Release date: 18 February 2005
Developer: Pandemic Studios
Publisher: Activision


Become a hired gun, hunt down bad guys, commandeer tanks and blow stuff up in LucasArts' free-roaming, bounty hunting action adventure.

Killing for cash is the name of the game in Mercenaries, a third-person action adventure that combines intense weapons combat with open-ended, 'go anywhere, do anything' gameplay. Putting you in the role of a soldier of fortune in future North Korea, Mercenaries lets you pilot dozens of ground and air vehicles, puts state-of-the-art weaponry at your fingertips, and even lets you form your own alliances as you work through your list of targets.

A recent coup in North Korea has left the region in chaos. A private military firm has decided to dispatch a lone mercenary to track down 52 of the old regime's members before they can launch a nuclear attack, which is where you come in. Playing as American badass Chris Jacobs, volatile Swedish mercenary Mattias Nilsson, or British SAS Paratrooper Jennifer Mui (all of whom have their own unique talents), your job is to take down the 'deck of 52', the ultimate prize being the Ace of Spades.

The game's explosive 52 missions (one per target) feature a wide range of objectives, from sabotage and hijacking to search and destroy - but you have more or less complete freedom as to how you go about them. Part war chest, part toy box, Mercenaries features fully interactive scenery, a devastating array of weapons, and dozens of vehicles just waiting to be 'liberated'. If you can see it, chances are that you can steal it, use it, drive it or just blow it up. Impressive physics brings the destruction to vivid life, whether it's huge explosions, massive vehicle crashes, or buildings tumbling down around you.

Working your way through the game's non-linear structure, you can even choose to form your own alliances with various factions in the area, including the North Koreans, the Chinese, and the Russian mafia. Remember, it's not the mercenary's job to ask why; just when and how much.

  • Hijack over 30 military vehicles, from jeeps and tanks to helicopters

  • Use real-world weaponry such as sniper rifles, grenades and rocket launchers, to fulfil your objectives

  • Massive free-roaming environments