Not only were mainstream media critics unimpressed with the Saints Row reboot, with many finding it to be a dated open world game with more than a few bugs, but now independent reviewers have also come to utterly, truly loathe it.
RELATED: Critic Scores For ‘Saints Row’ Reboot Are Here And Reviewers Declare It An Overwhelmingly Dated Open World Experience Riddled With Bugs
This abysmal fan consensus made itself known almost immediately following the game’s August 23rd release date, as numerous notable video game critics were met near immediately with issues and bugs upon booting into the world of Santo Ileso.
“New Saints Row is an ABOMINATION and will go down as the WORST game of 2022. 3/10,” condemned @MichaelDoesLife.
Showing how, unlike in past games, players could no longer shoot out tires in Saints Row, “NPCs barely react to anything the player does, WORSE AI than Cyberpunk, NO cheat codes, LAZY VA performances, NOTHING to do within the world unless it’s marked on the map.”
New Saints Row is an ABOMINATION and will go down as the WORST game of 2022. 3/10.
✅NPCs barely react to anything the player does
✅WORSE AI than Cyberpunk
✅NO cheat codes
✅LAZY VA performances
✅NOTHING to do within the world unless it's marked on the map pic.twitter.com/BjXKX2DWfm
— Michael Does Life (@MichaelDoesLife) August 20, 2022
Michael also showcased enemies vibrating in place, cars being immune to a rather anemic gas station explosion, mirrors not reflecting the gun the player is holding, and an inability to derail a train (another thing prior games allowed the player to do).
He also took issue with the fact that the game had cut the ability for players to rob stores – a particularly nonsensical change considering the identity of the game.
DO NOT BUY SAINTS ROW 2022 pic.twitter.com/wC4bbHCNIC
— Michael Does Life (@MichaelDoesLife) August 20, 2022
YouTuber Cyael claimed that the game had over 100 bugs in it, offering up numerous examples of graphical bugs such as characters standing still or not reacting to their surroundings, players clipping through the environment and even enemies spawning from thin-air directly in front of the player.
He also called out the game for having “a lazy, placeholder Watch Dogs cast” and cringe-worthy writing, as well as lacking the “balls” to mock anyone but their own fans.
100+ Bugs join the Saints Row SEA of Red Flags. This dated, janky, soulless, mess asks $60 for cancelled CW show writing, CHEAP VA, Royalty Free Music, & Boneheaded Bullet-Sponge A.I. – #SaintsRow Devs : "We are not backing down". on this Husk?? lol 1/2 pic.twitter.com/l875W4TxnF
— Cyael (@Cyael) August 22, 2022
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In particular, Cyael took issue with the game’s protagonist, Eli, who he accused of being a racist depiction of an ” inoffensive, no muscle-mass, borderline feminine version of a black male that some people consider inoffensive, non-intimidating, and what they wish to see of black people.”
“You’re leaning on trash like this and pushing woke-nonsense in a shallow attempt at tricking trans, black, any gendered people into this,” he asserted. “And you’re transparent. You’re more transparent than a company changing their marketing for Pride Month.”
Expecting the games media to defend the Saints Row reboot, YouTuber Vara Dark instead found herself amused at how said critics were “tearing this game apart” – much to her utter delight as someone who had been pointing out the game’s apparent flaws for months.
Responding in a video to a tweet from @Okami13_ wherein they declared, “Always sucks seeing something people spent years of their lives”Proposing that Volition ruined any interest in the game due to gearing it towards “modern audiences”, Vara refuted, “Maybe they should have created a better product and actually listened to consumers.”
“This is the problem, is that there are people trying to defend this product, and I have nothing personal against these developers, but just because someone created something, doesn’t mean that we can’t criticize it,” she said. “Yes they have spent years working on it, a lot of them are probably proud of it, but its just not a good product, and it deserves to be criticized.”
While YouTuber ACG was able to find some positives in the game, offering warm comments to its accessibility options, graphics, music, and combat system, he also stated that Saints Row “never really feels like it’s doing anything unique or different at all.”
However, he still found himself disappointed with its lack of unique missions, AI which ranged from passable to “out of control” and its neutered writing.
At the time ACG recommended gamers wait for a “deep, deep sale” before buying the game while simultaneously noting that it would be an acceptable place-holder until something new in the open world genre became available.
RELATED: YouTuber Vara Dark Condemns Saints Row Reboot Developers For Dismissing Criticism When The Fandom’s Only Request Is Seeing Old Characters Back
In a follow-up video, ACG posited that the game’s “three core failures” were it being a “technical mess”, it’s preachy script that “attempted to explain to the gamers that what they liked is bad now”, and the fact that it had “no sense of focus”.
He also backtracked on his earlier advice, eating his recommendation that the game would be a sufficient gap-filler for open-world starved players, admitting, “Nor do I suggest people get this, just because nothing is coming out.”
“That’s like rewarding a volleyball tournament first place award to the ref, because the two teams couldn’t get there, because they’re busses crashed,” he said.
YouTuber Skill Up opened his review with the blunt declaration that “This… is not good” before eventually describing Saints Row as “aggressively bad in almost every aspect”.
“So this is a really damning assessment of this stuff, but it all really gets to you because it’s so relentless,” he explained. “Every single mission is the same concoction of annoying characters, spouting bad dialogue, while you do something that doesn’t clearly fit into a bigger picture, because there is no bigger picture.
He further criticized, “this game needed fewer boondoggles and more time in the oven to make it actually playable. It needed a complete rethinking of its open world design philosophy to bring it into the modern era, it needed a completely different cast of characters and an entirely new script.”
“It needed way more diversity in terms of mission design, and it needed significant renovations to its core combat mechanics,” he opined. “I don’t like being this brutal, but this is a very poor title, and I absolutely do not recommend it.”
Saints Row is now available to not purchase for the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PC, and Google Stadia.
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