"We Have Been Listening To Our Fans"
Volition associate producer Kate Nelson believes that vocal fans who didn't enjoy Saints Row III's direction will find themselves pleasantly surprised by Saints Row IV, which makes an earnest attempt to "do right by" the original games and take feedback into account.
During a recent interview, I asked Nelson to directly address the sizeable number of Saints Row fans who didn't enjoy Saints Row III's OTT direction. "I think the direction that we've ended up in with Saints Row III and IV is the right place for the franchise," she said. "At the heart of what Saints Row is, it is an open-world experience, it is a sandbox experience where you have access to toys and abilities to explore and have a whole bunch of fun in the world. That, to us, is the core of Saints Row. The fun that comes along with experimentation with your co-op partner, that comes through customisation, still with a strong narrative and the ability to choose what you do when.
"Those elements are still intact and we've had to make difficult decisions throughout development in terms of what should we be focusing on. We have been listening to our fans, and Saints Row is more popular than ever with the direction that we've gone.
"I know that some people would like to see the previous direction, but when fans play this version they'll see that we're trying to do right by our previous games."
Saints Row IV is currently enormously good fun, and to be honest, I personally enjoy the chance to totally unwind in a fun-focused sandbox. Whether Saints Row IV can please everyone remains to be seen - we'll find out next month.