The Saints Row series has kept me coming back since I first became obsessed with Saints Row: The Third back in 2011, so much so that I went on to get every achievement for the game, as well as buy all the DLC and 100% that too. Saints Row IV took me a little while longer to get in to – Although I enjoyed the super powers and silly guns, I didn’t find myself as completely dedicated as I was to the previous game, perhaps down to not having to fight rival gangs to take over control of other areas (although I do like the way that they kept the different areas and takeover concept intact).
With the latest release, Gat Out Of Hell, we’ve seen that the concepts for The Saints gang are still numerous despite sticking to giving us more of what we had in 4. Below are 5 reasons why I think you should try Gat Out Of Hell.
As with all Saints Row games, the jokes and humour present is still fantastic – It nods to a plethora of other things in the entertainment sector, just as we expect, such as The Book of More-man. The funny parts range from using the Lil’ Croaker gun, that fires frogs on to the ground that use their tongue to cling onto the enemy and then explode, to the singing number that rivals Disney for sound but leaves you wondering wtf is going on (in a good way). Shakespeare’s appearance as a DJ also hit my funny bone – his dropping off the mic to start spinning the decks certainly made me chuckle.
2) Uses the history of the franchise well
Volition and Deep Silver have used the history of the franchise really well – Dane Vogel from SR2 and the Ultor corporation he led (from SR2 and a part of SR3), act as the guide in the game when you first arrive in Hell as well as acting as the hub to switch between Kinzie and Gat. Oh, didn’t I mention? As the game title suggests, you play as Johnny Gat. Boom! You can switch, as I just said, to Kinzie as well, giving the option of male or female player. Other people to return include the DeWynter twins, Viola and Kiki, both of whom were major characters in SR3.
I’ve already mentioned the Lil’ Croaker gun, which almost brought back the same smile as I had on my face when I first used the ‘Merica gun in SR4 (Look this up!) – Along with that, I loved smashing the imps with the Devils Hammer for the first time when I met Blackbeard – who acts as a Gang member for all intents and purposes to those who have played prior games. Gat Out Of Hell plays well off its title with its weapons… you can collect the ‘Seven Deadly Sins’ weapons, which are all f*!&ing awesome to use and pwn Demons with. To mention just a few of my favourites – Envy (Uriel’s Edge); Uriel the Archangel from the Bible has a flaming sword… now, so do you! I love the melee weapons that Saints Row has often let us use, such as the Penetrator, so to slice through my enemies that were clearly well jel, was awesome. Sloth (Armchair-A-Geddon); probably the most seen in the run up to the game, you literally sit in an armchair with dual chainguns as well as having the ability to fire rockets from it… now Johnny (or Kinzie) can enjoy their murder-carnage-mayhem whilst relaxing in a chair! The last one I’ll talk about is Wrath (Ark of the Covenant); so Indiana Jones fans, this is what you’ve been waiting for… a video game weapon where you melt your enemies faces, just like in the film. I know, I’m aroused too.
4) New Open World
SR3 and SR4 were both in Steelport, just like SR and SR2 were both in Stilwater, well Gat Out Of Hell places us in New Hades and it’s great to explore. There are 5 districts in this… city… I suppose? Anyway, they are Barrens, the Den, Downtown, Forge and the Shantytown, all of which are connected to a central spire, called The Tower. It’s great having such an open world to explore and the ability to do the tasks in each area to get to 100% is a feature, similar to the prior entries of the series. The traversing of the terrain is brilliant; combining the jump and glide of Saints Row 4, where your super powers helped you to cover so much ground in so little time, with angelic wings, courtesy of Lucifer’s Cracked Halo, given to you by Dane Vogel at the beginning of the game. Upgrading this is very similar to SR4’s upgrades, stamina and duration being the biggest points to initially get to help make the world even easier to travel.
There’s nothing that I enjoy more than traveling the open world to do little side quests to unlock better items, to get the required soul stones to upgrade my powers and all that jazz. Saints Row and GTA both do this perfectly; the perfect amount to not make you say “oh god, not this again…” but enough to keep you interested and willing to chase that 100% stat. The tomes from the various supporting characters in the game helps give more insight and more laughter at this game, which is always a good addition to make!
So that wraps this up, 5 key reasons why I think you should give Gat Out Of Hell a try; however, if you’re looking for a graphically impressive game, don’t think about this. There’s no real improvement over Saints Row IV on the Xbox 360… in fact I was quite put back by how badly I thought it looked; I expected a little bit of improvement, but now I’m glad that I didn’t buy the Re-elected bundle.