Jagged Alliance 3 – The Best Mercs to Start With (and Not to Start With)

Best Mercs Tips

Luckily there are many mercs that are amazing. So I will start with ones that people seem to advise, but that suck. Kayla sucks. Steroid sucks. Do not hire them.

There are so many other better ones. Agility and Dexterity actually matter and wisdow increases the chances of them improving (not sure how good wisdom is, ie in raw numbers).

I repeat, Kayla is trash and expensive. She costs 600 a day! And low growth potential.

Livewire is op. Best mechanic and cheap. She will make you money.

Fox is op. Amazing fight starter and sniper. Her marksman skill will go up if you use her. She is also a decent medic.

Barry is op. Best dem expert and cheap. I have only heard bad things about Fido and he is more expensive. So take Barry.

Make sure you take your imp. 0 med, exp, mech. 40 health. max everything else. Go with psycho, as it will give you conversation options. I like the night (but you get googles later) and sneak skill.

Other people might build him different. I like high strength for carry weight. I max wisdom, but, as stated, not sure how well wisdom scales in JA3. I use them as the leader, so I max leadership.

This is a starting team of 4 and will easily get you through the game.

Extra Mercs:

I like Buns as merc nr 5. She has the negotiator skill. Again, not sure how vital these are, but they open up conversation options. Also an amazing marksman/sniper. Stupidly cheap.

Dr Q as merc 6. Boss killer. His skill stuns even bosses.

MD. If you prefer him over Q and he is cheap as hell. I am not a fan though and prefer Q.

Mouse is underrated. Amazing dex and agi. Trrash marksman, but if you take her early it should go up. I took buns for her “negotiator” skill.

Blood. People love him. Not tried him, but I can imagine he is a beast. Stealthy knife “sniper”. Go for the head blood, go for the head.

Ice. Great. I’d take him later if you make a B team.

Raven. Amazing. Not tested it, but her skill seems wild and I can imagine her and blood working well.

Legendary mercs are not worth it. Too expensive. They are also not that great. Maybe Sidney, but again he is expensive. Magic is awesome. AgaIn, expensive. Not tried Reapers skill. He could be a best, but, again, expensive as hell.

Ivan is amazing, but he isn’t so cheap. But if you want to splash out, then get him.

I hope that helps.


  • Fox, Buns, IMP, Livewire, Barry are the best for day 1.
Helena Stamatina
About Helena Stamatina 2704 Articles
My first game was Naughty Dog’s Crash Bandicoot (PlayStation) back in 1996. And since then gaming has been my main hobby. I turned my passion for gaming into a job by starting my first geek blog in 2009. When I’m not working on the site, I play mostly on my PlayStation. But I also love outdoor activities and especially skiing.


  1. Hello,

    Wisdom can’t be trained, and seem to progress very slowly. Or I didn’t figure yet how to level it faster.

    For a starting team, then, no merc below 80 wisdom, preferably 90. That’s what I would say. Therefore, I did pretty much the same as you :
    – IMP PET (Commander & stealth operative)
    – Livewire (Mech & sniping)
    – Hunger (demspec and mid-long)

    With one major difference : As a fourth I don’t go Fox : I go MD.

  2. As someone who beat the game recently on Ironman/Mission impossible difficulty with only 1 merc the entire game. I’d say your best starting squad is your custom merc as you don’t really need more than 1 merc unless you want quality of life and convenience for operations and sector defense during your play through. Here’s the build/perks/traits I used for this character.

    Traits: Scoundrel, Martial arts, Hand to hand

    Stats: Health: 85 Agility: 80. Dexterity: 70. Strength: 85. Leadership: 30. Wisdom: 80. Marksmanship: 30. Mechanical: 30. Explosives: 30. Medical: 30.

    Perk order as you level: Fully body contact, vanguard, hit and run, killing spree, sudden strike, ironclad, true strike, calm under fire, beefed up.

    Your weapons are gonna be knifes/melee weapons and any explosives like grenades or smoke grenades, etc.

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