Professor Genki's Super Ethical Reality Climax is a gameshow-style event where Playa is a contestant, and must eliminate enemies in a trap-filled course. The enemies are dressed in mascot costumes, such as Saints Flow and Johnny Gat mascots, the beer bottles, the dog, pig, rabbit and gorilla characters, etc. The goal is to accumulate enough prize money to open the exit before the time limit expires. A pair of announcers, Zach and Bobby, comment on Playa's performance, praising them for doing well and mocking them if they are going too slowly or performing poorly.
Each arena consists of a number of rooms with fixed enemy spawns and hazards, as well as signs which can be shot. At the start of the activity, only a KA-1 Kobra is provided; extra weapons are acquired by performing well in a given room, which drops a "present" containing a new weapon which vanishes after a short time, usually a shotgun, SMG or assault rifle. Weapons can also be taken from fallen mascots, making this a great place to pick up the McManus 2015 and The Penetrator weapons earlier for free. Weapon upgrades carry over into Ethical Reality Climax.
Health does not regenerate by itself during this activity; instead, one of the five types of sign must be shot. These billboard-like signs always appear in the same places in a given Activity; they are not random.
- ETHICAL (倫理的 Rinriteki) targets feature a picture of an angry tiger, and grant additional points, while also adding 5 seconds to remaining time.
- UNETHICAL (非倫理的 Hirinriteki) targets feature a picture of a cute panda, and deduct points, while also discounting 10 seconds from remaining time.
- MONEY SHOT (大当り Dai Atari) targets feature a Genki face with dollar and yen symbols in the eyes, and add to the current score.
- HEALTH (体力 Tairyoku) targets feature a Genki face with a nurse cap, and restore health.
- TIME BONUS (時間ボーナス Jikan Bōnasu) signs feature a Genki face with clock hands over it, and increase the remaining time by 25-30 seconds.
Points are gained primarily by killing enemies; each kill on a mascot is worth 100 points, and a headshot 20 additional points. Avoiding traps gains points, while being hit by them incurs a penalty. Additionally, killstreaks apply a 50% bonus multiplier to all points earned. When the bonus reaches 3, a present containing a new weapon is spawned. If the present is not collected in a short time, it explodes harmlessly.
Enemies are typically armed with shotguns, assault rifles or The Penetrator, though snipers with the McManus 2015 are not uncommon. Brutes, referred to as "Hunters", with miniguns, flamethrowers or unarmed are used in more difficult[when?] Ethical Reality Climax activities after a certain score is reached, usually[details?] coinciding with the score needed to clear the activity.
Ethical Reality Climax is one of the fastest ways to make money in co-op, as both players' kills count towards the same killstreak; it is relatively easy to make $10,000 or more at a time from even an easy-grade activity. The same number of enemies spawn regardless of the number of players, though on the downside presents and health targets only apply to the player who picks them up, not to both.
All money gained in a Super Ethical Reality Climax activity is kept; in co-op, both players gain the full amount displayed, it is not split. There is no upper limit to the amount that can be earned, unlike many other activities which only give a fixed sum on completion. In addition, any weapons picked up from mascots, but not ones given in "presents", are added to the Weapon Cache as if they were picked up in the regular game.
- At Gamescom 2011, this Activity was described as only available to those who preorder the game, however this was later clarified not to be true.
- A trailer was released that specifically advertised the Activity, along with the pre-order pack.
- A live-action trailer depicted an even more bizarre version of the show which differs heavily from the one in-game.
- Some of Zach and Bobby's dialogue refers to things that might have already happened before playing the activity, such as the hosts looking forward to Murderbrawl XXXI.
- The cellphone is disabled during this Activity.
- If left idle Playa with Male Voice 1 may say "Those Genki Girls give me a reality climax", Female Voice 1 may say "I wish Professor Genki was around when I was a kid." or "Gat would have loved Professor Genki.", Female Voice 2 may say "We could open a Johnny World and steal Professor Genki's fans.", and Female Voice 3 says "Professor Genki, why didn't we think of that shit?!".
- Randomly after Playa attacks someone with Male Voice 1 he may shout "Murder Time, Fun Time."
- The TV gameshow is broadcast on a channel called "WTF17", there is a billboard with the channels logo near the two northern bridges that lead to Sierra Point. There is an identical billboard outside of Zimos' pad.
- In Genkibowl VII it is possible to unlock Outfits providing mascot suit versions of the "Angry Tiger" (ethical target) and "Sad Panda" (unethical target).
- Professor Genki is featured playing in the introduction to this activity, while Zach and Bobby explain the rules.
- If the Dual Wield Pistols Upgrade has been purchased, then two KA-1 Kobras are used.
- It is possible to complete the Easy instances of Professor Genki's Super Ethical Reality Climax only by evading traps and shooting targets, without killing anyone.
- The timer is not active in the initial chamber and only starts to run once the door into the arena is opened.
- The theme is similar to classic combat-as-television storylines such as the movie The Running Man and the videogame Smash TV.
- The name includes the word "ethical", but includes a lot of hazards, torture, and killing people broadcasting on live TV.
- When starting the activity while standing close enough to a vehicle to enter it, the activity proceeds to load as Playa gets in the vehicle. Playa then spawns in the arena but fall through the floor and into space until a certain point[when?] and respawn on the streets of Steelport. The Genki SERC HUD is active, and points are awarded for killing civilians. There is no commentary or progress and there is no notoriety for killing cops. It is not possible to win, the only options are to get Smoked, or exit the activity.
- In Saints Row: The Third Remastered, repeating the same activity multiple times could[when?] cause the activity failed instantly once it started.
- GameInformer: The Over-The-Top Activities Of Saints Row: The Third
- Achievements: Achievements and Trophies in Saints Row: The Third
- Twitter: @One_Letter: "The actual Gameshow is part of the game. The manapult, stunt suit, and octopuss gun are pre-order only."
- YouTube: Saints Row the Third Exclusive Professor Genkis Reality Climax Trailer
- YouTube: Saints Row: The Third - Tim & Eric & Genki trailer