Mortal Kombat still a top-drawer fighting game
The Mortal Kombat series has always been known for its deep combat, rich gameplay mechanics, and general brilliance when it comes to relying on the tried-and-tested tropes of the fighter genre but, in this reviewer's opinion, Mortal Kombat X is the series' best to date.
Although not drastically different from 2011's Mortal Kombat, what does make Mortal Kombat X distinct from previous instalments is its commitment to the refinement and improvement of the three things that has made the series such a resounding success - story, fighting and, of course, gore.
And that's a relief, because in many ways Mortal Kombat X is at a significant disadvantage compared to its predecessor. 2011's Mortal Kombat had it comparatively easy, rebooting the series back to the beloved Mortal Kombat/Mortal Kombat II/Mortal Kombat 3 era, bringing back a nostalgia-ridden roster of characters in the process.
Mortal Kombat X drastically overhauls the entire roster of the series. Kabal, Sektor and Noob Saibot all face the axe, while eight entirely new characters are introduced to the fold.
Previous and long standing characters in the series see some marked improvements on their old personas. Takeda is the most eye-catching of the new-and-improved designs. He fights like you would imagine a 21st-century ninja might - with an arsenal of high-tech gadgetry and weaponry at his disposal. Remote-control laser swords, explosive throwing knives and arm-mounted grappling hooks all feature in what could be called a very current-generation concious revamp of the old Mortal Kombat formula.
Animations have also been given the next-gen treatment. Mortal Kombat X addresses the shortcomings of 2011's Mortal Kombat by way of improvements accross the board in almost all animations, including dash and hit. Walk speeds are snappier, pokes feel more useful, and with the awesome new variation system that gives each character three possible abilities to choose from at the beginning of a match, there's more to explore, discover, and exploit than ever before.
Combat is king in fighting games, and Mortal Kombat has proved time and again that rich gameplay mechanics, solid character balance and overall fun are key when it comes to winning over fans of the genre. While the Mortal Kombat universe becomes harder and harder to take seriously from a storyline point of view, Mortal Kombat X is still a top-drawer fighting game.
mortal combat x
PS4 / XBox One