Mixed or average reviews - based on 69 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 69
  2. Negative: 2 out of 69
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  1. Mercenaries 2 is absolutely fun in spite of its quirks and should be at the top of everyone’s must buy list.
  2. Pelit (Finland)
    Mercenaries 2: World in Flames is as perfect as sequels come. It takes everything that was good with the original title and polishes it to a mirror sheen perfection. Nevermind a few enemy AI annoyances, World in Flames is undoubtedly one of greatest modern sandbox-shooters. [Sept 2008]
  3. Games Master UK
    A souped-up return that delivers pyrotechnic perfection but lacks the depth of other games. [Nov 2008, p.73]
  4. Small gripes aside, Mercenaries 2: World in Flames is a title for anyone who’s ever stomped on a sand castle, mashed together Tonka trucks, or blown something up. It’s big, it’s bad, and the thrill of demolishing everything in sight never gets old.
  5. Mercenaries 2 gives you a big environment to explore (and destroy), tons of vehicles and weaponry, and varied missions, making it a great step up from its predecessor.
  6. 85
    The ability to approach missions as you want to or just cruise around town in a tank, blowing stuff up is something you can't get anywhere else and simply must be experienced.
  7. A must play game. It’s not a story-driven masterpiece experience like "Grand Theft Auto IV," but it is genuinely fun.
  8. 83
    It won't light the world on fire, but this next-gen playground of destruction offers you tons to do (well, tons to explode), it's always enjoyable, and I dove right back in after the credits rolled.
  9. Occasional hiccups or no, having this much open-world freedom to come at the enemy any old way you see fit is just too much damned fun.
  10. The sequel adds considerable depth to the original's plus points, without turning it into a serious economic simulation of trying to work out how to get the right amount of Snickers bars to feed your hungry mercenaries.
  11. 80
    Mercs 2 is a largely successful effort that will literally give you more "bang" for your buck than most games out there.
  12. 80
    Mercenaries 2 is a lot of fun if you don't get bogged down by its rough-hewn minutiae and relish the simple pleasures of blowing things up.
  13. The design and concept behind Mercs 2 is fantastic. Some of the artistic ideas and especially the music are totally top notch. It’s just a shame the entire experience doesn’t quite live up to expectations.
  14. A satisfying amount of destruction, whether you blow up an oilrig with a well-armed helicopter or bring down a building with C4 and gas tanks. It's engaging and exciting, especially if you play co-op.
  15. Certainly not as good as GTA IV, the similarly playing Mercenaries 2 still is enough of a blast romping through the jungles and cities of Venezuela with hot and heavy gunplay.
  16. All considered though, Mercenaries 2 isn’t a complicated game to assess. It’s a stupid action game in a long and storied tradition of stupid action games.
  17. While a disaster on the PC, this game shines on the next-gen consoles. It's a back-to-basics title that allows you to destroy pretty much everything around you, and you'll have no end of fun doing so.
  18. AceGamez
    Let down but not ruined by quirky AI, dodgy physics and some bland design, Mercenaries 2: World in Flames still manages to deliver childish fun for grown-ups - and if you don't regard it with too critical an eye then you'll see that there really is a hidden gem beneath the buggy mud.
  19. The game in general though is just a whole lot of fun.
  20. 79
    For every time I cursed the stupid AI, I cheered at the demolition of another building. For every bug that got me stuck in some bushes, there was an attack chopper waiting to be jacked. If Mercenaries 2 had more polish, it would have been a great game. As is, it’s still worth playing – and enjoyable – but falls far short of its promise.
  21. World in Flames delivers on what it tries to be--a high octane playground of destruction.
  22. Really enjoyable to play, especially when playing online with a friend, and should be purchased by any destruction loving fan.
  23. The game is worth a rental and a purchase if you want to keep your destruction going. So if you’re looking for a fun game, check out Mercs 2.
  24. Blowing stuff up with a buddy absolutely rocks, but the AI is anything but intelligent and the graphics are a bit disappointing.
  25. It’s an ugly game, both visually and technically. But for all that I hate the stuff under the bonnet (or hood), it manages to drive and lets you blow things up, lots. There’s a market of people who will love that, and doing it co-op in drop-in drop-out multiplayer might just clinch the deal.
  26. Despite a plethora of technical problems that make Mercenaries 2: World in Flames feel like an unfinished title, it remains a lot of to play. You can bring down a city with the press of a button, and the explosions are simply breathtaking. I had a lot of fun while I was playing, but the mediocre length and frequent bugs make the title a little hard to recommend for $60.
  27. It’s a giant, busy sandbox full of all kinds of fiery and destructive toys, but you have to get a firm handle on the game’s uneven tempo and immersion-breaking little quirks to fully enjoy the amount of freedom it offers.
  28. If you like your open-world games, guns and massive explosions then Mercs 2 will set your world on fire, and should still please open-world fans despite its many faults. It just may be worth waiting for the bargain bin sales or opt for a rental instead.
  29. Mercenaries 2, much like their in-game avatars, succeeds by getting the job done with no frills and nothing more. To many gamers that just may be enough.
  30. If I had to sum Mercenaries up in one word, I would say “fun.” If I had to sum it up in five, I would say “fun but glitchy as hell!”
  31. Mercenaries 2 is a bit of a dissapointment, If you like blowing stuff up with a friend its great but as a single player game it seems a bit shallow.
  32. 75
    You will find that the action-packed explosion-fest that is Mercenaries 2 is kinda like a good action film: light on story, heavy on action and sure to keep a big, dopey grin on your face the entire time you play.
  33. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    It won't light the world on fire, but this playground offers plenty of things to do and destroy. [Nov 2008, p.69]
  34. The arcade style shooting mixed in with the Hollywood blockbuster epicness delivers one of the more satisfying action games in recent years. If you’re a skeptic you should at least give Mercenaries 2 a shot.
  35. I suppose it’s fitting that Mercs 2, like most topics bearing the weight of political posturing, is ultimately flaccid. But that doesn’t stop me from expecting more.
  36. If you really wanted to get more out of rampaging around in GTAIV or want to go through an open-world action game with a buddy together over Live, then this one is worth your money. Otherwise, you might want to keep your cash and see what the rest of the holiday season offers us.
  37. Having to muddle through numerous menus to use the game's impressive airstrikes, travel all over the map to find work and shops, your inability to find a gun that fires straight, and a serious lack of challenge hamper what would otherwise be a fun and destruction-filled romp.
  38. Xbox World 360 Magazine UK
    Shabby around the edges - but that only adds to the charm of this daft playground. [Dec 2008, p.86]
  39. 70
    When there's dirty work to be done and you're looking for a hired gun, looks and originality don't matter much-all that matters is whether they can get the job done. You can approach Mercenaries 2 in the same way, letting it do its thing instead of obsessing about its shortcomings. Sure, it isn't exactly pretty and it doesn't reinvent the wheel but it does pack a nice satisfying punch.
  40. Mercenaries 2 doesn’t quite live up to all the good work done by the original and makes a bunch of new mistakes, but still proves entertaining enough to warrant a look.
  41. All in all, Mercenaries 2 was, despite certain shortcomings, a lot of visceral fun and a great catharsis of destruction.
  42. 70
    Mercs is all explosions with little care given to the wrappings. The lack of real story actually keeps the game playable and in the future Pandemic may be better off forgoing the pretense of plot.
  43. Mercenaries 2 is arguably a bigger and more ambitious game than the original, but it feels less polished and less satisfying.
  44. Though the game may feel rushed in places, and very rough around the edges, it does exactly what you’d expect it to – builds on the original game’s idea of a free-roaming gun for hire selling their military expertise to the highest bidder.
  45. Maxi Consolas (Portugal)
    Non-stop action and an amazing destruction engine are the key elements in this sequel, even more ambitious than the original. And it’s true that a few flaws, especially in the graphics and AI, spoil the final result, but the mindless fun it’s all there. [Sept 2008]
  46. There probably won't be any reviews claiming the game is awful or unplayable, but Mercenaries 2 has the distinct disadvantage of being too little too late on next-gen systems with far better choices for your gaming dollar.
  47. If you’re a big a fan of blowing things up, then you’ll love this game. Literally everything can be turned into flames, but the longer you play the more you realize that Venezuela is not the real deal when it comes to “virtual paradise”.
  48. Only the unconditional fans of the most frantic and brainless action will find joy in World in Flames. Mercenaries 2 fails in its work to jump into the Next-Gen, and it´s because of repetitive and clumsy gameplay. Abundant Bugs, little difficulty and short term boredom are the main negative points of a game that only shines in the destructive way.
  49. Mercenaries 2: World in Flames certainly lives up to its name. It's as if Pandemic made a game just to show of “hey look at the cool explosions we can do!” It's too bad the AI and graphical glitches bring such a promising game to a frustrating halt.
  50. The game delivers entertaining - although sometimes frustrating, sometime hilarious and sometimes jaw dropping gameplay, and with a small bit of patience, it ends up being an amusing and for the most part, an enjoyable experience.
  51. Mercenaries 2 feels like a rush-job sequel to a game that came out years ago, and for every step forward it takes at least two or three back.
  52. Once you get past the terrible opening missions and start blowing things up with massive explosions there's a game here that is worth a look, but it's criminally unpolished and as such will leave many gamers rather unsatisfied.
  53. That Mercenaries 2: World in Flames isn't better seriously bums me out. Even in its current state you can see so much potential for breakneck, anarchic fun, which makes its laundry list of problems that much more frustrating.
  54. 60
    Mercenaries 2 won't entice those expecting glitch-free gaming, diverse missions, gritty realism, and cerebral combat. Yet for the run-and-gun crowd, it's escapist entertainment worth seeking out just for the sheer amount of chaos you can create within the colorful jungle setting. It’s not long, it's not deep, but it's never boring, especially with a friend.
  55. 60
    A big brash bully of an open world shooter which rarely shines.
  56. Mercs 2 is nothing short of a monumental disappointment.
  57. The only redeeming value of Mercenaries 2 is the online co-op play, but even that has bugs and glitches.
  58. games(TM)
    With a little more substance it could have achieved something greater, but as it stands we’ll be looking to Far Cry 2’s release later in the year to satiate out non-linear jungle needs. [Nov 2008, p.108]
  59. With the success of the first game you'd think that Pandemic would easily concoct a winning formula for the sequel to the first Mercenaries. Alas, that's not the case and Mercenaries 2: World in Flames feels surprisingly ancient for a game released on the current generation of consoles. Granted, wreaking havoc with a friend in co-op is a lot of fun, but if you plan to play on your own you're better off playing the PS2/Xbox-original.
  60. Without the distraction that lovable licensed characters provide, I was faced with the inescapable conclusion that Mercenaries 2 was a mediocre title, suitable only for those who fantasize about using attack helicopters to slay entire countries.
  61. Overall Mercenaries 2: World in Flames is disappointing. There are a handful of noticeable bugs and glitches in the game, both in the cinematics and gameplay.
  62. The usually reliable Pandemic has produced a game that not only fails to compete with any current-generation openworld, but somehow takes a backward step from the original. With uninspiring combat contributing to a succession of desperately poor missions, the only remaining question is whether the developer will get a third chance to rectify matters.
  63. Mercenaries 2 is filled with bugs and glitches that are unacceptable in a retail release. Even if it were possible to overlook the broken elements, you're still left with abysmal AI, repetitive mission structure, unsatisfying weapons, and a huge world without much to do.
  64. With its threadbare narrative, unlikable characters, uninspired combat, and myriad technical issues, Mercenaries 2 is a huge disappointment. There’s some fun to be had blowing up buildings with a friend online, but playing through enough of the game to unlock these weapons is more of a chore than it’s worth.
  65. Somehow, against all the odds, the game still manages to be fun. Perhaps it’s the sheer over-the-topness of everything, Mercenaries 2 displays an exuberance missing from so many “realistic” games these days and it is this that will hold interest long after it should have waned.
  66. Mercs 2 turns out as a disappointing action game, weak in all technic departments, be it graphics, AI or the dead at birth multiplayer. So much wasted potential.
  67. This is definitely not the Mercenaries 2 you were asking for!
  68. The whole game feels like an insipid GTA clone that overemphasizes mindless destruction. For some games, this is enough, if it's done with style. In Mercs 2, it just feels pointless and without soul.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 162 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 98 out of 162
  2. Negative: 31 out of 162
  1. Jun 13, 2012
    Just writing this review to give a quick warning: Mercenaries 2 servers were taken down about a year ago, and the game will freeze your XboxJust writing this review to give a quick warning: Mercenaries 2 servers were taken down about a year ago, and the game will freeze your Xbox if you try to play while connected to Xbox Live. You MUST play offline. There is a workaround involving a demo for another EA game, but this ought to have been fixed by now. Way to go, EA, you've ruined an otherwise good game. Full Review »
  2. mikebare
    Dec 13, 2008
    This game is definitely fun. You can play it the way you want, be it running and gunning like superman or staying back and calling inThis game is definitely fun. You can play it the way you want, be it running and gunning like superman or staying back and calling in airstrikes to clear out hostiles like a special ops member. There isn't as much of a feeling of freedom as the Grand Theft Auto series, but i honestly take the Mercs game much more seriously. Full Review »
  3. JaceN.
    Sep 22, 2008
    My advice to anyone is stick with the original as Mercenaries 2 seems to be suffering a "Just Cause" infection with a hint of EA-ism. The My advice to anyone is stick with the original as Mercenaries 2 seems to be suffering a "Just Cause" infection with a hint of EA-ism. The worst addition has to be the regenerative health as on its own merits...may make the game easier to cope with but in practical terms...made Pandemic think it was okay now to throw ten times the pain at you now players have regenerative health. Most fights degrade into "get splattered with a rocket...hide while you heal...kill whoever dares come find you...rinse & repeat till bored and annoyed". The graphics are awful, skin displays a stupid radiactive red glow if the fake sunlight/HDR lighting hits it, loads of screen tearing, texture/object popup, friendly AI that forgets how to shoot until youre standing in front of them, enemy AI that can see through walls, millions of dollars to buy airstrikes but not a cent can be spent on clothing (you have to complete near impossible wager challenges with Fiona to UNLOCK them) and whisper quiet ill-timed dialogue that gets drowned out by any other noise. There may have been a market for this years ago but with so many alternatives around now youd have to both desperate and living in the middle of a software dry spell to buy this...factors which contributed to its initial sales. Full Review »