Tag Archives: challenges

Finished up everything in Saints Row: The Third

Saints Row the Third final blog post

Back in May 2012, y’know, two years ago, I polished off the last of the assassination targets in Saints Row: The Third as I pursued completing that game fully to 100%. And by fully, I mean doing everything there is to do in the main vanilla game–I never ended up buying any of the DLC due to less-than-stellar reviews–and that includes a bunch of small things that, more or less, equate to grinding. Thankfully, fun grinding. Here, let me list what I still had on my saintly to-do list:

  • Complete all 30 vehicle theft targets
  • Complete all 41 challenges
  • Start the game over and complete Act 1 in a different way

Well, I’m happy to report that I finally, y’know, two years later, finished off all of these goals. Now, truthfully, it did not take me two straight years to do this, as I ended up playing Saints Row: The Third again sporadically, but when I did get back into it, it was for a good while.

I first focused on the vehicle theft targets, squeezing one or two in during my lunch hour whenever I did get around to turning on the ol’ Xbox 360. These missions were made much easier thanks to being able to use your avatar’s cell phone to wipe either the cop alertness or the gang alertness after you steal the car. This makes driving it back to the chop shop a breeze as nobody is now chasing you and you can cruise to the location in style, blasting anything but talk radio. But it takes some decent amount of in-game time to respawn the two wipes, so I’d usually just goof around for a bit or go after another goal while waiting. Stealing the army vehicles was probably the toughest, as the helicopters would get shot down before I could make the call, thus me wasting the opportunity.

The 41 challenges…by the time Saints Row: The Third was over, I’d say I had almost half of them completed. Many, like grenade kills, cars destroyed, and hoods found get unlocked easily by just playing the game. Other challenges, like streaking and robbing stores, I didn’t even know you could do, but were easy enough to polish off once I got the hang of it. And then there were the ones that just required grinding, doing them over and over and over: hostages taken, gang members taunted, vehicle surfing time, EMUs destroyed, and survival missions. Thankfully, the game is just fun from top to bottom and, due to all upgrades purchased, it is nearly impossible for the main character to die, so you can just go ape-shit with grenades and rocket launchers. The only damper was having to wait five minutes for your cell phone to ring to start a new survival mission, especially knowing you had like fifteen more to do after it; I guess I shouldn’t have ignored it so much during the main campaign, but, like real life me, I’m hesitant to pick up a phone when I don’t recognize the caller.

Starting the game over and burning through the first main missions of Act 1 again takes around an hour or so, and it’s still a blast. I forgot how many big and goofy moments are there early on, like parachuting into the penthouse. I decided to play as a woman this time around, and I noticed a few lines of dialogue had changed to specifically reference this. Anyways, at the end of Act 1, you get a choice to blow up a tower or save it by driving the bomb away. In my original playthrough, I protected the tower, but this time I let it crumble to dust and ruin, and listen to the sweet sound of the last Achievement popping. Well, the last one I can get without dipping into the unnecessary DLC. If I still had that list in the right sidebar, you’d totally see a green star next to its name.

So, Saints Row: The Third is a very good grieving game. It is a game you can lose yourself in without dedicating too much time or emotion, and it makes for a great slice of distraction. Want to just cause chaos with the cops for minutes on end? Go for it. Want to see how many people you can knee in the nuts in a row? Go for it. Ever try taking out a tank with a chainsaw? I have. Last year, after Ryan Davis passed away, I remember Jeff Gerstmann talking on one of the Bombcasts a little bit about replaying Saints Row: The Third with cheats turned on, just goofing around and not having a care about the consequences. It’s such an easy game to get into and play, and I’m thankful to have it in my collection.

Well, I’ve squeezed every last purple-colored drop out of Saints Row: The Third, deleted my save data, and put the game back on the shelf where it will sit untouched for, likely, the rest of my existence. Honestly, it’s more like a pile near my game shelf. But either way, it’s done, and I’m done with it. Had a fantastic time with it over the last few years, but I’m not moving on to Saints Row IV any time soon as I have plenty of other different games asking for my attention. Not sure what will hit that sweet spot next…

Took some time, but I finally stepped up to the challenge in Fallout: New Vegas

The Gun Runners’ Arsenal DLC for Fallout: New Vegas added a number of things to the desolate and barren play-realm known to all as the Mojave Wasteland. Mostly weapons, obviously, but also new recipes , ammunition types, gun mods, and–the topic of today’s blog post–in-game challenges. These new challenges are given different ranks, ranging from one star to three stars, and are tied to some Achievements. Also, they ain’t easy, like the “kill 10 bloatflies” ilk.

Anyways, a few weeks ago, as I continued slowly down the path to a Mr. House playthrough, I finished off a third one-star challenge, earning this little darling:


Up to the Challenge (20G):¬†Completed any three Gun Runners’ Arsenal (GRA) one star (*) Challenges.

Now, there are a total of six possible one-star challenges, and, of them, four seemed doable. The other two? No. No way, no how. One asked of me to kill Mr. House with a golf club, which went against my entire playthrough, and the other wanted the Courier to obliterate animals with the Fat Man or Fat mines, of which I’ve never used either before in all my long hours. And so I went after the reasonable ones: cripple five right arms with a shotgun, kill 15 robots using a 5.56mm pistol, kill 15 feral ghouls using specific weapons, or destroy 10 abominations–which range from evolved centaurs to spore carriers–using things like katanas, dynamite, machetes, and throwing spears. It’s a lot of specifics, and unfortunately for my Courier, that meant constantly carrying around a lot of different weapons just in case a situation popped up where I could use X against Y to obtain Z.

Right. I was able to cripple arms and kill robots rather easily as I went along my merry way, but a third challenge constantly seemed far off. I was not interested in fighting feral ghouls, and abominations seemed few and far between as the Courier stuck to the main storyline path based around the Strip. That is until I went to Vault 22. That place is full of horrible creatures not right for this world, but it wasn’t just a matter of slicing them to pieces. Because my Courier is high in guns and low in melee and throwing weapons, I would first try to lower a spore carrier’s health–without killing it in one shot, natch–before finishing it off with a thrown spear to the face. This worked a couple times, but then I ran out of spears. So it was jungle fever action time with a machete, and I had to use a lot of health/food items to make it out alive. But regardless, I did it, and it felt nice to have one challenge-based Achievement dead and done.

However, the other two are looking like even bigger mountains to climb. I already failed my attempt to get two via fighting Caesar, and it is highly unlikely I’m going to go and punch some Deathclaws to death, considering just how much they freak me out.¬†I can’t seem to sneak machine guns into the casinos to kill Chairmen, White Gloves, and Omertas. Burning Cazadors to a crisp is risky business, and I think I’ve done it twice so far. It’s all looking hopeless. But we’ll see. I mean, I guess that’s why they are called challenges.