Resident Evil started out as a game with a fixed camera angle and a relatively slow pace to give gamers that terrified feeling of knowing that something could be around every corner and you may not be able to move fast enough to escape it. But back in 2005, when Resident Evil 4 was released on the Gamecube, the world of Resident Evil was turned upside down and given a new camera perspective and leaned towards the more action-oriented side of things while still managing to keep your pulse racing. While it received great reviews, it was still a big change from the original that continued into Resident Evil 5.
One of the greatest aspects of Resident Evil 4 was the mini-game Resident Evil: The Mercenaries which had characters from the game fighting for survival against hordes of enemies while racing against the clock to keep their score climbing for that 5 start ranking. It was definitely a surprise to many as well as a change of pace since you got to play as multiple different characters other than Leon. This continued into Resident Evil 5 but with this entry they added cooperative play which gave it a fresh new take on the mini-game.
Now here in 2011 The Mercenaries mode has its own stand alone game on the 3DS and it comes with a few more tweaks since the previous entries. Does this title stand up to the games that came before it? Or have The Mercenaries run their course? Here are the Hots and Nots of Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with The Mercenaries mode from the Resident Evil series but decided you wanted to give this game a shot, let me break it down for you. The Mercenaries mode has you choosing one of eight characters to play as in the designated level. When you start it up the goal is to survive until the time limit runs out while racking up the highest score possible. You can collect time bonuses and combo bonuses along the way in order to give you more time and a multiplier to get a higher score. At the end of the session you are given a rank to show how you did.
While the basic gameplay from the previous two games is still here, there are a few more tweaks that came along with it. The first big one is that you have the ability to move while you aim by holding down L. The downside to doing this is that you lose your ability to aim making this ability only necessary if you need to back up from an enemy about to strike you. The second tweak comes in the form of being able to reload on the move. While this is definitely a helpful feature when you have multiple enemies bearing down on you, I felt as if it completely sucked the tension right out of the game. After you get used to it though it turns into a more fluid experience that allows you to continue gathering that high score with very little pause.
As I mentioned earlier in this section, there is a total of eight different characters to play as and each offers their own unique set of weapons for you to mess around with (My personal favorite is Krauser and his compound bow). Along with these eight characters is a total of 30 perks that give you different bonuses during your session. These range from longer combo bonus times to improving your accuracy with pistols. You can even level them up as you play! (Now have I seen that before?)
Whether you’re teaming up with a buddy locally or playing with others online, it adds a great deal more play time and depth to the game. It also helps when you have a load of enemies bearing down on you and your partner runs in and clears out the crowd. It also adds some more life to the game. Once you have ran through all the missions with the different characters, it’s nice to be able to go back in with a friend and go for a new high score with them. There is also a competitive mode of sorts that has both of you running the same course to try and get a better score than your opponent. Both are excellent game modes that give you a reason to go back and play some more.
With this being a full priced retail game, you would expect to get more than what was put in it. With only a few different levels rehashed with different daytime settings, eight characters with an alternate costume, and levels set out like short missions rather than full on survival sets. Sure there are still a few missions where it is old fashioned Mercenaries, but there aren’t that many of them.
If you play straight through this game without playing as all the characters, it won’t take you more than 4 to 5 hours to get through all the missions. If you do decide to go through every level with every character you can increase the game’s playtime by 1 to 2 hours. I got to the 4th stage (out of 5) in little under 3 hours playing as every character I had so far.
To wrap it all up, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is a title that is fun to play, but ultimately not worth the full retail price tag put on it. While the gameplay will provide you with a good time while it lasts, it falls short of being a true Resident Evil experience that came out of the mini-game from 4. Fans will either love it or hate it with the new tweaks put into it. You should also make sure that you are positive with your purchase as the saves can not be deleted and some places will not accept pre-owned copies.Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D Review,