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SummaryWorthy (if toned-down) adaptation of the coin-op
The GoodThe graphics are flawless! Considering the hardware's limitations, the colour schemes and pixelation match the arcade original's very well.
Most of the grunts and groans and voices are included here, with the exception of "Flawless Victory" and "Fatality" (renamed Finishing Moves here). The music, while played at a rather subtle volume, is well adapted from the arcade as well.
The controls and pace. while a little slow compared to the arcade or even the Mega Drive version, are responsive and you get accustomed to the game's pacing before long.
The BadWhile the arcade version is famous for its controversial extreme violence and gore, the SNES version is criticised even in 1993 for toning down one of the most fundamental aspects that made the arcade version so addictive: blood. Instead of blood, we see grey sweat that is animated like the blood from the arcade.
Also, half of the game's fatalities were modified: Sub-Zero's spinal rip is changed into a Deep-Freeze and Ice-Breaker (which would be included in subsequent games), Kano's Heart Rip stays the same, save the heart not being visible, Raiden's almost identical except the character turns to dust. But the lamest of changes is Johnny Cage's fatality, which is merely kick to the stomach.
The Bottom LineEven though it is less violent than the arcade version, The SNES version actually surpasses the Mega Drive version in terms of graphics, sounds and also music (the one in the Mega Drive version sounds like garbage!). The controls maybe a little slow at first, but not to the point that make the game unplayable.
If you're to pick the SNES or Mega Drive, get this one. If you want blood and gore, get the other one.