A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
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.
Violence & Scariness
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.
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Products & Purchases
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).
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.
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.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.