Love Saints Row: The Third's Kayne Moment? Thank the Unsung Heroes of Game Dev

Love Saints Row: The Third's Kayne Moment? Thank the Unsung Heroes of Game Dev

It was an idea so good Volition clearly had to do it.

Of all the ways Saints Row: The Third leaned into silliness, its full-on embrace of musical moments is perhaps the most successful. The car singalongs can be funny, the Bonnie Tyler cut is delightfully cheesy, but one scene stands above the rest: the Penthouse mission featuring Kanye West's "Power." Now, as folks are replaying The Third in its new remaster, we now know who to thank for this A+ needle drop.

For those unaware, the "Power" moment starts with the player character leaping out of a helicopter and parachuting into the pool of a penthouse filled with henchmen. The song's timed just about perfectly to launch into the first chorus just as combat kicks off, and the music doesn't let up—you clear out the whole apartment with "Power" driving the action. That brilliant idea came not from a mission designer, but from the quality assurance team.

Elizabeth Zelle, who was the lead QA tester for Saints Row: The Third's singleplayer (now, she's a Senior Games User Researcher with Bethesda) confirmed that the "Power" moment was a tester suggestion on Twitter. "So remember that QA is a vital member of the dev team, and thank a QA professional today," Zelle writes.

If the "ah-ahs" and hand claps are resurfacing early 2010's memories of when "Power" was inescapable, when Kanye didn't do things like pitch the President on an "iPlane," or just when Volition truly challenged Rockstar for the open world crown, here's the good news—all the best musical moments from The Third are still in the remastered version for PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

Reviews Editor Mike Williams tackled our look at Saints Row: The Third Remastered and came away from his time feeling good about how the game has held up and positive on the new release's graphical enhancements, though it's still a bit buggy and even crashed to desktop for him. "Saints Row: The Third Remastered is like that friend who's a bit of a screw up, and has now returned years later with a new wardrobe," Mike writes. "They're the same person inside, but now they're wearing Air Jordan 33 All-Stars instead of Air Jordan 2011 All-Star Easts."

For more on the Saints Row: The Third Remaster, be sure to watch Digital Foundry's video on it, where John Linneman and Richard Leadbetter go over its myriad technical and graphical improvements with a fine tooth comb.

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Mathew Olson


Mathew Olson is a writer formerly of Digg, where he blogged and reported about all things under the umbrella of internet culture (including games, of course). He lives in New York, grew up under rain clouds and the influence of numerous games studios in the Pacific Northwest, and will talk your ear off about Half-Life mods, Talking Heads or Twin Peaks if you let him.

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