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Saints Row 2 (Xbox 360)

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35 Reviews

Genre: Action & Shooter / Video Game for Xbox 360 / Suitable for 18 years and over / ESRB Rating: Rating Pending / Release Date: 2008-10-17 / Published by THQ

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    35 Reviews
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      20.04.2011 22:40
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      A vast improvement on the original Saints Row!

      Originally devised as competition for the Grand Theft Auto series on Sony's rival console, Saints Row was a third-person shooter/ adventure game that saw you building up a street gang essentially from scratch to take command of the city of Stillwater. But things went wrong, your character was betrayed and the end result was an explosion that left you for dead.

      Now, some undisclosed time later, you have woken up from a coma and everything has changed. All the work you put in building up The Saints has come to naught and now a big company is buying up real-estate and trying to revitalise the old neighbourhoods. All the old gangs have grown stronger and the name of The Saints is now synonymous with one great big joke. It's time to put the gang back together and show The Man just who's boss! But first you need to break your old compatriots out of prison and Death Row because you can't do things alone!!

      The first thing you need to do is create your character. With even more customisation techniques than before, it is possible to create all manner of faces from an Obama look-a-likey to Monica Lewinsky; how-to-details of which can be found on numerous sites on the internet! You can change everything from facial dimensions to hairstyle and colour and ethnicity and even pick a voice for your character. Mine ended up being a feisty female freckled red-head with a voice not unlike Milla Jotchovich (I rejected eventually, after much deliberation, making her transgender and giving her a broad masculine cockney accent!!)

      Once this is done, a short tutorial is avaiable both as a refresher course and to give you a heads up on any new features which have been adeed since the last game. Then, it is off to the nearest clothes shop to pick a new outfit. Only once you have done al this does the game begin proper!

      As with the original, diversions are available that earn you money, respect (to open new mission strands), and even give bonuses once certain levels are achieved. Diversions vary from transporting Ho's to a nearby Brothel (whilst dealing with angry pimps); guarding a drug dealer whilst out on business; causing mahem and much damage to bring down property prices to starring in popular T.V show Fuzz because the local Police are not providing enough colour! One of my favourites includes spraying areas of the town in human excrement in a diversion called Septic Avenger. There is nothing quite like attacking Police and Swat trying to stop you with a cannon that essentially fires out poo!!!

      Bonuses you can earn include reduced prices in all clothing stores, a helicopter delivered to your crib and customisations that you can use to do up your pads! You can even alter the look of your gang with many various styles you can pick from which are added to the original selection you are initially given.

      One of the things I like most about this game is the ability to choose what songs you want played on all vehicle radio stations. As well as your standard selection of stations to choose from, there is also a station called "My Radio" and it is on here that your chosen tracks are played.

      Overall this is a much improved version of the original game with a better storyline and plot, better action and lots of little tweaks that make this bigger, better, bolder! Everything about this game is fun and, with this second installment, Saints Row finally breaks away and establishes itself as much more than just another GTA clone!!

      I could stand and sing this game's praises all night but the best thing for you to do is play it yourself and see what I mean! With much more humour than GTA IV, which lost much of the trademark comedy that made previous installments so fun to play, the game really is a barrel of laughs with lots of FUN things for you to do outside the main story strand which is something GTA was always lacking in ~ their diversions often seeming more of a nessecary chore to complete to get bonuses rather than being fun to play!

      With news that a new Saints Row game is on the horizon, there has never been a better time to pick this up! Saints Row 2 really is a delight in every gaming sense of the word and if it is not in your collection then you are severly missing out!

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      05.04.2010 12:11
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      Say it with me: Fun is fun, realism is not.

      Something just struck me. Whenever there's a sandbox crime game it's always the same gangs: italians, yakuza's or street gangsters who are always going on about either respect, honour or wearing your pants around your ankles. There should be a sandbox crime game in which you're a super villain who's ultimate goal is to build a doomsday weapon only to be foiled at the countdown to ultimate destruction by Batman who you didn't tie properly to your very slow and elaborate death machine. The reason I bring this up is because Saints Row 2 comes quite close.

      The level of character customisation is ridiculous, you could be a morbidly obese hobo with a purple beard for all the game cares. After I kitted my cockney accented pimp out, and started a mission hosing down everyone in their own s**t, I suddenly realised that I was roleplaying the bloody Riddler, or at least an evil twin of some kind.

      This term should certainly be dropped but there's no avoiding it: Saints Row 2 is a GTA clone without shame. You're in a huge sandbox city that NY citizens will be familiar with, you jack cars - as in you steal them not masturbate them, there are in game radio stations and you do a variety of missions involving gangs that introduce you to many vehicles and gameplay modes. The only thing it doesn't have is your f**king cousin ringing you up every two minutes demanding you take him bowling. That is just one reason why Saints Row 2 is better than Grand Theft Auto 4.

      If you give players a sandbox world filled with cars, guns and squishy people then they're going to want to bloody kill everything. This is something GTA4 failed to grasp. Saints Row 2 shows a much better understanding of its audience. They are fully aware that most gamers are ass hats and if you give them any form of freedom they will abuse it. If you give them guns they will shoot old ladies, if you give them cars they will run over old ladies, if you give them helicopters they will ascend to the highest possible altitude, fling themselves out without a parachute and land on old ladies and if you give them customisable outfits they will run around butt-naked and thrust their blurred genitalia into the faces of old ladies. If you try to stop them doing this they will hate you for it. Not only does Saints Row 2 not stop you it keeps score. Every one of my examples has little mini-games attached. You don't see Niko hip thrusting old ladies or doing missions in a dress and top hat, and even if he had it would have brightened up his miserable existence for 5 minutes.

      If you ran over someone in GTA4 with your realistic driving - i.e trolly full of rocks - they just tumbled over your car and landed like normal. Run someone over in Saints Row 2 by comparison and their ragdoll will be launched into the sky team rocket style and end up with their spine curled around a lamp post. I found myself becoming more attached to my character because whatever personality you choose they're in it for the same reason you are: to have some bloody fun.

      I'm not too keen on the mentioned mini games in which you're forced to do to build respect. You can own the entire city and have legions of misguided youth at your disposal, yet still not be respected enough for the next mission until you fling some sewage at some houses. The game's also a little too easy on medium, you can shoot a bad guys nipple from half a mile away with your pistol. Plus regenerating health makes a show stopping comeback essentially making you robocop with flexible ethics and pants. Saints Row 2 understands what it's trying to be - unlike GTA who has jumped from wacky colourful fun to gritty boring realism for the past 5 games - and that's pure mindless fun. Saints Row 2 reminds us that realism is an acceptable sacrifice if it means I get to throw old ladies into jet turbines.

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      • More +
        24.01.2010 04:29

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        Forget this one, GTA IV may be more expensive but at least you get an authentic gaming experience

        After playing GTA IV on XBOX, I became seduced by GTA style games. I found this one for a cheap price and I still feel mugged!

        The graphics are PS2 standards and the same goes for the audio. They are terrible and a game like this has no business being on the XBOX.

        The game, itself, is frustrating because you can't progress unless you keep your respect level up so you have to keep performing the same dire tasks, which are little side missions, but they are no fun at all.

        The idea of throwing myself in front of traffic to get insurance money is appealing for all of two minutes before you get easily bored.

        One of the main missions is to protect your drug dealer boss by shooting at the police cars behind your van but this goes on forever and the difficulty level increases in increments of levels ie level 1 (easy), level 2(a bit more difficult), level 3 (moderate) etc.

        But this is just still performing the same task in shooting the police cars behind the van and only after going up a certain level does the task end and you can do something else. Terrible and very mundane!

        The handling of the cars to drive around town are okay, pretty easy but they do not have a realistic handling at all.

        Above all, the whole experience feels cheap!

        I really hated this game and wouldn't recommend it to anyone.

        Get GTA IV instead!

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        20.01.2010 21:52
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        Fast paced often humourous action, well worth adding to your Xbox 360 collection

        This was a great game. For all those people who rate the GTA games I would suggest they give Saints Row 2 a go.

        The game starts with you waking up from a coma in a prison hospital ward. It is at this point you create your character. You choose the gender, the appearance (including ethnic background) as well as the accent and the character's idiosyncrasies. You can always change the style of your character including the voice at a later date by visiting a plastic surgeon. Once you have finished you make your escape and aim to reclaim your reputation.

        As a non-linear third person shooter, there are a multitude of different paths that you can go down, all the while you can earn some extra money doing jobs on the side which range from spraying rival businesses with 'sewage' to acting as a body guard and keeping crazy fans away from your celeb (these were two of the less adult jobs you can do).

        While driving around in "your" vehicle you can choose from various radio stations, however if you get bored by the standard music or talk shows you can always stop off at one of the in-game music shops and spend some of your characters money on new tunes. I found it was the little touches like these that added to the game play and kept the game highly addictive.

        I would definitely recommend this game, though be warned there are many things in this game that could offend those with liberal sensibilities.

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        31.08.2009 10:07
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        A fun, entertaining, casual game.

        I originally bought this game because it looked a lot like Grand Theft Auto (one of my favourite games) and I wasn't disappointed. One of the most entertaining aspects of the game is the amount of customization there is, unlike GTA, you can fully customize your character - changing their appearance completely (much like in the Sims 2, but with even more options) as well as changing their voice and other things like their walk. You can also modify any car in a Need For Speed-esque way, changing colours, adding nitrous etc.

        The gameplay itself is also pretty entertaining, unlike GTA, I actually bothered to watch the cutscenes, and the missions themselves are generally quite fun, although some can be a little frustrating (but no surprise there!).

        One thing that did annoy me is that you need to do side-missions to earn 'respect', and you need a certain amount of respect to be able to do a main story mission. This did get a bit annoying after a while, when I just wanted to continue with the main story, but it did force me to play some really entertaining activities - such as spraying buildings with sewage from a septic tank, and to jump in front of cars to try and get as much damage as possible (for the Insurance Fraud activity). There are lots and lots of different activities to do, and they are very varied, from destroying as many things as you can within a time limit to racing.

        The main story missions could be more varied though, there are three rival gangs, and there is a mission line for each. So you do one, then the next, then the next, then that is pretty much end of the game. It would've been nice to have more missions that didn't relate to those three gangs, although I believe that with the new downloadable packs there is a new storyline to play.

        I did have issues with the game freezing, however. It was very frustrating completing a mission and then having the game freeze so I couldn't save, meaning I had to do it over again.

        Overall I really enjoyed this game, and if you like sandbox action games such as GTA would definitely recommend you try it out!

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      • More +
        22.08.2009 22:18
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        A Good Game With A Few Minor Flaws Here And There

        when this game first came out i wanted it really badly so i traded in a few games to my local game shop so that i could afford it and i'm so glad i did. the game is set in the fictional city of stilwater, a city awash with gangs and violence and thats where you come in, you need to join the gangs and violence, or rule it to be precise. You wake up in the city prison and then get to customize your character, choose your gender, choose expressions etc. this is a great game for fans of Driver, Grand Theft Auto or any other free roaming shooting game. Saints row however has the edge for fun and user friendliness, the driving is easy (if a bit too easy) as is the shooting and pretty much all aspects of the game play. The game has a lot of fun aspects and involves shooting, gangbanging, drugs and anything else you can think of that a gangster working his way to the head of the city would be involved in.

        Game play 7/10
        Graphics 7.5/10
        Addictiveness 8/10
        Duration 7.5/10

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          05.08.2009 16:56

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          Don't buy this game if you do not like violence and swearing!

          Saints Row 2 is a very violent and loud game. According to my brother, there isn't much of an aim of the game! You basically walk around and steal cars, fly aeroplanes, buy guns and shoot people... Not my cup of tea to be honest! There's a lot of blood and gore, people have fits and get their brains blown up! A variety of songs are played, including hip hop songs and the odd 80's hit, e.g. by Boy George!
          You can download new content from the XBOX LIVE, which improves your performance.
          The game can have up to 12 players in competitive matches in XBOX LIVE.
          There are many cheats that can aid your game, to access more money and items in your inventory.
          You can choose what your character looks like, what their personality consists of, what they are wearing, how big they are and what their facial expressions can extend to...basically you can personalise it to your own tastes.
          I have watched this game be played and have not enjoyed it myself, but it is very gangster-based and typically a boys game!

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          04.08.2009 16:31

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          A game that can be played but not very exciting at all.

          This wan't the best game i have ever played.

          Really it just seemed like it was a wannabe GTA. The game had good missions some of which did not consume many hours but others took a ridiculous amount of time to complete.

          The weapons in this game were very good and made many different things explode in many different ways. This gave the game good variation which made up a bit for the rest of the game and the terrible plotline.

          I believe that there was an opportunity to make a really good game out of this plot however, as it followed GTA too much it just seemed as if there was no point in buying or playing this game as you could simply have bought GTA and had a much more entertaining and interesting game.

          Overall i would say this game did well on graphics and action but the plot and the missions were severely lacking in interest. The sound was not poor either and there were some very good effects added into this game which if they had been used more creatively could have made the game really good.

          I would not recomend this game, if you want an action game where you can run around and kill many people simply stick with GTA.

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          04.08.2009 01:57
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          Imagine saints row 1 with the variety, humour and depth of san andreas

          after a very disappointing if a little too over-hyped GTA4 launched earlier in 2008, saints row 2 seemed to appear out of nowhere. after gta 4 drained all the fun out of a free roaming go-where-you like do what you want game, after barely an hour of playing saints row 2 it was very easy to realise this was the game I wanted GTA 4 to "be". fun from the start, everything about the game felt right, from the customisable cribs to the interface, the characters, the dark satirical humour and the hilariously over the top ragdoll physics that will often see stillwater pedestrians become instant roadkill. where gta 4 felt over realistic and too slow, saints row 2 is fast paced enought to make you want to carry on playing. the fact that this game would be avoided because of the gta comparison when this is better to play for the reason many people want to play games, to have fun. the co-op mode was excellend also, although a split screen local option would have been nice aswell. the standard online deathmatches etc were probably the only aspect of this game that i found weaker compared to gta4s superb multiplayer mode. if you want a fun action sandbox then go for this, if you want a very detailed city, realism and a very strong storyline then go for gta 4.

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          01.08.2009 23:55

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          great!

          after your character was supposedly killed at the end of saints row he mysteriously comes back after only being in a coma! choose your characters appearance and get your story started! you start off by breaking out of jail ehich is really easy! after you find out that saints row which is almost exactly the same map as previous has been taken over again this time by 3 different gangs and the police and the ultor corp. are trying to partner with them. it is up to you to sop this. cutomise your gang from their outfits to the cars they drive and purchase plenty of different safehouses. there are also lots more weapons and vehicles to choose from! the best weapon is probably the kobra which is a fully automatic pistol. you unlock this after doing a mission. the best vehicles are probably the planes the helicopters the boats the monster truck the new supercars and everything else! the controls are easy and it is a simple game to understand. with no sense of reality saints row 2 offers hours of fun. strong language and violence is obviously an issue and i can tell you that they done a good job of it ;)

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          01.08.2009 19:05
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          A fun game!

          Saints Row 2 is the sequel to the gangster action Grand Theft Auto wannabe Saints Row, the first was great this promises to give even more!

          Saints Row 2 brings us back to the city of Stilwater, you begin in a hospital where you've been burned which convientely means you get to choose all your characters looks which uses a pretty robust create a character utility. You must then escape and recruit people to your cause and take over the city of Stilwater, again!

          The story missions are quite interesting but the game is not so story focused as say Grand Theft Auto 4. The game also has a good checkpoint system so if you die halfway through a mission you don't have to start over, again GTA4 Im looking at you why wasn't this in your game!

          The gameplay here is all about fun versus the realism that Grand Theft Auto provides so if that was a little to much for you this game is the one for you!
          The car handling is perfect and its easy to go really quickly and pull off cool car stunts, the lock on feature that GTA has isn't present but with quick thumbs you can prevail. There is also a really fun grab move where you can grab and enemy and then throw them around 10-20 feet!

          The whole game is co op too so you and a friend can play through the entirety of the game together, a brilliant feature which would have been great in GTA! There are side missions you can take part in too like insurance fraud where you leap into traffic to get money off the insurance, trail blazer ride a burning ATV, the good old standby races but my favourite has to be the zombie mode!

          Overall its a brilliant sandbox environment for you to play in, the fact that a friend can join in too is great. Highly recommended.

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            23.07.2009 05:37
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            A decent game though nothing original

            Yet another modern day gangster game, Saints Row 2 from THQ is intended for over eighteens only and bears a strong similarity to the Grand Theft Auto series. That is, you can basically play it however you want by doing anything you want - including stealing cars and beating up innocent people... or police! With scenes of violence, drugs and prostitution amongst other things, it's no surprise that the game has been rated an eighteen.

            The slogan on the back cover of the game claims that you can 'free your inner sinner' by building up respect on the streets using a wide arsenal of weapons including rocket launchers and satchel charges. There are several modes of play to the game too, including campaign, co-op or multiplayer online. You can use money you earn from missions in campaign mode to buy yourself a tidy house and car and you are given the ability to customize it all.

            In terms of gameplay the game is not really anything special or original and seems to be based heavily on the Grand Theft Auto games, they're basically the same sort of thing. Saints Row 2 does seem to be a little more explicit where the adult content is concerned though and also contains a lot of swearing and references to sex and drugs - even more so than the GTA series. It is all good fun though if you don't take it too seriously but definitely not recommended for the children.

            Graphically in general gameplay the game doesn't appear to be anything special and is very similar to Driver 3 on the original X-Box console though a little smoother in animation. However, other parts of the game where things get more exciting the graphics do seem to become a bit richer. One part of the game in particular, at the end of the first mission, does become visually stunning graphically though the game does tend to slow down a little bit and the animation gets slightly jerkier.

            In terms of gameplay I prefer to play campaign mode though finding locations on the map and getting there can be a little frustrating at times. An on-screen indicator that shows near locations for missions would have been a good idea. My brother prefers to just walk about through the game blowing things up and causing damage and riots everywhere while doing a mission now and again, which I personally find a little boring as there's no real point behind it.

            Overall if you've play the later Grand Theft Auto games then you're not really missing anything different, though Saints Row 2 is probably just as good a game as any of the GTA one's, if not a little better.

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            14.07.2009 18:21
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            Great game with so much to do.

            Given that this is very obviously a GTA:IV "knock off" alot of my review will be comparing the two. In fact, I never even would have bought this game if my Xbox hadn't scratched my GTA:IV disk. I didn't want to buy a game I'd already completed so I decided to check out the alternative GTA "clone".

            It's a pretty simple objective. After you wake up from a coma, the 3rd Street Saints have become nobodies and you must bring them back into power by defeating three gangs: the drug dealing Sons of Samedis, the Japanese Ronin and the Brotherhood. Not to mention the multi-billion dollar Ultor conversation.

            The story consists of short clips that play prior to the missions which explain what you've gotta do as well as short mission conclusion clips. The brief dialogue in turn leads to little character attachement. The fact that most of them are fairly one dimensional doesn't help. It's pretty cool to see your custom characters in the cutscenes though.

            It is by no means linear as at most points during the game you have a choice of three missions (split between the three gangs). Every time you complete a story mission you take another piece of gang territory from that gang.

            As a sandbox game, Saints Row excels. The sprawling city is massive and feels live a living breathing city.

            What's really great about this game though is that there is just so much to do and such a variety. If you look on the map it is littered with icons. There are a multitude of sidemissions to kill some time with. Fight clubs, races, mayhem, zombie uprising as well as septic avenger which involves spaying faeces at buildings to lower the property. There are so many, it'd take ages for me to run through them all on here.

            Saints Row 2 made a smart move of incorporating loads of the features that were wrongfully dropped from GTA:IV in transition from San Andreas. The main ones being character customization and gang warfare as well as putting more side activities in.

            Designing your character is great fun and you can make him/her into just about anyone, down to the last detail even selecting their voice (it's out of three choices but hey, that's two better than GTA).

            You can also customise your gang although not down to the last detail. Instead you select a sort of gang "style" like Ninjas/Pimps etc. You can also pick which cars your gang members drive and what your gang tags looks like.

            The combat is great fun and you've got a nice bunch of weapons to play with. My only problem is it's a bit of a shame there's not cover system but that leads to more run & gun action.

            There are some nice touches to be found. For example, I thought it was pretty cool that if you had too many gang members that they couldn't all fit in your car they would go hijack another and follow you. The cruise control tool that keeps your speed steady while you drive is also very handy.

            Unfortunately, there are loads of bugs that really should really have been worked out. Mostly, it's falling under the maps and walking through solid objects. I've also had my car fly ridiculously high up into the air for no reason. On the whole, they're not too bad and it doesn't really spoil your enjoyment of the game.

            The graphics are nowhere near as polished as those of GTA and they could use some work. Although this could be excused given how much is going on at once.

            On some missions the checkpoints are badly placed forcing you replay more of a mission than was logically needed which can also be annoying.

            Even though you can rotate the camera, you can't adjust the distance and although I found the set distance to be generally good there are some instances where you wish you could zoom out/in a bit.

            Also a really tiny problem but one that bugs me. Unlike GTA, if you crash and your door swings open - you can't close it, even by swinging your car about. All the flapping gets annoying after a while.

            The bottom line is, this is no simple GTA rip off as some would have you believe but instead a valid alternative to those who prefer fun to realism.

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            12.07.2009 14:30

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            A fun game similar to gta

            saints row 2 i think is a good game similar in alot of ways to grand theft auto but also very different. There are alot of missions in this game which gives you the chance to try out the wide range of weapons and vehicles whist tackling the missions. You can also unlock weapons which you then keep for the remainder of the game i think this is a great feature. There is also a range of clothing stores through out the game which gives you the chance to personalise your character exactly how you want him you can be running around killing people dressed in a hot dog suit or simply just in normal clothing. The game play i think is fairly good although id say it isnt quite up to the same standards as Grand Theft Auto but if your looking for a good similar game then this might just be for you.

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            07.07.2009 16:00

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            great follow up to an already good game

            the game itself i personally think is too short in terms of storylines and missons. the mini games and activities are a good way to build up your game time but do get boring after your 2nd or 3rd mission. the garphics in this game are excellent with only a few glitches to say its an open world game play. ideally it could do with better sideline missions or more storyline and actual game missions to make it more enjoyable for the price. choice of weapons that you get to use are far better than the previous game the character customization is far more in depth in this game also. the new ability to pimp up your cribs makes it so that each player has their own style for the game making it more personal. the new feature of flying aircraft and riding make and the wider choice of cars is a big bonus for the second game with the handling and graphics of the cars really outstanding. overall this game is better than the first one this is a good alternative to the gta series.

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        • Product Details

          Saints Row 2 brings true freedom to open-world gaming. Players can play as who they want, how they want, and with whomever they want in this sequel to the much acclaimed and tremendously successful Saints Row. Set years after the original, the player finds himself in a Stilwater both familiar and strange and challenged with bringing the Saints back as the rightful kings of Stilwater and bringing vengeance to those who wronged him.