Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D
I wasn’t quite sure what I could expect from Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D for the 3DS. Seems it isn’t a real Resident Evil game, but rather a handheld version of one of the extra modes from the mother games. Not what you would call a must-have.
The idea of the game is to get a high score within a certain timeframe by using the many items, weapons (including grenades) and kill combos and this in the world and with the characters and opponents from Resident Evil. Think of veterans like Chris Redfield, and old acquaintances like the villagers-with-zombie-tendencies from Resident Evil 4. The graphics luckily don’t disappoint so that you’ll not constantly be comparing with the Wii or the X360.
This all sounds a little thin and it is. There are eight maps that were taken out of RE4 and RE5, including the African village and the mining tunnels, each having a number of different missions. Also the gameplay will feel familiar if you played one of the previous games, but that’s a good thing! On top of that the 3DS proves with this game that shooters absolutely work on the handheld, amongst other things thanks to the thumbstick and the use of the lower screen for your inventory.
The latter allows you to focus on the over-the-shoulder shooting and unlocking the initially not accessible three final maps and new costumes, weapons, medals and characters. This mechanism not only adds variation as you can get new stuff to have fun with, but also because you have to perform certain tasks during the missions to unlock them. Capcom knew that the lack of content needed to be compensated somewhere and therefore has introduced some sort of RPG system where you can choose and upgrade three skills per characters (like faster healing). However, in the end it doesn’t make much difference, it only helps to deepen your own playing style and offers only an extra advantage during the more challenging missions.
Just like with Resident Evil 5 makers gamble on the power of co-op, and for those who have friends with a 3DS this is was a good gamble. There’s been plenty of thought about integrating co-op in the gameplay and you’ll happily be shooting and working together with two. However, it still remains centered around the same missions and you’ll quickly get the urge to get something new.
Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is as we said little more than one fun mode and it’s too bad that the makers didn’t put more effort into introducing a new storyline, setting or characters. The gameplay is good and the shooting is fun alone and better with two, but the lack of refreshment and more content makes that you’ll have to count on your own motivation to unlock everything. Something for the fans or for people who don’t want more than just straight forward action!