Mortal Kombat X Preview | MOUSE n JOYPAD

Mortal Kombat X Preview



A few days ago I was lucky enough to get some time playing Mortal Kombat X and have a chat with Hans Lo, Senior Producer at Netherealm Studios for Mortal Kombat X. As some of you may know the Mortal Kombat series of games started way back in 1992 when it made its first appearance thanks to Midway Games. Midway Games sadly went into bankruptcy in 2011 when Warner stepped in and acquired the franchise and the development team, NetherRealm Studios. Due to the realistic and gruesome nature of the games, Mortal Kombat also gave rise to age ratings on games, but enough about the history of the franchise, you guys want to know about what the newest title in the series holds, how it plays and so on. Well I am about to get into that bone breaking, blood splattering brilliance, so read on.


Johnny at the start of the story, with Sonya.

I was first of all able to play through the first chapter in the story mode, a mode which interests a lot of gamers including myself. The story will be taking you back to the end of the last game and 25 years into the future where the new generation of Mortal Kombat fighters are continuing to fight the good fight.Some of these new generation of players are in fact the offspring of fighters we have all played and loved in the past, Cassie Cage daughter of Johnny Cage, Jackie daughter of Jax, Takahashi son of Kenshi who was trained by Scorpion, and finally Kung Jin who is part of the Kung Lao family but did not start life out as a fighter but a thief. These four new characters were introduced to us and will be the ones continuing the fight for Earth Realm along with some fan favorites that are somewaht aged now. The opening sequence to the story mode sees Johnny Cage aboard a helicopter with some soldiers and allies, when Scorpion and Sub Zero manage to board, and so ensues a fight. This first part is handled with a quick time event (QTE), but soon enough you are facing off against these two old nemisis in combat. This is where I got my first feel of the new Mortal Kombat and its blazing fast combat as I faced Scorpion in a battle to the death. Soon enough I was button mashing to figure out some of the moves, and in no time the game was slowing to an X-Ray shot of me delivering a kick to Scorpions head that dislocated his jaw, followed by Johnny grabbing Scorpion by the head and ramming his skull off his rising knee, shattering bones, with such realism in both the visual and audio senses that it made me feel sorry for my opponent, just for a second. Raiden also made and appearance in this first chapter along with Quan Chi, Smoke and Jax to mention just a few you would recognise.

The fighters were leaping into the air and pulling off some amazing moves, in a speed that I honestly was not used too in previous fighting games. The environments are handled in the same way they were in Injustice Gods Among Us, but to much better effect. For example you will be able to use props when cornered at the end of a level, not to merely jump over your opponent but to rapidly vault half way across the screen, these are useful in delivering a massive kick at high speed. Other props can be used to hit your opponents with, such as ripping a branch off a tree and delivering a splintering blow to the head, or swinging on a tree branch to kick them under the chin while you swing round and round like a gymnast. I managed to pull off one Fatality while trying out the single fight mode, and it was everything I wished for and more. Cassie Cage shot her opponent in each leg dropping them to their knees, now hunched over beaten and barely able to stay upright she puts another bullet dead centre of their forehead, but they do not fall, she calmly walks over to her now dead opponent and taking the gum she has just been chewing, pushes it into the bullet hole in their head and calmly turns and walks away. I said to myself that is one cold woman, hot, but cold. I tried as many single fights as I had time to play using most of the characters available on the day, which included fighters like D,Vorah, Ermac, Sub-Zero, Johnny Cage (my favourite just because of our names, and he’s cool), Ferra/Torr, Raiden and Kotal Kahn to name a few. All the fighters have three variations you can choose from at the beginning of each fight, for instance Kitana has Royal Storm, Assassin and Mornful, these variations will give you certain different moves and you will have to experiment with each to find the right combination between fighter and style to suit how you play best. There will be around 20 to 25 fighters to begin with in Mortal Kombat X, according to Hans Lo, and of course you will get Goro if you have pre-ordered the game, others I suspect will either be unlocked or come in DLC, but Hans could not confirm this to me on the day.


Johnny showing Scorpion who’s boss!

Other modes available in Mortal Kombat X on the day were Survival which is pretty explanatory and towers consisting of modes where you can play against a number of opponents ranging from Klassic, which is 5 opponents, up to Test Your Might which is a 16 opponent tower to reach the top. There will also be Living Towers for you to explore, these will consist of challenges that will be forever changing, from hourly challenges for you to complete right up to tournaments, Hans was excited about these Living Towers, explaining that this is where Mortal Kombat X will be forever evolving and changing for players giving them new experiences to try, while keeping the game fresh and exciting all the time. I think players will definitely welcome these towers as these are where your journey will truely begin without end. Factions is another thing that is going to play a big part of the Mortal Kombat experience, and talking to Hans he explained a little more about these to me. Every player will have to join one of the 5 factions at the start of Mortal Kombat X, Black Dragon, the Brotherhood of Shadow, the Lin Kuei, Special Forces, or White Lotus. You are however not tied to that faction for ever, so if you get to the game later than your friends and join a faction only to find out all your friends are in another one, you will be able to quit and join their one, but this will come at the price of you losing all of what you have earned in your previous faction. Each faction will have unlockable items that are specific to that faction, one you leave you must leave anything you have earned behind including your placement within that faction, so basically you will be starting at the bottom again. All the fights you take part in and complete will earn your faction points, these points go towards your factions total, Hans did tell me that there will be rewards for the leading faction, whether that will be a weekly or monthly occurence is unclear yet, but he did assure me that being in the leading faction will have it’s rewards. Now if any of you think you will stay up for days earning points for your faction, think again, there is a daily limit on the faction points any one player can earn.

As you fight in Mortal Kombat X, on top of earning faction points you will earn “Koins”, these koins can then be spent in the store on what I presume will be outfits and things for your characters, anymore than that was not revealed to me on the day, but you will earn these on both the console and mobile version of the game. I did also get hands on with the mobile version on the day as it unlocks rewards for you to use on the console version, and vice versa. Hans was quick to point out that these rewards are instant, and gamers will not have to wait 24 hours to gain the faction points or koins they have earned on the mobile version to reach their console game.The mobile version is handled much like Injustice was, in that it is a card collecting game, you then choose 3 cards to fight for you, mid fight you can call in any of your other two fighters to help, as they enter with a devastating move. Completing challenges on this game unlocks things like the Farmer Jax or Klassic Mileena outfits, and module backgrounds, and this works from console to mobile also, so playing the mobile version is important if you are out and about and still want to earn those daily faction points for your team. It also allows you to be connected to the Mortal Kombat world anywhere at any time, so you are always up to date and not being a dead weight to your faction.

On the day, I did not see all of what Mortal Kombat X has to offer and I could still sit here all day typing and bore you with information on what I did see. It is such a massive leap forward for the series that it is something you would have to experience to truly appreciate. If you are a fan of the series you will already be waiting on it’s release even before reading this, but if you are not and are afraid of starting on this one, don’t be as NetherRealm have constructed the story in such a way that even newcomers will know what happened to bring us to this point. Mortal Kombat X is violent, that much is clear, but it is in this violence that it shines, delivering bone crunching blows in such detail that it makes your own body hurt at the very thought of it, is just testament to the fact that this is a new beginning for the series, one that is probably going to need a new age rating. Warner Bros and NetherRealm Studios in my opinion have made the first truly next-gen fighter, a benchmark for all to rise too and a kick in the nuts to those who have come before it. I will be queueing up to get my hands on this one come April 14th.