When I come home from work dejected and worn out, chicken teriyaki stains on my button-down shirt and pride obliterated from another day in corporate hell, all I really want to do is blow up aliens with an excessively large rocket launcher, wearing nothing but a purple pimp hat and a cheerleader skirt.
Not into the cheerleader skirt? How about an astronaut suit? There is very little that you can’t do in Saints Row IV, a game that has taken the rules and shoved them. It makes men feel like men and ladies like the strong, independent women we are. You can even dress your male character up in women’s clothing and cavort around the city like the strong cross-dresser you are on the inside.
This game is all about a release from the pressures and irritations that we have to deal with at our crappy office jobs. When you run out of staples. When you’re driving home and some jerk decides to cut you off. When you really wish you could run over the guy who walked through the crosswalk without looking.
In Saints Row, those irritations are no longer your concern. You are the President of the United States and pedestrians line the streets, ready for vehicular manslaughter. Yes, these violent games get criticized for sexism, for graphic content and for a general distaste for the rules — and that’s why they’re here.
Problems? I could complain about how the plot is all very pieced-together. Developers needed to make the traditional Saints Row-style game play (i.e., open world, completely up to the player) fit into their mega-intense plot. But who really cares? Saints Row doesn’t. Have an obsessive need to play by the rules? Go ahead and take a straight-edge approach to Saints Row IV. Follow missions and traffic rules. Don’t run over pedestrians. Pay your taxes on time each year. The problem is you’ll miss the whole point of this game.
Or you can put on your best panda suit and cartwheel around the city like the bad mother you are.