Mortal Kombat 9
Fighting Games Rarely grace our pages as we store rancid messes like Body Blows in lead-lined caskets to keep their foulness from spreading. However, Mortal Kombat has always worked on the PC - at least the first three did. The less said about the rest the better.
So when we hear that a new MK is coming that's going back to its roots and -most importantly - features bath tubs of the red stuff, we get excited. It's been a long time since we gave Johnny Cage a good kicking or admired Kung Lao's ability to slice people in half with his hat.
The Bigger Picture
- 2d Or Not 2d?
Mortal Kombat never worked as a 3D game. Ed Boon and his buddies on the MK development team have realised this, so the new game is doing away with 3D sidestepping and focuses solely on old-school horizontal plane action. Another tweak is this will be the fastest MK game ever: news which doesn't bode well for the cack-handed gibbons who work on a certain PC gaming magazine.
- Memory Motel
Raiden was the original straw hat-wearing hero of Mortal Kombat. In the new game he's killed by Shao Kahn. As he dies he sends a mental message to MKTs Raiden, who decides to do things differently, and so alters the events of the first three games. This means Mortal Kombat rewrites the plots of the original three games, allowing old favourites to appear. (Note: Raiden's not in this picture. That chap's Reptile.)
- Friends Reunited
Boon, who's been involved with MK since its birth, says that if you had a favourite character from any of the first three games - like MK3' s Mileena, thelady with the sai - chances are they'll appear in this release, but they'll be slightly different because of the whole history-being-rewritten thing. Altogether there'll be about 26 fighters to choose from.
- Core Grind
Boon says he's worried the game will be excessively violent, even by today's standards. Currently, the devs are aiming for a 'Mature' rating in the US, but Boon believes there will be so much guts and gore MK will end up with an 'Adults Only'. This will harm sales as kiddies will have to resort to underhand methods to obtain copies. Or just buy them from zombie-like store workers, who don't care for the laws of the land.
- Move Your Body
Signature moves for famous characters will be preserved. Scorpion's "Cmere!" is a definite keeper, as is Sub-Zero's freeze/upper-cut combo. No doubt this will also extend to the infamous fatality finishing moves, with Scorpion pulling his face off and roasting his enemy with a burst of breath-flame. But will hari-kari, babalities, animalities and the slightly satirical friendships make it back in?
- Donor Card
Boon has also revealed X-Ray Mode: a combo that does 40% damage to your foe, and displays the damage you're doing to their internal organs. Each fighter will have different viscera, so Sektor's insides will likely be all wires and circuit boards while Sub-Zero's resembles a Slush Puppy. But what about Ermac (if he appears)? How can you rupture organs belonging to someone who's made of souls? These and other questions will be answered soon, no doubt.