Top 5 Favorite and Least Favorite Things: Mortal Kombat X

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The tenth entry in the Mortal Kombat series came out last week. NetherRealm Studios added a lot of new, interesting elements to the longstanding franchise. They introduced a global battle for dominance with factions, multiple fighting styles per character with variations and a fresh new take on the Krypt. The game isn’t without it’s problems however; there have been server issues and concerns over DLC. Here is the list of our top 5 loves and issues with the game:

5 Least Favorite Things about Mortal Kombat X

1) Server Problems – The game has been live for a week and is still plagued by server issues. Trying to log into the faction page or living towers is often met with an error message. The WBPlay function of the game is still bugged. Many people can’t access the content they unlocked via Mortal Kombat Mobile. NetherRealm has already released one patch to little effect. Hopefully the server inconsistency will get cleared up soon.

2) Whitewashing of Tanya – Lackluster guest characters aside, the most disappointing aspect of the Kombat Pack announcement was the color of Tanya’s skin. Tanya, originally introduced in Mortal Kombat 4, has always been a darker skinned character. Being from the fictional realm of Edenia, Tanya technically has no defined race. Kitana and Jade who are also Edenian, range in their skin pigments from very light brown to darker brown (although Jade’s skin has lightened over the years). It’s always disappointing when creators take characters who were at one time of a darker complexion and ‘whiten’ their features.

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MK4 Tanya vs MK10 Tanya

3) Missing Some Old Friends – It’s always great to have fresh faces in a fighting game. The introduction of another generation of combatants in Mortal Kombat X is a welcome one. The problem with NetherRealm including the new generation is that they also included their parents (who’s styles are often similar). Instead of including Cassie Cage, Johnny Cage, and Sonya Blade they could have merely included the daughter. Including the entire Cage and Briggs families left gaps in the roster for fan favorites like Smoke, Cyrax and Noob Saibot. The Kombat Pack was hope that a fan favorite or two would be added, but sadly Tanya and C-lister Tremor took up the classic character spots.

4) DLC system – Mortal Kombat X is placing a lot of emphasis on DLC. The announced Kombat Pack already costs twice as much as the Season Pass from 2011’s Mortal Kombat. There is already a DLC skin for Sub-Zero not included in the pack and a series of Russian inspired skins that also look to be not included in the pack. Combine that with the fact that Ed Boon has teased the unplayable story mode characters might get their own DLC pack, and the costs for getting the full roster seem high. If only everyone could follow Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada’s DLC policies the world would be a happier place.

5) Lack of Backstory – Introducing new characters can be a great way to liven up a longstanding franchise. Many of these new characters however, don’t have any real backstory. By the end of the game’s 4 hour story mode we know next to nothing about newcomers Erron Black, Ferra/Torr, Jacqui Briggs and Takeda Takahashi. We get brief glimpses into the story of Kotal Kahn, Cassie Cage and D’Vorah. Mortal Kombat X’s story mode failed to fully flesh the new crop of characters and make us care about their motivations.

 5 Favorite Things about Mortal Kombat X

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1) Faction System – The faction system is an interesting way to keep the Mortal Kombat players connected worldwide to a persistent world. When you sign into Mortal Kombat X for the first time, you are forced to join one of 5 factions. In this faction, players battle weekly for dominance and in game bonuses. Also once per week there is an “Invasion” where a special extra hard boss is available to defeat collectively with your faction as well as exclusive towers to conquer. The system is a nice way to make each player feel connected to the Mortal Kombat world in a constantly evolving world.

2) Ladies of Kombat – Mortal Kombat X makes great strides in the realistic representation of its female characters. No longer do all the ladies on the roster have d-cup breasts and lingerie for clothes. All the women seem to have much smaller endowments this time around. Mileena, a classically voluptuous character, is dressed in a much more modest garb than 2011’s Mortal Kombat. It’s also nice to see that Sonya Blade’s face no longer looks like that of a busted drag queen.

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A modest and pretty Sonya

3) Krypt – The Krypt, aka the mode where you spend your battle-earned coins for costumes and finishing moves, received a facelift for Mortal Kombat X. There are hidden items you must find to unlock new areas. The mode also has random quick-time event baddies that, if defeated, will give you a handful of coins. You explore the Krypt in a first-person perspective as you scavenge the various tombs for treasures. The new version of the Krypt is a nice twist on an unlocking system that brought out the Lara Croft in me.

4) Variations – In Mortal Kombat X each character has three distinct fighting styles. The select screen gives a small blurb about what makes each variation different. While some signature moves are consistent across all variations, each incarnation offers up signature combos and special abilities. The introduction of variations allows a new level of strategy when playing against a variety of opponents.

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5) Story Mode Cameos – Without giving away any story spoilers, there are quite a few cameos from classic characters in the game’s story mode. It’s nice to see NetherRealm include B-list characters into the games story to really flesh out the world of Mortal Kombat. Long time fans of the franchise will undoubtedly have a few moments of glee as some fan favorites pop up on screen.

Let me know what you love or hate about the new Mortal Kombat in the comments below!

Mortal Kombat X is out now on PC, Xbox One and PS4. It’s soon to be released on PS3 and Xbox360.

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