While the amount of things to see at PAX was immense this year, I was extremely excited to try out the games Capcom had brought with them. I had a chance to try out all of the games that were displayed at the show, but was most interested in Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D. Being a huge fan of the Resident Evil series, I was excited to see what they would bring to the table.
As the titles suggests, Mercenaries is based on the “mercenaries” modes in both Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5. Several restrictions are imposed upon you as you defeat enemies to get a high score; these include a time limit and surviving a gruesome death by infected creatures. There will be maps from both games, as well as many characters from those games. Characters available are not limited to the aforementioned games however, as popular characters in the series are also included such as Jill Valentine and Claire Redfield.
The demo had four playable characters: Chris Redfield, Claire Redfield, HUNK, and Jack Krauser. There were two maps available to play, and I tried both. The first thing noticeable is the striking effect of the 3D graphics. It is evident in the title screen, but the visuals in game completely blow you away. Your character and the enemies appear to pop out at you, with the background of the level appearing stationary. The 3D effect only was at it’s peak in quality when staring straight at the screen; looking at the screen from an angle just appeared blurred. Overall, I was impressed with the visuals as a whole; especially since the graphics are close to what we have seen on previous console releases.
While the graphics were impressive, the controls were loose and frustrating. The analog stick would have to be the biggest problem with controlling the game; I hope that it is something that will not be a problem in other aim and shoot games. Aiming your weapon was very difficult, and there did not appear to be an option to adjust sensitivity. Luckily for me, there was an option to invert the y-axis. So for those who cannot play without look inversion, you will be able to play comfortably. “Aim and shoot” is also the only way to play, as are most Resident Evil games; this takes away time during play. If you have never played a game in this series, it basically means you can not shoot and walk at the same time. Since it was so hard to get the aim right, and you had to aim and then shoot with a separate button, enemies were quick to overwhelm you.
From what I could take away from the game with my brief time with it, it seemed decent. The graphics are amazing as far as what the DS can handle, and the 3D makes those graphics literally pop out at you. The controls are a little annoying, but I feel like they are something that could become easier with time. Enemies are non-zombie from what the demo showed, and this was disappointing as my most favored enemies in the series were of the undead variety. Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D will definitely provide a strong sense of challenge, and we look forward to the final release where we will give you our full review of this promising title.