Screenshot by Destructoid

Tips for every character in Resident Evil 4 remake’s Mercenaries mode

There are four characters at launch

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We waited several weeks for Resident Evil 4 remake’s Mercenaries mode, and now it’s here! Let’s look at all four launch characters and their loadouts, and see who comes out on top.

What is “Mayhem Mode” in Resident Evil 4 remake Mercenaries?

In action games like God of War or Devil May Cry, each hero can typically initiate a button combo to trigger a “rage” mode for a limited time after building up a meter. Mayhem Mode, which is now present in this iteration of Mercs, is kinda like that.

Mayhem Mode builds up over time or can be boosted by picking up yellow orbs scattered around each battleground. To trigger it once the meter is full, press the left and right analog sticks in at the same time. Note that every character’s Mayhem Mode is different! We’ll be going over all of them below.

Screenshot by Destructoid

Leon’s loadout

Unlock Condition: Leon is available right at the start as the sole default playable hero: you’ll need to unlock the rest of the cast by getting at least an A rank on any stage with each subsequent character. In other words, getting an A rank or higher with Leon will unlock Luis, and so on up the chain. We have a full guide on how ranks work here.

As an all-arounder, Leon can tackle multiple situations with a solid handgun, a shotgun, and a rifle. He also starts with one healing item, which is standard for everyone but Luis (who comes with two). Other than his shotgun he lacks crowd control at the start, and doesn’t come equipped with any grenades. With that in mind, anyone who is used to juggling weapons will be able to handle Leon, as he has strong close combat and ranged capabilities with his enhanced weaponry.

Mayhem Mode: Leon’s Mayhem Mode is interesting, as it enhances the skill of the player directly by boosting his speed and attack power. Unlike a few other characters, Leon’s Mayhem Mode is what you make of it. You really need to be on it to utilize that speed boost and keep your combos going for a higher rank.

Screenshot by Destructoid

Luis’ loadout

Unlock Condition: Luis is unlocked after beating any level with Leon with an A rank or higher.

Luis has one of the best loadouts of any Mercenaries characters I’ve seen to date: especially for newcomers. He has a formidable Red9 pistol to take care of most threats, and a rifle for pinpoint aiming (which is super useful for taking out the catapults in the castle). He also starts with two healing items, which can help keep you in the run longer and get your bearings. His Mayhem Mode is great for keeping combos alive, too.

Mayhem Mode: Luis has a fittingly stylish Mayhem ability in that he drops dynamite on the ground that can blow up multiple enemies like a grenade. The best part is that while he can only drop one stick of dynamite at a time, he can trigger it multiple times while his Mayhem Mode is active. One big tip to keep in mind is that you can shoot the dynamite stacks to clear them out and put more down (Luis won’t even take damage from his own Mayhem ability).

Funnily enough, Luis can go out in a blaze of glory too: his dynamite explosions wrack up kills/points after he’s dead.

Screenshot by Destructoid

Krauser’s loadout

Unlock Condition: Krauser is unlocked by beating any level with Luis with an A rank or higher.

Krauser is what I’d consider the most complicated character of the lot, as his bow and arrow focus can be tough for a lot of people to pick up. Krauser really needs to pick up his arrows from fallen foes to keep himself stocked up, as his TMP will run out of ammo very quickly (especially near the start, which can be crucial for a good run). Thankfully he has three flashbangs; which are very useful for the denizens of the castle stage (where lots of Plagas heads can pop up). Krauser’s knife-based focus is a boon for folks who have learned how to parry from the campaign, backing up his veteran style gameplay.

Mayhem Mode: Krauser literally turns into a monster with his Mayhem Mode, and mutates temporarily while his meter lasts. He can slice up enemies easily with the attack button, or lunge with aim + attack (L2 + R2 or LT + RT). Useful as a functional panic button or a way to clear out elites, Krauser’s Mayhem Mode is a powerhouse tool that’s easy to use.

Screenshot by Destructoid

Hunk’s loadout

Unlock Condition: Hunk is unlocked by beating any level with Krauser with an A rank or higher.

Although he’s the last character you get to unlock, Hunk is a very straightforward pick that can help you climb the ranks in all three levels. His one-weapon loadout is streamlined in the sense that you don’t need to worry about juggling multiple weapons/types of ammo during combat, and he starts with three grenades that can clear out early elites. His Mayhem Mode is also insane, and can be triggered when elites arrive on the scene to quickly clear them out.

Mayhem Mode: Hunk’s Mayhem Mode gives him access to unlimited ammo with his submachine gun. Not only does this put his SMG into an “infinite ammo” state instantly, you also do not need to reload, and it lasts for quite a while. Keep this in mind when you’re reloading out of habit: you don’t need to!

Wait, where’s Ada and Wesker?

Ada didn’t make the cut at launch for Resident Evil 4 remake’s redone Mercenaries mode (and neither did Wesker). Hopefully, she’s added later as part of the potential Separate Ways/Assignment: Ada DLC. And we double-hope it’s not at a premium!


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Managing Editor - Chris has been enjoying Destructoid avidly since 2008. He finally decided to take the next step in January of 2009 blogging on the site. Now, he's staff!