|Mercenaries 2: World in Flames|
Pi Studios (PS2)
LTI Gray Matter (PC)
Capybara Games (mobile)
|Released||NA August 31, 2008|
|Mode(s)||Single-player, co-operative, online multiplayer|
|Platform(s)||Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360|
|Media||Blu-ray Disc, DVD|
|Input methods||Gamepad, keyboard, mouse|
Mercenaries 2: World in Flames is the sequel to 2005's Mercenaries: Playground of Destruction, released in North America on August 31, 2008. It is developed by Pandemic Studios for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Windows, while Pi Studios is developing the PlayStation 2 version, with the publisher being Electronic Arts for all games. Also there's a mobile version developed by Capybara Games and published by I-play. The game is set in Venezuela, with Jennifer Mui, Mattias Nilsson, and Christopher Jacobs returning.
Features new to Mercenaries 2 include even more destructible environments, co-operative mode, a fire effects engine that allows the player to ignite things such as oil or foliage, improved artificial intelligence for non-player characters and the ability to swim. The game is powered by the Havok 4.5 physics engine.
New vehicles have been added, such as boats. Hijacking now consists of a small minigame, ranking in difficulty relative to the vehicle being hijacked. Another feature is the ability to switch from driver to gunner on demand. One other new addition to this iteration of Mercenaries is the ability to build a Private Military Company (PMC) and recruit mercenaries into it. There are three mercenaries that can be recruited: Eva Navarro, who will act as a mechanic once recruited, and Ewan Devlin, who is a helicopter pilot who can pick up valuable objects you may encounter, and can also extract the player if necessary. Also Misha Milanich, a bomber pilot, will be available for hire as the player's source for airstrikes.
The game features terrain ranging from urban environments such as Caracas to the Amazon rainforest.
- "Always pay your merc!"
- — The Merc's golden rule
Main Article: The Betrayal
The story follows the player's hunt for Ramon Solano, a druglord who contracted the player's mercenary for a job. Following a militaristic coup, Solano becomes the dictator of Venezuela. He uses his position to seize control of the country's oil supply, resulting in an international incident and distress among OPEC. Alongside Solano's Rebel Forces, a large portion of the Venezuelan army fiercely support the dictator's cause. The other rebel forces, in opposition to Solano, have risen under the name of the PLAV--the People's Liberation Army of Venezuela. Soon, numerous other factions join the fight for control of Venezuela's oil. Among them: The massive Universal Petroleum Corporation and its private military; the Rastafarian Pirates (the equivalent of the Russian Mafia), People's Liberation Army of Venezuela (PLAV), China's People's Liberation Army, and the Allied Nations. These five forces will inevitably form the backbone of a war to determine the fate of the country's oil supply.
Betrayed, the player's mercenary will ally him/herself with any of the other factions to get even with Solano, and make some money along the way...
Next-gen platform and PlayStation 2 discrepancies
While the PS3, Xbox 360, and PC versions are all the same, the PlayStation 2 version of the game is substantially different, with certain contracts not shared by both versions, the nature of missions being drastically changed, the order of missions being reshuffled, certain characters that exist in one version that don't appear in the other, as well as numerous gameplay features lacking in the PS2 version, to name but a few.
Trophies and achievements
Mercenaries 2: World in Flames released with achievements on Xbox 360, sometime later the major 2.0 "Payback" update was released that introduced trophy support on PlayStation 3, among other things like worldwide co-operative mode and cheats. A list of the trophies and achievements for Mercenaries 2 can be found here.
Originally, Mercenaries 2 did not feature any cheats, but after the major 2.0 "Payback" update cheats were released for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, a list of which can be found here. When using cheats in any game, achievement/trophies are disabled on that game save file.
The game has been criticized by the Venezuelan government, accusing the U.S. government and Pandemic Studios of trying to drum up support from the American public for a real-life invasion with the purpose of overthrowing Hugo Chávez. Pandemic Studios had previously developed training aids for the US Army. In response to the criticism, the official Mercenaries 2 website included the following disclaimer.
- "Pandemic Studios is in the business of entertainment. It has never been contacted by any U.S. government agency concerning the development of Mercenaries 2. All persons, storylines and events are purely fictional and bear no relation to real events. As with any number of games, movies and books, the decision to choose interesting events and locations is purely designed to tell a compelling story, as well as provide a fun and rich experience for the gamer."
- — Disclaimer on official Mercenaries 2 website
Despite the claim that Mercenaries 2 was intended to drum up support for an American attack, the portrayal of the United States through Universal Petroleum and the Allied Nations secretly led by Agent Joyce is less than flattering. Along with China, the US is only interested in the oil, and the only factions that seems to have the citizens interests in mind are the People's Liberation Army of Venezuela and, ironically, the Venezuelan Army itself.
- Hilary Goldstein, HG. 2007, Mercenaries 2: Meet Your Mercs, viewed 20 April 2008, <http://au.ign.com/articles/2007/05/28/mercenaries-2-meet-your-mercs>.
- Mercenaries 2: World in Flames' Wikipedia page
- Patrick Klepek, PK. 2006, Mercenaries 2: World in Flames PlayStation 3 Preview, viewed 20 April 2008, <http://www.1up.com/previews/mercenaries-2_7>.
- Dave McCarthy, DM. 2007, Mercenaries 2: World in Flames Preview, viewed 20 April 2008, <http://au.ign.com/articles/2007/07/24/mercenaries-2-world-in-flames-preview>.
- Venezuelan anger at computer game, viewed 10 July 2006, <http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/5016514.stm>.