Capcom’s always stuffed Resident Evil chock-full of unlockable goodies, though out of all the extra content jammed into each release, nothing has quite carried the same clout as The Mercenaries. Since its inception in 1999’s Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, this action-focused mini-game has remained a series staple. The mode eschews the exploration and riddle-solving components of the main story, instead focusing on unrestrained gun battles as players seek to rake in the high-score by vanquishing as many B.O.W.s as possible. Its addictive combo-based gameplay remains incredibly satisfying, lending it that ‘just one more go’ mentality that’ll keep you plugging away until the early hours.
One of the best things about this mini-game however is the chance to play as classic characters that haven’t seen the light of day in years, or even those who have been killed outright. Since it’s not canon, Capcom is free to implement whoever they see fit. And, with Resident Evil 6 set to include its own Mercenaries mode – details of which are being kept firmly under wraps at present – PSU.com decided the time was ripe to reveal five characters we’d like to see included in the game. It goes without saying that the likes of Chris, Leon, Jake and Ada and their partners are pretty much guaranteed a place in the Mercenaries, as they're part of the core cast -- and main players always get a place in this mini-game, as you'd expect.
Did your favourite make the cut? See below, and don’t forget to post your own wishlist in the comments section below.
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1. Billy Coen
Former Marine Lieutenant Billy Coen hasn’t been seen since his first and only appearance in Resident Evil Zero (Umbrella Chronicles is simply a retelling of past events, so that doesn’t count), making him an ideal candidate for a Mercenaries revival. Coen’s muscular physique and proficiency with firearms makes him an able combatant, and just the type of bloke you want at your side when faced with an army of zombies or J’avo. While we long for Coen to return in the actual storyline, we doubt it’s going to happen – he’s on the run, after all, and has probably settled down somewhere where the threat of bio-weapons is a distant memory. Still, the Mercenaries would be a perfect opportunity to remind gamers of this underrated fellow, and we reckon he’d be an expert in heavy weapons alongside Chris. Plus, his sweet dropkick from the Umbrella Chronicles would make for a great signature melee attack, don’t you think?
2. Carlos Oliveira
Like Billy Coen, South American-born Carlos Oliveira hasn’t been seen since his debut in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis (not counting Umbrella Chronicles), where he escaped from Raccoon City alongside Jill Valentine via chopper moments before the U.S. government bombed it to hell. However, unlike Coen, Oliveira did get to star in the Mercenaries in RE3, where he specialised in pistols and automatic weaponry. Oliveira would make a great addition to the Mercenaries cast since he hasn’t been seen in years, and would help shake up the roster before it gets too dull and predictable. Plus, it would be great if he were able to team up with Jill Valentine once again, providing she turns up of course. In terms of melee attacks, Oliveira demonstrated quite a penchant for battering his opponents with the butt of his rifle in Umbrella Chronicles, so that’s an obvious inclusion right there.
3. Claire Redfield
The younger sibling of Chris Redfield is long overdue a canonical appearance in the series, though for now we’ll settle with her showing up in Mercenaries. Indeed, Miss Redfield’s appearance in The Mercenaries 3D last year was definitely a treat, and we can’t imagine her being dropped after just one game. Claire’s a pretty able lass in terms of weaponry, and we’d love to see her wielding her signature Grenade Launcher and M9 Browning HP pistol if she does indeed show her face once again. Plus, you also have the obvious appeal of brother and sister teaming up, as Chris’s appearance in Mercenaries has already been confirmed via a teaser shot released by Capcom some months ago. Speaking as long-time fans however, if there’s one thing we’d like to see it’s Claire sporting her iconic ‘Let Me Live’ jacket – that’s a must, Capcom. We’d also like to see her physical attacks revamped especially for RE6.
4. Albert Wesker
An obvious choice but one we can’t avoid, Albert Wesker has become a staple of the Mercenaries since RE4, and it wouldn’t be the same without him. Sure, he’s brown bread as far as the official canon goes, but Mercenaries doesn’t let a silly thing like that get in the way of giving us a meaty roster. Wesker is especially potent due to his super-human abilities, thus giving Capcom a chance to have a little fun in terms of basic attacks. Aside from that, his apathetic and sarcastic demeanour makes him a treat to play, and is always good for a laugh. This time however we think Capcom should spice up the melee kills a little more; RE5’s were a little tame when you consider the antics he got up to in the campaign, after all. Oh, and just for a laugh, wouldn’t it be fun to have Wesker chuck his sunglasses at an enemy to stun them, ala RE5? Failing that, just give him the Hand Cannon and be done with it.
5. Dr. William Birkin
While we could have plumped for someone like Krauser or Hunk, the fact that Mercenaries can essentially accommodate any character from the Resi universe made us think – who hasn’t been in the game yet, and ultimately, who would be most interesting? With that in mind, only one character came to mind – William Birkin. Yep, that’s the same Birkin who infected himself with the G-Virus, mutated into a hulking Tyrant-like creature, and went on a bloodthirsty rampage across Raccoon City. Capcom could totally go to down with this character, and since they’ve already utilized Krauser in the pats – a chap who’s arm could transform into Tyrant-like claw – the concept of playing as an infected individual has already been proven in the field. Birkin mutated several times in RE2, so Capcom has four-five different incarnations of the doomed doctor to pick; perhaps the pole-wielding sub-human who ambushes us at the sewer entrance? Or the multi-clawed menace who attacks Leon and Claire on the tram car? The possibilities are there, and would allow the developers to flex their creative muscles that much more. Sure, a bit of tweaking would be in order – after all, Birkin was a lumbering beast in RE2, and a little overpowered to boot – but we’ve no doubt it could work. Wesker was toned down, if you remember. Last but not least, since RE6 takes place 15 years after Raccoon City’s destruction, and William’s daughter, Sherry, is in the game, Birkin’s inclusion would definitely carry some weight to it in terms of fan service.
Resident Evil 6 is due out on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on October 2, 2012.