I don’t want to begin this feature of the freshers’ issue with controversy, but - wait for it - this latest entry in the Mortal Kombat series is the first one I’ve played. I know, I know, I’m awful. But please, blame my parents - they (perhaps rightly) thought it was too graphic for little me to play. But now, battle-hardened from my time at university, the time for fatalities had arrived, and I don’t regret a thing.
Being new to the world of Johnny Cage, fatalities, and words beginning with a K rather than a C (seriously, what is with that?), I was amazed by Mortal Kombat 11. I’d never played a game that felt so much like directing a Hollywood fight scene. This was maintained by the story, grippingly authentic to action movie parody, and the graphics, which I reckon are pretty unmatched.
I began with story mode, though you can completely skip it at the expense of cosmetic rewards. I already had a rough idea of the story of the previous MK games, so catching up wasn’t difficult for me at all but if you jumped into this blind you’d be pretty lost. Most of the characters allude back to events and characters from other games, such as Mileena, Shinnok and Sindel. The story allows you to play up to fourteen different fighters across twelve chapters, with each chapter giving you four fights per fighter. The only downside I found was that I didn’t like being thrown into using a fighter with no idea how to play them effectively.
I'd never played a game that felt so much like directing a Hollywood fight scene
Once you finish the story, there is a lot of “end game” content, if you could call it that. ‘Klassic Towers’ allow you to play as any fighter against a bunch of other characters and then the final boss, where you can then unlock different character endings for each fighter you use. This was something that I loved grinding, as each ending was completely different and showed so much about your chosen character, even Baraka. ‘Towers of Time’ are slightly harder challenges that allow you to unlock rare cosmetic items and augments (buffs) for your chosen fighter. Then there is the Krypt - an RPG like area where you get to explore a puzzle laden castle and unlock tons of loot, from skins to character art. In addition there is an online mode where you can fight other players.
The highlight of the game for me was the long-time novelty of the series: fatalities. Seeing the brutal finishing moves happening in glorious gory detail and cringing behind my controller at D’Vorah’s disgusting techniques was my favourite part of playing the game. Either that, or Cassie Cage making fun of every character in the game in her intros.
The combat runs well, the AI is challenging and there is so much to do. I’d highly recommend picking this game up and giving it a shot.