For those that don’t know the original Mortal Kombat Arcade games are one-on-one fighters. Every fighter has different special moves and different fatalities, but for the most part everyone plays exactly the same. Every character has high punch, low punch, high kick, low kick, block, up to jump and Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 has a run button. In each of the three games, when you win two rounds you have a few seconds to perform a fatality, which is a grand murder sequence that the game is really able to hang its hat on.
As for this its a collection of 3 Mortal Kombat games, Mortal Kombat 1, 2 and Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3. There is no Mortal Kombat 3, which would have been nice. Sure UMK3 is superior, but why not have it too? These are arcade perfect ports, but for being released in 2012 they are just lacking in Steam achievements and Steam support. You need Windows Live to play it online. So basically when you have it on Steam, open up Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection and log in via Windows Live. It seems half ace to not have Steam support but whatever.
I have all three of these games on so many platforms, heck I even have this exact collection on PSN and this PC version just seems lacking. The games are still a lot of fun, but other versions with better online ease and functionality. Plus $10 seems a bit much for 3 games that have been released so many times over the years. I got this package with a bundle.
Just to give you a quick recap of all three games, the first is the original Mortal Kombat. A game with seven playable fighters, Johnny Cage almost was Jean Claude Van Damme, Sonya Blade as Sarah Conner, Kano as the Terminator, Raiden the thunder god who was also in Big Trouble in Little China and the bland protagonist Liu Kang. Oh and the two pallet swapped ninjas, Sub-Zero and Scorpion. Pick a flavor, cold or generic. These seven fighters are tasked with one on one competition working their way up a ladder before they take on a great sorcerer named Shang Tsung that can morph himself into any other character of the game.
Since he can transform into anyone else in the game, he just doesn’t feel special. Instead the real boss that everyone talks about is the champion, a half-man, half-dragon named Goro, the prince of the Shokan. A four-armed giant that will not be stopped from his blood lust.
Along the way, you’ll find mini games to test your might against opponents, and you can even fight a secret opponent named Reptile. Another one of the pallet swapped ninjas. At least they all have unique special maneuvers, because they all share the same move set.
Everyone has a trademark fatality and one of the easiest stage fatalities being the pit where you can uppercut an opponent to the spikes below. As for the fatalities, since it was the first game they can be mediocre. Liu Kang does a flip into a decapitation uppercut, Sonya has a kiss, Kano tears out a still beating heart, Sub-Zero rips out a spine, Scorpion spits fire and so on.
Mortal Kombat 2 brings an all new level of excess. More levels, more ways to die, more fatalities and more finishes including babalities and friendships. It was a stroke of brilliance to just have more variety at the end. Everyone except for Kano, Sonya and Goro have made their return. Now Shang Tsung and Reptile are playable characters right from the start. Also included are Kung Lao, Jax, Baraka, Mileena and Kitana. Everyone is tied to someone else to expand the mythology.
This time everyone is trying to topple emperor Shao Kahn, a boss bigger than Goro to make up for Shang Tsung’s shortcomings in the previous game. He’s not the only tower of muscle you’ll face, he too has his four-armed Shokan bodyguard, Kintaro. Even though you can play as Shang Tsung, he’s always your opponent before Kintaro, but there are plenty of secret characters to fight. Another ninja named Smoke and a fifth ninja named Noob-Saibot if you win enough times in a row. There’s even Jade, a third female ninja. Mortal Kombat 2 really got more out of its pallet swaps this time. I’m shocked there weren’t four Liu Kangs with one of them being blonde, one black and so on.
As a game, I prefer it. Its fun, difficult and the variety of fighters opens up a lot of new play styles that weren’t there for the first game. Each fighter even has two gruesome fatalities and more stage fatalities that are harder to pull off. There’s the sewer and the tower with its spiked ceiling.
Now for Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, which was just an extension of the original Mortal Kombat 3. Oddly enough, this game pulled out some lack luster stages to replace them with new ones. Originally, the ninjas and female ninjas weren’t in Mortal Kombat 3, but the ultimate edition brought them all in with a few new ones. Jade, Kitana, Mileena, Smoke, Noob (Kano), and even a ninja Sub-Zero that fits next to the unmasked Sub-Zero. There are even two versions of Smoke, human and robot. If that wasn’t enough ninjas, the game also presented two new cowled combatants, (purple) Rain and (error macros) Ermac.
Every character has more moves from the second game. The fatalities are more over the top. Jax grows so large he can just stomp his opponent, Smoke forces people to eat a grenade, if not destroy the entire planet. The franchise really took a turn into the modernized western culture with three robots, a swat officer, and even Sonya and Kano are back. New to the series is brutalities, which are a sort of combo system that leads to an explosive death at the end
Its so many characters that it almost becomes too much all at once. Luckily three of the characters need to be unlocked. There are a ton of secrets in this game and it makes use of a combat code system that lets you make codes that do everything from play mini games to wildly affect stats.
In UMK3 you can now chose your destiny and select the tournament difficulty, which is a nice touch. The game brings back endurance matches from the original game that have you fighting two opponents back to back on your way to fight the mighty Shao Kahn again. This time Shao Kan has taken leave of four-armed body guards and gotten a four legged bodyguard. Yes that’s right, a mind blowing centaur with a long dragon’s tail is his guardian. He’s also one of the toughest and most unconventional bosses in the series. Jax can still pick him up one handed and deck him.
With everything said, its still three incredible games in a lackluster collection. I can recommend the games more than the package they come with.