Saints Row IV Game Poster Image

Saints Row IV

Over-the-top alien bloodfest for mature audiences.
Parents recommendPopular with kids

What parents need to know

Educational value
Positive messages

Although the game never takes itself seriously, Saints Row IV doesn't really have any positive messages. Sure, it can be argued it's about protecting our world and running the country, but there are so many politically incorrect comments and scenes and inappropriate situations that it's difficult to find any positive influences in the game. Given the gangbanging, drugs, killing, and strong sexual dialogue, take heed of the Mature rating.

Positive role models

The game stars you as a superhero who not only becomes president of the United States but who also must fight alien evil to protect Earth. Although that sounds like a positive role model, you must use a number of weapons -- including bizarre ones -- to kill countless enemies, and you can also kill civilians. Similar to past games, it could be argued that this title glamorizes gang culture, as you're the head of the Saints and your gang members make up your Cabinet.

Ease of play

This third-person game is pretty easy to play, especially for those who played Saints Row: The Third. The left analog stick controls the player movement, and the right stick is used to aim; triggers aim and fire, and face buttons perform other moves.


The game features intense violence and blood, customizable weapons, and superpowers you can unleash on people, such as throwing them using telekinesis or exploding their heads with an alien gun. There isn't as much gore as in previous games, such as Saints Row: The Third, but two online gamers can team up to kill Zin aliens together, resulting in large pools of blood.


Saints Row IV features a lot of sexual dialogue, including options for hetero, homosexual, and bisexual relationships. There is talk of casual sex and implied violence and sex: a girl slugs a guy who asks her to "f--k," then jumps his bones and kisses him. Many of the female characters show ample cleavage and have very tight clothing. The male and female characters can be seen nude but with a black bar covering privates (blurred and pixelated).



The game has some very strong language including "f--k," "motherf--ker," "f--king," "s--t," a--hole," and more.


The game's soundtrack plays some contemporary pop songs.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

The game lets you consume alien narcotics to get high. (The Australian version removed this mission, along with other controversial material, to be allowed to be sold in that country.)

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know Saints Row IV is an over-the-top game that lets you exercise superpowers, be the Commander in Chief, and kick some alien butt. It's a silly -- but violent and sexual -- game meant for adults only. You can kill aliens and humans (even innocent ones) with both traditional and fictional weapons and see ample amounts of blood. As you're a leader of the Saints gang, the game might be seen as glorifying gang life. The game has scenes of sexual courting, frontal nudity (but blurred-out in areas), and women with very revealing clothing. If that weren't enough, there are also scenes involving taking drugs and profanity-laden dialogue.

What's it about?

In SAINTS ROW IV, you play the leader of the Third Street Saints gang, who gets elected president of the United States. If that doesn't sound strange enough, Earth is under attack from an alien invasion, and the Saints are transported into a simulation that grants superpowers, giving these \"petty humans\" a chance to free themselves from the alien overlord Zinyak’s mental grasp and to save the world from annihilation. By jumping over buildings, using mind control, and firing all kinds of realistic and alien weaponry, you're tasked to fight back with all your might. Played from a third-person perspective, this open-world urban adventure also includes car racing, high-tech hacking, and even romance.

Is it any good?


Despite some technical bugs -- which can be fixed with a downloadable update -- and some drab environments (not unlike in Saints Row: The Third), this adult game is a fun, silly, and action-heavy adventure in a sort of "guilty pleasure" kind of way. Between the zany story missions, humorous writing, and innovative combat abilities, Saints Row IV gets it mostly right -- if you take the game for what it is. Just when you think the action can't get more bizarre and intense, the talented developers at Volition throw in some extra twists, including robots, space stations, costumes, and unlockable superpowers. If you're of age, love shooters, and have a sense of humor, consider picking up this ridiculously fun but mature game.

Families can talk about...

  • What is the impact of media violence when you're playing a cheeky, over-the-top game such as this one?

  • What makes alien-infested games so much fun to explore?

Game details

Platforms:PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
Subjects:Social Studies: citizenship, government, power structures
Skills:Collaboration: cooperation
Self-Direction: achieving goals, time management, work to achieve goals
Thinking & Reasoning: applying information, investigation, strategy
Communication: friendship building
Responsibility & Ethics: learning from consequences
Available online?Available online
Developer:Deep Silver
Release date:August 20, 2013
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Superheroes, Adventures, Misfits and underdogs, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires, Space and aliens
ESRB rating:M for Blood, Intense Violence, Partial Nudity, Sexual Content, Strong Language, Use of Drugs

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Parent of a 11, 11, and 14 year old Written bycautiousmom777 August 27, 2013

Amazing first, second or third M game.

This is an absolutely UNDERRATED game, My 11 year old asked me to get this game around when it came out, This was his first M game so obviously I was very cautious about what he saw and played, we struck a deal and he was allowed to play with my moderation. I am going to cover my opinions on each subject and if it's okay for 10 and up children. Violence: First of all, the only thing's you'll really be fighting is aliens. They're blood is completely unrealistic and they use childish-like weapons such as "ray guns" and lasers. The player mainly uses unrealistic weaponry also such as "the dubstep gun" and several other weapons. It can get scary due to the aliens creepy faces, but that's about it, he is also a very powerful superhero and can use superpowers to defeat enemies. Sex The game is hardly sexual. If anything it's around the same sex in the "iron-man" movies, Not really much to put here, but if you have been through the birds and the bees with your kid's, this is nothing. Language The language is the only part that is "iffy" about the game, my son has played the entire thing, and I have only heard 1 f-word and an occasional b-word Drinking and drugs No alcohol in the game at ALL there is one side mission is where you deliver an alien drug to testers for it, but that's about it.
What other families should know
Great messages
Too much swearing
Parent Written byDescartes1971 February 9, 2014


My wife purchased Saints Row IV for my 14 year old after reading the reviews here. And having finished the game myself, all I can say is: what are you other parents thinking that this is appropriate for 13? The game is funny and mostly cartoonish, but has more sex, language and violence than the average Rated R movie these days. 1) The sexuality in this game is over the top. Short of any actual nudity or simulated sex, there is a lot going on here. The lead character openly asks for sex from his team (male, female, and robot - so be prepared for some switch hitting). There's also a small portion of the gameplay that occurs in a strip club, and lead character mid-mission decides to participate in amateur night while there. There are prostitutes that open solicit activity on the street, and there are XXX video stores on a couple of corners. Oh, and I would be remiss if I forgot to mention the enormous, floppy dildo-shaped baseball bat. 2) The language is as bad as any video game I have ever played. Just about every word you can think of, it's in here and in your face. And it's constant, not occasional. 3) The violence isn't actually all that bad, compared to some other games. There is a Mortal Kombat-style kill in one part of the game (i.e., yanking off your opponent's head with his spine). And there are a couple of kills which involve stomping your opponents head until it caves in. But it pales in comparison to some of the gorier games out there (like Gears of War). So the game is actually really fun and immersive, but parents: please don't let your kids snow you into thinking it's okay for them.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Parent Written byMrpertt August 26, 2013

Nice job

Nice game that is great fun for hours and hours with little wrong technically and great graphics.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking