Review: The Saboteur
Review copy provided by the publisher
The Saboteur is another World War II themed game but this time set in Paris. You are Sean Devlin an Irish man with one agenda to avenge your slain best friend while taking out as many Nazis as possible. Sean is not your typical main character and often has some good one liners right before puffing on a cigarette in his 1940’s environment. The opening scene with topless women was one that I was not expecting and something that many gamers were probably not expecting either, but was a very interesting experience to see how developers are willing to incorporate mature content.
The great looking style of the game is one that is incredible. The towns in old Paris all start in gray and darkness until you liberate certain sections from the Nazis and return it back to its beauty. Couple the great style with phenomenal panoramic views of Paris and the ability to scale famous Parisian landmarks really makes this a unique visual experience.
Blowing things up in The Saboteur is a good time. The destruction in the game really is a lot of fun and can take you to places and events that are not even part of the main storyline. I could spend hours planting explosives on Nazi sniper towers and tanks to help make main missions and escape points much easier. There are over 1,000 items that you can blow up and get money for aside from the main story.
Killing Nazis in the game is fun and you can actually save the citizens of Paris if they are being harassed. Of course killing Nazis raises the alert level and much like GTA you can get higher stars where you will be chased down by tanks, zeppelins and other Nazi vehicles.
Of course The Saboteur is very much an open ended sandbox style game where you can roam around Paris and watch Sean smoke his cigarettes or take a walk over to the local strip club and get a lap dance. There are also freedom zones where a quick time event can be started in order to call resistance fighters in to fight alongside you against Nazis.
The Saboteur also gives you the ability to get certain perks and upgrades for performing certain things like killing enemies via headshots or blowing up multiple characters at once.
One of my biggest gripes with the game was the car handling or lack of car handling. The cars I guess handle realistically since it is set back in the 1940’s but it is almost ridiculous as at times the cars feel like they are on ice. You will get used to it after a while and some cars that are higher levels do handle better but it is very annoying.
Another thing that gets a bit tedious is that you are constantly running from Nazis. At times this gets overwhelming and in similar GTA fashion you can be driving down the street and hit a Nazi and get in trouble for no reason. The only thing that breaks this up is the ability to find hideout spots or trigger the freedom zones in order to get yourself free.
The stealth action in the game is not very strong and in most scenarios it is much easier to just go in guns blazing. Even though you can sneak up on Nazis and take their clothes to help blend in if you stealth kill an enemy this typically does not help. The stealth in the game is difficult to keep up or just gets tedious as when you’re in an enemy uniform you are forced to walk very slowly or alert suspicion.
Hand to hand combat leaves much to be desired and again the game really is more fun if you decide to use your bombs and guns.
Climbing like Spiderman is another large part of the game that can get a bit tedious at times. The climbing mechanic works well but at times climbing is a slow paced task that allows enemies to easily spot you. One of the best things with climbing buildings is hearing the random citizens yell out at you as you scale the side of a building.
Music for the game is set in old time Paris and unfortunately for me there is only one station that I found entertaining. For the most part the music although fitting the tone of the game was a bit too old school for me and I almost wanted some new tracks like “Click Click Boom” as I blew up Nazi gas stations.
The Bottom Line:
The Saboteur is one part Infamous and one part Grand Theft Auto mixed in with some Inglorious Bastards. Put this all together and you get a solid game with a lot of replay value and gaming time. If you are in the mood to kill some Nazis and blow up various things while trying to free Paris then the Saboteur is right up your alley.
- Title: The Saboteur
- Platform Reviewed: Xbox 360
- Developer: Pandemic Studios
- Publisher: EA
- MSRP: $59.99
- Release Date: December 8, 2009
- Review Copy Info: A copy of this game was provided to DualShockers Inc. by the publisher for reviewing purposes.