I am floored. I am excited. I am ecstatic. I have had to pinch myself repeatedly and reread emails to prove they were actually real and not some kind of crazy fever dream. I even danced. I have desperately been trying to somehow contain my unbridled joy that this is actually happening, and am finally able to share it with you all today.
“But Idol,” you are probably asking yourself, “what in the holy granola are you flipping the fuck out about? Tell us, already!”
Jeff Thompson, the Studio Director of Programming at Volition, is putting together a package for us containing documentation, file formats, tools, and more on the Saints Row: The Third engine. Myself, Minimaul, and gibbed will be working closely with Jeff over the coming months to use this information to create a robust set of modding tools to supplement our existing ones and creating what is essentially a full sdk for the game! But, that’s not all! Saints Row: The Third is only the beginning! Jeff has confirmed that he will also be digging up all the Saints Row 2 info that he can so we can do the same for it as well, and that this undertaking is actually a “test run” for Saints Row IV.
So, what does this actually mean to the average Saints Row player? In simple terms, the modding community will finally be able to create and offer new clothing, new vehicles, new guns, new npcs, new missions, and even new world geometry which will greatly extend the life of the series and enhance the Saints Row games in ways we never even dared to dream of.
You are probably asking yourself right now, just how the fuck we managed to pull this one off. The answer to that is actually quite simple. I asked. While I was in LA playing Saints Row IV, I took the opportunity to lay out a modding proposal to the Volition guys. The proposal itself was quite modest and simply requested a technical email contact at Volition to whom we could pose a question or two about file formats once a month or so. This contact could then use that month to find an answer for us along with his actual job duties. All I really hoped for was the tiniest little nudge in the right direction with some of the file formats that have had us stumped for years now. I talked about how our forum has 36,000+ registered members with thousands of unique hits a day. About how we are staunchly anti-piracy and have been dedicated to keeping Volition’s best interests at heart despite their uninvolvement. Lastly, I mentioned how Koch Media and Deep Silver have a reputation in the industry for being fan-centric, and how working together would show just how different they are from the previous regime’s policies that forbade Volition developers from interacting with the fans at all.
The Volition guys in LA all loved the idea, so I drafted up an official proposal document on my return which laid everything out and sent it off to Alex Mejia and Steve Jaros. They both warned me at the time that nothing was likely going to happen for at least a couple of months due to how insanely busy things were with the finalization and launch of Saints Row IV. Much to my surprise (and Alex and Steve’s,) Jeff Thompson replied promptly with the amazing offer detailed above and gave the go ahead to bring in Minimaul and gibbed into the proceedings. I then created a community modding wishlist thread that Jeff has been monitoring to see the kind of things the rest of the community is hoping for as well.
And that, as they say, is that. I am eagerly looking forward to getting things started and Jeff has told us that we can expect something from him this very week. I want to take a moment to sincerely thank Volition and Deep Silver from the bottom of my heart for giving the Saints Row modding community this amazing opportunity. Some of the ideas we have in store are going to blow people’s minds, and the open world crime genre will never be the same.