This article is about soldiers from Test Subject series. For soldiers from other games, please see Soldiers.

Mercenaries, alternatively referred to as soldiers[1], are enemies in Test Subject Complete.

Originally appearing in Test Subject Green as non-harmful characters in the background of levels, mercenaries were given bigger roles in Test Subject Complete, retaining their previous occupation but also shifting roles across the game, and showing more emotion.

The mercenary also appears as one of eight playable characters in Test Subject Arena 2.


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Mercenaries are clothed in black trench coats and black helmets. Their helmets seem to have built-in gas masks, and are adorned with a red band and a white skull emblem. Each mercenary also carries an assault rifle.

They have same skin as Dr. Nastidious, which only can be seen in Test subject Complete when killing a mercenary.

Game information


A mercenary in TSG and levels 1-2 of TSC

Test Subject Green

Mercenaries do not in any way effect the game - five of them simply appear in the background. They bob up and down, probably there to police the test.

Test Subject Complete

Mercenaries do not have a singe role, they change roles according to the level of the game.

Levels 1-2

Mercenaries perform the same action they performed throughout all of Test Subject Green - simply present in the background of the level, bobbing up and down.

Level 3-7

Due to Dr. Nastidious being away, Mercenaries are apparently governed by no one and only one will watch the test. Injecting Blue into the test chamber, into the Rex209 for the test, the mercenary outside the chamber will be resting both hands on the chamber, watching the test intently while breathing on to the chamber in order to fog up its glass.

When Blue dies, the mercenary will laugh. Sometimes it will make faces at Blue by positioning its two index fingers beside its helmet and waggling them like the ears of a rabbit. Sometimes it will pound the test chamber with its hand, shaking everything in the chamber, but not effecting the test at all.

Level 6

The watching mercenary will drop cooked orange enzymes into the level

In this level, the watching mercenary retains all its regular actions for level 5-7, only this time he will drop cooked orange enzymes into the level by reaching his hand into the test chamber, and dropping the enemy. The mercenary hand cannot harm the player, not even with its hand, the player will pass through its hand if they impact it. The mercenary will drop cooked orange enzymes over a place the player was previously standing.

Whenever the mercenary tries to put its hand into the level, outside the container its body can be seen going upwards.

Level 7

On this level, the mercenary retains all its regular level 3-7 behaviour, but also becomes as a hazard, as it deliberately tries to kill the player. The mercenary harms the player by putting its hand down in a place the player is at, the mercenary's hand appearing as a hand in a glove with all finger faced downwards. In the area below where the player starts, anywhere in this hallway, and anywhere a bit above the long horizontal green teleporter, it will try these hand diving attacks.

In the hallway with the key card, as soon as the player obtains the key card, the mercenary will place its hand in cupped position, face it so that the cupped position is facing the player, then move this hand horizontally across the hallway in the direction of the player, moving this hand all the way to the right-hand wall in this hallway.

It is completely impossible to avoid this hand, as every part of the mercenary's hand is dangerous, and trying to avoid it will always result in death. Shooting this hand will cause the mercenary to become startled and bang and want to get its hand out of the test chamber. It will struggle, knocking the tester chamber from left to right, but eventually get its hand out of the test chamber and presumably try to get far away from it.

This is the only hand of any mercenary that can be shot, of all occurrences of mercenaries throughout the test chamber tests.

Level 8-25

On levels 8-25, mercenaries return to being non-harmful characters that inhabit the background of levels, doing just this for seventeen levels of the game. In the background, two types of mercenaries are seen - far off mercenaries and nearby mercenaries. Far off mercenaries enter through the laboratory door that has the word "Lab -" above it, and upon doing so will turn to the left and begin walking, walking off screen.

Eventually, they will appear on the right side of the screen walking forward, eventually exiting the room via the lab door. Many mercenaries will pass the lab door many times before using it, and sometimes it takes a long time for to be replaced by another mercenary. This seen mercenary, when seen entering the laboratory, uses the sprite that is seen in the background of Doctor Nastidious's laboratory of a mercenary.

Many mercenaries may enter the laboratory, but only one far off one will be seen at a time. Nearby mercenaries appear huge when compared to far off mercenaries, and gigantic when compared to the player, as nearby mercenaries are very close to the table the player is on. Nearby mercenaries appear as regular mercenaries, only that they lack a weapon. Despite nearby mercenaries constantly passing the table the player is on, they seem to never notice the player.

Level 18

On this level, far away mercenaries act as normal, however, nearby mercenaries will constantly turn to look at the table the player is on. As the player is in a glass cylinder, moving while the mercenary sees them will cause the mercenary to still look, but a hand will come down and move the glass cylinder back to its original spot, forcing the player to move also. As the player progresses through the level, the mercenary's looking at the table will increase.

Despite having to guard the cylinder, the mercenary will only react to the player moving the cylinder, if the player has moved from their previous spot and is still when the mercenary sees them, it will not reset the player.

Levels 26-30

Penguin 1

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During this set of levels, mercenaries become hazards on levels 26 and 27, before becoming enemies on levels 28-30.

On levels 26-29, mercenaries are already present - they do not enter or exit the level through doors (as previously seen mercenaries do), but simply walk a set path. On level 30, at certain point a mercenary will enter the room, and at the end of the escape portion of level 30, a mercenary will exit the door the player is immediately about to enter.

When entering the room through a door, the door will open, and coming out of a black background will be a small sprite of a mercenary. This sprite is also momentarily seen when walking mercenaries turn.


Mercenaries will walk forwards along a set horizontal path, upon reaching the end of this path staying there a bit before reversing direction and walking to the opposite side of the path. When they turn, a mini sprite of them (the same seen when one enters level 30) is seen.


If the mercenaries see the player, they will immediately stop, make a "Huh?" sound, draw their weapon, and either stand up or go into a sniper position, determined by the player's position.

The position they go into is determined by whether there is any solid objects between the sight of the mercenary and the Professor, and the position of the Professor's head. If the Professor's head is parallel to the mercenary's head, then the mercenary will say "Huh?", stop moving, and draw their weapon.

If the Professor's head is below the body of the mercenary, but not below its legs, the mercenary will say "Huh?", and immediately go on to its stomach with its gun drawn, the mercenary now in a sniping position. In both of these positions, if the player does not move, the mercenary will fire streams of five bullets until the player gets out of the way or is killed.

Mercenary's only have vision that extends vertically, they do not look downwards or upwards, and neither does this vision extend downwards or upwards. If the player gets out of site of the mercenary, - getting to a point where the mercenary cannot see the player, such as below the feet of the mercenary or going behind a solid object that obstructs the mercenary's vision - the mercenary will immediately hold its gun regularly (not have his gun drawn), begin standing (if it was previously in a sniper position), and stand still for a few seconds before continuing walking.

If the player ends up in a situation where they are falling vertically in front of a guard, the guard will stop and draw its gun, then when the player's head goes below the mercenary's head, the guard will immediately go to its sniper position (on its stomach).

If the Professor's head is parallel to a mercenaries head, and both are on a solid platform, when the mercenary spots the player, if the player ducks, the mercenary will go to its sniper position, but not abruptly moving to this position - two frames are shown of it crouching and going on its stomach.


Mercenaries are dangerous on content, collision with one causing death to the player. Interestingly, if the player manages to approach a mercenary while it is looking at them, if they get close enough to them without being shot, the mercenary will kill the player by kicking them, the professor letting out a different groan when killed this way.

When the player is sighted, the mercenary will fire a stream of five bullets, with a short break before firing another stream of five bullets. It will cease firing if the player gets out of the way of the mercenary.

Although the bullets are the same, two different bullets are used - a white bullet and orange bullet. The design is completely aesthetic, the bullets are not different. When a bullet impacts a solid surface or the player, it will explode and send out red pixels. Although these could be interpreted as the Professor bleeding due to being hit, these are actually from the bullet.

The only way around a mercenary is to jump from a higher object, and land behind them when their back is turned (as if their back is not turned, they will likely kill the player), as mercenaries cannot be jumped over by jumping from the same platform they are on over them, as the player will impact the mercenary's head and die.


Bullets can also kill other mercenaries, and demonstrated in a few levels late in the game. It takes a single bullet to kill them, however, if bullet are fired by a standing mercenary at a mercenary who is in a sniper position, it will not harm the sniper position mercenary. Mercenaries for levels 26-28 cannot be killed, as mercenaries are not set up in a position to shoot other mercenaries, and the player does not have access to the Proto mech suit.

When the player obtains the Proto mech suit, one bullet from the suit will kill a mercenary. When a mercenary dies, it will lift its hands moderately up, and its face completely up. Its helmet will come off its head, and it will let go of its gun, before falling on the floor. Similar to the part of the proto mech suit and Rex209, the dropped gun will move depending on what they impact, and does not have a set animation for being dropped.

However, the helmet has a set animation for always falling behind the mercenary, and will not go through green teleporters, despite the sound for something going through a teleporter being heard. Mercenaries can also be killed by the laser shot by The Machine during the boss battle on level 30.

Level 28-29 changes

Level 29 and 29 features a slight change in mercenaries, these levels introducing mercenaries who are set to always be stationary, and either be standing with their gun drawn, or on their stomach in a sniper position. This is the only occurrence of mercenaries who are set to be stationary in one position. Other than being stationary, they act exactly the same as a regular mercenary. Regular mercenaries are also present on this level.

Test Subject Arena 2

The mercenary was confirmed on August 14th, 2013, to be one of the eight playable characters in the upcoming game, Test Subject Arena 2. The mercenary's dancing animation was released in a preview image for the game.

In the game the mercenary is one of the slowest characters. He can jump a good height and distance but his limited speed along the ground is one of his cons. When he is crouching, he gets into a laying position on his belly, pointing his gun out in front of him instead of bending down or crouching like all of the other characters do. He attacks by firing bullets from his machine gun. If the attack button is held down, he will release a stream of rapid fire bullets from his gun.

The mercenary has the fastest projectile speed and firing rate of all of the characters in the game. His melee attack is a kick out in front of him. When the mercenary is idling (a result of the player not pressing any controls for a while), he will place the butt of his gun on the ground so that it is standing vertically and then take off his helmet, revealing his green head. After a few seconds he will replace the helmet on his head and pick up his gun.

When the mercenary's single player level is completed, the quote from the character "Hey, I'm just doing this for the money" is displayed on the results screen.

Nitrome Touchy

A mercenary among a red flag appears as the controller art for the Nitrome Touchy version of Test Subject Complete.


If the player pauses the game in Test Subject Arena 2, the animation the mercenary is doing, it will do the same animation all over again.


Test Subject Green

Test Subject Complete

Test Subject Arena 2




  1. 1.0 1.1 Nitrome blog: - Test Subject Complete is coming...: You’ll also notice that one of Dr Nastidious’ soldiers is messing with Blue,...