Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D Updated Hands-On Preview: Local Multiplayer and More

We run around and shoot in an updated version of Capcom's 3DS third-person shooter set in the Resident Evil universe.

We had the chance to get a deeper look at Capcom’s upcoming Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D at its Captivate press event last week. The 3DS game is based on the mercenaries minigame that was first introduced in Resident Evil 4 and expanded upon in Resident Evil 5. A presentation on the game showcased more of the content Capcom is packing into the title to flesh it out from its console minigame origins. In addition, a new playable work-in-progress version of the game let us look at more of the selectable characters and try out some new stages.

The game presentation was led by producer Masachika Kawata who explained that it had been Capcom’s intention to launch the title with the 3DS hardware, but development proved challenging and the decision was made to give the team more time to work on producing a more polished product. Kawata underscored his point by showing off a new trailer that ran through the game’s key features of character customization, cooperative play, character progression, and a tutorial mode. The game’s character customization lets players adjust their character’s weapon and skill loadout to best suit their play style. While you’ll have a modest number of skills and weapons to choose from initially, you’ll unlock more skills and weapons as you progress deeper into the game. Your skills will also level up as you use them in battle to offer added power that will come in handy during your matches.

Skills, meanwhile, will run the gamut from active offerings, such as the thunderbolt skill that adds electrical damage to your attacks, to more passive support in the form of reduced reload time. The cooperative play feature of the game is shaping up to be an ambitious, albeit slightly uneven, component of the experience. The good news is that you’ll be able to play wirelessly with a friend in local and Wi-Fi games. The more problematic news is the game’s communication options that appear to be limited to issuing in-game commands as opposed to proper voice chat, which would have been handy. That said, it’s nice to see Capcom continuing its trend of packing its 3DS offering with as many features that take advantage of the 3DS hardware as possible. Communication options notwithstanding, cooperative play will yield bonuses, thanks to combos you’ll only be able to perform when playing with a second player.

Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D’s controls have been refined from its console cousins and offer a broad range of control configurations to support each player’s tastes. In addition to a variation on the classic RE control scheme, the game offers a number of different options to choose from, including an option to let you move and shoot at the same time. Kawata also pointed out that the game could be played just as well in 2D as in 3D for those players who chose to pass on the game’s 3D effect.

In terms of the demo on display at the event, the new version featured six playable characters: Chris and Claire Redfield, Hunk, Jack Krauser, Jill Valentine, and Albert Wesker. Each character featured a unique but customizable array of skills, as well as weapons that were in line with how they’ve been portrayed in the games. The demo featured four levels, a solo-only tutorial and three levels (one easy and two normal) that could be played alone or with a friend. The stages were based on the familiar village center from RE4 and the docks from RE5. The action played out as it has on the console: Your goal is to blast as many foes as possible within a set time limit. You’ll find health, ammo, and time-restoring pickups throughout a stage as you stab and shoot your way around. The cooperative game was simple to set up, requiring you to decide if you were hosting or joining via an easy-to-follow menu. The in-game commands weren’t too tricky to pull off, but once the action heated up, we found ourselves verbally telling our partner what to do, which will be a challenge if you’re in a Wi-Fi game.

As far as the visuals go, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is a sharp-looking game with detailed environments and enemies that are comparable to its console cousins. The game’s frame rate zipped along at a steady clip even when things got clogged onscreen with foes and explosions. The 3D effect adds a solid sense of depth and is kept fairly subtle with a few flashy moments throughout the course of a game to remind you it’s there.

Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is shaping up to be a solid offering on the 3DS that offers some cooperative fun to the system’s software library. We’re curious to see just how much content is going to wind up in the game, but what we’ve seen so far is fun. The inclusion of a demo of the upcoming Resident Evil Revelations is a nice perk that we expect will offer one more reason for fans to pick up the game. Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is slated to ship later this year, so look for more on the game in the coming months.

Written By

Want the latest news about Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D?

Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D

Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D

Discussion

43 comments
LeviHarris
LeviHarris

So what, it takes GS a week to review a game that takes an afternoon to tackle?

digi-demon
digi-demon

this game rocks :D - a must buy if you are into mercenaries games

darksongbird
darksongbird

Cool. I'm glad Jill is in the game! However, like Keybladegamer, I think when I get a 3DS I'm just gonna get Revelations. I know it's not even out yet, but this is the type of game I'd probably just wait to drop 10 or so bucks before I even thought about getting it. I'm just anticipating Revelations more.

keybladegamer
keybladegamer

Personally I'm waiting for Revelations. This game, as much as it's a good sign RE will look great on the 3ds, is just rereleasing levels from RE4 and RE5.

eliebaz
eliebaz

well i believe the 3DS won't kick up in sales until after the E3 where they will announce new games, release dates and a lot of things we want :) so im a proud owner of a 3DS and well i can't wait till the real games come out :)

crmarine6644
crmarine6644

I appreciate the graphics on a handheld but this game is a total rehash.

DS-man
DS-man

the graphics look amazing!, cant wait for this one along with the other RE game for the 3DS

Rafandrews
Rafandrews

@BudgetMonkey82 I've finished RE4 so many times I can't see myself playing it again for the 3DS unless they add some significant changes to the game. I'd rather this new game. Although RE4 for the 3ds would make a great game, specially for new players.

BudgetMonkey82
BudgetMonkey82

Why don't they just release Resident Evil 4 for the 3DS? That game has Win written all over it.

BirdofTokyo
BirdofTokyo

It looks good, but why should I waste my money on both Mercenaries and Revelations? Majority of people are only going to pick one (I assume) and a full game seems better than a Mini-game format played over and over and over again.

kirkonacid
kirkonacid

@RocSeanD While I think the time limit is necessary to the main style of gameplay, I wish there was an additional mode without the limit.

RocSeanD
RocSeanD

Looks awesome. Just wish it wasn't a Mercenaries time count down style game. That's just me tho, I know that it does give a sense of gotta hurry, be effective in kills, and adds some tension. I just wish there wasn't any time limit.

renji4eva
renji4eva

im glad i got my 3ds early, i can focus saving my money on all the cool games comin out like this game, dead or alive and the legend of zelda.

wiserat4
wiserat4

I'm so excited about this one!

awwitz
awwitz

Nice one. Cool graphics. Mercs madness. Too bad it's going to be (mostly) the same familiar maps.

gkhalifa
gkhalifa

UMMmm Do we have to forget a TITLE CALLED RESIDENT EVIL PORTABLE OR WHAT???????

singhellotaku
singhellotaku

@tictac_boss RE portable has long since been canceled you just must have missed it

TICTAC_BOSS
TICTAC_BOSS

RE portable was annocounced for 2010 for the psp....it's 2011 and yet we still don't know anything about it.....the don't give a fuk about people having older systems.....sad

Wandrian
Wandrian

@ CaptainVictory Oh, I understand. Being forced to choose between moving or attacking definitely is a tactical element that adds pressure and a bit of intensity to the experience, but I just think it's a bit...alien. I think if anything, RE5's Lost in Nightmares DLC proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that depowering players is a good way to enhance the experience of a game. It took a lot of practice and skill to handle those guardians like they were anything less than a pants-&%#$tingly terrifying abomination that should never be considered anything other than a walking wall of death(executioner reskin or not). And yet still for all that the depowering adds to the experience, I simply resist the urge to poke fun at these elite special forces characters taking so long to learn to move and shoot at the same time. No matter how much you love the games, you've just got to take a step back some time and say "hahaha, they can't move and shoot at the same time."

CaptainVictory
CaptainVictory

@WandrianWvlf Apparently I'm in the minority on this one but, I enjoy not being able to move and shoot. It gives me a different way to play the game. I find it intense and exciting to have to stand my ground while hordes of zombies and chainsaw toting freaks try to murder me. I would prefer for every game not to play like a typical first or third person shooter.

engraphos
engraphos

very good graphics for a ds...cant wait to see also Metal Gear 3 on ds

WeskerTeam
WeskerTeam

@chaos260 You will be waiting a long time.

DungeonLeader
DungeonLeader

I hope this game has features to make you keep playing. I know its got online which is incredible, but still mercenary mode over and over and over and over and over and over.....It might get stale, but rumor has it Revelation Demo is on there which im excited about

chaos269
chaos269

this one is gonna be good i can't wait, Waiting for the 3DS to drop in price first before it get it

Sgthombre
Sgthombre

I'd love to see Leon Kennedy in this one/

Wandrian
Wandrian

The biggest thing I got from the article is being able to move and shoot at the same time. With past decade or so of western gaming being so tremendously dominated by shooters that have this as a given, somehow it still seems strange that this ability is finally in a Resident Evil game(Survivor and Dead Aim don't count due to sucking hardcore). I'm not saying the games were bad or anything, I've just always found it cruelly amusing. Leon's secret service training didn't include how to move and shoot at the same time while BSAA training clearly does include this: but only when cool to do so. Obviously, if Sheva and Chris had shot Wesker while dodging his Uroboros tentacles they would've been discharged from the BSAA! And then who would be the hero? Josh and one of those redshirts? No thank you. The preceding comment was brought to you by Wandrian's Tangents.

Kos1c
Kos1c

It's nice that their bringing out more Resident Evil games, i wasn't a huge fan on the mercenaries part of RE4/5. I hated the whole time-system, and not just getting on with the storyline. I am un-decided to go for this game, or just wait for the other RE game for 3DS to come out.

ChiefFreeman
ChiefFreeman

looks good. I like that you can move while shooting in first person (albeit slowly), but it's a nice addition. This will be a fun game to play online. I hope they add in Leon Kennedy as an unlockable character.

naryanrobinson
naryanrobinson

Personally I thought the Resident Evil 5 Mercenaries stages didn't work very well at all.

ChillingSky
ChillingSky

Can't friggin wait! Please let this game be as good as I imagine it will be!

Henninger
Henninger

When this game drops is when i'll b buying my 3ds. Had 2 wait cuz the launch lineup sucked.

WllDan7
WllDan7

Nice read. Cannot wait to put this in my hands. Hopefully capcom gives us a real release date on this game soon.

WeskerTeam
WeskerTeam

@The-Longshot Yes, yes, people love pointing this out. However the mercenary mode in Nemesis was nothing like the Merc mode we have now. I believe in Nemesis you had to get from point A to point B.

The-Longshot
The-Longshot

"first introduced in Resident Evil 4" is an inaccurate statement, Mercenaries was 1st introduced in RE3 Nemesis. It was perfected in RE4 but non-the less technically introduced in 3. Otherwise, nice article. Thanks for it.