Saints Row (video game): Wikis

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Saints Row
Game cover
Saints Row box art
Developer(s) Volition
Publisher(s) THQ
Designer(s) Douglas Carrigan (director)
Series Saints Row
Engine Havok
Custom
Native resolution 1080i
Platform(s) Xbox 360
Release date(s) NA August 29, 2006
PAL September 1, 2006
Genre(s) Action-adventure, sandbox, Grand Theft Auto clone
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer
Rating(s) BBFC: 18
ESRB: M
OFLC: MA15+
PEGI: 18+
Media DVD-DL
Input methods Gamepad

Saints Row is a sandbox-style action-adventure video game developed by Volition, Inc. and published by THQ. It is the first title in the Saints Row series and is succeeded by Saints Row 2. Saints Row was released in North America on August 29 and in the PAL region on September 1, 2006 for the Xbox 360 and had a port planned for the PlayStation 3, which was later canceled. [1] The game was released to commercial and critical success, selling over 2 million copies,[2] and prompting for development of its sequel.

Set in Stilwater, a fictional city based heavily on the likes of Detroit and Chicago, the game begins with the unnamed protagonist being caught up in a war between three rival gangs. He is rescued by Julius Little and Troy Bradshaw, who lead the 3rd Street Saints, a street gang tasked with bringing an end to the ongoing gang war that has crippled the streets of Stilwater. When he is offered a position in the gang, the protagonist gladly accepts and the storyline follows the protagonist's journey as he aids the Saints in bringing down the other gangs and giving the Saints full control over the city.

Saints Row is composed of elements from driving games and third-person shooters and features open world gameplay that gives players control over their playing experience. An array of land-based weapons and vehicles are included in the game and an in-depth customization system allows the player to modify the protagonist's appearance and clothes, as well as vehicles. Saints Row also features competitive multiplayer modes and an online gang system.

Contents

Gameplay

Saints Row consists of elements of a third-person shooter and a driving game, affording the player a large open environment in which to move around. [3] On foot, the player's character is capable of walking, running, swimming, climbing and jumping, as well as utilizing weapons and basic hand-to-hand combat. Players can also steal and drive a variety of land-based vehicles like automobiles, trucks and vans.

The open, non-linear environment allows players to explore and choose how they wish to play the game. After a short cinematic-based prologue, the entire environment can be fully explored. Although storyline missions are necessary as they are part of in-game progress, players can complete them at their own leisure and after filling up a bar of 'respect', which is in-game currency used to unlock missions. As missions are separated into three linear mission arcs with different storylines, each mission can be completed at the player's leisure or played through in respective order. In addition, the player can replay any mission or cutscene through use of an in-game movie theater. Should the player ever fail a mission in Saints Row, the option of instantly retrying the mission is given to the player, instead of having to drive back to the point in the city where the mission originated from. The goal is to wipe out other gangs.

When not taking on a storyline mission, players can free-roam and explore the environment, spend money on various shops and participate in eleven mini-games called activities which in turn earn the player money and respect. However, creating havoc can attract unwanted and potentially fatal attention from the authorities and rival gangs.

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Combat and response

Combat in Saints Row allows the player to engage in basic hand-to-hand combat and utilize a variety of weapons. A 360-degree free aiming reticule appears when a weapon is equipped, allowing for fast and responsive aiming. The player can still move around freely with a gun equipped and still has the ability to run while firing as the game does not feature a fine-aim zoom mode, except on sniper rifles. Weapons are selectable from a one-touch inventory system, rather than toggling through each weapon. The player can also perform a melee attack with a gun equipped through use of the alternate-fire trigger on the Xbox 360 controller. The player's health will slowly regenerate over time, however food items can be bought to help regenerate health more quickly and efficiently.

The game incorporates the use of a vast array of weaponry. The player is capable of firing over twenty different weapons, including melee weapons, pistols, submachine guns, shotguns, rifles, an RPG and thrown weapons. Many weapons can be bought from weapon stores across the city however some need to be unlocked throughout the game. The player can tap into their own private stash of weaponry through in-game progress, available at their crib for use at any time.

The game uses a "wanted level" system and a bar is gradually filled up when authorities and rival gangs are provoked. Each bar filled is represented by the provoked enemy's logo, be it a star to represent the police or a "gang sign" to represent an enemy gang. One bar of notoriety will result in non-lethal retalliation however two, three, four or five and seven tha's SEVEN black cowboy ninjas. All being gay and sporting luxury hats. bars of notoriety will result in a gradually increased lethal response. Over time, however, notoriety will go down but until all the notoriety bars are fully depleted, the enemy will continue to be aggressive towards the player. When arrested by the police, the player will reappear outside a police station with a small bounty collected from their earnings, but will not have any items revoked. The player can recruit members of the 3rd Street Saints as "homies" who will follow the player around and respond to any attacks made on the player, serving as personal bodyguards.

A player fires at traffic with the rocket launcher

Activities and respect system

The player can also partake in a variety of side missions referred to as activities, ranging from street racing, pimping, carjacking, robbery,drug trafficking, kidnapping, and even insurance fraud, in which the player earns money for self-inflicted injuries.[3] Completing such activities helps players earn respect,which unlocks story missions, throughout the various districts of Stilwater, as well as granting special abilities (ie. more hit points, more effective weaponry, etc.)[3] The player's attire also reflects on the respect level, such that a "clothing bonus" is awarded upon successful completion of a mission when a sufficient number of stylish or gang-appropriate items are being worn.[3] Once the player has earned enough respect in a neighborhood, another story mission or location of an enemy stronghold is revealed.< held.[3]

The player can engage in whichever activities he prefers to increase the 3rd Street Saints' kill level. For example, if the player does not wish to street race and instead wants to focus on the chop shop activity, he or she can steal and deliver cars instead. One can make the same amount of progress through the game by choosing this route than if one had done the same amount of street racing. Essentially, the game is tailored to reward the player for whatever he enjoys doing the most. By fully completing all of the levels of a given activity, the player can unlock jewelry, designer clothes, tattoos including the developers tattoo and other bonuses.

Customization

The game allows the player to create a customized male character using a number of different features, including facial and body makeup. Furthermore, the player can dress their character in numerous styles of clothes available from shops around Stilwater. The choice of color and style of the clothes can affect the game, as by dressing in the Saints' colors (purple) will earn the player more respect for completing missions. The player can further customize their character through facial hair, jewelry and tattoos. Additionally, the player can perform custom paint jobs on their cars, and purchase new in-game music through the city's stores.

Communication and navigation

The use of an in-game mobile phone features in Saints Row. The phone can be accessed from the in-game menu. The phone allows the player to call different services around the city, including emergency services. In addition, the phone can be used to input a variety of cheat codes which can then be activated through the "cheats" menu, but will subsequently disable Achievements. The phone can also be used to call up special "homies" which are unlocked through in-game progress and depending on the player's location, the "homie" will arrive in his/her vehicle within seconds.

The game makes use of a large pause-menu map— and also an in-game minimap; which allows the player to view a graphical representation of the streetscape and view each district with its subsequent neighborhoods, shown in different colors indicating which gang controls that territory. The map also filters numerous icons used to represent unique points on the map such as shops, activities, missions and cribs. Saints Row is the first game of its kind to adopt an in-game GPS navigation device. Through the use of this, the player can set a waypoint anywhere in the city and a directional line will indicate the quickest route to the marked destination.

Downloadable content

During the X06 Convention in Barcelona, Spain, in September 2006, the "Funky Fresh Pack" was released on the Xbox Live Marketplace as the game's first downloadable content. The item, which costs 100 Microsoft Points, added 23 different clothing and tattoo items for use in both the single and multiplayer modes. In December 2006, the "Ho Ho Ho Pack" was released, adding Santa Claus themed clothing items. The pack is free to download. In January 2007, another free downloadable pack was released. The UnKut pack installs clothes designed by UnKut and features shirts, jackets, overshirts, pants and hats.

Synopsis

Plot

Saints Row begins with the player (an unnamed character) in the fictional metropolitan city of Stilwater, based on cities such as Detroit and Chicago,[4] in the middle of a gang war between several gang factions. Though he attempts to maintain distance, he witnesses a fight between the 3 major gangs. Members from one gang attempt to gun him down; however, the 3rd Street Saints, led by Julius Little, step in and save him. Julius informs the player that he formed the Saints to bring down the other three gangs with the goal of returning peace to the streets. After proving himself to the Saints, he's initiated into the gang and then asked to assist them in taking over the city from three gangs in the city. Los Carnales, the Westside Rollerz and the Vice Kings. The player, over the course of the game, assists in several missions and stronghold takeovers against each rival gang, slowly bringing the entire city under control by the Saints. Because of the three different gangs, there are three linear plots that deal with the conquest of each gang, though events in one plot do not affect any of the other plots. In the end, the player is able to defeat the boss and several of the lieutenants of each rival gang and brings all of Stilwater under the Saints' control. The game apparently ends when the player receives a call from Julius, who tells the player that he is the new "right hand man". However, he implies that he is about to be arrested by corrupt cops, who were waiting for the gang wars to end before they made their move against the Saints. At this point, other members of the Saints ask the player for their orders.

After a shortened version of the credits, featuring only the voice actors in the game, and the game appears to be completed, the player is allowed to engage in three "epilogue" missions, resulting in attacks on the mayor and the corrupt police chief in order to try to free Julius from prison. Once the mayor is dead, the player is invited to the private yacht of Alderman Richard Hughes, the only other candidate for mayor in the upcoming election. Hughes thanks the player for eradicating his political rival for him, planning to use his mayoral power to destroy the Saints. Before the player can respond to Hughes' ultimatum, the yacht explodes, leaving the player's character's fate in question as the game ends.

Characters and gangs

Stilwater is ruled primarily by four gangs:

3rd Street Saints

The gang that the main character will join after the leader Julius saves him after a gang fight, wear purple colors and is made up of all races. The gang specializes in gang warfare in an attempt to take back the city from the other gangs and restore peace. The Saints are led by Julius Little (Keith David), with lieutenants Johnny Gat (Daniel Dae Kim), Dex Jackson (JAQ), and Troy Bradshaw (Michael Rapaport) backing him up. Lin (Tia Carrere) works as a spy to infiltrate the Rollerz and Aisha (Sy Smith) is a singer from Saints Row that signed on with the Vice Kings' record label, Kingdom Come Records, and is also the girlfriend of Johnny Gat. The Saints start their operations from a derelict church in a run-down residential area on the east side of Stilwater. The Saints wear purple and their symbol is a Fleur-de-lis

Los Carnales

Primarily made up of hispanics, mostly Colombians and Dominicans, and a small group of Caucasians, and sporting red colors, Los Carnales specialize in arms and Drugs. Hector Lopez (Joaquim de Almeida) leads the gang while his brother Angelo Lopez (Freddy Rodríguez) is his right-hand man. He is dating Luz Avalos (Andrea Zafra) at the game's onset. Victor Rodriguez (Phillip Anthony Rodriquez) is their enforcer, and Manuel Orejuela is a liaison from the cartel that supplies them with cocaine. The Carnales operate primarily out of the region around the airport and the run-down industrial areas of Stilwater. It is revealed in the church in Saints Row 2 that the Lopez Brothers' father was named Alejandro Lopez. The gang is probably based on the Texas Syndicate or Barrio Aztecas. It is also an ongoing gag that some members of the Saints refer to Los Carnales as The Los Carnales. "Los" means "The". Hence it's just the Carnales

Vice Kings

The Vice Kings were formed by Benjamin King in Sunnyvale Gardens and one of the sections of the Projects district in Stilwater to counterbalance the might of Los Carnales. Warren Williams and Anthony "Tony" Green are lieutenants with Tony's girlfriend Tanya Winters in the gang. In present-day Stilwater, the VK's serve as little more than the private security force that serves to safeguard King's personal dynasty which included illegal gambling, prostitution and, the crown jewel of the King empire, Kingdom Come Records. The Vice Kings refuse to sell drugs for as Benjamin King does not want to lose his political connections with law enforcement and City Hall. The gang is loosely based on the Chicago-based gangs the Vice Lords and Latin Kings, and their gang color is yellow.

Westside Rollerz

Specializing in racing and automobiles, the Westside Rollerz are composed of Asian-Americans and caucasians, and dress in blue. The gang is run by Joseph "Johnny" Price (Greg Sims) and financed by William Sharp (David Carradine), Price's uncle. Donnie (Andrew Kishino) is the lieutenant to talk to in the Rollers and also is their expert mechanic. The Rollerz operate from the northwest area of Stilwater, encompassing expensive suburban housing as well the area around the Stilwater stadium. The Westside Rollerz are loosely based on the Chicago gang Almighty Gaylords.

Reception

 Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 82%
Metacritic 81%
Review scores
Publication Score
1UP.com 7/10
Game Informer 8.75/10
GamePro 4.75/5
GameSpot 8.3/10
GameSpy 4/5
GameTrailers 8/10
IGN 8.5/10
Official Xbox Magazine 8.0/10
TeamXbox 8/10

Prior to the retail version of Saints Row being released, the demo set an Xbox Live Marketplace then-record for being downloaded more than 350,000 times in the first week of its release.[5]

The game has received generally positive ratings. Although most critics have noted the striking similarities in gameplay that Saints Row shares with releases from the Grand Theft Auto series, they have also praised the game for the inclusion of new features and its improvement of existing ones from GTA. Saints Row has received ratings of 95/100 from GamePro,[6] 8.75/10 from Game Informer,[6] 80/100 from Official Xbox Magazine,[6] 8.5/10 from IGN,[3] 8.4/10 from GamerNode,[6] and 8.3/10 from GameSpot.[6] GamePro called it "the best reason to own an Xbox 360 this side of Oblivion",[7] while IGN noted, "Hate it if you want to, snicker at its obvious me-too qualities, but don't forget to recognize impressive, kick-ass gameplay as you walk out the door."[3] Saints Row has received an average critic score of 82% on Game Rankings and 81% on Metacritic.[6]

Most critics have praised the "Activities" and the online multiplayer, as well as the free-form control scheme. Common complaints about the game are over issues with glitches, unsatisfactory car physics, cartoonish graphics and forced, hit-or-miss humor. While the robust character creation mode was praised, several gaming publications also complained about the main character's lack of dialogue.

Although welcomed by critics and fans alike, the online multiplayer suffered from significant lag upon the game's debut, making it difficult to play. This issue was mostly fixed by a patch that took 2 months to develop.[8]

As of November 2006, Saints Row had sold more than 1 million copies.[9]

Saints Row received awards from Gamespot for "Most Surprisingly Good Game of 2006",[10] as well as Gaming Target for one of 52 Games We will Still Be Playing From 2006 selection.[11]

Saints Row has since joined the Xbox 360 lineup of "Platinum Hits" games, being rebranded and sold for US$19.99.[12]

Saints Row has also won a TMF game award in 2006.

Possible Feature Film

Rapper Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson has expressed interest in developing a screenplay for a Saints Row film in collaboration with THQ.[13]

References

  1. ^ Graft, Kris (2007-05-10). "Saints Row PS3 Canned, Sequel Confirmed.". Next Generation Magazine. http://www.next-gen.biz/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=5583&Itemid=2. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  2. ^ Kris Graft (2008-06-18). "THQ: Saints Row 2 "Very Different" from GTA IV". Next-Gen.biz. http://www.next-gen.biz/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=10997&Itemid=2. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Perry, Douglass C. (2006-08-28). "Saints Row Review". IGN.com. http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/728/728829p1.html. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  4. ^ Layton, Chris (2006-07-02). "Saint's Row Q&A Feature". Total Video Games. http://www.totalvideogames.com/articles/Saints_Row_QA_9259.htm. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  5. ^ Surette, Tim (2006-08-21). "Saints Row demo sets record". GameSpot. http://www.gamespot.com/xbox360/action/saintsrow/news.html?sid=6156122. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  6. ^ a b c d e f "Saints Row (xbox360: 2006): Reviews". Metacritic. http://www.metacritic.com/games/platforms/xbox360/saintsrow. Retrieved 2007-12-18. 
  7. ^ "Review: Saints Row for Xbox 360 on GamePro.com". GamePro. 2006-08-28. http://www.gamepro.com/microsoft/xbox360/games/reviews/79588.shtml. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  8. ^ "Official Saints Row Forums". http://developer.saintsrow.com/forums/showthread.php?t=4497. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  9. ^ Graft, Kris (2006-11-03). "Strong Quarter for THQ". Next Generation Magazine. http://www.next-gen.biz/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4133&Itemid=2. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  10. ^ "Best Games and Worst Games of 2006 at GameSpot Special Achievement". GameSpot. http://www.gamespot.com/special_features/bestof2006/achievement/index.html?page=3. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  11. ^ "52 Games We'll Still Be Playing From 2006: Part 3". Gaming Target. http://www.gamingtarget.com/article.php?artid=6371. Retrieved 2007-07-06. 
  12. ^ Sinclair, Brendan (2007-05-02). "Saints Row canonized into Platinum Hits line". GameSpot. http://www.gamespot.com/news/6170048.html. Retrieved 2007-12-18. 
  13. ^ "50 Cent Optioning Saint's Row Rights For Possible Movie". Kotaku. http://kotaku.com/5159640/50-cent-optioning-saints-row-rights-for-possible-movie. Retrieved 2009-2-24. 

See also

External links


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