MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries – Review
Follow Genre: Action, Mech battle
Developer: Piranha Games Inc.
Publisher: Sold Out
Platform: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X,
Tested on: PC

MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries – Review

Site Score
Good: Fighting enormous robots, Hours of gameplay, Nice attention to details
Bad: An unforgiving difficulty curve that is steep to climb at first
User Score
(1 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Fighting with toy robots is something that we all did when we were kids. We sat in front of the TV while watching Gundam Wing or Megas XLR, dreaming of piloting our own Mech one day. Now many years later we are greeted with MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries, the latest installment in the popular MechWarrior series. While MechWarrior 5 has already been out for a couple of years, it returned to the spotlights thanks to its two new DLCs that add a ton of content. This game boasts high realism with a simulation factor that truly creates the impression you’re controlling your own personal Mech.


The story of MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries is a rather sad one. The campaign starts with Mason (you), who is now old enough to commandeer his own Mech. Fahad the chief mechanic has fixed up an old Centurion and orders you to give her a run for her money. During the test trials with your father Nikolai, you both get ambushed by a mysterious group of mercenaries demanding information about something unclear to you at this time. They demand answers and, whilst both of you don’t know what they’re talking about, they decide to get the information by any means necessary. Both of you get hit hard and right before they try to kill you, Nikolai sacrifices himself so you can live to tell the tale.

After a long recovery, you are put in the lead of Nikolai’s old squad “Nik’s Cavaliers”, a small mercenary outfit that is rather unfortunately trapped on a planet. After escaping the damned planet, you work your way up in the mercenary’s food chain to uncover the reason why your dad was assassinated on that unfortunate day. The story starts off in a fairly impressive fashion but ultimately gets dulled down by the very long grind that follows. Nonetheless, it’s still a decent story to plow through.


Visually the game emits different vibes. On one hand, the game looks quite impressive with attention to detail, interesting environments, and a lot of visual damage to Mechs and other items. On the other hand, some places might feel a bit emptier and some textures look a bit dated. One might think that this was a design choice, so you can roam around on large maps with enough visible details, without having a very expensive gaming rig.

If you mostly play inside your Mech, then you will notice the many buttons, HUD elements, and general wear of the inside when you get hit. On the outside, you can clearly see visible damage on other Mechs, missing parts, impacts, fire damage, and much more.


Not only is the game visually entertaining, but it also sports a great soundtrack. The sound effects are very bombastic and rockets and other weapons pack a proper punch. All the characters are nicely voiced and the cast presents you with a lot of different accents. There is some music playing in the background, but this is quickly phased out when you are concentrating on evading hostile fire.


MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries is a Mech battle game where you need to complete missions to increase your reputation and become the most loved or hated mercenary in the solar system. The game has two basic modes that can both be played in online co-op. To start, you can select the campaign mode, where you play as Mason, the only son of Nikolai Mason and the former leader of Nik’s Cavaliers. Here you must grow your mercenary group and become more powerful to one day exact your revenge on those who killed your father. Not feeling the grind? Then you can just go into the career mode and play as one of the other mercenary outfits that roam space.

The game starts with a simple short tutorial on how to manage your Mech. The controls are pretty simple and it doesn’t take long to learn them. The way that the campaign mode is set up is so that new players can get a feel for the game while holding your hand through the first big steps. If you are a returning player, or you want to dive headfirst into the chaos, then just can skip it all in the career mode.

Fighting your way through the missions proves to be pretty spicy. Fights can be won and lost by letting your guard down for one second. Micromanaging the temperatures of your Mech, which ensures that your weapons stay online, can be a hurdle to overcome at the beginning. Every action you take, including firing your weapons, will heat up your Mech, and when it overheats you’ll be unable to fight for a short while. This means you can’t just keep spamming all attack buttons for your different weapons. When you overcome some of the game’s initial hurdles, you’ll find a deep and engaging experience.

After each mission, you will have to repair your mech and this can cost a pretty penny. Broken parts will need to be replaced and when you run out of these, you’ll need to purchase a replacement. The game tends to be harsh at first, teaching you that you must fend for yourself. When a friendly pilot is shot down, there is always the chance of them dying, so be sure to keep them healthy and don’t risk it all. New recruits can be difficult to find, which is something that is not clearly explained to you in the beginning.

Playing with friends is always more fun, but it can be a bit frustrating at first in MechWarriors 5: Mercenaries. As you can either play the story and career mode in co-op, it is advised that every person learns the game first. The host of the game will be responsible for maintaining the Mechs, but if your friends play recklessly or take too much damage, this will come out of your paychecks. The best way is to either have all players trained in the story mode or learn the game by resetting your save file in the career mode each time you mess up.

As mentioned in the introduction, MechWarrior 5 became a lot more relevant again thanks to the release of two DLCs: Heroes of the Inner Sphere and Legend of the Kestrel Lancers. Both DLCs add a lot of new content, where Heroes of the Inner Sphere adds the career mode, a huge amount of new bots, weapons, and Legend of the Kestrel Lancers makes the campaign mode even more interesting with the addition of 14 new missions with unique mechanics, custom dialogue and cinematics. These expansions also add new biomes and all this new content flows seamlessly into what was already present, making it look like one big game, rather than a base game with expansions.


MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries is a very time-consuming game if you wish to progress, but it does feel rewarding when you slowly start achieving your goals. From its elaborate yet easy-to-master control system to the story giving you the incentive to grow your mercenary outfit for revenge, you will have loads of things to do. The graphics look great but can feel a bit dated from time to time, especially when you start taking a closer look at certain parts of the different maps. Outside these somewhat dated parts, when it comes to Mechs themselves, the attention to detail is splendid and the sheer damage that Mechs accumulate during missions is an awesome sight to behold. All the characters are nicely voiced and the game is an absolute blast to play with a friend in co-op. Thanks to the two additional DLCs you will have a lot of content to plow through, and because of the large variety of Mechs, weapons, maps, and activities, the game offers plenty to experiment with.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries – Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

Never give up on a dream. It might be a long nightmare, but one day it will change into a beautiful reality - MC_JP 2014

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