Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D Game Poster Image
Violent action/horror game delivers gore effects in 3D.

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 6 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

The story sees players defeating evil in a fictional world. As with other arcade shooters, much of the gameplay revolves around bloody, gory violence.


Positive Role Models

In this Resident Evil game, you play as multiple characters, each with their own look, personality, and set of skills. But you don't really get to know any of them or their side to the story, so it's difficult to fully understand their motives. One thing they all have in common, though, is the use of violence to accomplish their objectives.

Ease of Play

This game has a mandatory tutorial, which teaches gamers how to move around the world with the Circle Pad and buttons. Subsequent levels teach aiming, firing, reloading, melee combat, and more. It's not too difficult to pick up, plus the 30-page manual does a good job of providing additional instructions.


Expect plenty of violence, blood, and gore. Players kill mutated humans and other creatures with an assortment of guns and grenades. Red blood sprays out -- in 3D -- when enemies fall. Many enemies shriek in pain, too. Successful headshots can result in decapitation.


This game includes the ability to play a brief demo from the upcoming Resident Evil: Revelations game for the Nintendo 3DS (due out in the spring of 2012).

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D is the first game to be rated "Mature" by the Entertainment Software Rating Board for the Nintendo 3DS, a platform used primarily by younger players. It has a significant amount of blood and gore, including sprays of blood and decapitations, which can be viewed in 3D. Clearly, this game is not for kids or tweens. Note that while the game can be played online, players cannot communicate with one another. Parents need to remember that Nintendo is warning all parents not to allow kids age six and under to view the graphics in 3D because that viewing "may cause vision damage." The Nintendo 3DS offers parents the ability to lock out the use of 3D graphics in the system's Parental Controls.


User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byJossieM July 11, 2011

Ok if you want some action in your 3DS.

A good game for action fans, but sort in content for the price of $39.99. The game is suitable for older teenagers , it only contains typical slasher-film viole... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byKieth11 August 17, 2013

Rated M???

Even though this game is rated "Not for Kids" on this site and "M" on ESRB, it really doesn't contain that blood and gore in it. Very l... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old June 8, 2012

Quite addictive, but seems more of a minigame than full release.

A great game, but not very lengthy, and could have been a lot better. There are only 8 characters, and missions that don't take long to complete, so it was... Continue reading

What's it about?

Any video game with the words "Resident" and "Evil" in its title no doubt conjures up images of creepy environments, blood-thirsty mutants, and plenty of action, and latest entry in this popular franchise is no exception. RESIDENT EVIL: THE MERCENARIES 3D is a pocket-sized adventure that's fully playable in 3D on the Nintendo 3DS, which means no glasses are required to see the gore effects. A third-person action game, it has players taking on the role of one of eight protagonists -- including familiar Resident Evil characters like Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine, Krauser, and Claire Redfield -- who must attempt to stop the spread of a nasty virus within a predetermined amount of time. While the game houses re-mastered stages from Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5, it should be noted this game is more of an arcade shooter that has players working through multiple stages. You can tackle the action by yourself or via wireless co-op with another player over the Internet.

Is it any good?

This first "Mature"-rated Nintendo 3DS title is a blast for older players, especially fans of Resident Evil games who want to up the ante in the action department. With 3D graphics, touch mechanics (for actions such as switching weapons), and the option to play with friends online, this play-everywhere entry in Capcom's long-running series should prove popular. The mercenary missions are memorable and boss enemies are unforgettable. Players use a number of weapons, up to three "skill shot" slots to improve performance, alternate characters, and run around dangerous environments. The game also has a lot of un-lockable content and a demo for the upcoming Resident Evil: Revelations game for Nintendo 3DS.

Note: Some might be upset with Capcom for not letting gamers erase their saved games –- allegedly to clamp down on the used game market, as no one will want to buy someone else's saved game. Be sure you're aware of this if you plan on trading it in or buying it used.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whether 3D makes the game violence more intense. How did you react to this game's gory effects when they appeared to pop off the screen? Does it make the violence more difficult to bear?

  • Families can also discuss the notion of online play without communication. Players may not be able to use words, but are there other ways they can communicate with one another, such as character movement? Do you see any danger associated with more visual methods of communication?

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo 3DS
  • Price: $39.99
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: Capcom
  • Release date: June 28, 2011
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • ESRB rating: M for Blood and Gore, Violence
  • Last updated: June 19, 2019

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