Mortal Kombat II

aka: MK 2, Mortal Kombat II: Kyūkyoku Shinken

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Critic Reviews add missing review

Average score: 85% (based on 57 ratings)

Player Reviews

Average score: 3.8 out of 5 (based on 282 ratings with 12 reviews)

Great port of what's probably the pinnacle of the original MK series

The Good
More, more MORE! MK2 set out to topple the original arcade hit by adding as much features and secret thingies as they could think of at the time. It may not be revolutionary, but it certainly wins by it's use of sheer brute force and it is one of the best sequels to any arcade game ever.

For starters you have new moves, new characters (12, which seem like a frigging thousand when compared to MK1's measly lineup) which include the remarkably smart addition of Shang Tsung (and yes, you can morph into any other character mid-game) and the only thing better than ninja warriors: Ninja warrior BABES!! You also have 2 standard fatalities for each character (though more for some), a new "friendship" and "babality" feature which are amusing though remarkably gay, 3 secret characters and additional stage-specific fatalities as well as plenty of glitches and funny things to mess around with (like Johnny Cage's Triple decapitation).

Technically speaking the game didn't make so much of a quantum leap, with only slightly sharper graphics but with way more colorful and interesting backgrounds and better character designs. All of which have perfectly been translated to the pc (though aurealy speaking the port seems to have taken a hit and the sounds don't feel the same as in the arcade, particularly the music).

Finally the general storyline has managed to expand on the original mythos and not become boring or lame, and the whole game still has that interesting dark edge that no other fighting game had in it's time.

The Bad
Gameplay wise things are still the same, only to spice things up they resorted to adding cheap moves to some characters to make more of a difference, thus you have Kitana with that super-cheap fan stun move, Milenna's teleport kick or Baraka's overpowered blade slice, etc... nothing nowhere near MK3 but still.... Oh, and Shao Kahn may not qualify as an SNK-sanctioned "King of Cheapness" boss, but he sure is an overpowered sob! He's beatable, but I sure enjoyed more fighting Shang Tsung than this doofus. And Kintaro doesn't have a fraction of the charisma good ol' Goro had! All you could think while you fought him was that Goro sure was a kickass boss...

The Bottom Line
Bitching aside, after Kombat-mania setted in, this game had a really tough act to follow. It had to live up to incredible hype with and cope with those kickass commercials and that freaky kid yelling "Mooooooortaaaaaaaal Koooooooombaaaaaaaaat!!" and heck, any sequel that survives that is a winner in my book, especially if it also manages to be a fantastic action game. Bigger and better than 1, I played the hell out of this one and had a blast doing so, no one who considers himself an arcade gamer or fighting aficionado can let this one pass up.

DOS · by Zovni (10504) · 2003

The Greatest Arcade Game...EVER

The Good
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 Bad
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.

DOS · by Daniel J McKinnon (3) · 2001

Good but horrible in contrast to the Super Nintendo Version

The Good
First of all I'm not here to say this game just sucks because of the port. The port itself is good for a genesis version BUT there are some inherent flaws in this port compared to the super nintendo. First I'll start with the good.

The speed is a bit faster over the first mortal kombat. The speed boost is great for Kombat. In this one the fighting is almost as good as a Street Fighting game

The speed is faster then the super nintendo game thus giving it a more arcade feel.

The graphics replicate themselves quite good considering the hardware

Characters have actual combos and more depth to them and skill to learn.

The six button controller really makes this game better to play with compared to the super nintendo's stiff pad.

The Bad
Now for the bad. Being a arcade port of a huge game there is quite a few issues here.

Sound is DRASTICALLY crapped on. TONS of missing voices. Not just a few here and there. But let me give some examples. When selecting a character they don't say the characters name. When you get in the fight they don't say round one or round two and so on. Just FIGHT. This sounds like a small omission BUT it's a HUGE detriment when going all out for the arcade experience.

Music is DRASTICALLY cut back. Sure it has some semblance to the original music but GOD this is horrible! It's like sophisicated midi at best and total crap at worst.

STOCK GROANS! Hot damn sure there was some similiar ones in the arcade and super nintendo version but these are all the same almost between MALE and FEMALE! Just HORRIBLE! Why oh WHY didn't Acclaim put diversity in the hits? What few voices were in the game.

Graphics look washed and if you look close enough GRAINY. Sure it doesn't look too bad and the game moves fine but the visual is just crap compared to the arcade and super nintendo versions.

Playing this game with a three button control WILL put you up for the FIGHT OF YOUR LIFE. There is NO WAY to play this comfortably with a three button controller. Start is the block button. There is NO WAY you can access that easily right before you get hit which is less then one second. If you are going to play this game PLEASE PLEASE for the sake of your fingers and sanity use a SIX button pad!

The Bottom Line
Though it sounds like I slammed the game I really do like it. It's just that there's better versions out there to play this on. If all you have is a Genesis then by all means get it. If you have a super nintendo get that version for a more full on experience. Though this version is a bit faster and true to the arcade in speed and gameplay then the super nintendo. It's really you're call. Overall a 7/10 with this port.

Genesis · by Mr. Huh (105) · 2005

Acclaims Best Game?

The Good
MK2 is a better game than the original. Thankfully. This time around there is more to the game than just the blood. More characters & more moves are a welcome addition. This is in my opinion the best MK game that has been made. A decent arcade conversion.

The in game fighting is now a lot smoother and quicker. The characters are a lot more technically defined, in that each character has strengths & weaknesses. This was less apparent in the first game as most characters were just about equal.

This game was much better with a few mates to play against and was far more enjoyable with the infinite finishing time cheat in order to get those finishers in.

The Bad
Its more of the same 2D fare, which is no match for Street Fighter 2. The game will wear thin after about a month or so.

The Bottom Line
A better game than its first incarnation. Worth playing.

Genesis · by Liam Dowds (39) · 2003

Good for a 16 Bit Translation

The Good
I would have to say Mortal Kombat 2 is probably the second best fighting game of all time! The first MK was good, but it was raw and needed improvements; MK2 is much improved from the first! This game went through a cosmetic overhaul. The graphics are sharper, the backgrounds are way more interesting, and the fighters are far better outfitted in this version. The sound effects and background music also contribute to the games dark, deadly feel.

The Bad
I don't like arcade to 16 bit translations! In terms of gameplay the SNES version is perfect, no problems there. The problems start with the graphics and sound, which are good for a 16 bit console, but not even close to the arcade. This may seem minor, but it does take away from the overall feel of the game.

The Bottom Line
MK2 is the best of the MK genre (that goes for MK 1, 3, 4, Trilogy, and Annihilation) and this is a good SNES translation of the arcade.

SNES · by Tyrone Eugene (6) · 2003

Street fighter 2 was the spark, Mortal kombat 2 was the gas that set the fire in Beat 'em ups.

The Good
First of all many chosable characters for it's time (12), moreover it included 2 female fighters (a fetish of mine). The characters were real actors and not drawings.

Furthermore MK2 like MK1 introduced a whole new way of beat 'em up games. It no longer is the traditional game, now it features many different moves for every character, Fatalities, Friendships, secret characters and some story other than "revenge the death of someone you loved".

Graphics were very nice for it's time and the abilities of AMIGA, sound was very nice also, and finally the characters were fantastic.

The Bad
Absence of Sonya was a huge disappointment for me, what the heck, they could have kept the original characters and add some more.

Anyway there are some minor annoying things: Babalities, they were adding nothing to the game (by the way all of them were the same) The ugly face appearing after an uppercut and his comment (I understand the need for promotion of themselves - the authors - but this was really annoying) Finally the one fire button (but AMIGA had only one), Using keyboard if desired would be very nice.

The Bottom Line
Finally to add a point that is evenly good and bad, is the extra game of breaking things, nice for a variety but away from the plot.

I would describe it as the game that really changed Beat 'em up scenery in it's time.

Rates for it's time and AMIGA's capabilities

Amiga · by SonyasFan (3) · 2005

Mortal 32X

The Good
Mortal Kombat II (1994) for the Sega 32X features improved, compared to the Sega Genesis version, animation and graphics along with tighter controls. It remains the best cartridge version of the ultra violent coin-op game.

The Bad
The music and sound effects do not appear to have been improved much from the Sega Genesis version. It is not quite a perfect arcade translation, even through it probably could have been.

The Bottom Line
Mortal Kombat II (1994) has better graphics then the Super Nintendo version as well as better (with the six button controllers) controls then the Sega Genesis version. Had the game not been rushed, it might have been a perfect translation of the coin-op game.

SEGA 32X · by ETJB (431) · 2010


The Good
I've played and own just about every version of this game and each one has one or two things that bother for this 16 bit translation. Why you ask? Well...despite the fact that the Saturn version looks most like its arcade cousin its missing a few things, i.e. a majority of Shao Khan's voice samples...and in a 2D game that isnt a graphical powerhouse those little touches are missed (although the music was of high quality). The 32x version has clean looking characters but the backgrounds look muddy and suffer from being rendered by the Genesis' main hardware. Finally the regular Genesis version animates well but is lacking in music, sound effects and visual presentation. Okay okay I'll get to the SNES review already...heh...

The SNES version keeps most of what made the arcade game so great...It kept a variety of Shao Khan's voice samples (most importantly: character voice introductions) in addition to the "awed hush" of the crowd when an unexpected move is landed. The music is rather well done and sounds most like the arcade soundtrack, although you can tell it is being pumped out of the SNES' Sony sound chip. The graphics are strong and the characters animate decently enough (exceptional for a 16 bit translation). The backgrounds are rich with color and parallax scrolling. The little touches I've mentioned go a long way to sell this version of the game and that is why I prefer it to the other ports.

The Bad
Aside from the diminutive appearance of the characters this game is FLAWLESS.

The Bottom Line
MK2 for the SNES is a superbly violent distraction for any retro gamer fan. If you don't own an SNES pick up any of the other ports (steer clear of the game gear version...eeek) ...despite their shortcomings they are imbued with the spirit of Midway's arcade classic.

SNES · by Stefan Grammer (5) · 2007

Worse sequel? Pixelated Graphics? Definetely not!

The Good
Although Mr. Gabel said he found the graphics more pixelated in comparison to the first Mortal Kombat, it is definetely the opposite -- in the the first game there were a lot of sharp non anti-aliased edges whereas the sequel features smooth fighter-background interaction. In fact, the strongest aspect of MK2 is its eyecandy graphics. I even thought the graphics were displayed in a square-pixel hi-res tweaked VGA mode when I first saw the game.

Another aspect where MK2 is better than the first is the speed of the game. You can really move very fast. Also the variety and the graphic detail of the finishing moves are totally astounding (especially in the case of Liu Kang).

The Bad
It's really hard even in medium difficulty settings.

The Bottom Line
A worthy sequel to the first Mortal Kombat game.

DOS · by IJan (1972) · 1999

Mortal Kombat 2 Genesis

The Good
Great game with good graphics. Great characters and cool levels.

The Bad
Nothing, except the difficulty. When I first played it it was insane, then I realized how easy!!!! the first few stages were. When I get to the later stages, there very hard. So bascially keep practicing to get further, of course.

The Bottom Line
Great Game!!!!

Genesis · by Joey Perkins (3) · 2005

The sequel is even worse than the first.

The Good
Nothing. Nothing at all.

The Bad
Bad controls, graphics even more horribly pixelated than in the first, terrible music and sound effects and amazingly bad gameplay make this one of the worst fighting games in history. Acclaim tried to capitalize on the first game's success. The sequel somehow managed to become a hit almost as big as the first (kill me if I can figure out why), and came up with a game even worse.

The Bottom Line
A horrible, horrible game anyone in his right mind should stay away from.

DOS · by Tomer Gabel (4539) · 1999

What is this!??1st was better!!!

The Good
Okay, the one good factor of this game was the characters. Lots of them.

The Bad
Graphics suck! Cartoony, what is this!! First was better! Johnny Cage is gone! Everyone wants Johnny Cage! Did I mention that graphics are horrible? Fighting is not fun, as it doesnt have that touch MK1 had, thus leading to key bashing. Oh yeah, graphics are really bad.

The Bottom Line*
Overall, even my rating is too good for this game. (My rating 1.5/5

SNES · by ThE oNe (180) · 2002

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Bozzly, Big John WV, Tim Janssen, Mr Almond, Kohler 86, yellowshirt, RhYnoECfnW, Kayburt, Alsy, formercontrib, Jeanne, chirinea, Scaryfun, Cantillon, Игги Друге, Patrick Bregger, lights out party, Alaedrain, Evil Ryu, Wizo, jaXen, Sun King, Sciere, Sonikku225, Riemann80.