Madness and insanity are just par for the course with Saints Row: The Third, but it seems that with each add-on Volition aims to give us situations even more ridiculous than the main game. The Trouble With Clones is no exception, focusing on the Saints’ recovery of their self-proclaimed “biggest fan’s” newest creation: a Johnny Gat clone gone awry. One part Incredible Hulk, one part sheer stupidity, does this DLC provide enough giggles to be worth the extra digital dollars? Hit the jump for my full review.
The core action of this DLC is exactly what you expect from Saints Row: The Third. You’ll drive to places, you’ll blow things up, you’ll ride shotgun in a vehicle and blow things up, and you’ll protect other things from being blown up themselves. You get a few nice bonuses along the way, like a gun that shoots swarms of bees, but don’t expect drastic changes from the core game. The best addition in this DLC, which becomes available during the third and final mission, doesn’t even transfer into the base game. If you’ve played all of Saints Row: The Third and its DLC like I have and find yourself wanting more, you’ll get that here.
The problem here isn’t the content itself, but the lack of gameplay originality. There is almost nothing here to differentiate the action from any other part of the game. The last mission gives the player some amusing powers: punches that are stronger than even the Apoca-Fist and the ability to throw a fireball that would make Ryu jealous, but it’s all too brief, confining the one interesting new inclusion to maybe fifteen minutes worth of playtime. It doesn’t help that it only includes three missions, which are finished in slightly over an hour.
[+New Weapons] [*Almost Identical Gameplay] [-Brief]
If you ask me, production quality is the most important part of Saints Row: The Third. Volition fully commits to all of their wacky ideas, leading to some of my favorite moments in a video game. It doesn’t shine quite as bright here. The voice work is still top-tier, but the dialogue isn’t as snappy or as witty as it has been in the past. While playing through the last DLC, Gangstas in Space, I had a constant smile on my face and found myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion, but that wasn’t the case here. There is funny stuff in The Trouble With Clones, to be sure, but it’s inconsistent at best. The soundtrack is appropriate to the comic book-y feel of the add-on, but there’s nothing truly worth noting. In the final mission, onomatopoeia bubbles are added to the character’s hyper-powerful punches, but that’s one of the only cases of Volition going above the call in this pack.
The story is additive, yet unnecessary, detailing how the Saints came to obtain a Brute version of Johnny Gat named, of course, Johnny Tag. What else would he be called? It’s unclear what impact this will have on future DLC or future games, but it’s not a particularly thrilling or important tale. If you’re coming to Saints Row for the story and the humor, there is very little to be had here.
[+Great Voicework] [*Middling Soundtrack] [-Unimpressive Story] [-Mostly Flat Humor]
For $7 (560 Microsoft Points), there is very little content here: three story missions, one new weapon, two new homies, and a new vehicle whose only variation is a large horn on the top. If you’ve already purchased the Season Pass, this DLC is included, so go download it now! If you haven’t, there is very little value in this add-on. $7 for barely over an hour’s worth of gameplay and hardly anything to carry back into the game proper make this a hard sell, especially when almost all of the achievements are guaranteed to unlock during the first playthrough leaving no reason to ever play through the DLC again.
[+Included In Season Pass] [Brief] [No Replay Value] [Barely Any Content Transfers To Main Game]
Saints Row: The Third is one of my favorite games. The sheer insanity it provides keep me coming back over and over again. I will gobble up any content that Volition will give me for it and it’s a real shame that most of the DLC has been lacking in substance. Chances are, if you’re a fanatic about the series like me, you’ve already purchased the Season Pass. If so, this release gives you a good reason to return to the game for another hour. If you haven’t bought the pass, though, I would advise against purchasing this DLC. There just isn’t enough content to justify the price tag.
[+New Weapons] [+Great Voicework] [+Included In Season Pass] [*Almost Identical Gameplay] [*Middling Soundtrack] [-Brief] [-Unimpressive Story] [-Mostly Flat Humor] [-No Replay Value] [Barely Any Content Transfers to Main Game]