After jumping out of (and into, and back out of) a moving plane, it's hard to believe Saints Row: The Third can keep its pace throughout the entire experience. Oh boy, does it. Volition's title, which in some instances can only be described as a fever dream, is over-the-top and fun. Saints Row: The Third isn't afraid to be nonsensical in its quest to be wholly entertaining. Sure, some of the gags fall flat, but it's crazy experience that goes beyond any other game in its genre (not the dildo bat genre, the open world one).
It was a game that I, along with some of my colleagues, wrote off as a game comprised of fart jokes wrapped in a GTA-cloned shell. Saints Row: The Third goes beyond that initial core design philosophy--because let's face it, the series has hit those points already--and offers players an experience so unique that it's a series that has set itself far apart from the competition. The game is insane on every level and is definitely one of the year's best.
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The Shacknews 2011 Game of the Year awards are based on a weighted scoring system between all staff writers and editors. Throughout the week we'll be revealing our 'Honorable Mentions,' which include the titles that did not quite make our overall 'Top Five Games of the Year.' The Shacknews 'Game of the Year 2011 Award' will be revealed on January 20.