Sidenote: I will try to keep this as spoiler free as possible
As a player of both games, I have to say I liked Saints Row 2 better than Saints Row 3 in terms of content, characters, and storyline. Saints Row 2 had a deeper, grittier, more... impactful (yeah I tried) storyline than its counterpart. The characters provided this go around in 3 are interesting, but nowhere near as interesting as Saints Row 2. One character change i was very disappointed in was Shaundi. I for one hate her character this go around and it raises the question from me, what happened? Sure I understand the whole plastic surgery possibility but still though... she's less bad#*% than she used to be. Saints Row 3 has a good storyline, and if you're a stoner you'd probably be seriously laughing out loud from start to finish due to the over the top antics of your character, but it doesn't leave as much as a lasting impression or thought or thirst for revenge 3 missions later like Saints Row 2. Fans of Saints Row 2 will probably never forget Aisha's death, and some of which probably wound up wiping the Ronin out immediately after. Saints Row 3 didn't have that kind of impact for me except for probably two occasions. Customization and uniqueness takes the forefront in Saints Row 3 once again but this one little thing - the different fighting styles - came up missing in this entry. They added a lot, but they took some things away. The environment itself in my opinion didn't really FEEL like a Saints Row game either... it felt... a bit TOO commercialized in a sense, which fits the story but it had me actually asking for more. Side misssions are still fun and entertaing, but once again, they took more away from what we knew in Saints Row 2 in favor of the action you find in 3. Musically, I was blown away yet again, and thats coming from soneone who really doesn't listen to too much music. After my time with Saints Row 3, I gotta say it actually made me want to play Saints Row 2 just because I felt that it offered more, but it doesn't diminish from the fact that Saints Row 3 is still a pretty solid game.