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Mortal Kombat

MobyRank MobyScore
PlayStation 3
83
4.4
Xbox 360
86
4.2
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Description

Mortal Kombat rises again, and taking a seemingly taking a cue from Capcom and titles Street Fighter IV, it's gone back to its roots. Namely, some of the more complicated combo practices of the 3-D Kombats, such as titles Deadly Alliance have been streamlined down, or removed completely, and the series returns to its 2-D roots. Besides removing more complicated combo systems involving switching fighting styles and weapons, this new Mortal Kombat also partially re-writes the story of the franchise, and starts over from the beginning.

Story

This new Mortal Kombat reboots not just the series, but the storyline as well, going back to the original tournaments from the first three games, essentially reuniting the Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 line-up to retell the stories of the first three games in order. This retelling of the story falls into a Story mode in the game which follows specific characters in individual chapters to clearly chronicle the early events of the series. Players follow the roles of specific characters and follow their storyline through several matches as they move through the story. Battles are both relevant to the plot, and general sparring between characters to settle disputes. Fights are both one-on-one, and one-on-two, similar to those introduced in the titles original game, with the exception that now, the dual-member opponent team's characters will switch in and out of the action on the fly. Some original story elements have been re-written as well, and characters from later games in the series have plotlines in previous stories. For instance, a back-story for Cyrax and Sektor appears during the story following the tournament from the original Mortal Kombat.

The character roster is made up mostly of characters found in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, with some exceptions. For instance, Quan Chi appears in this new incarnation, and he first appeared as a regular in the main fighting series in Mortal Kombat 4. Players can expect to see the Cyber Ninjas in both human and cyborg form.

Modes

This Mortal Kombat reboot contains a multitude of game modes, options, and variations. Besides the Story mode, which offers arguably the clearest and most direct telling of the story in the history of the franchise, there are classic Arcade-style modes akin to the standard gameplay set-up of titles Mortal Kombat II and 3, and several options to this style. The classic "Test Your Might" mini-games return with a vast collection of varying events in a Challenge Tower featuring 300 challenges for players to tackle. Challenges vary wildly to anything from only blocking attacks, fighting using only special moves, fending off hordes of zombies, and several tailor-made for specific characters--for instance, one challenge has players fighting as Johnny Cage and a film director to defend a movie set from Jax and Sonya.

There is a simple "Fight" menu with a variety of menus, including Tag battles and several minigames, including one "slot machine" style game, and testing a player's pure skill, rather than brute force. A variation of the classic Test Your Might challenges appears (along with a return of the original incarnation) called "Test Your Strike", in which players must build energy with button presses and then unleash an attack at a very specific point to break a specific object. For instance, where "Test Your Might" was to break through a stack of boards or other objects, the new variation and it's specific timing is to break an "internal" object, i.e. a differently colored brick within a stack of other bricks.

Fighting

The fighting engine of this new Kombat operates largely like a hybrid of Mortal Kombat II and 3. The separate weapon-specific stances and skills from latter titles like Deadly Alliance have been removed, and combos are performed with quick-fire button presses akin to Mortal Kombat 3, though without the run button. All fighting takes place on a 2-D side-scrolling plane, much like the original games in the series, with slight variations. For instance, some moves like Raiden's torpedo often feature a quickly, and dramatically skewed camera angle; and Fatalities are seen from a variety of angles.

Like other modern fighting games, such as Street Fighter IV, there is a power bar at the bottom of the screen for each player. The bar features three levels--the first of which allows a standard special move to be powered-up, the second activates a combo breaker, and the third allows activation of a powerful new X-Ray attack. This special, often devastating attack ends in slow-motion, black-and white animation, with color X-Ray cut-aways showing the recipient's muscles twisting, blood spewing, and bones shattering.

Multiplayer

Besides the numerous game modes and challenges, Mortal Kombat features a diverse selection for multiplayer gameplay, ranging from the classic one-on-on fights to various styles of Tag modes. There is also offline 2-player co-op gameplay, and offline 4-player Tag modes. Beyond this, there is a robust online mode featuring the two-player co-op gameplay as well as a huge Tournament mode, known as King of the Hill, intended to evoke the feel of classic arcade competition. In a sense, where a player might wait in line to be next to challenge the winner in an arcade in the 1990's, players will do the same here, though online, and with far fewer quarters.

Extras

The Krypt makes a return as well, wherein players can spend "Kurrency" earned through every other gameplay modes to unlock a variety of features, including Kombat Kodes to tweak gameplay, new Fatalities, concept artwork, music, and other things. All unlocked items can be viewed in the Nekropolis. The Nekropolis also contains visages of every character, with gameplay stats, endings (if unlocked in Tower gameplay), and alternate costumes. Bios for every character are also listed.

Kratos from God of War appears as an exclusive character to the PS3 version of Mortal Kombat. No official reason has been given for a lack of an Xbox 360 exclusive character.

Screenshots

Mortal Kombat PlayStation 3 The game starts with the events of <moby game="Mortal Kombat: Armageddon">Mortal Kombat: Armageddon</moby>.
Mortal Kombat PlayStation 3 You can check character's move list any time in-game.
Mortal Kombat PlayStation 3 Performing an air throw.
Mortal Kombat PlayStation 3 "I'm taking you down, I'm taking you down and I'm taking you down". Johnny Cage is so cocky.

Alternate Titles

  • "Mortal Kombat 9" -- Informal name

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The Press Says

Calm Down Tom PlayStation 3 Apr 20, 2011 10 out of 10 100
games.mail.ru PlayStation 3 Apr 19, 2011 9 out of 10 90
411mania.com PlayStation 3 Apr 26, 2011 9 out of 10 90
3D Juegos PlayStation 3 Apr 20, 2011 8.7 out of 10 87
OMGN: Online Multiplayer Games Network PlayStation 3 Aug 29, 2011 8.7 out of 10 87
Jeuxvideo.com PlayStation 3 Apr 22, 2011 17 out of 20 85
Jeuxvideo.com Xbox 360 Apr 22, 2011 17 out of 20 85
Xbox Mag Xbox 360 Jun 28, 2011 16 out of 20 80
4Players.de Xbox 360 Apr 20, 2011 78 out of 100 78
MAN!AC PlayStation 3 Apr 21, 2011 77 out of 100 77

Forums

Topic # Posts Last Post
Rare game breaking bug w/ Cyrax? 1 Kadath Bird (706)
Jun 11, 2011

Trivia

References

In Chapter 7 of the Story mode, at one point Smoke calls Sub-Zero by the name Tundra. This is a reference to the original name of Sub-Zero (prior to the release of the first Mortal Kombat game).
Contributed to by ResidentHazard (3252)