Tag Archives: Kombat

Mortal Kombat 11 Serves Up the Ultimate ’80s Fight: RoboCop vs. Terminator

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Mortal Kombat 11 players will soon be able to play out one of the most-discussed cinematic battles of the 1980s that never actually happened. RoboCop and Terminator are both coming to the franchise, finally allowing gamers to answer for themselves what we used to argue over during lunch.

Now, personally, I have to say — I’ve always been 100 percent on Team Terminator on this issue. In fact, I don’t even see how the “PRoboCop” faction even has a leg to stand on.

Let’s examine the facts. Alexander James Murphy is a cop who gets most of his brain shot out by a crime boss before his amazingly corrupt employer literally shoves a few of his organs and parts of his cerebellum and cerebrum into a titanium can.

The T-800, in contrast, is a ruthless, entirely mechanical adversary. It’s much faster than RoboCop. RoboCop is, to be sure, extremely durable — but the T-800 has survived direct hits from grenades, incendiaries, high-speed vehicles, and a truly astonishing number of bullets. It’s simply astonishing to argue that…

Oh. Right. There’s actually a story attached to this. First up, here’s a video that ends with RoboCop delivering one of his fatalities:

There’s also a second video available, this one with a demonstration of the T-800 laying out the pain. Both are full of easter eggs, including references to the RoboCop Versus The Terminator comic, in which RoboCop discovered Skynet had been built in part from his own technology, and plotted for decades to destroy it. The Terminator’s signature step-out recalls an iconic scene from T2, while changing it to fit the Mortal Kombat universe.

Mortal Kombat, MKII, and MK3 were staples of my adolescence and young adulthood, but I haven’t kept in touch with the series much through the intervening games. Visually, it’s impressive, though I’d rather some of the damage inflicted in the periodic close-ups actually remain on the model once we transition back to the fight. Mortal Kombat 11 clearly uses two different rendering approaches throughout the matches, and while the game transitions cleanly and quickly between them, it’s still a little visually jarring. We suddenly move from a battlefield perspective to what looks like an entirely different area, and the lighting model and detail level shift dramatically to accommodate Fatalities or various high-damage attacks. I’m genuinely curious to see what the next console generation brings to the table for fighting games like this — the advent of substantially faster CPUs and ray tracing should allow for some incredible animation and art.

I don’t have the game, but I certainly wouldn’t mind a match or three — if only to put RoboCop in its place, once and for all.

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Mortal Kombat 11 Slices Its Way Into Our Hearts, Grinds to a Halt

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The team behind the Mortal Kombat series is one of the most reliable fighting game developers in the world. They’ve been cranking out well-liked fighters on the regular for nearly 30 years now, and Mortal Kombat 11 might be their best game to-date with the exception of its ugly lootbox implementation.

Mitchell Saltzman gave MK11 an amazing score of 9/10 at our sister site IGN – the highest score any MK has ever received from that outlet. The story mode, intricate mechanics, incredible visuals, and even the online performance receive incredibly high praise from Saltzman, but the shocking amount of grinding needed to unlock customization items from the krypt prevents the game from reaching its highest highs.

With 53 reviews counted, the PS4 version currently has an 83/100 metascore. It’s not the highest in the series, but it’s in the ballpark of the other recent releases from NetherRealm Studios. You’ll find fairly glowing reviews at Gaming Age and CGM, and much of that comes down to how enjoyable the gameplay feels one-on-one. And with a highly detailed tutorial system, Mortal Kombat is more accessible to new players than ever before.

However, outlets like USG and Shack News were a tad more muted in their enjoyment. USG’s Mike Williams finds that the unlocking process is tedious, and Ozzie Mejia at Shack News didn’t feel like the story mode follows through on enough of the most interesting plot points. Having spent a fair bit of time with MK11 ourselves, it’s hard to disagree with either of those critiques.

We’ve played through the story mode, fought our way up countless towers, and unlocked loads of goodies in the krypt on the PS4 Pro, and the visuals have been thoroughly impressive. As expected, there are some slight imperfections during transitions from cutscenes into the fights, but there’s nothing really worth worrying about performance-wise. Even when special moves trigger a spray of particles, we’ve yet to see any meaningful gameplay impact.

The PS4, Xbox One, and PC versions largely perform in line with expectations (at least locally), but what about the Switch version of the game? In the video above, you’ll see the folks at Giant Bomb give Nintendo’s hardware a working over. The resolution is low, the krypt becomes foggy, and load times can be a bit of a hassle – it’s the worst version of the game by far. However, the entire experience is there with acceptable performance in portable form, so commuters who want to run through story mode on the train should be fine.

Sadly, there’s a significant amount of content and rewards that are only accessible when you’re online. So if you don’t have a reliable mobile connection for your Switch, you’re going to be in for a tough time.

[Image credit: IGN, NetherRealm Studios]

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