Saints Row IV developer "didn't appreciate" THQ's porn star marketing

"I did not always love how much THQ put an emphasis on porn stars," says Saints Row IV associate producer.

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Saints Row IV associate producer Kate Nelson said some of the team at developer Volition "didn't appreciate" now-defunct publisher THQ's attempts to promote previous iterations of the series with porn stars.

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For Saints Row 2, THQ suggested porn star Tera Patrick had been a "special producer" for the game. "Saying that someone who had no industry experience was in a role that is sexualised as a producer of our project, or saying the penthouse girls are our QA staff… I can see the humour in that angle of promotion but for me that's the line where it gets into reality," said Nelson in an interview with Edge.

Patrick would later star as as character in Saints Row 2 DLC Ultor Exposed. Former pornographic actress Sasha Grey also voiced the role of Viola DeWynter in Saints Row: The Third.

“I did not always love how much THQ put an emphasis on porn stars,” says Nelson. “In Saints Row 2 and Saints Row 3 there was an emphasis on the penthouse girls, and earlier Tera Patrick."

"I think it’s important in marketing games to make sure that the essence of the game is what’s being marketed, and I think the porn star angle didn’t really fit in with what Saints Row is at heart, which is a parody. We like to poke fun," added Nelson.

Nelson also emphasised that she believed the Saints Row series has empowered women in many ways.

"You can be an important female character--you don't have to have a D cup either. You can be large woman, a small woman--you can be blue," she said.

"You can be who you want to be in the game and you have powerful female characters written into the narrative. I think our game actually does represent women in a positive way, but the press will focus on, oh hey, there are strippers, or there's a dildo bat--it's unfortunate from my perspective that that doesn't come through."

Saints Row IV, which is being published by Deep Silver, will be released for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on August 20.

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