Mortal Kombat an ever expanding series

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Its one of the goriest fighting game series of all time and its a game series that I grew up with, lets take a look at the evolution of the Mortal Kombat video games.

Before we begin here is a brief explanation of the series, you battle your many opponents in one on one battles and the victor of the fight can perform a finishing move which can be either comical, brutal or fatal, these games are not shy on blood and gore and for a lot of people its the gory finishing moves that make the games as enjoyable as they are.

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Mortal Kombat takes place on the island of Shang Tsung, the Island has hosted the Mortal Kombat tournament for hundred of generations, in the tournament warriors battle for the chance to take on the warrior Goro who has never been defeated. You are one of the latest challengers to take on the tournament.

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Mortal Kombat introduced players to seven characters.

Johnny Cage – A martial artist and famous movie star

Kano –  A mercenary who is devoted to a life of crime

Liu Kang  – A Shaolin Monk who hopes to bring peace to the realm.

Raiden – A god of thunder

Scorpion – A ninja that dresses in yellow colours and uses fire as an element of attack

Sonia Blade – A member of the special forces

and Sub Zero –  A ninja that dresses in blue colours and uses ice as an element of attack

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Apart from fighting, players are able to try their luck at the extremely hard and blister enducing test your might game, in this mini-game you have to raise the might bar and destroy various strong materials.

The Original Mortal Kombat was quite basic but it was good enough for a first entry in the series.

A memorable moment from the game for me is the pit where you can throw an opponent onto a bed of spikes after defeating them in one of the levels. The Pit is also where players are able to trigger a secret fight with the green ninja called Reptile and major points are available if he is defeated.

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The game was released on various home consoles after its debut in the arcades, I owned the game on the Sega Mega-drive which is the superior home console version as blood could be turned on using a special code however in the Super Nintendo release blood was completely removed.

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As a side note I thought it might be fun to talk about the original arcade machines for some of these games starting with Mortal Kombat 1. I think the art is really cool on this machine, it has Johnny on the side and it looks like he is kicking a dragon in the head. Good art but not sure if it really shows that its a fighting game I feel like it would be more appropriate to a beat em up such as double dragon.

There is a lot more information about this cabinet on arcade-museum, I will put a link below.

https://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=8753

After being defeated by Liu Kang in the first game , Shang Tsung begs ruler of Outworld Shao Khan to spare his life and also host the next Mortal Kombat Tournament in Outworld, Shao Khan agrees and restores both life and youth to Shang Tsung.

It should be noted that because of the plot of this game Liu Kang winning the tournament in Mortal Kombat 1 was the canon ending.

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Seven new playable characters were introduced in Mortal Kombat 2

Baraka – A mutant that works for Shao Khan

Jax –  A special forces officer

Kitana – A female ninja and assassin

Kung Lao –  A Shaolin monk and friend of Liu Kang

Mileena –  Kitana’s sister and who is an assassin working for Shao Khan.

Reptile –  The mysterious ninja from the first game

and Shang Tsung –  The sorcerer and final boss from the first game although much younger

It should be noted Sonia Blade and Kano did not make a comeback as a playable characters in Mortal Kombat 2.

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The game had three hidden fights that you could access if you hit certain criteria during your play-through.

Jade –  A strange female ninja who fights with a fan

Smoke – A Ninja dressed in grey that uses smoke to help him fight

and Noob Saibot – A very mysterious character that who’s features are completely hidden by its dark colour palette, this fight is the hardest of the secret battles in my personal opinion.

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As well as fatalities there were two more finishing moves you could do in this game, the first was babalities where you could turn your opponent into a baby and the other was friendship which had you do something kind for an opponent after defeating them, hilariously this was made as a mocking response to critics who deemed the first Mortal Kombat too violent.

Mortal Kombat 2 was a massive improvement over the first game, it added loads of new characters, new stages that were better animated, it gave players babalaties and new fatalities along side three brand new stage fatalities, overall a fantastic game.

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I much prefer the arcade machine design here, I love Raiden being on the side of the cabinet, to me he is a much more recognisable character than Johnny Cage is and to be honest in my opinion he is a lot cooler as well.

For more information on this arcade cabinet follow the link below

https://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=8756

After being defeated by Liu Kang in Mortal Kombat 2, Shao Khan uses Shang Tsung to revive his long lost love Sindel, he does this as part of a plan to combine both Earthrealm and Outworld causing billions to lose their lives because of this Raiden sends warriors out to fight Shao Khan and put a stop to him once and for all.

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Mortal Kombat 3 is my least favourite out of the original arcade games, as a child I really did not like a lot of the changes they made and I still do not to this day. Biggest change was removing scorpion from the game which makes no sense because he is the most popular character in the series and nothing happened to him in the last game to explain his absence here. Sub Zero has a new character design and it sucks, I prefer the iconic blue mask and he just does not look right.

The game introduced a good number of new playable characters

Cyrax – A cyber assassin that dresses in yellow

Kabal – A former black dragon warrior

Nightwolf – A native american shaman

Sektor – A cyber assassin that dresses in red

Sindel – Shao Khan’s resurrected queen

Sheeva – A female shoken who is also the protector of Sindel

Stryker – A riot control officer

and Smoke – A cyber assassin that uses smoke as a means of attack

Both Kano and Sonia Blade return as playable characters in Mortal Kombat 3 however Baraka, Mileena, Reptile, Scorpion, Raiden and Kitana did not make a return as playable characters.

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The stages here take place in world settings that are more familiar to players such as subways, cities and streets which to be honest I much prefer to the stages in the first two games.

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A new finishing move called an aqnimality was added which allows character to turn into animals before killing their defeated opponent.

Other things that should be noted are the new stage fatalities which take advantage of the new settings, the ability to change stages during a battle if you manage knock your opponent to higher level, secret fights with a robotic version of smoke as well as returning fighter Noob Saibot and a new sub boss Montaro who is a centaur that is ridiculously hard to beat.

Overall Mortal Kombat 3 is a really good game, and the reason I dont like it is because of the character selection which may seem a little unfair for me to judge it on that but with the changes they made to some of the characters it just didnt feel right and took away from the experience for me.

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Really great artwork on this arcade cabinet, the character choices make sense due to the games plot and the amount of detail is fantastic, I still prefer the artwork for the Mortal Kombat 2 cabinet but this one is a close second for me.

For more information on this arcade cabinet please use the link below

https://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=8754

Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 was released the same year as the original game it made a few updates that improved the overall experience the first was returning characters Scorpion, Kitana, Jade and Reptile, it added two new modes and added new hidden fighters Human Smoke, Classic Sub Zero, Mileena, Ermac, Noob Saibot and Rain.

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The art here is a little dissapointing as they copied the Mortal Kombat 2 art work instead of Mortal Kombat 3 which does not make a lot more sense as Raiden is not a playable character in this game.

Mortal Kombat trilogy was compilation of the original Kombat trilogy crammed into one game, every playable character was back along side Goro, Kintaro, Motaro and Shao Khan.

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The game introduced another finishing move called a brutality where players will beat the utter crap out of their defeated opponents before making them explode.

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A new secret fighter called chameleon can be taken on, he uses the combined abilities of all ninja characters and is really tough

Mortal Kombat Trilogy was the first game to not be introduced in arcades.

Mortal Kombat Mythologies –  Sub Zero was the first spin off game in the series

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Taking place before the events of the original Mortal Kombat, Sub-Zero has been tasked by Quan Chi to steal a map of elements from the Shaolin temple.

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The game was very disappointing, not only was it not like the other Mortal Kombat games but it was also really badly designed and extremely un-fair.

It was a 2D platforming action-adventure game where players needed to gain experience points and unlock special moves by defeating enemies.

The problem was that the game had confusing controls and was very cryptic on how you need to survive, a lot of the time you would not be able to see below the character so if you had to jump onto a platform below you would not know how to time or position your jump, a lot of enemy sprites were very similar to each other so the game lacked in variety.

If you play the Play-station 1 version of the game it has full FMV cut scenes and they are actually really cool and worth checking out on Youtube.

Overall a bad game and I am pleased that they never made a sequel

With the help of Quan Chi an elder god named Shinnok has escaped from the Netherealm after being defeated by the thunder god Raiden thousands of years ago. Shinnok seeks revenge on Raiden and the other gods who helped to trap him in the Netherealm, Raiden requests help from Mortal Kombat warriors to help defeat the elder god once again.

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Five new playable characters were introduced to Mortal Kombat 4

Fujjin – A wind god and an ally of Raiden

Jarek – The final member of the black dragon

Kai – A Shaolin monk and a friend of Liu Kang

Meat – A gory skeleton and one of the hidden characters in the game.

Reiko – The general to Shinnok

Tanya – A traitor to Edenia

Noob Saibot – Finally playable as a hidden character in the game.

Scorpion and Raiden have been re-added to the game after being absent in Mortal Kombat 3

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The game came with 3D graphics, full CGI cut-scenes, hilariously bad voice acting and a kick ass soundtrack.

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Silly finishing moves such as babalaties and friendships were removed to make the game focus more on violence and to be taken more seriously however a new move that allows you to break your opponents bones during a fight was added which was really awesome.

Players can now also use weapons and stage hazards to hurt their opponents, adding a lot of new ways to fight which is really great.

Mortal Kombat 4 is a fantastic game and while its not my favourite 3D Mortal Kombat game it was a great first attempt.

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Mortal Kombat 4 was the last game to be released in Arcades and its art does not disappoint, I love Quan Chi being next to a wall of flames, it reminds me of the art from the Mortal Kombat 2 cabinet which had Raiden using a thunder attack.

For more information on this arcade cabinet follow the link below

https://www.arcade-museum.com/game_detail.php?game_id=8755

Mortal Kombat Gold was a dreamcast exclusive release of Mortal Kombat 4, it added Mileena, Cyrax, Kung Lao, Baraka and a secret character called Sektor to the game. It even added a few new cut-scenes for me personally this is the definitive version of Mortal Kombat 4 but a lot of people would disagree as the game was hit with mediocre reviews when it first hit store shelves.

I could not find a commercial for this game so we will make due with the opening sequence.

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Taking place before Mortal Kombat Mythologies Sub-Zero, Special forces follows the character Jax who seeks revenge after his comrades were murdered by the Black Dragon Clan, Jax takes on a mission to obtain a mystical artifact called the Eye of Chitian which can open portals.

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The game is a third person beat-em up and shooter, I found it to be quite simple to get used too and at first it was really fun but it became boring very quickly. The game is repetitive, the levels are all very similar and it lacks challenge in both its combat and its boss fights, overall its not great.

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I couldn’t find any commercials or videos for this one so I am afraid we will have to make due with the box art.

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The game was a bad port of Ulitmate Mortal Kombat 3, the limitations of the gameboy advance button layout made it very difficult to play and took a lot away from the experience. At times the game was also really unfair on its difficulties making it near impossible to finish on any difficulty above normal. This is one port you will want to skip.

In the canon ending of Mortal Kombat 4 (Scorpions Ending) Scorpion gets sent back to the Netherrealm by Quan Chi but Quan Chi is grabbed by Scorpion taking him to the Netherealm with him. Quan Chi escapes the Netherealm using a magical amulet which sent him to a tomb of dead bodies, he learns that the dead can be brought back to life and plans to build an army so he teams up with Shang Tsung who then murder Shao Khan and Liu Kang. This causes Raiden to give up his status as a god after realising that if the alliance is victorious Earthrealm will be doomed leading into the events of the game.

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New characters in this game include

Blaze – A secret character and a fire elemental

Bo Rai Cho – Former trainer for Liu Kang

Drahmin – An Oni who seeks revenge against Quan Chi

Frost –  Sub-Zero’s Trainee

Hsu Hao – A red dragon operative

Kenshi -A blind swordsman who was stranded in Outworld

Li Mei  – An outworld native who wants to win the freedom of her native people.

Mavado – A red dragon mastermind

Mokap –  A Joke character added in by the developers

Nitara – A vampire who wants to separate her home from Outworld

Liu Kang and Shao Khan are absent from the game due to their deaths.

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The game looks great and its visuals are a huge improvement over Mortal Kombat 4, the combat remains practically the same although stage fatalities have been completely removed which really sucks.

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Mini games came back in Deadly alliance in the form of Test your Might and Test your Sight, both of these games are very difficult but both are rewarding.

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The crypt made its first appearance here, it was an area that allowed players to spend coins to purchase unlock-able content in the game.

A new mode was added called konquest, this was essentially a long tutorial mode for the fighters but it gave insight to their back stories.

Mortal Kombat Deadly Alliance was an outstanding game and one of my personal favourites.

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Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition was a GBA port of Deadly Alliance

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While controlling a lot better than the previous GBA game in the series nothing about this really stands out enough for me to say its a good game, if anything its a lacking version of Deadly Alliance and overall it can be skipped.

After the events of Deadly Alliance Raiden attempts to fight Shang Tsung and and Quan Chi but is quickly defeated. Not long after this the dragon king Onaga comes to gain the power of the amulet, Raiden sends a powerful blast to try and stop the monster, this blast kills Raiden, Shang Tsung and Quan Chi but hardly touches the dragon king leaving only a few warriors feeling brave enough to try and stop the new threat.

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The game came with a new konquest mode and I recommend playing this off the bat because it helps explain more information on the games antagonist.

The game is a full RPG with side-quests, rewards and really fun combat, this is what I wish the Mortal Kombat spin off games were like.

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Two additional side games were added the first was Puzzle Kombat which was a tetris clone with a mortal Kombat spin to it and the other was Chess Kombat which was a game of chess in the style of Mortal Kombat, I recommend checking both of these modes out.

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New characters this time are

Ashrah – A Netherrealm demon

Dairou – A Seidan guardman

Darrius – A Seidan leader

Havik – Archrival of Hotaru

Kira –  A former weapons dealer

and Kobra – A deadly martial artist

Surprisingly Liu Kang and Raiden are playable but with re-designs, Liu Kang is now a zombie and Raiden seems to have a new colour palette.

The Crypt returns but this time is much smaller and easier to collect everything.

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A new finisher called Hara – Kiri was added, its a controversial move which causes the other player to die by suicide.

Stage hazards and fatalities were brought back in this instalment making the experience even better.

Overall an excellent Mortal Kombat game.

Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks was the third attempt at a spin off for the series and this time it was actually good.

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The game takes place during the events between Mortal Kombat and Mortal Kombat 2, In this game Shang Tsung plans to take over Earthrealm after his defeat by Liu Kang in Mortal Kombat.

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The game is an action packed beat-em up which stars Liu Kang a Lao Kung, players need to slaughter hundreds of enemies and occasional bosses to reach victory, players could perform fatalities in succession as well as a new finishing move called mutuality which kills multiple enemies at once.

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The game is a lot of fun but for the best experience I recommend playing the campaign with another player, I feel not enough games these days allow co-op game-play on story mode so its inclusion here is a blessing.

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The game is packed with secrets including a hidden battle with the ninja Ermac as a well as other characters such as Kano and Mileena. A full working version of Mortal Kombat 2 could be unlocked if you helped the Ninja Smoke on your quest.  A hidden mode called survival could be discovered as well unlocking the ability to play the campaign as Scorpion and Sub-Zero after finishing story mode.

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The game even had a traditional versus mode available with unlock-able characters hidden throughout the campaign.

Mortal Kombat Shaolin Monks is a fantastic game and one the best Mortal Kombat games, it shows good spin offs are possible with the correct team behind them and I really hope that one day we either get re-release or a sequel.

Following the events of Mortal Kombat: Deception, fighters from all realms battle to survive in the battle of Armageddon, this battle sets everyone out to survive by doing anything necessary. The deadly warrior Blaze is awoken and must be defeated in order to save the realms from certain death and destruction.

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The character roster in Armageddon is absolutely massive, for the first time ever in a Mortal Kombat game every character was back and playable including previous boss characters and characters who were deceased.

 

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Fatalities were completely changed in this game and not many people liked this, instead of each character having set finishing moves, players had to brutishly destroy their opponents by combining multiple gory attacks together creating their own finishing moves, this was really cool but it took away a lot of character personality and the fun of learning to pull off tricky fatalities

Another disappointment was that the game had no end cut-scenes or art for players, its still had narration explaining each characters ending but the lack of the imagery to go with this made it really boring and not as interesting as it was in previous games.

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On the bright side the game did have an excellent Konquest mode which introduced two new characters Taven and Daegon who have just been released from suspended animation to defeat the warrior Blaze.

The game-mode is really fun and takes a lot of inspiration from Mortal Kombat Shaolin Monks making it one of the best parts of Mortal Kombat Armageddon.

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Another new mode allows you create a fighter using a lot of fun tools and designs, more stuff for this mode could be bought in the krypt.

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My favourite mode in the game is Motor Kombat which is a really silly Mario Kart knock off with Mortal Kombat characters, themed tracks and items as well as plenty of blood and guts.

Mortal Kombat Armageddon brought a lot of new ideas and modes to the table making up for the elements that were lost but overall the game for me a was a little disappointing due to its losses however it was still fin and better than some of its predecessors.

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A PSP version of Mortal Kombat Armageddon was released titled Mortal Kombat Unchained, the game was very similar to the console versions however unchained did have an exclusive endurance mode which allowed players to fight constant waves of fighters until they fall in battle.

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A port of Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 was brought to the Nintendo DS titled Ultimate Mortal Kombat, the game was an exact copy of the arcade game.

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This version came with a Puzzle Kombat Mode as a bonus that was not available in the original game.

Mortal Kombat vs the DC Universe was an odd choice for the next Mortal Kombat game as it would include regular Mortal Kombat characters battling characters from another universe.

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The story has players choosing which side to fight for but both campaigns show that Shao Khan and DC villain Darkside both get sent into new realms however due to both of these event happening at once both worlds collide and a new villain named Dark Khan is born.

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I always found the character roster for this game very lacking, yes both sides have the obvious choices but I feel that a few fan favourites such as Smoke, Harley Quinn, Reptile, Killer Croc as well as many others could have made the cut or at least came later on as DLC.

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A new ability was added to stages allowing players to throw characters down to lower platforms beating the snot out them while they are doing this, this could also be done in a similar new feature called close kombat.

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Test your might returns here although its now implemented into ground based stages, this means that in some stages you can trigger test your might by ramming your opponents through walls and other obstacles.

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Due to an agreement with DC and its use of characters, violence had to be toned down in this game meaning that a lot of gore was removed from Fatalities and DC Heroes could only perform Brutalities that did not kill the opponent.

Over all not the best Mortal Kombat game but its one of my favourite crossovers, I wish they kept the gore but I understand why DC did not want Super Man brutally murdering someone or having Batman be sliced in half.

2011 brought us Mortal Kombat 9 (AKA Mortal Kombat) a retelling of the plot from the first three games however this one has a twist, it begins at the end of Mortal Kombat Armageddon with Raiden sending a message to his past self “He must Win” referring to Liu Kang needing to win the Mortal Kombat tournament.

While this does technically continue from the end of Armageddon in reality it was the beginning of a reboot of the series while keeping the events of the previous on going story canon. Throughout the campaign Raiden receives visions from the future encouraging him to make drastic changes to past events but with these changes came some serious consequences.

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Playable Characters in the game included

Baraka

Cyrax

Cyber Sub-Zero – a robotic-ally altered version of the popular blue ninja

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Jade

Jax

Johnny Cage

Kabal

Kano

Kitana

Kratos from the God of War Series (PlayStation Version Only)

Kung Lao

Liu Kang

Mileena

Nightwolf

Noob Saibot

Quan Chi

Raiden

Reptile

Scorpion

Sektor

Shang Tsung

Sheeva

Sindel

Smoke

Sonya Blade

Stryker

and Regular Sub Zero

DLC character were added to the game in the form of

Freddy Kruger – From the Nightmare on Elm Street Franchise

Kenshi  – From Mortal Kombat Deadly Allaince

Rain – A Purple Ninja who was first playable in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3

and Skarlet  – A red female ninja

These characters were free in the the Komplete Edition of Mortal Kombat that was released in 2012

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This game is gory and the fatalities were finally fatal again, DC universe left a lot of people disappointed that the series would never go back to being R rated and Mortal Kombat 9 proved us all wrong.

Stage fatalaties such as the pit returned as well, which was very nostalgic for fans of the series.

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A major new addition to the series introduced in Mortal Kombat 9 was the X-ray moves, these are specifically timed grab moves that break the bones of your opponent causing serious damage to the health bar, broken bones or not the damage you take does not affect how you fight in the game after you are hit with an X-Ray.

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Apart from the amazing story mode of the game, new modes included a training mode which allowed you to practice pulling off moves and fatalities

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Challenge tower was a new mode to the series it offered 300 challenges for players to tackle and if they are successful they would earn currency to spend in the games Krypt Mode.

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Other modes included Test your Might, Test your Sight, Test your Strike, Test your Luck, Tag Team and online play.

A great reboot of the series, it held the Nostalgia of the original games while also bringing a new feel and new ideas to the table, Mortal Kombat 9 is one of the best Mortal Kombat Games yet.

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A re-release of Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat 2 and Ulitmate Mortal Kombat 3 for the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and PC.

This version added online multiplayer and achievements.

 

Two years after the events of Mortal Kombat 9 Johnny Cage and Sonia Blade are fighting to imprison the Elder God Shinnok and Quan Chi. They are successful and Raiden traps Shinnok in an Amulet but unfortunately Quan Chi escapes, the main meat of the campaign then takes place 20 years later and shows Johnny Cage with a group of warriors that he wants to use to retrieve the amulet from Mileena who wants to release Shinnok. The campaign of this game helps to give a lot of sympathy to the characters we all know, the problems that they deal with in the game help to make them feel more like real people than video game characters, I wont spoil the whole campaign story as it gets really good and you should really check it out for yourselves.

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New comers to the roster included

Cassie Cage –  The daughter of Johnny Cage and Sonia Blade

D’vorah –  A member of a race of insects called the Kytinn

Erron Black –  A gunslinger from Earthrealm

Ferra and Torr – A young girl who rides a giant masked monster

Jacqui Briggs  –  The Daughter of Jax and his wife

Kotal Kahn – An Aztec Warrior from the realm of Osh Tekk

Kung Jin – A master thief and the cousin of Kung Lao

and Takeda Takahashi – The son of Kenshi

Paid DLC characters were

Tremor – A bronze ninja and a member of the Black Dragon Clan

Jason Voorhees – From the Friday the 13th franchise

The Predator – From the Predator franchise

Tanya –  A woman from Edenia and a worshipper of Shinnok

Xenomorph –  From the Alien franchise

BO’Rai Cho – Former trainer of Liu Kang

Goro –  A tough four armed warrior who debuted in the original game

Leather Face – From the Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise

and Triborg a ninja that is a combination of Smoke, Cyrax and Sector

All DLC was included with Mortal Kombat XL which was released in 2016

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Apart from characters there really was not much new content in this one but the two main differences really affected the game-play negatively in my opinion. Instead of just choosing a fighter in quick matches now we had to also choose a fighting, style and all of these needed to be learned separately and it just made the whole thing much more confusing than it needed to be, I hated this I  just wanted to play normal Mortal Kombat not this new diverse version of Mortal Kombat.

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Anyone who has been reading this website for a while knows that I hate quick time events in cut-scenes. In my opinion they make the story less enjoyable and are lazy attempts to advance a game, they don’t take much skill and are usually boring, these are no exception in Mortal Kombat X they don’t fit well into this series and it distracts players from what was originally a fantastic story mode plot.

With these complaints aside, I actually really like this entry to the series, it still is a lot of fun to play and minus the quick time events had the best plot in a Mortal Kombat game yet.

After Shinnoks defeat in Mortal Kombat X Raiden is left corrupted and dark, he wants to protect Earthrealm by destroying its enemies immediately. Shinnoks mother Kronika rewrites history to remove Raidens interfere by bringing the past and the present together which causes new Mortal Kombat characters to meet the original versions of themselves.

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New comers here are

Cetrion –  An Elder Goddess and Shinnoks Sister

Geras -Kronikas main underling

and Kollector – A debt collector for Shao Kahn

So far the only DLC characters are

The Joker from Batman

Nightwolf

Shang Tsung

Sindel

Spawn

And the Terminator

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Fatal Blows are a new move that can deal serious damage to your opponent they are very similar to the X-Ray and do not show the bones breaking making them slightly less cool.

X-Ray has been replaced with Krushing Blows a shorter X-Ray move that does less damage but is executed much faster.

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Mercy is a move that allows you to revive an opponent by giving them a small amount of health.

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Character customisation was added to the game, this allows players to add new skins, weapons, abilities and more to the characters in the game.

There really was not many new modes or ideas added to Mortal Kombat 11 but that has not stopped the game from being an excellent entry into the series, I still prefer Mortal Komat 9 overall but this is a close second for me.

That leaves us up to date with the Mortal Kombat video game franchise so far, I grew up playing the original games and I have fallen in love with its reboots, this series has had a lot of good moments and bad moments but all of it is nostalgic and brings back a lot of gaming memories for me.

I learned a lot of history and information about the series from a very well put together YouTube documentary series, this series is much more in-depth than the information I have provided and I recommend checking it out if you want to learn more about Mortal Kombat and the impact it has had on gamers for over 20 years.

Join me when the next game is released as we continue to explore this ever expanding game series.

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Make sure to subscribe to 616Entertaiment on Youtube who made the excellent Mortal Kombat history documentary series.

 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWyYPkTpefppyrOO8gcjgfw

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kirby Star Allies (Nintendo Switch) Review

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Released on the 16th of March 2018 Kirby’s latest adventure has become popular amongst both fans and critics, the game makes a few changes to the regular Kirby formula which helps to make the game play feel unique while still being similar to its predecessors.

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On a distant Planet a Crystaline heart is blown up by a mysterious individual, the heart fragments are shot across the galaxy where they land on various planets including Kirby’s home planet of Dream Land, many characters are possessed by the heart fragments making them extremely aggressive, Kirby is also affected but instead of becoming dangerous Kirby gains the ability to befriend anyone he pleases, with his handy new ability Kirby heads off to find out whats going and prepares himself to save the galaxy.

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similar to most other Kirby games this one is a plat-former but as previously stated it does add a fair bit to the average Kirby formula, Kirby is still able to consume enemies and shoot them back out in the form of a star as a means of attack and most enemies will allow Kirby to gain their abilities if they are completely consumed, whats new is the ability to throw hearts at enemies forcing them to join your team, you can have up to three extra team members to help you beat the levels by killing enemies and solving puzzles, this doesn’t always work so well as I found that I occasionally needed to sacrifice a team member by consuming them as they wouldn’t commit to simple tasks such as lighting a fuse meaning that I has to do it my self at the loss of an ally although this wasn’t too much trouble as you can easily find someone else to join your team in their place, it should also be noted that some enemies can add elements to Kirby’s weapons making some enemies easier to defeat, you can also play as a main series characters such as Meta Knight by unlocking them in bonus areas called Dream Palaces, these palaces and bonus levels are unlocked by finding giant pink buttons in certain levels.

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Another fun ability Kirby can perform with his friends is the various podiums you find through out the different planets, these podiums require you to have a full team of allies so that you can create various forms, the most the common is the friendship circle but my personal favourite is the train, it was so much fun racing through the train segment at full speed not too mention very cute.

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Boss fights are what you would normally expect from a Kirby game but that isn’t a bad thing, they are still fun to fight and and its not as if they aren’t unique at all, the King Dedede fight stands out to me a lot and the final battle is extremely dramatic although I wont spoil that here.

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The visuals are amazing this is Kirby looking the best he has ever looked, the graphics are smooth, the game has some great uses for shadows and shading, colours vary from bright and cheerful to dark and gritty in order to fit the mood and atmosphere of the different planets and even smaller touches such as fire sparks being caused by fire attacks and the backgrounds being slightly enlarged and stretched out when passing over it during a water attack, this really goes to show just how much effort was put into the game by the designers.

The soundtrack of the game may just be my favourite yet of any Kirby game, it has all of original music as well some updated versions of classics tracks from the past, check it out above.

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Some Minor spoilers regarding bonus content below

Bonus content in this game while fun isn’t too much to get excited for, the main collectable of the game are puzzle pieces and if you collect a certain amount you can unlock one of many pictures inspired by past Kirby games, there are a few extra mini games available from the moment you start the game one is a lumber jack game where you must chop down trees faster than your opponents and the other is a game where you must bash a meteor with a baseball bat hoping that it goes further than the other players, once you beat the story mode you will unlock a boss rush mode and time trials which allow you too play as various enemies from the game, if you beat this game you can then play as dream palace characters such as Dedede and Meta Knight.

Kirby Star Allies is a really fun game and is a great entry to the series however it is far too short, its also very easy which isn’t surprising for a Kirby game but honestly there is no challenge at all in the main story, the boss rush can get a bit tough but that doesn’t make up for a story mode which only managed to kill me a handful of times, I know Kirby games are easier than most but this seemed a bit ridiculous, however its still worth picking up mostly due to the bonus content the player gets rewarded through out the game, the graphics are wonderful and the soundtrack will have you humming along all day, also at some point in the game a nod to one of Kirby’s earlier games is made and its honestly so cool and is worth discovering for your self.

Kirby Star Allies is a nice return for Kirby and I hope that its sells enough games to encourage some new story DLC but until then this game is good enough but definitely could have done with being a bit longer 7.3/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Kirby Star Allies for the Nintendo Switch

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

 

 

Splatoon 2 (Nintendo Switch) Review

Is Splatoon 2 a good reason too buy a Switch?

splatoon-2-artIt’s been over two years since the release of the original Splatoon so it was no surprise when the sequel was announced during the Switch reveal earlier this year and even though this review is over a month late due to all the new content in Splatoon 2 I am finally ready to talk about this much anticipated game.

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The single player story mode hasn’t changed much since the first game but there are a few small differences, first of all you are now playing as Agent 4 and not Agent 3 from the first game, the plot still revolves around rescuing the great zapfish from an unknown threat, there are five areas which each hold multiple stages and a boss fight, apart from using some of the newer weapons which I will get into later the game play hasn’t changed a lot the objective is to rescue the zapfish by getting from point A to point B, each stage has a different obstacle for example some levels require the player to fill up sponge platforms with ink in order too increase the platforms size, another obstacle requires the player too activate buttons in order to change and rearrange some platforms in order to reach the goal.

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The Boss fights follow a similar design as before however they still offer a fresh experience for players returning to the series. my favourite of these new bosses is the Octo Oven a giant toaster which requires the player to avoid its nasty attacks until the bread pops out of its oven doors allowing the player to maneuver their way to the top of the boss and hit its weak point.

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Turf War is the main mode in Splatoon 2, just like in the first game players will team up with other players online, each player is separated into two teams and the goal is too ink as much turf as possible, the team that inks the most turf by the end of the game wins.

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All of the old weapon types return for Splatoon 2 so you can still play with the splattershot, splat roller and the inkbrush however many new weapon types have been added to the series two of my favourite new editions include the splat dualies which is similar to the original splattershot but the player holds 2 guns (1 in each hand) and they hold half the amount of ink, another fave of mine is the splatbrella an umbrella weapon which can fire a shotgun blast while also protecting the player from enemy fire in a similar manner to the movie Kingsman a Secret Service.

Splatoon2-SplatZones-1024x576 Ranked Battle is back and its more intense than ever, there are three modes available the first is splat zones where teams must go up against each other to try and splat certain areas of the map and then keep that area inked in their colour in order to win the game, next up is tower control where players must ride a moving tower into enemy territory to reach the goal and finally there is the mode I suck at the most rain maker, the rain maker is a special powerful weapon which players must carry into the enemy base without being splated by the opposing team.

DGPBIXCUAAAikEy_thumbOnce you reach rank B minus you can try your hand at league battles, a league battle is 2 hours long and they allow competitive players to battle it out in ranked battle modes without being able to lose their level

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A brand new mode introduced to the series, salmon run is a horde survival mode where players must destroy hordes of enemy AI and bosses in order to gain experience points and golden eggs, the golden eggs must be picked up and dropped off at the collection point and if all players are dead in the game then salmon run is over, salmon run is awesome and by far the best part of the game but unfortunately its only available during certain times of the year.

Whats to be said other than Splatoon 2 is amazing and is a great reason to buy a Nintendo Switch, my complaints from the first game still stand I wish you could choose maps and game modes instead of them being swapped out during 2 hour time slots, the amiibo support here really sucks compared to the first game as it only allows you to save another players gear to the amiibo for a quick costume and weapon swap between games and mini games such as squid jump have been removed completely,  however putting this aside the graphics and music are as fresh as ever and the addition of salmon run is enough for me to rate this game a little bit higher by giving it an off the hook 9.5/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Splatoon 2

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Sonic Heroes (2003) (GC, PC, PS2, XBOX) Review

Happy New Year and to kick of 2016 we are going to be looking at another controversial 3D Sonic game

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Sonic Heroes released in 2003 and was Sega and Sonic Teams attempt at making a next generation Sonic game that uses Team based mechanics, just like Shadow the Hedgehog this game also has a reputation of either being a piece of crap or a pretty fun experience.

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Sonic Heroes is split into four main campaigns Team Sonic, Team Rose, Team Dark and Team Chaotix, each of these teams have unique story and for the most part a different objective which ties into the games main plot.

Team Sonic receive a threat from Dr Robotnik about some new scheme he is creating and so Sonic, Tails and Knuckles run off to find and defeat Robotnik.

Team Rose are on the hunt for Big the Cat’s Missing Frog and Cream the Rabbit’s Chao Chocola.

Team Chaotix work for a detective agency and they hunt down a new client who offers them a lot of money if they rescue them from where they are being kept prisoner.

Team Darks story begins with Rouge the Bat searching for a hidden treasure when she accidentally comes across Shadow the Hedgehog and Omega (a security bot built by Robotnik),  Omega is angry because Robotnik locked him away for so long and Shadow has forgotten everything about himself and his past, all three of them seek out Robotnik for revenge and answers to why Omega and Shadow were locked away.

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How you play the game is that you control three characters for each team one Speed Character, one Power Character and one Flight Character, In teams Sonic, Dark and Rose you will need to use all three characters to pass obstacles and defeat enemies while trying to get to the goal ring as fast as possible.

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Team Chaotix are personally my favorite team to play as they are the only team that offer new gameplay, while playing as Team Chaotix you will need to play through all the same stages as the other teams but each with a new objective for example in one stage you need to find and rescue a lot of Chao and in another you need to find and blow out a bunch of flames that are hidden through out the level.

A big problem with beating the game with all four teams is that you will literally be playing through the same stages over and over again, yes each team does use slightly different paths but most of the time its the exact same stage and its gets really boring and repetitive, this is why I enjoy Team Chaotix the most they offer a more unique gameplay and its a nice break from the action style gameplay of the other teams.

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While playing through each stage you will find small golden keys that you will lose if you take damage, these keys are very important because if you manage to survive a stage with a key you will be sent to a bonus level which will either allow you to earn lives or you can try and catch one of the seven Chaos Emeralds.

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The controls are some of the worst I have ever used in a Sonic game, the characters move way too fast which often causes players to hit unforeseen enemies, some areas in the game require rail grinding and these controls make these sections a lot more difficult than they need to be, far too often did I try to quickly switch rails and the game decided to fling me far into the distance making me fall to my death, the awful controls make the special stages almost impossible to play which is extremely annoying because you need to play these to get the Chaos Emeralds and just getting to the special stages isn’t that easy of task to complete in the first place.

Glitches are not uncommon in this game so be wary if you ever to pick this one up, my advice is to mostly use the power characters as they are strong enough to take out a lot of enemies as well as moving at a reasonable pace, flying characters are by far the most useful this is due to a glitch allowing you too quickly build up your Team Blast bar by quickly throwing  your team mates using the flying character, the speed characters move far too quickly and I recommend you never play as the speed characters unless you get to section where they are needed.

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Team Blasts are a new type of special attack where all three characters in your team will work together to destroy every enemy on screen.

The music in the game isn’t really anything special, I love the vocal tracks but the level themes are just basic and not very catchy which is a shame because for me the music is what I look forward to the most when I play Sonic games and especially when I play the 3D games as they have a reputation of not being some of the best games out there.

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The visuals are amazing in this game, Sonic Heroes looks like one of the old 2D sonic games brought into the 3D world, the level designs are perfect rail sections are only implemented when they need to be, surprisingly their isn’t too many loops, every area is unique and offers a new gameplay style for example in the jungle levels you will find frogs that can make platforms appear and disappear and the Casino levels offer pinball and bingo sections to help you earn a whole load of rings to help you on your adventure and its not too often that you will die due to bad game design.

 

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The game has three types of Boss battles within the four campaigns you will either fight Dr Robotnik in one of his aircraft’s, another Team you meet while on your adventure or a barrage of Robotniks robots, for the aircraft’s just use the speed character because you can glitch the game by spamming homing attacks on the boss killing it almost instantly and for the other two I recommend a fully powered flight character as you hover in the air avoiding enemy attacks and due to the flight character being very over powered by using this character you will beat the level very quickly.

If you collect all seven Chaos Emeralds and manage to beat each Team’s campaign you will unlock Final Story which is the games real final boss and its eventual conclusion.

I wont go into too much detail here due to spoilers but I will say that this boss is a blast to fight, if 3D sonic games have one good thing about them it is almost always the final boss, the real enemy of the game is not Dr Robotnik but is a returning villain from past Sonic games that long time fans will surely enjoy fighting once again.

In conclusion Sonic Heroes is a really fun game with a lot of really big problems, it looks amazing but it plays and feels horrible, the soundtrack is not very interesting and the whole game feels rather repetitive, its not quite as bad as Shadow the Hedgehog but that doesn’t mean it’s a good experience.

Sonic Heroes is ok at best, its a shame because if all of these issues didn’t exist it would of been a classic 4.0/10

I still want a sequel though, come on Sonic Team its been almost 13 years and we want a Sonic Heroes 2 just make this one not so broken please.

I hope you enjoyed this review of  Sonic Heroes

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com