Fans of the acclaimed Saints Row series have been getting riled up about the reveal of Saints Row: The Third, the long awaited third entry. Publisher THQ believes they should be and that the industry at large is hungry for more quality open world titles. They’ve even gone so far as to say that there is a “pent up” demand for these games, implying that there has been some sort of shortage or lack of quality games of this kind.
Boss man Brian Farrell sees Rockstar and the Grand Theft Auto series as competition for the Saints Row series, noting the various differences between them over the years. Obviously, he thinks that genre fans would be interested in both titles. I wholeheartedly agree with that, as I can barely tell the difference between GTA and Saints Row. I have always harbored negative feelings towards the Saints Row series because I saw it as nothing but legal plagiarism of the GTA series. I don’t feel too differently today.
Regarding his earlier point, about a need for more open world games, I call shenanigans. Last year’s Red Dead Redemption cleaned up both critically and commercially. It’s an open world game. L.A. Noire, from the same developer (Rockstar, duh) has been turning heads and is set to explode at retail when it launches next week. It also appears to be a pretty non-linear title. Either way, Saints Row: The Third will hit HD consoles and the PC later this year, whether we need more open world games or not.