Mortal Kombat 3

aka: MK 3
Moby ID: 601
DOS Specs
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Description official descriptions

Shao Kahn has won. The Earthrealm is no more. In order to revive his Queen Sindel, the emperor Shao Kahn used the Outworld Tournament from Mortal Kombat 2 as a diversion while his Shadow Priests revive his fallen Queen on Earth. Once enacted, the dimensional bridge between the two realms connects, allowing Kahn's extermination squads to invade and destroy Earth, and enslave the population's souls.

A small team of Raiden's "Chosen Warriors" survives the attack: Mortal Kombat champion Liu Kang and his ally Kung Lao, Special Forces agents Sonya Blade and Jax, the shaman Nightwolf, the riot cop Stryker, the nomadic Kabal, and former Lin Kuei warrior Sub-Zero, who has gone rogue from his clan. Facing the warriors are the mercenary Kano, cyber-ninjas Smoke, Sektor and Cyrax, Sheeva, a female Shokan, the sorcerer Shang Tsung, and Queen Sindel herself.

Mortal Kombat 3 brings new elements to the 2D fighting series: multi-level playfields, "Dial-A-Combo" attacks, a "Run" button to speed up the battles, and "Vs." codes, which unlock new powers and abilities once both players enter a code sequence in pre-match-up screens. Also included are more stage fatalities and finishing moves as each warrior attempts to go one-on-one with the Centaurian enforcer Motaro, and Shao Kahn himself.

Mortal Kombat 3 is the last traditional one-on-one fighting game game in the series to feature motion-captured digitized graphics for its kombatants, and introduces online network play to the PC version.


  • モータルコンバット3 - Japanese spelling
  • 真人快打3 - Chinese spelling (simplified)

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Credits (DOS version)

59 People (42 developers, 17 thanks) · View all



Average score: 79% (based on 32 ratings)


Average score: 3.7 out of 5 (based on 186 ratings with 5 reviews)

How did this game get so huge?

The Good
The game has a nice collection of fighters, I especially like Kabal. The voice of the announcer ("you'll never win!", "friendship? again?") is dark & creepy like it should be. The game has a sick sense of humor; the fatalities, babalities and other special moves are fun to watch. Lots of blood & gore. Finally, the graphics are a lot better than they were in the previous MK games.

The Bad
This game doesn't belong on a PC. Some of those combos seemed impossible to pull off with a keyboard, I tried using my Logitech Thunderpad Digital but that only made things worse. With one on one beat' em ups timing & control are everything. Console versions of these games are made with a specific configuration (controller & CPU) in mind. This is not the case with the PC versions. The communication between the controller and the CPU doesn't seem to be as good on the PC as on the console. Furthermore I don't like the idea of having 6 different attack buttons (high & low punch, high & low kick, run & block). It makes the controls needlessly complex. Why did they make separate block and run buttons. Could have been solved by replacing run with pressing forward twice and block with pressing backwards when under attack. All of this causes the controls to be less than perfect.

Also this game is not much fun in the 1 player mode and it is pretty hard; I never got past Motaro (maybe cause I didn't like it enough to give it a serious try or maybe I just stink).

The game hasn't got much depth, just two guys beating the crap out of each other. When you win you have to fight again against another guy (or gal). For what reason?

The Bottom Line
I really don't understand the hype that surrounded this game. Sure being the sicko I am the blood & gore kept me fascinated for two afternoons, after which I had seen enough. This game gets boring pretty fast and in my opinion is only fun to play if you're playing it with a friend. I must admit that I'm not a fan of the genre though (everyone seems to like One Must Fall, so maybe I'll give that one a try).

DOS · by Roedie (5239) · 2001

Another worthy installment of the Mortal Kombat franchise

The Good
The controls are the cream of the crop. They're smoother and faster than the previous two installments and you can pull off almost every move with ease.

The music and sounds capture the arcade's very well in all its 16-bit glory and most of them are all here Only a few grunts and Shao Khan taunts are missing.

Unlike the arcade, you can actually play the bosses through a series of kodes known as Kool Stuff , Kooler Stuff and Scott's Stuff, all these at the main menu. Also, these kodes allow to play as Smoke, which saves a lot of headaches over the infamously long kode in the arcade.

The Bad
The graphics, while still awesome by SNES standards, has room for improvement. The characters are a little small and skinny vis-a-vis the previous two games. Also, the graveyard stage and music is not included due to lack of memory space. But otherwise I have no more complaints in this department.

Also, some moves are a little tricky to pull off, such as Shang Tsung's Kano and Kabal morphs.

The Bottom Line
It's a well-balanced , worthy adaptation of the arcade game and a masterpiece of the 16-bit fighting genre. It may not have the looks and crisp sounds of the Playstation version, you sure don't have to wait around for those annoying load times. It's fast, has a lot of blood, and you won't regret adding this one to your collection.

Final verdict: pick the SNES over all versions, it's the most-balanced and it the game doesn't freeze when performing Shang Tsung's morphs.

SNES · by Stsung (30) · 2009

Mortal Kombat 3 Genesis

The Good
This is a great genesis fighter. I have played the other 2 (mk1 and mk2) and I like this one just as much. It has whole lot of new characters, but to do that, they had to get of some old ones. The ones they added, I thought were very good additions to the mortal kombat collection. They also added a choose your destiny mode, where you could choose how hard the game is, along with the change difficulty setting in the options menu.

The Bad
The main problem I had with this game is the controls, I hated them. They were completely different than the mk2 version. When I first played the game I couldnt do a uppercut. I then found out that for some moves (such as the uppercut), you have to push two buttons at once. That doesn't seem complicated right now, but when your getting pounded in the ground and can't do a simple move, it gets fustrating. Don't get me wrong, you will get used to the new fighting system, it could just possibly take a little while.

Other than that, its a great game!

The Bottom Line
Its a great fighting game, and while I think the second mortal kombat is a little better, this one is still very fun in my opinion. So if you can find it now for a decent price, you should possibly consider it. I don't know if many people would this game anymore, since it's about ten years old. It's 2005 and I still like it.

Genesis · by Joey Perkins (3) · 2005

[ View all 5 player reviews ]



The game's "animalities" were inspired when upon the release of Mortal Kombat II, Liu Kang's dragon-morph fatality started a rumour that all the characters were able to morph into some sort of animal as a finishing move. The creators thought this was a fun idea and included it in the game.

Arcade version

The "Graveyard" stage that was found in the arcade version was scrapped for the 16-Bit versions due to memory constraints of the cartridge space. The rest of the gameplay and features remained intact.


  • Originally, the character Kurtis Stryker was supposed to appear on Mortal Kombat, but he was scrapped early in the development process when beta tests revealed player's interests on a female character (Sonya replaced him). Later, on for Mortal Kombat II, Kurtis Striker almost made it to the final game, but had his name changed at the last minute to Jax. Finally, Stryker would make his debut in Mortal Kombat 3.
  • This was the first Mortal Kombat game to feature Sub-Zero unmasked and have a red mark on his eye. This led to many questions however, and it wasn't until 1997 the question were answered in Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. This Sub-Zero was the original's little brother.
  • Instead of being a ninja like usual, Noob Saibot was actually a palette swap of Kano, Presumably because almost all the ninjas were removed (except the new robot ninjas and Sub-Zero, whose appearance was changed),
  • Before the developers could come up with names for the new characters Cyrax and Sektor, they were called Mustard and Ketchup respectively.

German index

On November 30, 1995, Mortal Kombat 3, with the exception of the Game Boy version, was put on the infamous German index by the BPjS. For more information about what this means and to see a list of games sharing the same fate, take a look here: BPjS/BPjM indexed games.

In addition to the indexing, on June 12, 1997, the Genesis and PlayStation versions were also confiscated for violating §131 of Germany's penal code (for showing gruel violence against humans etc.)


This was the only game for the original Game Boy or for the Game Gear to receive an M rating from the ESRB.


There are references to the game's creators in the game. Boon and Tobias (MK creators) can be seen on signs in the background of the subway stage and the creators' names are on tombstones in the graveyard stage.


The developers dismissed a rumour: that you could perform a "nudality" with Sonya Blade's character.

Version differences

  • The differences between the PS and SNES versions of the game are the following. In the PS version, they had Friendships and the SNES didn't. In the SNES, you have Shao Kahn, Motaro, and Smoke as secret characters. In the PS version, you only get Smoke. In the SNES version, there was a cheat that would let you play a mini-game. The PS doesn't have that. In the SNES version, there was a code that could let you do one-button fatalities. In the PS, that code is missing.
  • The Windows 95 PC version released in September, 1996 was different from the 1995 DOS version in that it had "eight all-new characters, two new boss monsters and exclusive new encryption 'kodes' which enable players to alter control settings and intensify game play". It was in fact a port of the Playstation version. A $10.00 rebate was offered inside the retail box for those who had previously purchased the DOS version.


  • Electronic Gaming Monthly
    • October 1995 (Issue 75) - Game of the Month (Playstation version)
  • Game Players
    • 1995 Holiday Edition (Vol. 8, No. 13) - Best Arcade-to-Home Translation Award (along with Tekken)

Information also contributed by Ace of Sevens, Big John WV, Dracula_Marth, Guy Chapman, Medicine Man, NightKid32, Scaryfun, Stephen Gillespie, and Xoleras


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  • MobyGames ID: 601
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Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history! If your contribution is approved, you will earn points and be credited as a contributor.

Contributors to this Entry

Game added by IJan.

Game Boy added by Zovni. PlayStation added by Adam Baratz. SNES added by Roedie. SEGA Master System, Game Gear added by Freeman. Arcade added by The cranky hermit. Windows added by Scaryfun. Genesis added by Syed GJ.

Additional contributors: Zovni, Unicorn Lynx, Exodia85, Alaka, CalaisianMindthief, Rik Hideto.

Game added December 19, 1999. Last modified April 11, 2024.