Comments criticising Saints Row 4 for looking like an expansion pack are "understandable", Volition has said, telling that a lot of fan criticism over the upcoming sequel is a result of "natural confusion" over previously announced Saints Row: The Third expansion pack, Enter The Dominatrix.

"It was interesting because people really liked what we were doing," Saints Row 4 producer Jim Boone said talking about the reaction to the game during E3. "But I think the biggest issue was because we had announced [Enter The Dominatrix] before, there was a lot of understandable and natural confusion of like, 'Okay, so is this that and you guys just expanded it? Or did you not even expand and it's not really a full game?'

"We've all been very eager to [explain] no, it's a full game, you just need to hear more."

The community appeared to react badly to Saints Row 4's announcement, with one YouTube commenter saying, "the more I watch this the more I feel angry that volition just f*** [their] fans over like this."

"It's that thing where as you're slowly announcing the game, you're teasing," Boone continued, "but because we were teasing people were jumping to conclusions which again, I totally get why they were, but it was definitely like, 'No, we'll show you all the missions, there's tonnes of game! You'll see!'

"But [it's] understandable. There's never really been a game that's come together in this way and so I get why some of the fans are like, 'I'm not sure what this is exactly'."

Saints Row 4 started life as SR3 expansion Enter The Dominatrix before being turned into a "full-fledged sequel" after being given a "broader scope".

DLC featuring content set to be included in the original expansion pack is set to launch as post-release 'Director's Cut' content for Saints Row 4.

Saints Row 4 launches this August on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.