If you’re a fan of classic co-op shooters like Contra and Metal Slug, and you think that they’d be even better with a deep and rewarding weapon crafting system, I have some good news for you. Mercenary Kings – from developer Tribute Games – will be available for the PlayStation 4 starting April 1st, and it sounds like it could be just what you’re looking for.
Tribute Games seems to have stumbled onto a nice little indie game formula, taking classic twitch-based game design and then adding additional depth through elements such as stats, customization, loot, and currency. You may remember Tribute Games from their previous title, Wizorb, which successfully took standard Breakout/Akranoid gameplay and fused it with traditional RPG elements.
Now it seems that they’re about to do the same for classic side-scrolling shooters, but if the Gears of War-style reload system is any indication, they’ll also taking a bit of inspiration from more modern titles in the genre. One thing that won’t be modern, though, is the look of the game, which will be using Tribute’s unique and stylish brand of 16-bit era pixel art.
The plot of Mercenary Kings tasks players with rescuing Dr. James Neil from the evil CLAW organization. To accomplish this, you can team up with up to three other friends, online or through local play.
In addition to simply providing stat adjustments, the crafting system in Mercenary Kings will allow players to select from over 300 gun parts, which will offer changes in both appearance and function. Categories include barrels, magazines, sights, ammunition, and more.
If you’re like me, and this all sounds like your idea of a good time, be sure to checkout the Mercenary Kings trailer below.