Saints Row - Preview, tried the crazy and funny reboot

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Among the most anticipated titles of the year, we cannot fail to mention the new and irreverent Saints Row, whose launch day is getting closer and closer. After a fourth chapter that, as expected, turned out to be totally crazy and over the top, Volition has opted for a substantial change of course: no more Saints Row 5, but a reboot, which puts aside the narrative universe that, for better or for worse, we have had the pleasure of appreciating so far, and tells again the birth of the Saints, the extravagant gang protagonist of the series. Thanks to a special event behind closed doors, we had a chance to immerse ourselves in preview in the fun open world of Saints Row, and we are therefore ready to tell you about it one last time before the official release of the game.

In fact, we remind you that this awaited reboot developed by Volition and published by Deep Silver - couple that has accompanied the Saints Row series since its inception - will be officially launched on August 23th, 2022 su PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One e Xbox Series X/S.


A new beginning

After getting mind blowing superpowers, worn out aliens and having descended into hell to face the Devil himself, it's time to take a big leap back and get your feet back on the ground. We are located in Holy Unharmed, a fictional city specially created for the new narrative universe conceived by Volition, and we are about to witness the (rebirth of the Saints, the craziest criminal gang ever. Jump out of the interesting and in-depth system of Customization of the character - which in addition to the classic physiognomy options, allows you to change some things that the series has accustomed us to, such as the size of the breasts or the private parts of our avatar - we immediately get to know some of the supporting characters of the game.

Eli, Nah e Kevin, together with our protagonist, they are a really interesting group of friends who will decide to make their way into the world of organized crime for ... to pay the rent! A narrative opening with an extremely comic and light-hearted nature, which goes well with the themes of the series. Without going further into the plot, of which, however, we could see a little more, just know that the nascent Saints will obviously clash with different gangs already present in the area, such as the menacing Panthers and the extravagant idols.

A few missions of the main plot allowed us to immediately get a first idea of ​​the new direction of the series: it is no longer about comicality madness in its pure state, often exaggerated and so over the top that it ends up in annoying - as unfortunately it happened in the fourth chapter - but with a much more elegant comedy, which will make you smile at every line of dialogue. Moreover, even though we have seen them for a very short time, the supporting actors seemed to us really well characterized and, indeed, we are very curious to see how their adventure will evolve.

The right direction for Saints Row?

In our two hours of gameplay preview of Saints Row, we had the opportunity to play different missions of the main campaign, but also and, above all, to wander around the map game, in search of missions and side activities. Moving around the map, you immediately notice a level design really peculiar, which seems to mix elements from different historical periods and it also seems to mark a clear distinction between richer and poorer areas of the city; this is an aspect that has intrigued us a lot and we can't wait to learn more once the game is available.

Pad in hand, getting around the city is really fun and turns out to be a mix di dynamics and rather effective means of transport: if on the one hand we can rely on the classics cars on four wheels (and there would seem to be all kinds, even electric ones), or indulge in the unconventional means to which the series has always accustomed us, such as the hilarious footwear, usable both in specific secondary missions, and freely in the open world.

What is very evident from the first moments of the game is a much more approach arcade both to the guide system and to the shooting system. Between a chase between bands and the other it will not be at all difficult to notice how Volition has deliberately chosen not to focus on realistic game physics, but has opted for something extremely simplified. This would seem to be a right move, as everything is simpler, but also a lot of fun.

Il gun play it is improved compared to the previous iterations, and has some small innovations, such as the possibility of quickly hooking and hitting flammable objects by pressing a button to cause large explosions. In addition to several active skills, the melee also finds ample space, which is enriched with different ones finish move capable of eliminating enemies in spectacular action sequences. Everything is frenetic and exciting, but only the complete game will allow us to deepen a system that, it seems, could really be deep and complex, thanks also to the addition of a large tree of perk passive.

In conclusion, Saints Row seems to have all the credentials to revive the series, after a not-so-brilliant period. Although the fourth chapter had convinced most, the exaggeration towards which the saga was traveling, with the apex (or the bottom) touched by the DLC Gat out of Hell, would certainly have ended up tiring most of the players. A reboot it would therefore seem to be the right direction to give the Saints Row series a new light, hoping to find in the full game not only the very good impressions that we had from our preview test, but above all a good management of the activities and secondary quests, hoping that they do not only act as a mere filler in the inspired city of Santo Ileso.

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