Mortal Kombat - Xbox 360

Game Description:The newest chapter of the iconic fight franchise marks a triumphant return to the series’ mature presentation and a reinvention of its classic 2D fighting mechanic. Driven by an all new graphics engine, the fan favourite Fatality is back and presented in more gory detail than ever before. In addition, Mortal Kombat introduces a number of new game-play features including tag team and the deepest story mode of any fighting game. Players can choose from an extensive line up of the game’s iconic warriors and challenge their friends in traditional 1 vs. 1 matches, or take on several new game modes.
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Mortal Kombat Preview: Returning to the Gore-Filled Good-Old-Days

Mortal Kombat Preview: Returning to the Gore-Filled Good-Old-Days

By Christopher Monfette - Posted Jan 27, 2011

Mortal Kombat is returning to game consoles everywhere, no longer the latest in a long string of sequels and spin-offs, but a true return to the game’s hardcore, ultra-violent roots. Hence the lack of any sub-title, number or moniker. This isn’t Mortal Kombat: The Revenge; it’s not Mortal Kombat 47, the Action-Sim-RPG combo. It’s Mortal Kombat, tried and true. The formula you grew up loving, gleefully tearing out your opponent’s hearts or ripping their spinal chords free from their flailing, blood-soaked bodies.

Oh, fatality! All is right with the world….

We recently got a chance to check out the latest iteration in the long-running franchise, a series that has tried again and again to redefine itself only to discover that they’d gotten it right all along. Consequently, players won’t be fighting PG-13 battles with comic-book superheroes, or scratching their heads at a troublesome lack of the series’ iconic gore. Rather, you’re back on a 2.5-D fighting plane, ravaging your favorite Kombat characters as you spill through industrial environments into new rooms and chambers, each as disturbing and torturous as the last.

To assuage your fears, characters such as Johnny Cage, Kung Lao, Reptile, Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Sektor, Sonja, Jax and others return for this considerably darker and more mature go-around. The graphical presentation is really your first indicator that this Mortal Kombat title is taking itself seriously – dim, dank with the polished sheen of blood-covered stone; character models that are neither cartoonish nor simplistic, but rather imposing and quasi-demonic. These are the fiercest we’ve seen these characters in quiet some time and even from the short demo we witnessed, they feel back to their old – albeit newer – selves.

It’s surprising to realize that this is the first “next-gen” Mortal Kombat game to appear with an M-Rating, most readily exemplified through the game’s gruesome background animations. Bouts can be fought in single-player or as a tag-team match and moves can be combined by precisely timing your character switch-outs. Every room or chamber into which our fights progressed featured some kind of brutal aesthetic, such as victims being lowered into a boiling river or having their limbs quartered and discarded. All of which framed the fights themselves which seemed more weighty and impactful than overtly bloody.

Yes, the truly insane fatalities soak up much of the gore, but the battles themselves are bone-crushingly brutal. So much so that Mortal Kombat features a new X-Ray mode, a super-move so devastating that the camera zooms in on your opponent with a stylized internal view, allowing you to behold the sub-dermal damage of broken spines and shattered femurs. While these moves don’t result in full-on decapitations or disarticulated limbs, the old-school fatalities certainly do, not the least of which was Kung Lao’s razor-rimmed hat flying through the air like a deadly Frisbee only to lop off the head of Johnny Cage…and then circle back to cleave him vertically in half!

While we didn’t go hands-on with the title, stylistically speaking, Mortal Kombat appears back on track after far too long out in the cold. If the controls prove intuitive and easy to manage, this celebration of carnage could be exactly what the doctor ordered for enthusiastic fighter fans. Hell, with Kratos playable in the PS3 version, how could it not be? But it does make one wonder if a return to the basics alone is suffiicent to rejuvinate the series, or if some added complexity might help to underline the effort. For example, the X-Ray mechanic, while visually impressive, may take players out of the game -- if only for a half-second -- by painfully illustrating a broken back yet including no discernable consequence except for increased damage. If broken legs momentarily slowed you down, or a cracked spin put you into a force crouch -- motionless and open to kicks -- or if the gritty realism of Mortal Komat's new tech resulted in anything remotely...well...real, it might be a creatively strategic flourish.

We can't wait to see how these features develop, and how the character roster continues to grow, as the game nears release!

Comments are Closed

  • crashthebc

    this gonna b the shyt

    Posted: January 31, 2011 9:49 AM
  • crashthebc

    this gonna b the shyt

    Posted: January 31, 2011 9:48 AM
  • UrbanInfection

    Two words. DAY ONE!! I have played all of the games in the MK series since it first started in the arcade. I am so glad they went back to there 2D roots. I am counting the days till I can freeze Scorpion and smile with evil satisfaction.

    Posted: January 28, 2011 11:02 AM
  • Jackal904

    I'm so excited for this game. I'm a huge Mortal Kombat fan. I've played almost all the Mortal Kombat games (besides MK vs DC), and I definitely plan on buying this MK game when it comes out. I hope they bring back Baracka, he's my favorite character.

    Posted: January 28, 2011 8:12 AM

    I swear to god if they add a exclusive character to 360......They said this game was a return to its roots. Not, "lets add a 1st party game developers character to our game so we can sell more copies."
    Take your kratos and shove it. /rant

    Anyways, I'm so happy that the game back to a 2d fighting plane. Mortal Kombat just wasn't Mortal Kombat after UMK3.

    Posted: January 27, 2011 5:29 PM
  • OGcrackpipe420

    i cant wait for this game. i've always been a mortal kombat fan and what was all gore. but i started not caring so much after MK4. but now its back. hopefully better than ever. specially that kratos is going to be in it. but what i wonder is how is kratos going to play. where r the gameplay videos of kratos fighting style?????

    Posted: January 27, 2011 4:02 PM
  • FaroDemon

    I thought that Mortal Kombat Deception was a good game, and I thought that Mortal Kombat vs. D.C. Universe was almost a bigger fail then Cooking Mama cook off for the wii. I hope they don't screw this one up. From the looks of it though they are doing a good job.

    Posted: January 27, 2011 11:21 AM
  • Hitman_Mr.47

    Can. Not. Wait.

    Posted: January 27, 2011 9:09 AM
  • DKBomber13

    Interesting article. It makes me wonder a lot about this game. I'm sure the game will be great, but will it be fantastic. I hope so. I'm not a big Street Fighter fan so I am excited for this Mortal Kombat. I need this and pray it's KICK ASS.

    Posted: January 27, 2011 7:43 AM