Saints Row 5 Was Originally Set to Feature Characters from Previous Instalments, Including Johnny Gat – Rumour

However, publisher Deep Silver was reportedly not sold on the pitch, leading to the project becoming a franchise reboot.

To say that last year’s Saints Row reboot failed to live up to expectations would be a bit of an understatement. The open world title saw mixed reception from critics and the series’ fanbase, which was coupled with commercial underperformance. Interestingly enough, according to a new report, the series’ fifth mainline instalment could have taken a very different approach if things had gone differently.

In a recently published video, YouTuber mrsaintsgodzilla21 has claimed that developer Volition’s original plan for Saints Row 5 was to focus on characters from older instalments in the series, with Johnny Gat, Shaundi, Pierce, Dex, and Aisha intended to return as the Saints.

The developer allegedly intended to appeal to both new and old series fans with a tonal balance that would have seen the game telling a more grounded story while also have some over-the-top moments. As per the video, the game’s tone would have been 80% similar to Saints Row 2, and 20% to Saints Row: The Third. Apparently, the game was also going to have a mission designed by community modder Mike Watson – who passed away in 2021 – that would have allowed players to kill Dex.

Though that was reportedly Volition’s plan for the game for a “decent portion” of its development, it ultimately did not align with what publisher Deep Silver had in mind for the series’ next instalment, leading to the original plan being scrapped and replaced with a complete reboot.

Earlier this year, Volition was shut down as part of Deep Silver parent company Embracer Group’s internal restructuring program. In the aftermath of the studio’s shuttering, Deep Silver confirmed that Saints Row would continue with other studios.