6344754NoneThese are the kinds of experiences you only want to share with someone you trust.
You also become the proud owner of an increasingly large and varied assortment of vehicles that includes helicopter gunships, VTOL planes, and jet bikes. Regardless of how you choose to get around Steelport, you're sure to enjoy yourself. Cars have a tight grip on the asphalt and slide around corners with style; aircraft are similarly maneuverable and let you bank and roll with ease. If you don't find a car that suits your tastes on the streets of Steelport, you can take your ride to any Rim Jobs mechanic shop and avail yourself of a robust customization system, improving the car's performance and changing its appearance in a number of ways.
Unfortunately, the world in which you get to use all these amazing toys is far from flawless. Steelport's districts don't have much detail, and as a result, the world feels more like a chintzy miniature playset than a living, breathing city. Vehicles, trees, and other features often visibly pop in to the environment, and sometimes characters get stuck inside of objects. Occasionally, activity objectives won't trigger properly; for instance, you may steal a vehicle that has been requested, but find that your GPS continues to direct you to the area where the vehicle can be found, rather than to the chop shop. And at times, you may call in homies for support and have them fail to show up. Also, the enemy gang members and law enforcement officials you're constantly gunning down don't exhibit much intelligence. They tend to stand in the open, making easy pickings for you and your fellow Saints, and when they do take cover, you can often walk around behind them and take them out before they even know you're there. But this isn't a game that tries to excite you with challenging tactical combat. It's all about the chaos that ensues as you fend off dozens of enemies, the sheer fun of pointing and shooting and making things blow up and fly through the air in spectacular fashion. And when you're having that much fun, the blemishes don't matter much.
Even a ruthless gangster knows better than to shoot a cute picture of a panda.
As entertaining as it is to cause mayhem in Steelport on your own, the enjoyment is amplified considerably when you bring a friend along. Playing with a partner, you can each freely move around the city doing your own things, or you can join each other for activities and missions. Causing mayhem in tanks, raining rocket-propelled death on rival gang members from a helicopter, or just running around and kicking people where it hurts is all the more merry when you're rolling with a real-life homie. With another player, you can also participate in the Cat and Mouse diversion. Similar to the great Chopper vs. Chopper multiplayer mode from Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned, Cat and Mouse has one player drive a car through checkpoints while the other attempts to destroy the car from a helicopter.
Along with the fun it brings, co-op play also brings more chaos to the game's visuals; your co-op buddy and other characters and vehicles may bounce around the environment at times, but again, it's easy to overlook such flaws when the action is so enjoyable. It's too bad, though, that, with the aforementioned exception, you don't have the option to replay missions you've already completed. Some are so spectacular that you might want to invite a friend to join you, but you can only do so if your friend has played up to exactly the point in the story when he or she has access to the mission and hasn't done it yet.
Outside the main game, Saints Row: The Third has Whored mode. This pits you (and possibly a partner) against waves of enemies, but while plenty of games have similar "horde" modes, this one has a distinct Saints Row flavor. One wave may give you a chainsaw with which to defeat a flood of zombies, another may give you a minigun with which to take down a massive energy-drink mascot, and another may require you to fend off attacking gimps while armed with nothing but a purple dildo bat. It doesn't offer the tactical thrills of the best "horde" modes out there, but the absurd concepts and varied waves make it fun to experience at least once.
You don't need that plane. There are plenty more where it came from.
Saints Row: The Third is buoyed to great heights by terrific mission design and by the remarkable assortment of vehicles and weapons it gives you with which to take over Steelport. Whether you're buying up property to increase your hourly income, cruising the city in your favorite vehicle to collect photo ops, drug packages, and sex dolls, or punching people to bits with those crazy apocafists, there's rarely a dull moment. Saints Row: The Third succeeds tremendously at delivering its unique brand of raunchy, outrageous fun. If you have an appetite for this particular kind of absurdity, you won't be disappointed.