The Greatest Arcade Game...EVER
Everything from the original Mortal Kombat was improved upon (graphics, sound, level backgrounds, # of characters, moves, animations, fatalities...the list goes on), and was it ever improved!! There have been many more fighters since this game came out, but I find that this game "feels" the best of them all, and it truly stands the test of time. Keep away from all other versions of Mortal Kombat I I (Super NES, Genesis, Saturn, PC, GameBoy, etc). The only version that gets my stamp of approval is the original arcade beast, revision 3.1 (very important designation to make, as the earlier versions had problems). Mortal Kombat I was alright, and all future Mortal Kombats sucked (MK3 is just horrendous, and MK4 doesn't even feel like MK with the non-digitized actors)...if you want to learn about the game Mortal Kombat, this is the ONLY game in the series in my opinion.
The computer AI is too dificult on hard, and the only way to win after a certain # of rounds is to resort to the cheap dropkick, move back, dropkick strategy. Reptiles' energy bolt comes out too slow so he isn't good to use, and certain characters like Jax and Kitana are much better than others so there is a question or character balancing that would have been nice if it had been fixed (which should have been done in lieu of time spent on Mortal Kombat 3). Also, there is too much dependency on uppercuts, roundhouses, and sweeps. These basic moves make some players just sit in a corner and take the defensive approach all day long...and that can get boring really fast.
The Bottom Line
A fighting game that pits 1 on 1 competition between two players, where the object is to defeat your opponent in 2 out of 3 rounds. Fantastic digital imaging of live actors, an incredible score, spectacular moves, and gruesome fatalities (finishing moves that rub in the face of your opponent that you defeated them) make Mortal Kombat I I a classic.