Mortal Kombat X takes place along multiple timelines following the recent reboot. It’s not exactly a coherent or even a linear storyline, choosing to flesh out its characters past and present. Following the defeat of Shao Kahn, an evil sorcerer named Shinnok attacks Earth with his army of Netherrealm forces. Of course, nobody stays dead in Mortal Kombat, so a few familiar faces who perished in the prior game appear to help out different forces in their wars across the realms.
If Mortal Kombat X’s story sounds familiar – it’s probably because the team at Midway (and now Netherrealm) have been really just doing the same old stuff for several years now. Sure, it leads on from the reboot which retold the events of the first three games, but X attempts to take things in a slightly different (if not ever so familiar) direction.The result is, unfortunately, a rather typical Mortal Kombat storyline. People are back from the dead. Realms are being invaded. People are betraying each other. It’s all here. The inclusion of the children of some of the major characters are a nice touch, and it’s interesting to see how their own unique personas and moves have been developed, but ultimately they’re rather boring compared to the characters we’ve grown to know and love.
But that’s not to say that the storyline in Mortal Kombat X is uninteresting, it’s just not that new. The developers have put more effort into the writing of the game’s unique Story Mode more so than other games in the genre ever have. X takes a much more serious tone than the other Mortal Kombat games but still manages to keep that almost goofy humour intact here and there. It’s not game changing stuff, but it’s interesting enough to keep you hooked from beginning to end.Mortal Kombat X is without a doubt one of the strongest looking fighting games on the market right now, and the team has put in a lot of effort to give it this kind of dark and macabre style to the point where the game’s tone feels radically different. The environments look amazing and lived in, the character models look fantastic and the game animates beautifully. It’s a technical achievement to get a game running on an old version of the Unreal Engine looking this great and running this fluidly, and the team at Netherrealm have managed to pull it off.