One of the male victims, who appeared to be the intended target, was shot three times and is in guarded condition. The other victims, a male and two females, had lesser injuries.
Police say it happened about 9:30 p.m. after an argument between a man and two others in the 400 block of Bourbon Street.
The incident happened in front of the strip club Babe's Cabaret on a block filled with thousands of revelers in town for Carnival. Police say the victims are not associated with the strip club.
On the Saturday before Mardi Gras, police said the aftermath of the shooting could have been much worse, crediting heavy police presence in the French Quarter for a quick response.
"We had an immediate response, if you look you also see the light tower, we had troopers and officers out on the scene immediately. We were out on the block actually making a gun arrest at the time," said NOPD 8th District Commander Jeff Walls.
Multiple surveillance and cell phone videos are helping police piece together what happened. Officials have already identified a motive, said Walls, although he would not elaborate. He would also not say whether the victims were the intended targets, but did say police are developing leads on a suspect or suspects.
Anyone with information about this shooting is asked to call Crimestoppers at 504-822-1111.