In grade 2, I played this game for the first time. It was awesome – blood, guts, and multiplayer mayhem! My brother and I played the hell out of this game – and I even set up a little tournament with my friends! It has been years since I have played this game (although I have been keeping up with the new Mortal Kombat release on PS4) so I thought that I would give it quick revisit!
In terms of story, the game takes place after the first one. Goro has been defeated and Shao Kahn has come to the earth to have another tournament to see if he can take over earth! The story is simple – if you win the tournament – the earth is saved!
In terms of gameplay and design, this is a 2D fighter. Players take control of a character and have a variety of moves including high and low punches and kicks, block, and then a number of special moves for each character like magic projectiles (e.g., freeze shot, acid shot) and teleport attacks. While some moves are pretty cheap by todays standards (like the trip mechanic) most moves work quite well.
The character roster is much larger than the first game with 12 players (and a coupe of hidden characters). A couple of the characters looks the same but with different colours (e.g., scorpions, sub-zero, Milena, Katana) but they play quite differently so the mild aesthetic similarities don’t matter that much. There are unfortunately a couple characters who didn’t make it from the first game including Kano and Sonya Blade, but the roster is still diverse enough without them! You can still see the missing characters in level with Shao Kahn in the background!
While the game is okay in one-player mode (although extremely hard), the game really shines in two players when you can battle your friends endlessly! This is how I spent 90% of my time as a kid, and the battle mechanics still hold up today with multiplayer!
The main addition that Mortal Kombat added to the fighting genre though is Fatality finishing moves! Most of the characters have 2 finishing moves each – they are moves that can be used to kill your opponent once you have defeated them. Players have a few seconds to input a button combination to initiate the finishing move. It was this specific mechanic – pulling off the finishing moves – that kept my friends and I up late at night trying to pull them all off. See below for a couple outrageous examples below!
The game also introduced new types of finishing moves such as stage-specific moves like punching enemies off a bridge or into a pool of acid. Friendships are also an option that allow players to finish with a fun move instead of killing them. Lastly, players can turn their opponents into babies. The last two options are a bit random and the moves themselves are really hard to pull off compared to the regular finishing moves but are nevertheless a fun addition.
In terms of graphics, the game was very realistic at the time of its release, and it still looks fairly decent for a SNES game. The game utilizes digitized sprits to make everything look so good and for the most part it works! The game is quite bloody and violent (and I don’t usually like games like that) but its so over the top that it just seems to work. There are lots of different stages players can visit as well – all of which are quite detailed.
The games’ music is present and does get the job done (its quite moody), but it definitely takes a back seat to the great sound effects. All the special moves and finishing moves sound powerful and satisfying!
In summary, this is a fantastic 2D fighting game with some awesome characters, cool moves, and over the top grotesque finishing moves that makes multiplayer a ton of fun! This is probably my favourite Mortal Kombat on SNES and is recommended – especially with the inexpensive price of $15-20. Overall, I give this game a final score of 8/10.
Final Score: 8/10