Mortal Kombat Komplete Edition / Version Played: PS3
NetherRealm / PS3 – 360 / May 1st / RRP $39.95
(Note: This is an Australian review of the game Mortal Kombat, which was originally released in 2011, and banned in Australia at the time. Due to the incredibly broken ratings system implemented in Australia, the ban was not lifted until the introduction of the R18+ rating, which meant a release of May the 1st for the complete version of Mortal Kombat. This review is a reflection of the fact and can be considered relevant to an Australian audience…or you really like my writing.)
This latest iteration of Mortal Kombat (officially the 9th, if you’re counting) is set after the last Mortal Kombat yet focuses on the main character Raiden retelling the stories of the first 3 Mortal Kombat’s. The story isn’t anything special (basically a tournament is held and Raiden sees the future and must ensure that Liu Kang wins to save the world from evil) but it is of worth to note that this is probably one of the most fully fleshed out stories ever told in a fighting game.
The story on a gameplay perspective forces the player to use specific characters for key events and while this may seem a little restrictive on a player perspective, it allows for a great deal of change in tactics and combos, and stops the game from feeling stale from using the same character over and over.The amount of effort into making this look and sound like a true Mortal Kombat game is evidently strong here, and while the story is quite cheesy and not to be taken seriously, it’s still a great ride.
Graphics are spectacular, and the copious amounts of blood and gore look absolutely stunning on screen, especially the aforementioned ‘x-ray’ attacks and fatalities. The focus on a 2D plane allows for more graphical focus on the character animations and it does not disappoint. This is one of the smoothest looking and goriest fighting games I’ve played.
The core gameplay has been stripped down and done over as an old school Mortal Kombat game. While characters are now fully animated in 3D, the fighting plane is resolutely 2D, with one-on-one and tag-team matches thrown into the mix. The face buttons are each dedicated to a separate limb of the body which allows for an incredibly smooth and fluid fighting system that is both challenging and forgiving enough for mistakes.
The crux of the new Mortal Kombat is the new ‘Super’ meter, which charges corresponding to certain actions, like performing a combo or getting damaged. Once the meter is charged to 1 of 3 levels special moves can be performed, with the top tier being a brutal ‘x-ray’ attack that shifts the camera to an ‘internal’ view of the enemy’s body, showing bones being broken and organs getting ruptured in gory unflinching view.
The violence has to be noted here, as no punches are pulled to depict how graphic and ridiculous these moves are. Blood flies, bones are broken and the ‘fatalities’, a Mortal Kombat staple, are all here. The fatalities in particular save the best and the goriest for last, showing some incredibly over the top moves and disfigurement to finish a fight. Unfortunately the AI is incredibly unforgiving and cheap, especially on the harder difficulties. Playing on the default setting during the story mode led to many instances of frustration due to unfair tactics and cheap moves from enemies. Shao Kahn in particular led to many instances of anger and irritation.
There is a huge amount of options to partake in, with hundreds of challenges ranging from destroying blocks in a certain time to fighting with certain options disabled, like the ability to jump. Old favourites all return, from Raiden to Liu Kang to Scorpion and Sonya Blade and Johnny Cage. This is a truly old school Mortal Kombat game. Also included on this edition is all previously released DLC. this includes cludes fan-favourite warriors Skarlet, Kenshi and Rain, as well as the infamous dream stalker Freddy Krueger. The game also provides 15 Klassic Skins and three Klassic Fatalities (Scorpion, Sub-Zero and Reptile).
Definitely worth a purchase and given the low entry cost because of the delayed release in Australia, I see no reason to pass this game up for fighting game enthusiasts and Mortal Kombat fans.