Saturday, February 14, 2009

Ok, I was wrong - 'Saints Row 2' owns 'GTA IV'

Originally published on January 23, 2009 on

Yes, Duke City readers, you read the title correctly. I wasn't wrong about how sweet "GTA IV" was. However, "Saints Row 2" is the true sequel to Rockstar's "GTA: San Andreas."

In earlier posts, I was so sure "GTA IV" was the best thing since sliced bread. I hadn't played "Saints Row 2," didn't get a review copy and really ignored it when it came out. A few weeks ago, I used my Blockbuster Combopass - I can use it to rent Blus and video games - and decided to rent THQ and Volition's "Saints Row 2." I didn't even put it into my 360. I returned it for another game. Finally, I decided to pick it up from Blockbuster again and played it.

Wow ... just wow.

After missing all of the cool features in "GTA IV" - the Lear jets, conquering territory, buying safehouses, vehicle customizations, buying businesses and new features like jet skis, power boats, yachts and the like - "Saints Row 2" really outshines "GTA IV."

So, now that I've seen the light, why has this awesome sequel been overlooked? The R* hype machine and the fact that "Saints Row 2" makes a ton of references to "Saints Row" which a gamer who never played the first one will likely complain about. I was truly impressed. The gang wars are here and it's sweet fighting wave after wave of baddies.

What really makes this game shine is the online integration. You can be online and find another person who wants to team with you. Guess what? They appear at your main safehouse and can do whatever they want in the game, independent of you. However, if you decide to ride out together, like Megan Fox said in "Transformers," one shoots, one drives. Oh my ... talk about mad fun! It was sweet doing drive-bys while another gamer drove. The only gripe I have is if the person is using cheats, you can't stop it before the gamer is loaded and you'll have to quit your game or risk getting achievements disabled.

However, that is still the best use of online gameplay I have ever seen.

This is one true hidden gem that is way below the radar.

What do you think?

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