3 quiet a bit (not liking the fact it is watered down on so many area's) I have to agree with you. SR4 is just a trainwreck.

Sgt. Sykes:

I hope not all the developers will follow this path now and we'll continue to get also some serious games with context and story. Which can also be lots of fun.

I'm confused by this line. Are you actually saying that serious games with context and story are a niche genre threatened by the likes of SR4?

Okay, here are the Wikiquote pages for Yahtzee and Zero Punctuation. The time is 12:14. Let's see how long this takes...

With regards to that last bit - The french female voice at one point near the beginning does say something along the lines of "Can I even legally be elected president?"

I loved that comment with the potato salad. Sadly I haven't had the time to play this game yet. I've got it installed and ready, but there's just too much going on these days. I'm sad.

I enjoyed them all, though SR3 was a bit to over the top, though it had its moments. I enjoyed SR4. Was a lot of fun and its exactly what i thought it was. An very funny places, loved the singing scene in the car. They said this is the last Saints Row game. I would like another gang game, i did miss the whole starting from nothing and slowly taking over areas, buy houses and buildings etc

But it didn't just immitate, it mocked a lot.
"Hey baby, this Snake is 100% Solid~".
And most importantly, the gameplay didn't suck complete ass, quite the opposite in fact, which made it ok to me.
There have been too many "comedy" games that had gameplay as an afterthought, and while SR4 wasn't really original in any way, it copied enough of the good bits to justify mocking other bits.

Personally, I had a lot of fun with it, even though it was my first entry in the series and I had to puzzle the characters together myself.

Well at least they made sure the mexican voice couldn't get into office >(

SR4 really is a lot more grounded and focused than SR3, and it feels a lot more like a constant adventure as opposed to the previous one.

In some aspects I'm surprised that Yahtzee thought it was better than SR3, but in some aspects I'm kind of not. This feels like the game to finally have given Saints Row it's identity, and it's one hell of an awesome and fun experience. I love the sense that it's been an on-going adventure and the culmination to the Saints' story couldn't be better.

It's really been a fun series to follow this generation.

SgtFlaman:
I'm still convinced that Saints Row 2 was the crown jewel of the series. SR1 was showed it could compete with the GTA series, SR2 showed it was more than just a GTA clone and could excel in its own right, then SR3 took it off the rails and SR4 ran it down an embankment into a river. I hope this is the last we'll hear from the Saints.

Evonisia:
So, it's better than Saints Row: The Third and is more grounded? FUCKING SOL-... no, it's still not really convinced me that the game's worth playing. I don't want to see them taint Saints Row 1, when they did it to 2 enough in The Third. I might get it eventually when I feel like I've ingested enough illegal products to do so.

Shame the series can't make up it's mind on what to name the sequel.
Original name
2
The Third
IV

I've no idea what they possibly do next.

Apparently the next thing they're going to do is start a new story. They said that 4 will be the last chapter for the current Saint boss, so this may be the last we will hear of these Saints. At least that's what I've heard.

Makes sense. What can you do after you become president, and fight aliens? Start again.

Anyway, played it, was very fun, and what Yahtzee said about it is very true.

Evonisia:

Shame the series can't make up it's mind on what to name the sequel.
Original name
2
The Third
IV

I've no idea what they possibly do next.

They could do tally marks.

OT: This game looks like a lot of fun. Unfortunately, by the time I'll have the money to buy it, GTA V will be out. I guess it's going to be a race to the bargain bin.

It's definitely on par with 2 in terms of quality. Much like the Star Trek movies, the best ones are even numbered. I loved damn near every minute of it. Looking forward to seeing what modders can do when they release the tools (Just let me fly dammit!).

Piorn:
But it didn't just immitate, it mocked a lot.
"Hey baby, this Snake is 100% Solid~".
And most importantly, the gameplay didn't suck complete ass, quite the opposite in fact, which made it ok to me.
There have been too many "comedy" games that had gameplay as an afterthought, and while SR4 wasn't really original in any way, it copied enough of the good bits to justify mocking other bits.

Personally, I had a lot of fun with it, even though it was my first entry in the series and I had to puzzle the characters together myself.

Exactly, I loved that the cardboard boxes had little exclamation points on them too. And it had the exclamation sound effect when you were spotted. And the guards you were killing off whilst in the cardboard box made constant reference to how stupid they were for patrolling in such a manner and hoped nobody would sneak up on them while their backs were turned. Oh, and using vents for no reason. And splinter cell referencing about being invisible in the shadows. That was probably my favorite their-own-hell mission, though Pierce's was freaking hilarious too.

Thunderous Cacophony:

Evonisia:

Shame the series can't make up it's mind on what to name the sequel.
Original name
2
The Third
IV

I've no idea what they possibly do next.

They could do tally marks.

OT: I've been kind of iffy about getting Saint's Row IV. On the one hand I think Saint's Row 2 was better than The Third and so I was nervous about them going even further into wacky territory. But on the other, it does look very funny in places and a lot of fun to play. But it also looks very ham-handed in its design.

Kinda surprised he didn't mention the option to use Nolan North as your character's voice. No, really. You can have Nolan North voice your character.

Perhaps its time for the makers of Saints Row to hang it up and try something new... Like teaming up with Yahtzee to finally make his dream game Mankind Has Yet To Recognize My Genius. If only for the main reason which is to see how he'd run with a sandbox crime game. Could be somewhere in the middle between insane parody and serious tone. Then again, he did describe one character having the face of Frank Zappa with nuclear missiles for legs and voiced by Liam Neeson.

The Last Melon:
Okay, here are the Wikiquote pages for Yahtzee and Zero Punctuation. The time is 12:14. Let's see how long this takes...

Someone has added it. So, if 12:14 is GMT (I highly doubt it), it took 5 hours 40 mins (or at least that is how long when I checked, again assuming GMT).

Also, if you're going to make me write a captcha, it helps if the captcha thingy doesn't crash on me.

The funniest part was that both the president and vice president were british.

tangoprime:

Piorn:
But it didn't just immitate, it mocked a lot.
"Hey baby, this Snake is 100% Solid~".

Exactly, I loved that the cardboard boxes had little exclamation points on them too.

And if you failed that mission (say, by shooting a guard before shooting all the lights), Asha shouts, "Boss...Boss? BOOOSSSSS!!!!"

Finished the storyline about a week ago. I've spent most of the time since just playing around with the vehicles that I didn't need to use before. :)

Am I the only person that thought Saints Row 2 is almost as insane as SR3? I mean, the player shoots 100 plice officers and a judge in mission 2 and then just goes inside some random pay and forget mechanic thingy... and a couple of hours after that I was wearing pajamas and shooting a neighbourhood with an RPG. I honestly see SR 2 almost as insane as SR3. Its kinda around Black Ops 2 level of insanity.

I'm actually glad it he liked it to a degree if only to not give ammunition to the hardcore Saints Row 2 fans who hated on this game long before the game even came out and still do. While I did prefer 2 over 3, 4 is like a whole different game, a great one at that. As Yahtzee correctly pointed, the Third was the odd one out really.

If the developers intend on keeping this identity, the next step would be mixing elements that made 2 great into it, such as territory and greater choice.

this is my favourite saints row game. 1 was utter shit, 2 was probably better but the pc port sucked a lot of fun outta that and 3, while still a lot of fun, just felt like a downgrade(i know this is silly but one thing i loved in 2 was that you could put on layers of cloth). this one has superpowers and superpowers make sandbox games so much better.

Well, THAT explains why it took so long for you to get this review up. I was starting to worry.

Points you raised in your Saints Row 2 review led to my buying that game. Points you raised about SR3 made me decide not to buy it. The points you've raised about SR4? Hm... well, between those and the fact that the transgendering options are back, I guess I'll buy it via Steam when it's down to about thirty bucks.

SonOfVoorhees:
I enjoyed them all, though SR3 was a bit to over the top, though it had its moments. I enjoyed SR4. Was a lot of fun and its exactly what i thought it was. An very funny places, loved the singing scene in the car. They said this is the last Saints Row game. I would like another gang game, i did miss the whole starting from nothing and slowly taking over areas, buy houses and buildings etc

It might be a little late to suggest this with GTA V right around the corner, but have you ever played Saints Row 2? If not, I highly recommend it. That being said, I'm in total agreement with you.

As for Yahtzee, Saints Row 2 was no GTA knockoff. They had 3 more years of development time after San Andreas was released, and it shows. As far as I'm concerned, Saints Row 2 kicks the ass of every GTA game made up to today. That doesn't mean I don't love GTA San Andreas though. Or Saints Row the Third. Or Saints Row IV.

So I'm wondering, is Yahtzee going to review Rayman Legends? I can think of several criticisms that he'd make for the game, even though I loved it.

For all the pretensions of 'quality' in Saints Row IV, this was absolutely the least fun I've had playing a game in the main series (never played SR 1, so take that with a grain of salt if you like).

The writing is decent, the missions are inventive, but when it gets right down to it there's just nothing spectacular about SRIV. Where's the moment when you realize the Boss is about to give Worf face cancer? When does the Hulk make you drive around in a convertible with a tiger riding shotgun? When am I going to meet and gain the trust of a new, absolutely ridiculous lieutenant like Zimos locked up in a sex dungeon?

In the end it just felt like an extended, official piece of fanfiction. Put all the old characters in an enclosed space, make the main character bone/explode/shoot/shockwave whoever you want, spank the monkey, repeat. I never felt an attachment to anybody in the game except for Pierce and Zinyak (I was surprised to realize I no longer cared what happened to Kinzie, but she's really changed from the 1337 haxxx0r who IRL hides under the table at a pancake house), and for all the talk of 'inclusivity' what that really seemed to mean was that nothing was particularly fleshed out and that none of your choices mattered. Maybe it would have been interesting if Gat was homophobic, or Pierce was totally gay or Kinzie wouldn't sleep with you unless you were part cyborg. In fact, I can't recall making any choices in the game after the white house mission, and never any with a lasting effect aside from when I want to buy X, Y or Z.

So, yeah. Disappointed.

I played Saints Row 1 out of a deal with my best friend (we would each play a game the other one likes that we normally wouldn't play. I played Saints Row and he played Persona 3) and I thought it was pretty good. I liked the characters and story and all that good stuff.

Saints Row 2 came out and I freakin' loved it. One of my all time favorite games, easily in my top 10. Loved the mix of wackiness still fairly grounded in reality.

Saints Row the Third I thought took a huge leap towards crazy, with stuff like one of the enemy gang leaders being defeated through a freakin' video game and then just chased out of town rather than killed, but despite the story being a little bit TOO wacky for my tastes, I still had fun with the actual game.

Saints Row IV on the other hand...I haven't bought, and I'm not going to anytime soon. Not because I think it looks bad, not because I think it'll be even further away from what I loved about 2, but because I know sometime next year or so there's gonna be a Saints Row IV: Fudge off Aliens Edition or whatever it ends up being called that'll include all the super fun DLC stuff and will probably cost less than buying SR4 right now anyways.

Sooo...y'know...I'll get it later.

FizzyIzze:

SonOfVoorhees:
I enjoyed them all, though SR3 was a bit to over the top, though it had its moments. I enjoyed SR4. Was a lot of fun and its exactly what i thought it was. An very funny places, loved the singing scene in the car. They said this is the last Saints Row game. I would like another gang game, i did miss the whole starting from nothing and slowly taking over areas, buy houses and buildings etc

It might be a little late to suggest this with GTA V right around the corner, but have you ever played Saints Row 2? If not, I highly recommend it. That being said, I'm in total agreement with you.

As for Yahtzee, Saints Row 2 was no GTA knockoff. They had 3 more years of development time after San Andreas was released, and it shows. As far as I'm concerned, Saints Row 2 kicks the ass of every GTA game made up to today. That doesn't mean I don't love GTA San Andreas though. Or Saints Row the Third. Or Saints Row IV.

I think better than any other games I've seen, GTA3 and Saints Row 2 both do a very good job of portraying you as the soulless bad guy. You're not even an anti-hero, you're a legitimate monster, and you have to be the BEST monster and defeat all the other monsters to win. Saints Row 2 I think is a step better because there's an actual story behind it all rather than go here, get instructions, and kill things like GTA3.

Which is why I think the stark contrast between SR2 and 3 really disappointed me. Truthfully I think Yahtzee had the bars between 2 and 4 too close together. SR2 was gangsta... SR3 was gangsta in clownshoes... SR4 is just clownshoes. I see the blatant change in design being like Squeenix and their sudden priority on graphics starting with FF7. Those like myself who played FF4-6 saw it extremely disappointing while it gathered a larger new audience that had no idea how good the games were before.

There will be people like me who may never return to SR because we remember when it switched from gangsta parody to a panda suit. Fun or not, it's a complete departure from what it was. It's a definite success, but I think it lost a good portion of its original fanbase while catering to a completely different one.

Evonisia:
So, it's better than Saints Row: The Third and is more grounded? F*(KING SOL-... no, it's still not really convinced me that the game's worth playing. I don't want to see them taint Saints Row 1, when they did it to 2 enough in The Third. I might get it eventually when I feel like I've ingested enough illegal products to do so. Edit: I'm also quite intrigued by how it's apparently hard, because I was laughing my bum off when you mentioned Saints Row: The Third having any difficult whatsoever.

Shame the series can't make up it's mind on what to name the sequel.
Original name
2
The Third
IV

I've no idea what they possibly do next.

Eh,I haven't played the games myself,but I have watched LPs of 3 and 4 (That's still going). And while I doubt I'd ever buy SR: The Third full price, I did mostly like the story to it. Or something close enough to it in this game. LOL jk There were also characters I liked in SR3; Oleg,Zimos, Angel (Angel-Mania! XD) to name a few. But from what I've seen of SR4, it both looks fun to play, but is somewhat enhanced by those who have played the other games. You can tell it's a game for the fans. And the "Saints of Rage" segment was pretty cool,too. LOL

Captcha: No regrets Me: I concur. If you want a darker,more serious story, go with GTA. But if you want a more goofier tone, with Dub-step Guns and 12 machine guns wrapped around a rocket launcher and a flame thrower ('Merica), SR is the game for you.

Quiotu:

I think better than any other games I've seen, GTA3 and Saints Row 2 both do a very good job of portraying you as the soulless bad guy. You're not even an anti-hero, you're a legitimate monster, and you have to be the BEST monster and defeat all the other monsters to win. Saints Row 2 I think is a step better because there's an actual story behind it all rather than go here, get instructions, and kill things like GTA3.

Which is why I think the stark contrast between SR2 and 3 really disappointed me. Truthfully I think Yahtzee had the bars between 2 and 4 too close together. SR2 was gangsta... SR3 was gangsta in clownshoes... SR4 is just clownshoes. I see the blatant change in design being like Squeenix and their sudden priority on graphics starting with FF7. Those like myself who played FF4-6 saw it extremely disappointing while it gathered a larger new audience that had no idea how good the games were before.

There will be people like me who may never return to SR because we remember when it switched from gangsta parody to a panda suit. Fun or not, it's a complete departure from what it was. It's a definite success, but I think it lost a good portion of its original fanbase while catering to a completely different one.

It was really a blessing for me since I played Saints Row the Third first, then #4, and finally, Saints 2. I got to see exactly what was lost in the transition after 2, but at the same time I see why Volition did it. They added tons more Friendly Fire locations, added the ability to customize cars from cribs, and made cribs into safe locations. Also, after Saints 2 it became much easier to make your character attractive. It seemed that in Saints 2 every character but you had a high poly count.

At the same time though, I agree, they sacrificed game play for the sake of better graphics. I think the real problem is that Saints Row 2 is so massive, so well written, and so jam packed with insane activities that the only place for Saints Row to go was down. I don't mean down in a negative way, I mean that I really believe Saints Row 2 is Volition's magnum opus. Also, I prefer your analogy over Yahtzee's complaints about SR3 by the way. It was his critique of Saints Row the Third that actually kept me from playing Saints 2 for a long time. It sounded more like he was whining, and all I could hear was him complaining about what was gone, rather than what The Third had to offer.

the way I see it is that the Saints Row series has indeed stopped being just a copy cat of GTA, and while some people still want it to do that...well they're probably better off hitting their own niche than trying to compete with GTA 5. if I want the traditional car jacking free roam gritty story...I already have that elsewhere.

it's called Sleeping Dogs.

lol oh and maybe GTA too I guess...

tangoprime:

Piorn:
But it didn't just immitate, it mocked a lot.
"Hey baby, this Snake is 100% Solid~".
And most importantly, the gameplay didn't suck complete ass, quite the opposite in fact, which made it ok to me.
There have been too many "comedy" games that had gameplay as an afterthought, and while SR4 wasn't really original in any way, it copied enough of the good bits to justify mocking other bits.

Personally, I had a lot of fun with it, even though it was my first entry in the series and I had to puzzle the characters together myself.

Exactly, I loved that the cardboard boxes had little exclamation points on them too. And it had the exclamation sound effect when you were spotted. And the guards you were killing off whilst in the cardboard box made constant reference to how stupid they were for patrolling in such a manner and hoped nobody would sneak up on them while their backs were turned. Oh, and using vents for no reason. And splinter cell referencing about being invisible in the shadows. That was probably my favorite their-own-hell mission, though Pierce's was freaking hilarious too.

HERE COMES PAUL!

image

OT: I think this game is more off the walls then SR3 because it makes fun of a lot more things then Yahtzee said. Hell the biggest parody is of Mass Effect. You spend a good portion on a space ship where you can "Romance" (Aka: Fuck) all your crewmates.

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