Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39
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  1. A must have for two audiences: those who have been looking for a game that lets you play around with a virtual version of an illegal substance, and those who enjoy a great puzzle game that takes a lot of skill to master.
  2. Pelit (Finland)
    An excellent puzzle game with a realistically behaving mercury blob. The camera causes some problems occasionally, but nothing major. [Apr 2006]
  3. Like "Lumines," it’s a classy-looking, addictive, and highly challenging game. But your cerebral activity is guaranteed a tougher workout with this one.
  4. The controls are very easy, the levels are fun and challenging. The graphics are very good and the game is worth every penny.
  5. Some, even those in our office, have passed the game off as a weak puzzler in light of some of the more impressive stuff like Lumines, but I'll be damned if it isn't something different and perfectly suited for a high-powered portable medium. Go buy it.
  6. With all of its original game design, multiple game modes, and creative level design, Mercury just oozes with style, and is a must own title for anyone with a PSP who enjoys a game that challenges your mind and your reflexes.
  7. The unique gameplay and puzzles, as well as the balanced increase in difficulty, makes for an addicting and rewarding experience. There may not be too much replay value in this one, but it’s definitely entertaining enough to give it a shot.
  8. Mercury is a solid game that is easy to pick up, yet hard to master and certainly results in many hours of addictive gameplay.
  9. 80
    It’s another addicting puzzle game for the PSP, but this isn’t quite as good as "Lumines" was. Had the two games been packaged together, they would have been arguably one of the best puzzle packages ever.
  10. 80
    The animation effects, while simple, are true to the nature of the game, right down to how the little gobs of mercury break up when you hit a divider or go around a wall a bit too fast.
  11. I've had more fun playing Mercury than any other PSP game so far. It is my new "Zoo Keeper." That is all.
  12. Mercury exhibits a perfect hierarchy of challenge and reward... The pain becomes the pleasure because, in spite of the extraordinary degree of trial and error (practically requiring a degree in the subject), there’s never any moment that feels broken or exploitative. [June 2005, p.91]
  13. The absence of sandbox mode, an uninspired multiplayer mode, and rapid difficulty increase in the levels all detract from an otherwise spectacular offering.
  14. games(TM)
    Mercury’s subtle combination of spot-on physics, obvious answers and hidden short cuts creates a game of continual perfection and frustration alike - what more could you ask for from a great puzzle game? [June 2005, p.104]
  15. A challenging, rewarding and innovative puzzle game.
  16. With a solid graphics engine and some decent audio effects to boot, there’s no doubting that Archer Maclean’s Mercury offers an engrossing, absorbing PSP gaming experience that offers the sort of longevity most titles can only dream of – even if you do run the risk of losing handfuls of hair each time you play it.
  17. AceGamez
    With over seventy levels and a multiplayer option, there's enough in Archer MacLean's Mercury to keep you going for a fair while.
  18. For PSP puzzle fans on the hunt for another game to complement their current Lumines addiction, Mercury is a solid choice.
  19. 78
    It may not quite be the masterpiece I wanted but if you're looking for an excellent puzzle game which you can jump in and out of at will then Mercury's definitely a PSP launch title to take a butchers at.
  20. 77
    On the pure level of maddening puzzle challenge and an ingenious gameplay concept, however, it's oozing appeal.
  21. I got sucked in for awhile, but the trial and error game play and non-stop mazes wore me out.
  22. Excepting its peach-perfect fit on the young platform, Mercury is hardly mind-blowing—how many puzzle games are?—and can't match Lumines for sensation and impact. This is simply a very good puzzle game conceit that's been unassailably well implemented into a sensibly balanced and handsome title.
  23. 75
    A surprisingly addictive puzzle game that not only looks great, but is also insanely deep.
  24. If this Mercury was put into a thermometer, it would be floating just above “lukewarm”.
  25. When Mercury is at its best, it's an elegantly simple and addictive action-puzzler. When it's at its worst, it's like a tedious pop quiz from an unpredictable, bad-tempered teacher.
  26. Cheat Code Central
    Everyone will be simply fascinated by this game but not everyone will feel compelled to take on the challenge to complete it.
  27. 70
    It falls short in a few areas, and the missing tilt-sensor is a disappointment, but puzzle fans with patience and those into heavy metals would still do well to give this one a roll.
  28. 70
    If you're a competent gamer with a steady hand you'll be able to complete every challenge eventually, but beating the game "clean" is going to require quite a specific skill set that may ultimately not make this entertaining for everyone.
  29. PSM Magazine
    The default control scheme is awful, but the alternate is perfect. [June 2005, p.85]
  30. Official U.S. Playstation Magazine
    A nice puzzle compilation for those who are dexterous of hand rather than mind. [July 2005, p.78]
  31. Once you get used to the controls you'll be fine... but all too often levels seem like chores rather than challenges. [PSW]
  32. Mercury has tons of potential, but it doesn't realize much of it. A sequel that added an autosave feature, perfected the puzzle designs and smoothed out the uneven difficulty would be an utter blast.
  33. Game Informer
    Its trial-and-error gameplay seems a bit too old school for the sexy new system. [May 2005, p.130]
  34. Mercury can be quite fun and quite challenging, though ultimately short, but sometimes sweet. The project feels somewhat incomplete.
  35. If Mercury had twice the amount of puzzles, a decent multi-player mode and some mini-games or other challenges, it’d be a great game. As it stands now, it’s a decent diversion that lasts 3-5 hours, but one not worth $40.
  36. netjak
    While its core concept and educational fluid dynamics demonstrations earned the game a couple tenths of a point extra in the Overall category, it unfortunately commits the two cardinal sins of a puzzle game. No replay, and no learning curve.
  37. 60
    A visually stunning game mired in repetition, or a hardcore puzzlers dream come true? I'd say a bit of both.
  38. 60
    Mercury demands a lot, and doesn’t offer many ways for deficient players to build their skills for later levels.
  39. It doesn’t really have the endless appeal of something like "Lumines," "Puyo Pop" or "Tetris," but the problem solving, logical puzzles and interesting physics make it nonetheless enjoyable.

Awards & Rankings

#39 Most Discussed PSP Game of 2005
#53 Most Shared PSP Game of 2005
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 23 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 23
  2. Negative: 6 out of 23
  1. Assimov
    May 20, 2007
    Good game for persons who like fight the chrono and against previous times.
  2. WeirdN.
    Sep 19, 2005
    Wow! An original and mature puzzle game for Sony's shiny new trinket! I think that puzzle games of this type fit handheld gaming really Wow! An original and mature puzzle game for Sony's shiny new trinket! I think that puzzle games of this type fit handheld gaming really well. The levels in this game are well judged, always taxing but beatable. Many of them make you think 'No Way!' until you crack them after a few practice runs. It makes a nice break from the reaction puzzles of Lumines. A couple of blemishes on this game are a lack of auto save (why? surely that takes about 15 miuntes to code and is a feature in every title since whenever!) and long load times meaning that it isn't as pick up and play as it could be. You may find yourself relying on the suspend feature a lot. Also, to get the unlocks is simply impossible. To get all the high scores needs reference to an online guide or a sociopathic addiction to this kind of game. They're uber-hard. If you enjoy original puzzle games you won't be dissapointed with this. Maybe a sequel will iron out the rough spots and give us another great game?! More games of this quality and originality on PSP please! Full Review »
  3. SamT.
    Sep 6, 2005
    Original and fun for a bit. got bored after 3 days.