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Friday, November 9, 2007

Saints Row Vandal

I've managed to put in quite a number of hours playing Saints Row in the past few days. Although nothing's really changed with the "screamy baby" situation, I've still managed to play. I won't look that gift horse in the mouth! In any case, I've been able to knock off another couple achievements - so it's bragging time!

When I last posted about Saints Row, I was making my way through the various districts of Stilwater and blowing stuff up. The Mayhem Activity challenges players to cause a certain amount of damage to a specific district in Stilwater. Although this type of criminal activity is inherently dangerous due to the strong police and gang presence in Stilwater, it is nonetheless quite fun and, as you'll see below, quite easy if you follow some simple pointers.

Before getting to my Mayhem Activity tips and tricks, I first wanted to point out that I picked up the Addicted to tha Row achievement. I question whether twenty hours spent on one game makes me truly an addict; nevertheless, I've been awarded 20 gamerpoints for my lack of will power. I first started playing Saints Row in earnest around October 17th which means that I've averaged about one hour a day in Stilwater since then. I'm sure that many of Saints Row early adopters had more free time on their hands than I have and probably picked up this achievement in the space of a weekend. I'm a little jealous but, then again, I have two kids and a wife to show for my time!

On Monday night of this week, I started working my way towards completing the Vandal achievement. To earn this achievement, I needed to complete all Mayhem Activity levels and locations (3 locations, 8 levels each). All told, I'd say I spent about 2 - 3 hours completing this activity; however, I think there is room for improvement given what I now know about the Mayhem Activity.

Here are my tips and tricks for completing the Mayhem Activities and picking up the Vandal achievement.

First and foremost, be sure to stop by the Friendly Fire to pick up the RPG launcher. Although you'll rarely need to leave your vehicle while clearing the Mayhem Activities strewn about Stilwater, a little extra firepower never hurts. If you ever do find yourself without a means of transportation, the RPG launcher can normally finish up your current level of Mayhem if you've managed to maintain a high combo meter and can find enough juicy RPG targets (e.g. FBI SUVs, Five-Os, Helicopters, etc).

And this brings us to the most important tip: success or failure depends on the mayhem combo meter. When you're completing a Mayhem level, every time you hit, shoot or destroy a person, vehicle, or destructible object, your combo meter will rise by 1 point. The higher your combo meter, the more money you're awarded per hit or kill. The problem is that you'll have a limited amount of time between hits and kills to continue your combo: wait too long and your combo meter is reset to zero. What does this combo meter mean to you? If you can find a nice chain link fence, a series of parking meters in a row, or even a busy sidewalk, you'll be able to get your combo meter quite high and you'll find yourself clearing the current Mayhem Activity level with very little effort on your part.

The only trick now is knowing where to attempt your Mayhem missions...

Each of the three Mayhem locations will assign a district within which you will be scored for the damage and havoc you create. Each Mayhem Activity location will randomly assign you one out of three or four Stilwater districts. The trick to beating the current Mayhem Activity level is knowing which districts are best.

Below is a list of the best vehicles to use and the best districts to visit when clearing a Mayhem Activity mission. If your randomly assigned district differs from that listed below, cancel the current activity (press down on the d-pad twice) and start the Mayhem mission again. Eventually you'll be assigned the "prime" district for the Mayhem Activity and you're ready to start.

Los Carnales Mission

  • Vehicle to Use: FBI SUV, Delivery Truck, MAG, BullDog, Titan, TraxxMaster
  • District: Airport
  • Strategy: Make your way down to the Airport district. Notice the long chain link fencing everywhere? Start running it down with your car. Be sure to maintain enough speed to avoid being stopped dead in your tracks by a pesky piece of fencing. You'll find yourself easily causing well over $800,000 worth of property damage in a mere 40 seconds of de-fencing the airport.

Vice Kings
  • Vehicle to Use: FBI SUV, Delivery Truck, MAG, BullDog, Titan, TraxxMaster
  • District: Downtown
  • Strategy: The main strip that runs east/west and just north of the three bridges to the North island is where you'll make your mark. Take your sturdy yet manoeverable ride to the strip and start driving along the sidewalks. Hit as many pedestrians, parking meters, outdoor patio furniture pieces, and (if necessary) cars to keep your combo meter skyrocketing upwards. You should be able to easily clear as high as Level 7 without actually leaving your vehicle. If you are forced to abandon your vehicle before clearing the mission, be sure to quickly start taking out pedestrians and vehicles with any weapons you might have.

West Side Rollerz
  • Vehicle to Use: Peterliner
  • District: Arena
  • Strategy: After being assigned a West Side Rollerz Mayhem mission, your first order of business should be get on the freeway and start heading down to the Arena district. While driving, keep an eye out for a Peterliner (i.e. big rigs) that you can jack: this is the key to easily clearing the Mayhem activity in the Arena district.

    You may find that the Peterliners won't slow down on the freeway if you simply stop in front of them. The trick to jacking a Peterliner is to gently slow down in front of the rig and bring the behemoth to a gentle stop. From there, it's an easy steal and a quick drive to the Arena district.

    As you enter the Arena district, head north along the water-front road while hitting everything you can, focusing on the other vehicles on the road. Do your best to pinball between any and all cars: this will cause a lot of damage to a lot of vehicles and it will keep your combo meter on the rise. If you can't see any nearby vehicles, hit the sidewalks for a bit. When you get to the road running North/South along the Eastern side of the Ultra Dome, turn South and continue your rampage. Pull a u-turn if you go too far South and simply reverse your route to continue racking up the damage.

The last bit of advice I can give is regarding Level 8 of the Mayhem activity. Although it may seem quite difficult to cause $800,000 worth of damage in five minutes, it's really pretty easy.

Regardless of the Mayhem Activity location, Level 8 can be completed in any district of your choice. What district should you choose? The Airport district! I found that driving an FBI SUV put me no more than three minutes of driving time from the Airport district. If you follow the Los Carnales Mayhem mission strategy (i.e. run over the chain link fence), you should easily be able to clear $800,000 worth of damage in less than a minute!

So there you go! The Vandal achievement handed to you on a silver platter!

As for me, I think it's finally time to work my way through Saints Row's story missions. Although I have a number of activities waiting to be completed, I think it's best to remove the opposing gang presence from Stilwater before going any further.

Have a great weekend!


Smugu said...

Hey ! Nice post :D Good tips and such. I think this will definately help me out

Anonymous said...

They were nice tips. I tryed them out and they worked perfect. Thanks