Mortal Kombat X

Mortal Kombat X was originally announced for PS4, PS3, Xbox One, and Xbox 360. However, the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions were later cancelled. It's been almost exactly 4 years to the day since the last Mortal Kombat (MK9) was released. NetherRealm's follow-up to the 2011 reboot of Mortal Kombat brings the franchise onto the new generation of consoles, enabling the most violent and cinematic presentation to date. MK9 definitely turned some heads in 2011 (by decapitating them no pun intended), but even after cringing at MK9's gruesome Fatalities, I couldn't help but wonder, "What will 'next-gen' MK be like?"... Well, here we are.

MK9 really was the perfect reboot of the "glory days" of the series, bringing back all the most iconic characters and backgrounds, and made a huge statement with its elaborate story mode. MKX presents a much different spin, featuring a storyline set 20+ years in the future with the sons and daughters of classic kombatants thrown into the mix. Cassie Cage, Jaqui Briggs, Kung Jin & Takeda Takahashi are among the "new generation" of MK; and along with some bizarre new personalities from Outworld, most of Earthrealm's hardened veterans also make their return. (On that note, I must say it's a bit surprising that after 23 years of Mortal Kombat... nobody ever really "died"... and no, Quan Chi bringing several of them back to life doesn't count as 'being dead'. Seriously, how did everyone even manage to survive this long?) With all the Fatalities, Animalities & Brutalities over the years, you'd think there would be more... Casualties. But naturally, it's smart for NetherRealm to have some sort of roster consistency and bring back the fan-favorites; and honestly, the klassic kombatants never looked better. 

In case you didn't notice from the insane amount of mainstream media coverage MKX received, Mortal Kombat is back in a big way. I must hand it to Ed Boon and company, they certainly know how to "sell you" and hype up a game. To be honest, I have to admit it's usually difficult for me to like something that's so commercialized and "hyped up" as much as MKX was... but for once, MKX is actually a mainstream game that lives up to the hype (for better or worse). Once you pop in the disc, it won't take long to notice the insane amount of polish that went into MKX as a console fighting game. If you can stomach the graphic murders and possibly "uncomfortable" moments MKX will indiscriminately provide to your family and friends who might be watching, there is a fighting game behind the curtains of censor-bending blood and gore that might be worth your time.

Mortal Kombat X character select screen.

Before we get into MKX's glossy presentation and blockbuster 12-chapter Story Mode (see side panel), let's talk about the game itself... because, before anything, MKX is still a fighting game. With MK9 bringing the series back into the competitive limelight after years of absence, MKX is poised to keep the series relevant to not only the token mainstream audience, but competitive fighting game players as well. Wisely, the dev-team hasn't strayed far from the previous formula, keeping most MK9 gameplay systems intact. One of the new additions is the Stamina Meter used exclusively to limit running and dashing backwards (I'm guessing NetherRealm isn't a fan of Mayweather fights). It doesn't restrict your movement as much as you may think, since the meter fills up fairly quickly (and there are other movement options, like background interactions). Borrowing the concept introduced in Injustice, background interactions allow characters to propel off of various stage elements (and attack, too). New specific interactions include "hanging from a vine" or kindly drowning your opponent in a fountain. Fighters can also grab various weapons laid out on the stage for a 1-shot, "do or die" attack (some looking painfully badass when connected). MKX's stage interactions feel a bit smoother than Injustice's, but at the same time, I personally don't like how convenient it is for opponents to escape being cornered.

This brings us to the headlining new feature of MKX's gameplay: 3 Variations of each fighter. First implemented in 2002's MK: Deadly Alliance, the concept of "3 styles per character" is executed much more gracefully in MKX. Instead of poorly-performed "martial arts" styles from those laughable yet memorable 3D-era MK games, the new Variations highlight what MK characters do best... brawl, claw, incinerate, etc. Both from an artistic and gameplay standpoint, Variations are compelling. Each Variation gives characters access to a few different special moves and combos (while losing others); but thankfully most of each fighters' iconic specials are available across all Variations. Obviously, Variations add complexity and strategy... but also tack on "quadruple" the amount of required study and memorization time if you plan on gettin' good. Learning how to incorporate a couple Variations for your favorite characters is one thing, but learning how to fight against the entire cast, and all of their Variations, is another. That said, MKX's solid practice mode options and in-game frame data will definitely appeal to studious players. However, any form of specific character combo trials are sadly missing in action and would've sped up the learning curve quite a bit.

combo system is also very similar to the prequel's. Combining combo strings into air bounds into special moves and finishing with an X-ray still feels solid and fun to perform. Along with the awesomely disturbing new eye-gouging, bone-breaking X-ray moves, returning characters show off "flashier" and better-animated combos this time around. On the flipside (and in true MK fashion), certain characters still have some rather ugly, sloppy-looking combos (lookin' at you Erron Black... what a jerk of a character). EX moves have also returned and just like in MK9, EX moves will not only power up a character's basic specials (at the cost of burning meter), but usually always result in entirely new animations and often end up being almost entirely different moves. It's not just cool in a gameplay sense, but "artistically" as well... and it's definitely one area where MKX really shines over the likes of Ultra SF4 (which is ironic, since Street Fighter was the first mainstream fighting game to implement EX moves). 

To sum it up, MKX feels like a sharply refined version of MK9 mixed with a small dose of Injustice. On that note, one could say that MKX really "hasn't changed much" since MK9. While there are plenty of new visuals to take in, MKX definitely feels like a game I've played before. While that's good if you like MK9-style gameplay... I still find the 2-button, super-easy-to-connect comeback moves (X-rays) a bit too foolproof. Taking off 50% of an opponent's life bar with a simple bouncy combo and then an easy-to-connect X-ray move doesn't really do it for me... but more casual fighting game players may find MKX's accessibility to their liking. X-rays truly are the ultimate comeback mechanic. They are literally "hard to miss" since they connect with practically any legit combo and there's zero risk of messing up the command... because... 2 buttons. On the bright side, most juggles end up looking cool and X-rays definitely still bring the "wow factor"... granted that some of the "wow" eventually becomes dull in the sense that X-rays are so stupidly easy to perform
. ...Duhhh, w
hat's an input boiiss? 

MKX newcomers are an interesting bunch.

Gameplay simplicity aside, MKX's visuals are anything but. As expected, MKX's shock value and extreme violence is back in full force. Of course, Fatalities are still a series trademark, and Ed Boon & the folks at ex-Midway *cough cough* NetherRealm clearly still take much pleasure in finding new ways to "mutilate" and dismember the human figure. (At the least, you gotta give the graphics team credit for being anatomically correct with the "insides" of the character models.) Blood and gore isn't what got me into fighting games, but I'll admit most new Fatalities in MKX are fairly clever and worth a laugh (or shriek); but as usual, they do get old after a few watches. And thanks to the super easy inputs and generous allotted amount of time to perform a Fatality, you will indeed be seeing them over and over, and over... (and some are just unsettling to watch that many times). I'm sure some of you can relate; back when I was "serious into MK" as a young teenager in the 90's, there was always a facetious, humorous tone that accompanied MK's violence and gore. You could punch 3 heads off of someone, or explode them and see 6 of their rib cages on the ground afterwards. MKX Fatalities take on a completely different persona. It's hard to put a word on what that persona is, since everyone will react differently to the gore... but generally speaking, it's a bit overkill. And at times, it's too violent for its own good.

On a more positive note, the Fatalities performed by the "new generation" MKX characters do manage to capture their personalities and actually compliment their designs. And on an even more positive note, the new character designs of MKX definitely pack more than cool Fatalities. A game can live or die by its character designs... and for once, I have nothing negative to say regarding (most) new MK characters. Takeda, D'Vorah, Kotal Kahn, Ferra/Torr, Cassie Cage, Kung Jin & Jacqui Briggs each have a lot to offer. (Alright, so Erron Black isn't a total failure of a design, I just don't like him.) Overall, the newcomers exceeded my expectations for next-gen MK characters, managing to stand out among (and possibly even outshine) ome of the iconic veterans. Whether it's Takeda's stylishly hard-hitting combos, Cassie's smart-ass personality, or Ferra/Torr's innovative assist-based play-style, there's a lot to see that "hasn't been done" in the MK universe.

Another noteworthy mention regarding the evolution of MK's movesets is that "more thought" has been put into basic attacks. In general, any direction + attack button is a different move, and all fighters now have very unique pokes. The new characters also show off innovative new ways to throw that classic, cringe-worthy MK uppercut. D'Vorah is a prime example, as her uppercut and pokes, done exclusively with her creepy insect legs, are 100% original and downright badass. On the flipside, I do see some missed opportunities in certain movesets. At times, I wish movesets were deeper and more dynamic in some areas. (For example: D'vorah has a really cool-looking move called "Lady Bug" where she stands on her bug legs, which looks like it could be a cool "stance". However, it's only a delay specifically for that "1" attack. Just imagine if she was a Soul Calibur or Tekken character; she could have 10+ awesome moves from that stance, even walk from that stance, etc). In all fairness, I'm nitpicking here... and of course, 2D fighting games will keep mix-up possibilities to a minimum by nature.

Still Klassic... Still Klassless... Still Mortal Kombat. 

Mortal Kombat X will go down in history for having one of the strongest in-game presentations of any fighting game to date. The character selection screen alone oozes with "in your face" personality hosting badass character animations and sleek lighting effects. The new pre-fight dialogue between characters is also one of the star attractions. Before versus battles, characters exchange their one-liners with one another, and nearly all are unique per match-up (with most match-ups having several). Some of the dialogue is witty and well-written, but others rely far too heavily on obvious puns. For example, to quote a conversation between Shinnok and Scorpion. Shinnok: "Ohh, the firefly..." Scorpion: "Taste my flames." Shinnok: "You'll be extinguished." Ooooh hooo hoooooooo... wow guys. Careful now, you might get a PG-rating. Is the timeline still 1994? I swear I heard those lines in a 90's movie. In fairness, most of them are better than that.

The main menu is rather plain, but reminders of impending updates and new "Living Towers" keep it feeling alive. As far as 1-player modes go, MKX's various Towers are mostly straight-forward. Like in the classic MK titles, the various towers are filled with different arrangements of opponents (and the new towers, surrounded by flying dragons, look especially badass in MKX). Aside from the Traditional Towers and Living Towers (which change periodically), Towers Challengers and "Test Your Luck" matches offer a unique spin, featuring a slew of different gameplay modifiers, such as: gameplay speed increase/decrease, upside-down camera, random teleporting (appropriately called Portal Kombat), random missiles exploding on the stage, instant kill power-ups, etc. They're definitely silly, so at least MK hasn't entirely lost its "humor". Some of the Living Towers also allow you to try out DLC characters for a short while, before (if and when) you decide to buy them. Another good 'selling' strategy from NetherRealm.

The Krypt in MKX has been given a massive overhaul. The MKX Krypt "plays" like a 1st-person game where you not only destroy gravestones and chests for bonus content but also "obtain" various items (such as Scorpion's spear or Raiden's staff) to eventually access new areas of the Krypt. There are a surprising variety of "spooky" environments to explore, and you might even become immersed (just watch out for those random creatures that jump out to scare the shit out of you). The unlockables players obtain from the Krypt include: move commands for Fatalities & Brutalities, alternate costumes and concept artwork - the usual stuff. To sum it up... it's easily the best Krypt to date.

Test Your Might also returns in MKX but is more novelty than anything else. The "mashing buttons" mini game became stale in the 90's... and it's basically no challenge (beat it 100% on my first run with no trouble). At the least, it's a sorta fun 2-player mini game (for 2-minutes maybe)... but it's kinda entertaining seeing all the new breaking materials they came up with. But this time, if you fail to break the material, your character is tastelessly murdered before your eyes. They included upwards of 10 different "TYM deaths" which are just overkill, unnecessary, and a bit stupid. (Waste of development time much? Should've spent that extra time beta testing or working on the netcode).

Also new is the MKX Faction System allowing players to choose a faction from MKX lore (Lin Kuei, Black Dragon, etc). There's not much to it, but basically everything you do in the game earns you "Faction Points" which contribute to the overall faction score online. You can also perform specific tasks while playing to add points to your faction. Players who are part of the winning faction each week will earn extra rewards such as bonus koins, icons & backgrounds to customize online player cards (different ones depending on your faction). The game also tracks a variety of fairly interesting player statistics:  X-rays connected, throws performed, character usage, etc. Other modes include a basic Tutorial, which guides you through the fundamentals of MKX gameplay... nothing more, nothing less.

Learning character Variations is key.

Finally, GRAPHICS.... If you couldn't tell from the crispy HD screenshots, MKX is definitely a next-gen fighting game when it comes to visuals. Both during gameplay and up close on the character selection screen (and the in-game character model viewer) MKX's character models and costumes are full of ornate details, more-so than any MK game to date. To match the characters, the backgrounds are among the sharpest 2D backgrounds to date, and while I wish there were a few more backgrounds (and some classic stages), the new stages deliver with trademark "MK style" and unmistakably next-gen visuals. I'm also very impressed by MKX's particle effects, which aren't obnoxiously in your face or seem forced like in some other games. Character "battle damage" after fights also show off blood stains, ripped clothing and even bullet-holes after fighting gun-users (very cool attention to detail). Skin textures when wet also look impressive (although, Raiden & Fujin look a bit too plasticy during their story mode fight scene).

While MKX's overall graphics are superb, in typical NetherRealm fashion, there are some generic qualities and fundamental flaws with some of the human faces. Hair detail is last-gen in some cases (Liu Kang still has his PS2 hair intact... back from that one time he 'died' but didn't). These up-close flaws are mostly evident during pre-match cutscenes and MKX's story mode, as some character faces really shouldn't get the "zoomed in" treatment. Sonya Blade's hide
ous facial expression when Johnny Cage comes to her aid after his battle with Shinnok had me rolling. In fairness, they actually did a bit better with Cassie Cage's face. (Or maybe good looks just skip a generation?) Generally speaking, facial renderings on MKX's "monstrous" characters look much more impressive... badass actually. Kotal Kahn, Goro and D'Vorah for example look seriously cool up close. The other good news is, during dialogue sequences, facial animations & (most) facial expressions look natural across the board.

Animation-wise, Mortal Kombat has clearly taken yet another step forward since its earlier, "clunkier" days. As a whole, MKX has very smooth, beautiful 60fps pace and very crisp hit detection (resulting in pretty epic "ouch factor"). All characters definitely have their fair share of stylish, great-looking attacks... but many MK'ers still suffer from awkward attack animations. The way some characters weirdly "reach with their upper body" when punching is fundamentally not how you throw a punch... and just looks dumb. Non-martial artists probably won't care, but poor kicking and punching technique in a fighting game really grinds my gears. Other lesser impressive animations resemble bad CGI from early-2000's films or even claymation. Yes, claymation. (Is this next-gen Clayfighter?) It's hard to pinpoint exactly where some animations went wrong, but if you squint your eyes, some characters definitely look like they're made of clay when animating. The way characters "faint" after every round also looks silly - almost as if they're "acting".

In closing, the all-important netcode definitely comes up a bit short in MKX (as it did in MK9). The latency is pretty noticeable even against online friends who live in the same town. While it's "survivable" for casual online play, serious players may find themselves ending up with the short side of the stick, and on the opposite side of spamming, as projectile / teleport-spamming characters may get the better of opponents online. I hate to mention this (not really)... but Bandai Namco's free-to-play 2-year old title, Tekken Revolution, actually has better netcode than this full-priced ($92 with all DLC) game. Ouch... but facts are facts. 

On the bright side, MKX's online mode does have some cool new features like "Quitalities" (funny instant-death punishment for rage quitters) and a selection of modes, including:
Team Battle, King of The Hill and Tower Battle. There are also solid options while spectating, as players can browse player stats, match history, etc. The Respect Points system also returns from MK9 and there are various other small details like character emoticons that give MKX online mode personality. However, perhaps my favorite thing about online mode is that you can actually check your character's movelist DURING the match. What a great idea... and it's especially a nice option to have for a game like Mortal Kombat. (Quick, check that Fatality command before he falls down!) (It actually works btw.)


Page Updated: August 28th, 2022
Developer(s): NetherRealm Studios
Publisher(s): Warner Bros. Interactive
Designer(s): Ed Boon, John Edwards, Paulo Garcia
Artwork By: Steve Beran
Platform(s): PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC
Release Date(s): Apr. 14th, 2015          PS4 / XB1 / PC
Mar. 1st, 2016            Mortal Kombat XL - PS4/XB1
Characters Sub-Zero, Scorpion, D'Vorah, Kotal Kahn, Ferra & Torr, Cassie Cage, Raiden, Kano, Goro, Quan Chi, Kung Lao, Kitana, Reptile, Ermac, Johnny Cage, Sonya Blade, Jax, Mileena, Liu Kang, Kenshi, Kung Jin, Takeda Takahashi, Erron Black, Jacqui Briggs, Shinnok, Corrupted Shinnok, Tanya (DLC), Tremor (DLC), Jason (DLC), Predator (DLC), Bo Rai Cho (DLC), Leatherface (DLC), Alien (DLC), Triborg (DLC)

Featured Video:

Related Games: Mortal Kombat 11, Mortal Kombat 1, Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat 2, Mortal Kombat 3, Mortal Kombat 3 Ultimate, Mortal Kombat 4, Mortal Kombat Trilogy, MK: Deadly Alliance, MK: Deception, MK: Armageddon, Mortal Kombat 9, Mortal Kombat VS DC Universe, Injustice: Gods Among Us, Ultra Street Fighter 4, Tekken Revolution, Under Night In-Birth EXE:Late, Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN-, Killer Instinct (3), Tekken 7, Street Fighter 5, Injustice 2

Gameplay Engine  8.5 / 10
Story / Theme  9.0 / 10
Overall Graphics  9.5 / 10
Animation  6.0 / 10
Music / Sound Effects  6.0 / 10
Innovation  8.5 / 10
Art Direction  8.0 / 10
Customization  8.0 / 10
Options / Extras  9.0 / 10
Intro / Presentation  9.0 / 10
Replayability / Fun  6.0 / 10
"Ouch" Factor  9.0 / 10
Characters  8.5 / 10

8.7 / 10

 Review based on PS4 version  


Final Words:

I give Ed Boon and NetherRealm credit where credit is due. Mortal Kombat, as a game series, has experimented and changed their formula the most out of any fighting game franchise in history. By doing so, they've taken quite a few missteps along the way, but MKX's refined experience seems to highlight the absolute best of what a Mortal Kombat game is all about.

Visually, and in terms of presentation, MKX is definitely a groundbreaking next-gen fighting game. It's nearly impossible not to be impressed by the polished in-game graphics and story content. But contrary to what your eyes might be telling you, MKX is not a "revolutionary" fighting game. The actual 2D game mechanics aren't anything entirely new, but new characters and animations make things feel fresh again. If you enjoyed MK9 or Injustice competitively, you'll feel right at home with MKX.

For everyone else, you might have to step out of your "fighting game comfort zone" to enjoy MKX. While very accessible for casuals, fighting game players who prefer more complex, input-heavy games may be put off my MKX's redundant "tap tap tap"
combo strings, 2-button super moves (X-rays) that even a monkey could perform with ease, and gimmick-heavy characters, some of whom are designed to be used in a very specific way. Everything down to the Fatalities just wants the game to be "easy" for players. Hell, NetherRealm is even selling "Easy Fatalities DLC" for real money (in case hitting 4 directional inputs + 1 button is too hard). Wow indeed. It might not seem like a big deal, but the very principle of selling a player "easy moves" is pretty insulting. By that logic, NetherRealm is telling today's gamers that any move (from another fighting game perhaps) with more than 4 directional inputs + 1 button can considered "hard" and perhaps too difficult for a new player to learn? To conclude my rant, I don't approve of this trend of "dumbing down" fighting game learning curves.

Indeed, there are elements of MKX that cater heavily to the casual crowd to win that "mass appeal" approval. 
In America at least, Mortal Kombat has the strongest name recognition out of any fighting game series. This can be attributed to not only the shock value and controversial, censor-shattering gore, but also the unforgettable, iconic characters who... regardless of how many Fatalities have been performed on them... will never actually die (or stop being made into cheap Halloween costumes). With a fairly epic story mode filled with Hollywood cliches, MKX is a natural hit for casuals, and also since it's one of the most easy-to-play fighting games of this era.

Add-in some DLC horror movie icons like Jason, Leatherface, and even the Xenomorph from the Alien movies... and "MKXL" has mainstream button-masher appeal written all over it for years to come. On that note, I think the inclusion of the horror movie icons is a bit "overkill," even for MK. I suppose the team deserves credit for trying something different, but I think most old school / hardcore fans of MK would agree that these washed up Hollywood don't really fit in with the MK universe and are nothing but easy "cash-ins" at the end of the day. And to think, those character slots could've been filled by classic, beloved MK characters, instead. Furthermore, some of their Fatalities are just too much... and just like in the horror movies, are distasteful and juvenile. Perhaps, as a 32-year-old with 25+ years of fighting game experience, I've just "outgrown" gore... and Mortal Kombat in general... long ago. Meh. 

What NetherRealm envisioned for MKX in the sense of gameplay and presentation, they accomplished not with flying colors or flashy artwork like other fighting games do... but in their trademark "gritty and dark" style (but truthfully, MKX is more silly than it is dark). The mid-match, intestine-ripping skull-cracking violence is a gory novelty that obviously can't be taken too seriously when characters humorously "spring up" after having their spines shattered and skulls caved in. In that sense of presentation alone, other fighting games still emit a more honest "vibe" that makes sense for their universes. But nonetheless, X is no doubt one of the best Mortal Kombat games to date.
MKX isn't a flawless victory, but a victory for the series overall.
~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen  


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Click Here for more Variations!


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Click Here for all Concept Art!

MKX's storyline drifts from the ambiguous "tournament" plot frequent in fighting games for decades, but ushers in some very typical Hollywood cliches at the same time (resulting in both pros and cons). Ever since Warner Bros. teamed up with NetherRealm, Mortal Kombat has indeed become increasingly more "Hollywood". So who better to kick off MKX's story mode than washed up movie star, Johnny Cage himself? (His 'starring' role later to be succeeded by his daughter, Cassie Cage.) In general, the story & cinematic pacing is well done and keeps you watching with interest. As the story skips around, giving different characters their turn in the spotlight, players will take control of said fighter in familiar 2-round matches (you'll play almost as often as you watch the story). Overall, it's a smart way of introducing characters, but a bit overwhelming in terms of actually learning them (you'll inevitably be in the habit of pausing the action to check movelists time and time again). 

The fight choreography in Story is surprisingly good and features QTE events, which are no-brainer button presses that alter the progression of the cinematic fights (but actually don't alter the outcomes or the story in any way). As each chapter follows a character or two, some of the new characters also get flashback segments which flesh them out a bit. Not only does the story introduce each character, but each of MKX's stages as well. You might recognize a few of the stages before playing through story mode, and then realize the current fight takes place in the very middle of that stage... Cool effect.

the new generation of Mortal Kombat heroes.

While MKX's story offers far more content than any recent fighting game, that doesn't mean it's automatically "good". It's easy to be impressed by the graphics, along with random cool moments throughout the story, but it's difficult (for me) to overlook some "typical Hollywood movie" cliches that are painfully worn out. These cliches (AKA: things I've been "tired of seeing" in movies since the 90's) have now made their way into a fighting game. Let's see.... "Powerful amulet held by evil-doer?" (Ohh God... like that wasn't overused by every villain in the mid 90's). Seriously, between Chapters 11-12 alone, they managed to fit in a "super cheesy love interest" cliche... a "saved just in the nick of time" cliche... a "sneaking around the corner but then found due to noise" cliche... a "someone falls off cliff but is unsurprisingly saved" cliche... an "awakened new power just in the nick of time" cliche... and to top it all off, a terribly corny pun spoken by the protagonist: "You're the bug, I'm the windshield?"... Really Cassie? You just had to use a bug pun on D'Vorah before the big fight? Furthermore, he entire story mode's soundtrack is the most cliche, stereotypical, boring orchestral score I've ever heard.

One of the ironic flaws of MKX's story mode is the gore itself. Characters repeatedly jabbing sharp objects through each other's flesh doesn't make sense in fights where characters seem to have "mutual respect" for one another. For example (
*Spoiler Alert*), Scorpion tells Sonya after fighting: "I wish you no harm Sonya Blade." Yeaaaah... after he just broke her neck and then stuck a spear through her skull, twice? And how about Sub-Zero's "training exercise" where military grunts with guns and Lin Kuei ninjas armed with swords fight for over 10 minutes... and nobody dies. Because... it's a training exercise. And after Sub-Zero has 7 bullet holes in his chest (awesomely showing them off during his win pose) and Cassie Cage's intestines were ripped out and shoved into her eye (twice), ohh guess what guys... "IT WAS ALL JUST A TEST." Ohhhhh Mortal Kombat, you try to be all "cool" and "dark"... but you are far more silly and ridiculous than anything else.  

Predictable cliches and moments of bad, rushed writing are among the main reasons why I dislike and won't pay to see 90% of Hollywood movies these days, so forgive me if I seem harsh on MKX's writing... as this is a pet peeve of mine (since I'm a writer myself). For a supposedly "dark" and "gritty" game, the moments of juvenile dialogue and overused cliches is childish. The story also falls flat on several occasions. For one, the villains should've been represented much, much better. (Example: Really Quan Chi? You're this ultra powerful Sorcerer who rides demon horses, can bring dead people back to life and summons giant evil bats, but you let 'Merica's Jax Briggs strut into your evil sorcerer lair, on foot... uppercut you one time, and take you into custody? Into custody? LMAO. Lame-ality. There's another scene where Quan Chi's evil minions have Raiden defeated (but not dead of course), so they just decide to kick him around on the ground like schoolyard bullies for 5 minutes. No guys... definitely DON'T use your awesome killing powers or X-ray moves when f*cking Raiden The Thunder God is on the ground withering in pain. Just kick him around a bit.... Yeah. That should work. Great planning.

Anyhow, if you can get past the periodic catering to a "mass appeal" audience, you'll enjoy the better aspects of MKX's story. For one, there are an insane amount of character cameos (which I won't spoil) from past games, and you'll even fight against some of these cameo characters (who happen to use portions of their MK9 movesets). And to state the obvious, the in-game graphics and the multitude of action happening onscreen at once are solid next-gen eye candy. In closing, yes... MKX's story mode is "decent"... but the writing is uninspired. Considering the story is set 20+ years after MK9, there were many missed opportunities.


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