Mortal Kombat is back and gorier than ever as Warner Bros. Interactive and NetherRealm Studios dish out new details for the latest iteration in the competitive fighting franchise, Mortal Kombat X.
If you managed to make it into the Mortal Kombat X closed-door session during E3 2014, then you would have been treated to a solid 20 minutes of blood, broken bones and even a handful of surprises as members of the development team showed off four of the upcoming game’s brutal fighters including fan favorites Scorpion and Sub Zero, as well as newcomers D’vorah and Ferra/Torr. The former is an agile bug-like woman while the latter is actually two characters, a hulking monster and a tiny blade-wielding woman who rides on his back…Yep, this is a Mortal Kombat game.
As a side note, it looks like some romance was actually happening behind the scenes of the MK universe, as the daughter of Johnny Cage and Sonya Blade, Cassie Cage, was also revealed as a playable character. No word yet on if her parents will be in the game, nor what type of a fighter she will be, but it was explained that her and the other new characters’ appearance was further growth of the game’s “Who’s next” tagline. Fans can expect more new characters, a proper continuation of the Mortal Kombat lore, new levels and more.
Aside from the Cassie Cage shocker, the biggest difference in this new Mortal Kombat is the introduction of three fighting styles for each character. Not only do these styles augment each fighter’s abilities, but they also open up some new moves and further strengthen a player’s preferred technique. Each style offers its own strengths and weaknesses, as well as visual alterations to the character.
Scorpion, for instance, has a Hellfire style that adds an extra bit of kick to his fire-based attacks. To show this visually, his hands give off a toasty glow throughout the battle. His Ninjitsu style, though, boasts a pair of back-mounted katanas that he can whip out and use to make new holes in old enemies. Sub Zero, on the other hand, has a Cryomancer style that gives him more ice-based options, as well as another style that offers up additional defensive tactics. One style gives him frozen arms in battle while the other features an icy facemask.
It’s clear that NetherRealm were fans of their levels in Injustice: Gods Among Us, as all of Mortal Kombat X’s levels are now interactive. Players can grab objects and use them as a weapon, chuck bodies at one another and the like. More agile characters can use certain parts of the environment to move around more quickly while larger characters can pick up heavier objects to dish out some additional hurt.
To further draw players into the game, combatants (kombatants?) also now have specialized dialogue depending on who they are fighting. Scorpion and Sub Zero will bring up their lifelong hatred of one another, for instance, while Ferra/Torr might taunt the “bug lady” before a bout.
As in the most recent Mortal Kombat, the especially violent x-ray attacks once again make an appearance, interrupting powerful combos to show a slow motions, internal view of the damage. These characters are tough as ever, though, quickly standing up and jumping back into the fray after having an organ ripped out, their jaw crushed and their spine shattered all in one go.
And, of course, there are the Fatalities, which are just as cringe-worthy as longtime fans might hope. The team seemed especially proud of one of Scorpion’s new finishers, which sees him chucking a fireball through an opponent and watching as their heart droops down into the newly formed orifice. He’s not done yet, though. As the opponent falls to their knees, Scorpion steps to their side and swings his sword downward, resulting in the front of the character’s face and skull sliding off before they hit the floor. Nope, still not finished. On the ground, their exposed brain now slides out onto the floor while their snipped tongue flops around in what used to be their mouth. There is, of course, loads of blood to accompany these final scenes.
Look for it on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 sometime next year.