Cliff Bleszinski, the former leader of the Gears of War team, says that Saints Row might actually challenge the Grand Theft Auto series for the title of best open-world game as long as the team at Volition dials down some of the silliness that defines the series.The ex-Epic Games public face states via Twitter that, “The SR team is amazing. [...] It's immature. Make an open world game that's more Michael Mann/HEAT/Collateral/Training Day.”
At certain times, both Saints Row and GTA have talked about their ambition to deliver the same experience as Heat, the landmark movie featuring Al Pacino and Robert de Niro, and both titles use heists at certain moments during the story to show off their mechanics.
Bleszinski adds, “Game mechanic wise I found SR3 to be more fun than many recent GTA games. Controls, pacing, etc... are all great.”
The developer also believes that the addition of props and unnecessary items to a game might make the players more interested in what the experience is like, but it also brands the series forever and shows that it lacks a serious tone.
The Gears of War series was always known for its over-the-top approach to the shooter genre but in the last few titles, Epic Games has tried to infuse it with more serious tones in order to gain the respect of the public.
Rockstar has traditionally used Grand Theft Auto as a platform to comment on the state of modern politics and economics in quite an explicit manner, but there’s also plenty of silliness to be found in the game world.
Volition has recently been bought by Koch Media and the company has already suggested that it will continue with the current approach to Saints Row development.
A fourth game in the series was in development before THQ assets were auctioned off.