At some point - possibly
before the death of the Great Kung
Lao 500 years ago, or possibly after - Reptile joined Shang
Tsung and Goro on Earthrealm.
He stayed in hiding during the first Mortal Kombat. Naturally, when Tsung
returned to Outworld, so did Reptile. He protected his master from harm
during the events of Mortal Kombat II, and then went on to receive special
missions from Shao Kahn himself, who had promised
to release the remaining members of his race from slavery if he would unquestioningly
do his bidding. Such an opportunity arose when Kitana had escaped into
the unknown regions of Earthrealm during Kahn's invasion of that world.
Reptile was sent by Shao Kahn, who promised Reptile to resurrect his race
if he succeeded, with Jade to find and, if necessary, kill Kitana.
He did not succeed as Jade betrayed him to help her friend Kitana.
After the war was
over, with Kahn defeated and both Earth and Edenia free, Reptile was brought
back as a prisoner to Edenia, and tried there for genocide, a bitter irony
since his own race once was the victim of the very same act. Reptile was
then exiled to the Netherealm. When the fallen Elder
God Shinnok invaded Edenia, Reptile grasped
the opportunity to join Shinnok's Army of Darkness as a commander, hoping
to convince Shinnok to revive his near extinct race. After being on the
losing side once more, he escaped into Outworld again and rejoined his
old masters, in spite of the fact that neither had ever kept their promises
towards him. Because of his state
of separation from the other members of his race, and especially his matriarch,
Reptile had begun to show signs of devolution. Where he used to mask his
appearance by posing as a human, this proved to be no longer possible.
By the events of Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, Reptile had nearly gone
insane and had a significantly changed appearance, including a tail.
Later it became
his alternate costume in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon.With the armies of Edenia
and Outworld locked in combat, Shao Kahn requested the services of the
sorcerer Shang Tsung. Reptile was sent to tell Tsung of the emperors request
but upon reaching Tsung’s new place of residence since being released from
prison Reptile overheard Tsung and Quan Chi
forming their Deadly Alliance and plotting to kill Shao Kahn. On his way
back to inform his master he was distracted by Nitara, who revealed to
him knowledge of his lost civilization. She gave him the Kirehashi blade,
which was an artifact of the Zaterran civilization, as proof and revealed
to Reptile the location of Kitana’s forces. Reptile knowing how this knowledge
would greatly aid his master in the war with Edenia raced back to tell
the emperor, but he was too late; Shao Kahn lay slain on the floor.
The desperate and
purposeless Reptile wandered Outworld aimlessly until he came across Nitara
yet again. Desperate for a new master Reptile declared his loyalties to Nitara, but unknown to Reptile, he had always been merely a pawn in Nitara's
plan to free her people's realm from the Outworld. The first step had been
to distract Reptile long enough for the Deadly Alliance to kill Shao Kahn
unhindered; next, she manipulated Reptile and the cyber-ninja Cyrax into
battle. Reptile damaged Cyrax, ensuring
the cyber-ninja would later help Nitara in her quest for the portal sphere.
Eventually, Reptile came to realize that Nitara had fooled him, and that
her plan had lead to the death of his master Shao Kahn. Enraged, Reptile
tracked the vampire and Cyrax to the Lava Chamber, but he was too late.
The portal sphere had been destroyed, and of Nitara and Cyrax there was
no sign. All that remained was the almost fully incubated dragon egg of
the Dragon King. The egg hatched, a beam of light struck Reptile and Reptile's
body became the vessel for the reincarnated Onaga.
Although claimed by
most fans to be 'devolving' into a more primal state since Mortal Kombat
Trilogy, there is very little evidence to support that this change is anything
but superficial. It is described in an unlockable photo of Reptile's home
realm Zaterra, that members of his race can lose their humanoid appearance
when separated for long periods of time from their monarchal leader; given
the fact that this authority figure - like most of his people - were most
likely wiped out centuries ago by Shao Kahn, the fact that Reptile did
not start to 'devolve' until after he assumed his master killed at the
end of Mortal Kombat Trilogy, and his race's natural camouflage ability
to look like normal humans, it's more likely that Reptile's 'devolution'
was a result of his increasingly maddening state overriding what mental
capacity was required to maintain his human guise instead of a physical
metamorphosis into a prior state of evolution.
Reptile returns in
Mortal Kombat Armageddon, his separation from Onaga seemingly explained
by Nightwolf's ending in Deception, whereupon he bound Onaga's soul to
the Netherrealm. Reptile is encountered in MKA's Konquest mode in the lair
of the Red Dragon clan. Though no explanation is offered as to why he is
there, it's possible that Reptile's DNA was also being used, along with Daegon's
dragon, Caro's, as a means of creating human-reptilian hybrids, since the
Red Dragon Hybrids do bear some resemblance to Reptile.