|Platform(s)||Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Linux, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One|
|Release||Windows / Mac OS X|
March 25, 2014
April 1, 2014
Nintendo Switch, PlayStation Vita, Xbox One
February 6, 2018
|Genre(s)||Shoot 'em up|
Mercenary Kings is a side-scrolling shoot 'em up game developed and published by Tribute Games. The game was funded by Kickstarter and was released for Microsoft Windows on March 25, 2014 and for PlayStation 4 on April 1, 2014. Alongside the Mercenary Kings: Reloaded update, versions for the Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PlayStation Vita were released on February 6, 2018. An early-access version of the game was released on Steam on July 23, 2013.
Mercenary Kings is a side-scrolling shoot 'em up/run 'n gun similar to games like SNK's Metal Slug series. Players can jump, crouch, roll, shoot in four directions and use a short range frontal melee attack to make their way through 100+ missions with a variety of enemies, bosses, and locations. Mercenary Kings offers up to four player co-op with online or local split screen play.
Missions are structured akin to the Monster Hunter series with levels accessed one at a time from a central hub area. Players gain rank points upon completion which are used to rank up and unlock more difficult sets of missions. Objectives vary from one level to another and include boss battles, hostage rescues, item collection, and more.
The game also features a detailed loot-based customization system. Enemies drop certain kinds of loot depending on their type which can be used to craft weapon parts, knives, armor, or mods which give unique player abilities. Gun creation involves crafting multiple components which affect the weapon’s stats such as firing rate, magazine size, and weight. Ammo types can also be switched out to add elemental damage or change bullet behavior, though not all ammo types are compatible with all guns.
Tribute Games, formed from the team who previously worked on Scott Pilgrim vs. the World: The Game, including animator Paul Robertson, launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund production of Mercenary Kings. Their initial target was $75,000 for a basic PC version, with additional milestones listed to add additional levels and modes, online support and a console version. The Kickstarter received a total of $116,064. At E3 2013, Sony announced at their press conference that the game would receive a console release on the PlayStation 4. On July 23, 2013, an early-access version of the game, containing 60 of the final game's 100 missions, was released on Steam. A PlayStation Vita version of the game includes Cross-Buy and other cross-features.
Mercenary Kings received mixed reviews upon release, with score of 70 for PlayStation 4 and 76 for PC version while user scores were lower with 5.9 for PlayStation 4 and 6.5 for PC version respectively by the aggregation website Metacritic.
- "Flinthook and Mercenary Kings coming to Switch". Retrieved January 27, 2018.
- "Tribute Games, Mercenary Kings! Out Today On Steam!!!". Blog.tributegames.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- Moriarty, Colin (25 April 2014). "Mercenary Kings Review". IGN. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
- Hancock, Patrick (1 April 2014). "Review: Mercenary Kings". Destructoid. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
- "Mercenary Kings by Tribute Games — Kickstarter". Kickstarter.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- Suszek, Mike (2013-06-10). "Mercenary Kings coming to PS4". Joystiq.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- "Tribute Games is bringing Mercenary Kings to the Vita". Destructoid.com. Retrieved 2015-05-28.
- "Mercenary Kings for PlayStation 4 Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 26 May 2014.
- "Mercenary Kings reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved Apr 3, 2014.