Saints Row: The Third is Better than GTA IV

You probably looked at the title of this article, raged furiously, and went straight to the comment section before even listening to what I have to say. Or you’re a well-mannered individual that enjoys a good debate. Whatever the case, the following is why I think that Saints Row: The Third is a better game than Grand Theft Auto IV.


Most Rockstar fanboys claim that Rockstar games have an fantastic story. While they are better than most of the hammy stories that several video games consist of, they’re nothing special. Most of the time, your character is being contradictory to what his dialogue contains. For example, the main character in GTA IV claims that he wants to change the dangerous life he once led. Yet throughout Grand Theft Auto IV, you are killing cops, dealing drugs, and other criminal activities. The same can be said for Red Dead Redemption’s lead, John Marston. Although, I feel Marston’s character is much more justifiable, due to the circumstances he and his family are in. It still doesn’t make sense why he would assist a Necrophiliac though.

Saints Row avoids all these missteps by not taking itself seriously. The characters are completely off the wall and don’t abide to a serious story like GTA. The sections of dialogue are funny, while still being well written and very self aware. The ability to create a character all on your own makes some situations that much more entertaining to watch. When choosing what voice you want your character to sound like, I chose the British accent. Just sounds more badass. You can also pick a zombie, in which your avatar mumbles and grunts when spoken to.


I acknowledge that GTA III changed the way we play open world games, but that doesn’t mean another game can’t come along and improve upon it. Sure, in GTA you can drive around a realistic looking city, while cranking some of the well-known tunes that Rockstar is known for providing. But, there’s also a terrible checkpoint system that hinders most players from enjoying the intended experience. Not to mention that you have to drive to every mission location, making it tedious and inconvenient. Contrary to this, LA Noire did the smart thing and gave you the option of letting your partner drive for you. The shooting mechanic also doesn’t exactly work the best. Granted, GTA IV is a five-year-old game at this point, and the third person shooter has since then evolved. Hand-to-hand combat is also somewhat clunky and just not very inspired. Hopefully GTA V will learn from other third person shooters, refining the shooting mechanic that was previously implemented in the previous games.

Saints Row takes all of the major gameplay flaws of GTA IV and either streamlines them, or discards them completely. Example: in Saints Row: The Third, you can simply toggle a button to jump straight into a car, removing the wait time,  and get your avatar on the road as quickly as possible. In that sense, Saints Row understands that your time is valuable, and video games should first and foremost, be about having fun. While the gunplay is nowhere as tight and refined as games such as Gears of War 3, it still gives a better sense of movement with the weapons. Not to mention all of the bizarre weapons that SR3 lets you play with. People either play GTA for the story, or to simply, ”blow shit up”. Saints Row takes the “blowing shit up” part, and gives you a playground to do whatever your dastardly heart desires. By the end of my thirty-hour playthrough, my character was invincible, and I felt that I deserved that. I put a hefty amount of time into the game, and becoming a killing machine was a perfectly acceptable reward. Plus, there is a button strictly used for punching a person in the groin. You can’t beat that.


Rockstar did a great job with the multiplayer portion of GTA IV. The game lets you and your friends cause plenty of chaos throughout the city. In addition, you have a plethora of multiplayer modes to choose from. It would be great to see GTA V add more to these modes, just please don’t make it be deathmatch only, Rockstar.

Saints Row: The Third lets you play the campaign in its entirety with a buddy via co-op. This is one thing GTA  V could definitely use. However, I hope that the next game in the Saints Row series has a better multiplayer mode than “whored mode” which, given its poke at Gears of War, is a poor man’s version of Horde mode. Something like the multitude of multiplayer modes in GTA IV would work really well in a Saints Row title.

I have nothing against Rockstar or its games. But the fact that GTA IV has one of the highest scores on Metacritic just screams that the game is highly overrated. The game was overhyped by Rockstar and the sales prove that point even further. Less than thirty percent of the people that played GTA IV finished the game. Weather you agree or disagree with me, I hope you understand that I want every game to be an enjoyable experience. The world of video games would be better for it. Here’s to GTA V and the Next Saints Row being better than the former.

Questions? Suggestions? Complaints? Problem? Email Or get at me on twitter: @bloodlinejake

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  1. Although I enjoyed GTA4, it became too realistic to be as fun as Vice City/ San Andreas. I prefer over the top action games – but I guess that is not everyone’s cup of tea.

  2.  avatar gvindyb says:

    Oh you’re tip toeing around a minefield here, while I did enjoy GTA VC the most! and I like SR 3, especially the opening mission where you’re falling from the sky, epic! but GTA IV for me was better, mostly because i like serious games than just funny ones. I do agree though that GTA could learn a lot from SR3, and i think stories from liberty city improved on it quite a bit, including a checkpoint system and taking GTA back to a little more light hearted game.

    Story of GTA IV lacked quite a bit for me, it became the same old story of starting out as a nobody and becoming a mass murderer with a lot of money. I think GTA V will change in regards to letting your friend drive, checkpoints and a little more lighthearted feel. So like you, here’s hoping to a better showing from both of them!

  3. I’ve not played GTA yet, so I can’t comment on that. However, I had a very fun time with SR3. It doesn’t take itself seriously, and that gives the game an opportunity to create new ways of having fun.

  4. Jake Nichols says:

    Interestingly enough, saints row 4 was just announced for august 20th. So it’s coming out a month before GTA V. I’m sure GTA will sell more, but it will be fun to see the games battle it out.

  5.  avatar Javertfan188 says:

    Actually i am totally agreeing with you which is odd bc I dont like sr that much but its true the characters are flawed in a weird way. On a path to redemption but here they are doing drug deals! Didnt male sense to me. But have to have some drama.

  6.  avatar Glenn says:

    im more of a saints row fan even though i beat gta4 and dont own any saints row games anymore, just the hilarious stuff you can do in that game like riding on the roof of a car, the unrealistic flying viechles like the bike in the third saints row, all make the game better. plus the interesting fact you can run around and slap people with a rubber dildo, something i would love to do to stupid people in real life

  7. Mike Jones says:

    dont think you can truly compare them….theyre open world games from the 3rd person perspective and thats where the similarities end….one is a more realistic play with usually subtle humor…and the other is an over the top ridiculous experience with tons of dick jokes….so eh…play them both depending on your mood id say

  8.  avatar Rebel Scum says:

    Nico got dragged back into that lifestyle because of his cousins bad debts. When does he kill a cop in the storyline? I’ve heard this “contradictory” argument before and I disagree with it. Why? Some people say its contradictory that he wants out of the violent lifestyle but still (outside of storyline content) runs over pedestrians, blow shit up, kill people. People forget that they are controlling the role of Nico. You’re making him do that, you could play the game without running over pedestrians and doing that stuff (in storyline I know its unavoidable, people must die)…its just not as much fun though.

    • Chad Rogers says:

      …and I really don’t give a damn about any of this. I play GTA IV because I want to rise to power as the city’s top criminal with several businesses bringing in unlimitted amounts of cash so I can buy unlimited ammo and insane weapons and go around blowing stuff up.

  9.  avatar MrSpoiler15 says:

    SR3>>>>>GTA4. That is a known fact. The same will be said with SR4 and GTA5.

  10.  avatar Alfredo says:

    In my case I could start a new game in GTA IV and enjoy it a little bit. In other hand, I think Saint Row got boring after I finished it.

  11.  avatar Rafae Sheikh says:

    I say this with all due respect, but comparing Saints Row 3 to GTA IV solely based on the fact they’re both third person open-world games is your first mistake here.

  12.  avatar nyran125tk says:

    I played GTA4 for 30 minutes and thought I should go back, yet played Saints row all the way through, I even played MAFIA 2 all the way through. I think that’s a testament to fun being more important than real life or at least fun story and fun gameplay will make me want to finish it. I play Mass effect and Elder Scrolls(yes Elder Scrolls IF YOU READ THE BOOKS ON THE SHELVES) and The Witcher for story. GTA 4 I could barely pick that game up and play it for more than 20 minutes at a time. If a normal day in real life is boring as sht, how the hell can it be fun in a game? Ok The Sims is like a typical day, but your constantly thinking about the green bars and career opportunities and having to upgrade your skills and character , that it takes your mind off the mundane thigns your actually doing. Theres nothing in GTA 4 that takes my mind off the mundane.

  13.  avatar SomeoneUnknown says:

    Yes, Saints Row TT is better than GTA IV, however, it is worst than GTA San Andreas and GTA V will probably be better than Saints Row IV because they are going too far.
    In teory Saints Row TT should be better than GTA SA. It has what San Andreas can only hope to have with mods. Everytime i play GTA SA, i install several mods, like almost every GTA player. Some of those, were the airstrike, homies backup, etc… Saints Row TT has that without the need of mods, however.. it fails to be better because of the storyline and because it’s wayyyy too short. It’s true that GTA storylines suck… let’s be honest, GTA wasn’t about the story, but about the fun. If you want a open world game with good storyline, don’t play GTA, play Mafia. But even in a game without story, you at least want a good villain, and that’s what Saints Row TT lacks.
    When i played GTA SA, i “hated” Tempeny and i was mad at Smoke.
    On the other hand, when i played Saints Row TT, i didn’t have time to hate Philippe cuz he died way too fast. I didn’t care about Killbane because he was just a clown and he did nothing i would be mad about. When Stag appeared, it was fun and cool… but… i couldn’t hate Cyrus.. It’s just a guy doing his job.
    Some people even argue that Saints Row 1 and Saints Row 2 were better.. That in my opinion isn’t true either. To play a game like Saints Row 1 or 2, i would be better playing GTA SA. They were just copies of GTA SA, and they weren’t in any way better. They weren’t bad, however… they were a shadow of GTA SA, and if Volution continued with that style of gamming, they would forever be in GTA shadow.
    Saints Row TT, on the other hand, offers us something new, something GTA doesn’t have, and that why it’s the best SR game.
    About GTA IV.. i don’t understand what were rockstar thinking when they created that game. Doesn’t make sense for a GTA game to be that realistic. It’s almost like they were trying to be like Mafia. I do love Mafia.. but come on… GTA isn’t about realism, GTA is about having fun. So anyone saying that GTA IV is a great game, isn’t a true GTA fan.
    GTA V will be different. I watched the trailer and the gameplay and seems to be similar to GTA SA but better.

  14.  avatar Justcause2fan says:

    Out of sr3 and gta iv, I vote for just cause 2 it has more mayhem than both of these combined, but seriously I go for gta because I don’t like the horrible driving physics of sr3 but love the feel of shooting and combat more than gta iv (I can’t decide)

  15.  avatar Ryan says:

    GTA is too overrated for the game that it is. I definitely prefer Saints Row III because it totally tackles the fun factor, personalization factor of being able to customize your character from voices to penis and breast sizes – pretty sweet. GTA is like this, but way less personal. It gives you like 5 clothes to choose from and is just generally a very, very dark and dull game.

  16.  avatar JCD says:

    Saints Row 3 blows GTA 4 out of the field in most ways.

  17. Anonymous says:

    I Prefer Saint row more becuase as you said it gives me the choice to make my character and choose every thing in him also the cars are more better than GTA

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