What initially appears to be a GTA rip-off tuns into so much more
The first thing i like is you can customize your charecter, and it's suprisinglly deep, it's not the sims, but there are hundreds of diffrent things you can change from your hair, to your muscle size. I love any game that lets you do that, so it's already scores big points for me. The one problem with this is when you customize a charecter they almost (if ever) never talk, and this game is no exception, your charecter has a whoping tottal of three lines in the game (the sequels would latter fix this but i'll review those later) and no one ever makes anything of this, but i assure you that the other colorful charecters (including the fan favorite johny) more than make up for this.
The story is pretty simple, you, are caught in a gang shoot-out and are rescued by the 3rd street saints, a gang trying to get back on their feet, you decided to join them and Take out the three other gangs controlling still-water.
The graphics are good... for 2006, texture/model detail is fairly low by today's standards, but it looks decent and runs at a smooth frame-rate and manages to have very little pop-in. The frame-rate can take a dip when alot is going on, but for the most part it stays smooth. The city of still-water is big, and there's lots to do there, but you are often forced to do side missions before you can progress through the story, and that can be a chore sometimes, as you often just want to get on with the story.
The music is great, most of it is liscensed music, but you won't recognize most of it, but that dosen't mean it isn't enjoyable. I don't even really like rap/hip-hop but i found the soundtrack to fit the game perfectly. The voice acting is also top-nothc with some actually pretty well-known people making apperances, the script is also very good and while there may be a bit too much cussing for some people's tastes i found it to fit in with the game's over-the-top gangster style.
The game is actually fairlly long, just completeing the story missions will take you roughly 20 hours and after that you can continue playing the side missions and d*ck around till your heart's content.
Now the biggest negative aspect of this game is the problem all ope-world games have GLICHES, i found often times gang members following me would dissapear, i ghosted through a train once, textures sometimes faill to load, i even had the game crash on three ocassions, and more. I found most of the gliches show up twoards the end of the game, but it's still really too bad that more of them couldn't have been worked out. Another thing i don't like is there is absolutely no indication of when you are getting hit, your charecter never flinches when being shot so the only way to know if you're being hit is if you look at your health bar, and that can be a real pain and lead to some un-expected deaths. Also the check-point system is awful, of you die during a mission, no matter how far you are into it, you have to start it all over again and this can lead to alot of frustration, finnaly there is no auto-save, so if the game crashes (which it can) and you havn't saved recentlly, you may have to re-play a large portion of the game.
So overall a few gliches and a couple other minor gripes are no reason you shouldn't play this game, it may be a little old, but it's still fun for someone looking for a less serious version of GTA