News Archive - April, 2012
Road to Evo: Civil War 4 Tournament Preview
The Road to Evo Arrives in Virginia for Civil War 4!

Just two weeks off of IKizzLE's 50pt victory at PowerUp 2012, the Road to Evo is rolling onward to Richmond, Virginia for Civil War 4!

Organized by RVAtournaments, the Evo Championship Series event will feature Mortal Kombat across three big days, April 27 to April 29, with the usual Evo 2012 seeding points on the line. All games will be played using Xbox 360 versions of the game, with a standard double elimination pools and best of five setup.

A single tournament victory continues to place competitors high within the Evo seeding stakes, with a clear lead still afforded to vVv CDjr (101pts) and vVv REO (85pts) at the top of the list. They will be competing in the first-ever fighting game Pro Circuit Arena special for MLG [full story] -- an eight-player invitational reuniting the finalists from the MLG Winter Championships.

Civil War 4 seeding points are expected to go to top twelve finishers, with 50pts for first, 25pts for second, and 10pts for third. 1pt is awarded for the remaining placement. Warner Brothers have boosted the Mortal Kombat Evo 2012 winners pot to $20,000, making seeding advantages all the more attractive come July!

Mortal Kombat Online is watching the Road to Evo with interest. Discuss all the action with the MKOmmunity as it unfolds, on the forums.

Preview: Major League Gaming Spring Fighter Arena
Major League Gaming Launches Fighting Game Spring Arena with Top 8 Winter Finalists!

This weekend, Major League Gaming continues its fighting game program with the first-ever Fighter Arena special, live from New York City!

The April 28 Arena event brings back the top eight Mortal Kombat finalists from a massive Winter Championships, pitting them against each other in the ultimate two pool rematch!

All matches will be best of five conditions, with the top two victors in each pool progressing to a single elimination, four-man bracket. A total prize purse of $3,400 will be on the line for the winning half of the group, with contestants delivered all expenses paid! The event will also feature returning competition for Soul Calibur V.

vVv CD Jr and vVv REO will be the men to beat -- top seeds in their respective pools after a dominant year in the Evo Series continued into the first MLG major! They currently occupy the top two ranks according to NFGR, with victories at Apex, Winter Brawl 6 and Final Round XV, between them.

A rigorous schedule will see all the matches decided in a single days viewing! Standard definition streaming will be available free, with HD passes available for $4.99. Details will emerge when available, via MajorLeagueGaming.com. The event is expected to last across four fatal hours.

Mortal Kombat Pool B
#2 vVv REO
#3 VSM Maxter
#6 KT Smith
#7 KN Crazy Dominican
Mortal Kombat Pool A
#1 vVv CDjr
#4 CURBOLICIOUS
#5 riu48
#8 KN DetroitBalln

Current Broadcast Schedule
6:00 PM Pool A vVv CDjr versus KN DetroitBalln
6:15 PM Pool B vVv REO versus KN Crazy Dominican
6:30 PM Pool A CURBOLICIOUS versus riu48
6:45 PM Pool B VSM Maxter versus KT Smith
7:00 PM Pool A vVv CDjr versus riu48
7:15 PM Pool B vVv REO versus KT Smith
7:30 PM Pool A CURBOLICIOUS versus KNDetroitBalln
7:45 PM Pool B VSM Maxter versus KN Crazy Dominican
8:00 PM Pool A vVv CDjr versus CURBOLICIOUS
8:15 PM Pool B vVv REO versus VSM Maxter
8:30 PM Pool A riu48 versus KN DetroitBalln
8:45 PM Pool B KT Smith versus KN Crazy Dominican
9:00 PM Semi Final 1st Place Pool A versus 2nd Place Pool B
9:15 PM Semi Final 1st Place Pool B versus 2nd Place Pool A
9:30 PM Mortal Kombat Fighter Arena Final

The fighting game Spring Fighter Arena special will provide a primer for the Pro Circuit Spring Championship, June 8 - 10 from Anaheim, California!

Mortal Kombat is also eligible to appear by fan-vote in the MLG Prizefights spectacle, potentially pitting some of the best players against each other in spotlight match-ups, May 2 [full story]! Voting is still open on Prizefights Homepage!

Follow and discuss the Major League Gaming Pro Circuit action with the rest of the MKOmmunity on the message boards. For last minute updates and stream info follow @MK_Online and like us on Facebook.

PSVita: Klassic Skarlet & Mileena Old Skool Trailer
Skarlet & Mileena Get Vintage in New PSVita Old Skool Trailer

The fighters of Mortal Kombat will be stepping out in all-new retro chic when PlayStation Vita plays host to a range of exclusive extras, May 1.
In a Vita first, klassic costumes inspired by Mortal Kombat II and Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 mean everything old is new again, with the vintage designs even being applied to characters who didn't exist in their first outing, as displayed in the latest "Old Skool" trailer.

Skarlet appears in three new forms: two klassic outfits referencing her inspiration as a rumor circulated during the halcyon days of the arcade. Her status as fiction turned fact was featured on Mortal Kombat Online, earlier in the month [full story]. Mileena also gets the old skool touch, returning to her MKII unitard. Kitana and Jade were released in this form as part of a previous compatability pack upgrade [full story].

Their male counterparts already featured in a similar trailer, earlier in the week [full story]. Bonus kostumes proved to be the most anticipated new feature within the MKOmmunity, their announcement garnering an overwhelming 53.2% of the poll vote [at the time of writing].

Touchscreen Fatalities, Test Your Balance, Test Your Slice and an Augmented Reality Kombat Tomb bonus arena [read on] are among other extras. European Mortal Kombat fans will be living PSVita loca when the game is released, May 4th.

PSVita Old Skool Trailer Previews New Kostumes
Klassic Kostumes are Among the New Features Featured in PlayStation Vita Kombat!

One year after the original release; Mortal Kombat is brand new all over again, boasting a list of unique features when it arrives on PlayStation Vita at the beginning of May!

With 53.1% of the vote at the time of this writing, bonus kostumes have far and away been the MKOmmunity's most anticipated favourite feature coming to the handheld device. In the latest trailer [via Gametrailers], we get a vivid look at some of the retro inspired designs billed as exclusive to the Vita!

Figuring most prominently into the trailer, various coloured palette swaps inspired by the Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 era of economy costuming. Rain, Smoke, Scorpion and Noob Saibot are among the uniform characters on display. They add to other klassic kostumes inspired by the twenty year history of Mortal Kombat, as well as confirmed alternate skins for Skarlet, Freddy Krueger and Kenshi, the latter who can be seen briefly during the action.

Vita versions of Mortal Kombat contain content found in the console Komplete Edition, along with a slew of device-specific bonus features. Touchscreen Fatalities, an Augmented Reality practise arena [full story], as well as Test Your Balance and Test Your Slice mini-games, are among the marquee unique features. 150 Challenge Tower feats make up the completely revamped, new mode, which includes the much requested first opportunity to take control of series boss, Shao Kahn!

A live-action campaign featuring Mileena and Kitana is underway, emphasising the portable features of Vita, which allows adhoc and WiFi peer-to-peer gaming.

Mortal Kombat arrives on PlayStation Vita in the US May 1; May 4 in Europe. For updates, follow the extended MKOmmunity @MK_Online and like us on Facebook.

Anniversary: Atomhawk Release Arena & Character Concept Art
Atomhawk Design Mark the First Anniversary of the Game with Unreleased Concept Artwork!

It was twelve months ago that the officially numberless reboot of Mortal Kombat created a new era for the series. Reigniting the MK flame across multiple arenas, the past year has given plenty of fans reasons to ruminate on the first anniversary of the release of Mortal Kombat on home consoles!

Atomhawk Design are a UK based digial art studio responsible for creating some of the most iconic pre-release imagery fans will remember from promotion. To mark the milestone occasion, they've added three new images to their existing gallery of stage and character concept art. Smoke, Shao Kahn's Throne Room and The Soul Chamber making up the anniversary inclusions!

Smoke Concept Render!


The newly released material adds to an extensive gallery of Atomhawk character concept renders and previously released arena artwork. This, of course, hasn't been the only concept art released in time for the paper anniversary, however. Ed Boon revealed a rare glimpse of discarded cover artwork designs via twitter, during the week [full story].

Mortal Kombat Online has been pleased to celebrate the occasion by teaming up with Pop Culture Shock Collectibles to give away a special 1/4 Scale Scorpion statue, signed by the sculptor. A kontest winner will be chosen in May [full story].

2012 will also mark the twentieth anniversary of the first Mortal Kombat machine in arcades. Share your nostalgia for the classic by posting in the Year of the Dragon MKOmmunity thread. To get more milestones direct to your devices, follow @MK_Online and like us on Facebook.

Kontest: Win a Signed Pop Culture Shock Scorpion Statue!
GET OVER HERE! jesus1997 wins Pop Culture Shock 1/4 Scale Scorpion statue!

It has officially been one year since the release of Mortal Kombat, the 2011 title that rebooted the series for a new era of brutality on home consoles! While the game revolutionized the kombat experience and launched the series into new realms of competition -- the franchise as a whole has been refreshed, bringing fans more MK in more mediums than ever before!

To celebrate the anniversary milestone, Mortal Kombat Online and Pop Culture Shock Collectibles are teaming up to give away a special signed artists proof edition of their 1/4 scale Scorpion statue!

Capturing the ninja spectre's trademark spear attack in mid-action, the mixed media statue stands an impressive 16.5" high, by 25" wide, at full stretch. This is the real deal, delivering 1/4 scale vengeance with the latest Scorpion design from the popular games.

For a chance to win, simply ensure you are registered to Mortal Kombat Online. Then post a comment in the appropriate forum kontest thread, declaring your intention to enter the draw! One lucky winner will be randomly selected in May from available entries. While you're there, why not share some of your MK experiences from the last year?

Please Note: Due to the significant size of the prize, this contest will only be open to users with a mailing address in the United States. Individuals may only enter once, users found entering multiple times will be disqualified.

Pop Culture Shock Collectibes have been a trusted name in limited edition, high-end gaming and media collectibles for years. More information and product is available at the official website, or by liking Pop Culture Shock Collectibles on Facebook.

Edit May 5: Kongratulations ! Winner of the Pop Culture Shock 1/4 Scale Scorpion Statue! Stay tuned to Mortal Kombat Online for more exciting giveaways in the near future!

For concise updates direct to your devices and more kontests, become part of the extended MKOmmunity by following @MK_Online, and by liking us on Facebook! 2012 will mark twenty years of Mortal Kombat! Share more nostalgia on the forums in the Year of the Dragon thread!

Anniversary: Discarded Mortal Kombat Covers
Ed Boon Reveals Unused Covers from the 2011 on the Paper Anniversary!

It's been one year since Mortal Kombat was first released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, ushering in a new era for the much loved franchise.

With this milestone in mind, we began the month with a customary April Fool [read on], indulging the inevitability of the cutting room floor. To mark the paper anniversary, Series Director, co-reator and frequent tweeter, Ed Boon, has revealed some of the real discarded assets from the latest release -- unused covers!

Discarded 2011 Kovers!
"For the 1 year anniversary of MK(9)'s release, check out these cutting-room-floor box
art designs we didn't use.
" [via Twitter]

The covers demonstrate two very distinct design philosophies, deviating from the now iconic image used, featuring series icons. Scorpion and Sub-Zero [full story].

Baring the iconic Dragon Logo in its most recent form -- one of the covers [pictured right] recalls the long tradition of an ironically minimalist approach for MK cover designs. The lone logo is a look many fans favoured in the lead-up to the franchise reboot, a fitting choice given the games redefining return to the beginning of Kombat mythology, and the fresh start a new fighting engine has given.

The other cover [pictured left], picks up on a more recent trend of featuring famous feuds from the franchise fiction, a design brief used more specifically in special covers for Armageddon (2006). Kitana and Mileena get a cameo opposite the usual suspects, but the ominous image at the centre alludes heavily to the plot, which begins with Raiden's final moments in battle with a post-Armagedonn Shao Kahn. The foreboding image also recalls the shortlived shadows advertising campaign, begun early in the promotional cycle during 2010 [read on], and continued in various art assets.

Did Boon and co. make the right the decision? What would the MKOmmunity like to have seen? Share your thoughts about the discarded cover and more on the forums.

Later in the year, MK turns twenty, a fitting milestone in this Year of the Dragon! While you're on the forums, post some of your nostalgic memories from the long history of Mortal Kombat! Mortal Kombat Online has already begun to look back with features on the history of famous MK hoaxes, and our Top 10 Hidden Kharacters!

Fight Anywhere: PSVita Live-Action Mileena Teaser
Mileena Walks a Barren Land in the Latest Fight Anywhere Teaser Tailer!

As Mortal Kombat reaches its the milestone of its first anniversary, the game continues to find a new market in the handheld market via PlayStation Vita. One year later, fans can "fight anywhere, kombat anyone," as this latest follow-up to the live-action Kitana trailer shows!

This is the second trailer to feature last years official cosplay models [full story], who appeared in conjunction with live and online promotions for the original release of game. Danni Levy reprises her role as Mileena, walking a barren landscape in full costumes (what there is of it), demonstrating some of the same trademark weaponing as her blue-clad predecessor.

Like the previous installment, this is a thirty second teaser for the full seventy second variety, which will no doubt follow sometime soon. Mortal Kombat is scheduled for release on the PSVita first in the US, May 1, then across Europe, May 4.

Kombatting anyone is one of the unique selling features of the PlayStation Vita experience. Ad-hoc live battles and Wi-Fi kombat mean anyone can be an opponent, wherever you go, with the much publicized belated inclusion of Augmented Reality, an added bonus of fighting anywhere [read on].

Like console versions of the Komplete Edition [full story], PSVita Kombat boasts the vital inclusion of previously downloadable additions (Skarlet, Kenshi, Rain, Freddy Krueger), as well as PlayStation exclusive guest of war], Kratos. A completely revamped Challenger Tower which includes a slew of unique touchscreen and accelerometer mini-games, as well as the first rung playable opportunity to be Shao Kahn, offers a whole new playing experience for kombatants new, and old.

Mortal Kombat Online will post the full trailer when available. It's the first anniversary of the last game and later in the year, MK turns twenty! Share your nostalgia on the forums this Year of the Dragon!

MLG CBS Interactive Partnership & Prizefights Poll
MLG and TwitchTV partner with CBS while Mortal Kombat Goes to the Vote for Prizefights!

The eSports scene has taken a major step into the mainstream with the announcement of a partnership between Major League Gaming, TwitchTV and CBS Interactive.

Announced via MajorLeagueGaming.com, the partnership brings MLG into the CBS online network, which includes; CNET, CBS.com, CBSSports.com, GameSpot, TV.com, BNET, CBS RADIO and Last.fm. CBS purport to now provide up to three billion minutes of live gaming content monthly, as a result of the partnership.

"Major League Gaming’s live audience is growing in popularity to rival some of the most popular traditional sporting events with a highly engaged fan base worldwide,” said Sundance DiGiovanni, CEO and Co-Founder, Major League Gaming. "Leveraging the reach of CBS Interactive, we will now be able to create a premiere eSports destination for current and future fans alike, while providing some of the most powerful brands an opportunity to reach this coveted, passionate audience."

In MLG content; Prizefights will bring together popular players, matched-up in special feature cards, as part of a regular series of main event bouts with an undercard. Scheduled for May 2, one MLG supported fighting series will be voted into the feature by fans, pitting Mortal Kombat against Soul Calibur V in a battle for the spotlight!

Visit the Prizefights homepage to vote by selecting the poll option, from page right. Vote as often as you can to ensure Mortal Kombat continues to invade the realm of eSports.

Flawless Victory Sends Mid-Atlantic Winner to Evo 2012
George Mason University Hosts the Mid-Atlantic Flawless Victory - with a Ticket to Evo on the Line!

With a guaranteed prize purse of $500 and a paid flight to the 2012 Evo Championships in Las Vegas -- Flawless Victory attracted a legitimate crowd of contenders for its forty-nine strong field!

Taking place April 14 opposite the Evo Series' PowerUp 2012, in Ohio -- the Mid-Atlantic organized tournament featured several players already at the top of Evo seeding tally.
Current 101pt first seed and NFGR #1, CD Jr, topped a first class attendee list that also included fellow Team vVv tournament winner, REO, and reliable Evo points scorers like WNBA Death, and SwiftTomHanks.

The tournament star power would inevitably be splashed across the Top 8 final winners list, but CD Jr and REO would have to settle for runners-up, as another top ten player in the Evo Series would take supreme victory! Valley Stream Monster's Maxter booked himself a much needed guaranteed ticket to Las Vegas, making his 11pts all the more valuable in the countdown to the July major! Maxter placed third at Final Round XV, after earning a single point at Winter Brawl 6.

The Final 8 [via Test Your Might]
1. VSM Maxter [11pts]
2. vVv REO [85pts]
3. vVv CD Jr [101pts]
4. Kevo Da Man [1pt]
5. WNBA Death [3pts]
5. VSM Insuperable [0pts]
7. Lionheart [0pts]
7. WNBA SwiftTomHanks [1pt]

Mortal Kombat returns to the Evo Championships for a second year running, in July. This will be Maxter's first appearance in the MK field, however, having missed last years tournament. Equal ninth in the Evo Seeding [with Crazy Dominican] before PowerUp 2012,

Mortal Kombat Online is walking the Road to Evo with the rest of the community. Discuss all the tournaments in the series (and more) on the forums. Follow @MK_Online for direct updates, and like us on Facebook.

Easter Egg: Kano Kombats Batman in Arkham City Lockdown!
Kano Invades Gotham City in an MK Kameo in Batman: Arkham City Lockdown!

Earlier in April, Mortal Kombat Online featured our Top 10 Hidden & Unlockable Characters, revisiting some of the best easter eggs and hidden fighters the series has had to offer. Among them was an honorable mention for the characters who have found their way into other franchise titles, but there was one very big appearance we didn't mention!

MKOmmunity member, , has submitted an intriguing find posted to YouTube by BatmanArkhamVideos, revealing Kano staging a one-man invasion of the DC Universe in Batman: Arkham City Lockdown!

Hidden in the Challenge Mode; the rogue Kombatant appears in an "EMP Challenge" that robs the Dark Knight of his famed gadgetry, forcing Batman to engage thugs in pure hand-to-hand fighting. Waiting at the third one-on-one fight is Kano, in the service of Deathstroke, wielding his trademark duel knives and a whole lot of bad attitude!

The reveal comes as a small surprise. NetherRealm Studios were instrumental in the development of Arkham City for the iOS platform, marking some of the first significant work the team has done on non-MK properties since their establishment post-Midway. The team continue to express interest in developing for properties other than the flagship Mortal Kombat series, with some rumors already circulating of another trist with the mutually owned Warner Brothers properties of DC Comics. These are, of course, still unsubstantiated rumors and to be no more believed than the hoax characters of yesteryear, also featured in April [read on].

Characters in the Arkham City game led to much speculation of a Mortal Kombat crossover, but this is the first and only conclusive proof of any such easter egg. It continues an association that began in 2008 with the moderately received crossover title, Mortal Kombat versus DC Universe.

If you have interesting news, let us know about it with the newslead submission form. Receive updates directly to your Bat-phone by following @MK_Online, and like us on Facebook.

Sub-Zero & Skarlet in More Syco Collectibles Previews
You Guessed it - More Syco Collectibles Previews! Sub-Zero Spine Rip & Skarlet 10 inch!

The cavalcade of works-in-progress from Syco Collectibles continues with previews of two more production models, during the week.

Third time's the charm for Sub-Zero, appearing in his second premium format statue from the company [pictured right], while DLC-turned-Komplete Edition cover idol, Skarlet, also joins the standard 10" polystone line-up.

Having been part of the 10" line with an ice summoning pose [more], and a Premium figure in standard idle stance [more]; this time Sub-Zero is following through on his attack, with a dynamic 18" sculpt referencing the classic spine rip fatality that has been a Mortal Kombat trademark since the beginning.

Sub-Zero's hapless victim is a disembodied Scorpion, technically making his fourth appearance in a Syco collectible, already his own Premium 18" figure, along with 1:2 scale bust, and recently reissued 10" standard.

Skarlet makes her collectible debut as a 10" statue with removable tendril set piece, referencing her already infamous blood letting fatality. Skarlet completes the quartet of fighting femme fatales associated with the klassic palette swap design, Kitana, Mileena, and Jade, already part of the 10" line. She appeared earlier in the week in a first-look preview on Syco affiliate, The Kombat Tabloid.

Skarlet, of course, never actually appeared in the original games, but was inspired by belated rumors of a red swap character, supposedly stemming from Mortal Kombat II. Skarlet recently made Mortal Kombat Online's Top 10 Hidden & Unlockable Characters, and was the subject of our lookback at MK's famous hoaxes and rumors.

Don't miss Mortal Kombat Online's first-look preview of updates to Motaro -- the statue chosen and redesigned by the MKOmmunity [full story]! For more questions about these products and more, consult the official Syco Q&A; thread on the Merchandising forums. Get more updates and additional galleries by following @MK_Online and liking us on Facebook.

Road to Evo: PowerUp 2012 Tournament Preview
The Evo Championship Series Kontinues in Ohio at PowerUp 2012!

April continues to be a bountiful month for the Road to Evo as we arrive at yet another weekend of fully authorized action. April 28 will see another tournament join the ranks, Civil War IV the newest addition freshly added to an already jam packed calendar of events! It will follow this weekends PowerUp 2012 event at The Cincinnati Mall, Ohio!

Running April 13-15, the tournament will be another opportuinty to collect seeding points for the 2012 Evo Championships, in July. This means positioning advantages for the top fighters and a chance to control ones destiny at the biggest tournament of them all!

Players assigned to four pools will battle it out under double-elimination conditions, top four winners and losers brackets producing fighters for a thirty-two person bracket. The top eight fighters from subsequent winners/losers brackets will go on to duke it out in the finals on Sunday, fighting for Evo Seeding Points.

POOL B (10am)
ATL BaTmAn
GGA Dizzy
IKizzLE
PsychoJoseph
Skeeter
Twintail Fox
Xiang

POOL D (1pm)
AU_IM_DIGIMON
Derrick Legend
GGA HAN
Glass Sword
STB CharlieMurphy
The Maktastik
POOL A (10am)
BEENEEWEENEES
GGA | MOE30W
GGA | soonk
Goldfishkeeper
Hurricane
Jody Tha Great
MK_LEGEND

POOL C (1pm)
CoCo | i208khonsu
GGA | Jeremiah
GGA | Wafflez
Osu16bit
Semi Evil Ryu
StillSmokedOut
TFA|RZR Hornett

PowerUp 2012 promises a solid field of Mortal Kombat action! Among the fighters to watch, IKizzLE, Osu16Bit, and GGA Dizzy -- all fighters who picked up points at Final Round XV!

As always, 50pts will be awarded to the tournament winner, with 25pts to the runner-up, and 10pts for third. Players finishing 4th-16th will receive 1pt, four additional scorers to previously published tallies.

Mortal Kombat Online will attempt to continue the Road to Evo tally. For more details, visit PowerUpFighters.com. Follow and discuss all the action on the forums, and get updates by following @MK_Online.

MKO First-Look: Syco Collectibles Motaro Statue Revisions
Motaro Takes on a New Look in Latest Photographs from Syco Collectibles

After receiving extensive feedback, Syco Collectibles have continued refining the sculpt for their upcoming 14" Motaro statue, basing new details specifically on the input of fans.

The statue, last previewed in preliminary stages, has undergone some radical changes in the interim. Most notably, in keeping with previous incarnations of the character, the statue has shed a digit, to have the four fingers depicted in the games. The centaur's scowl now comes with more distinct facial features, possessing a much more pronounced jaw and teeth, with a more aggressive expression than previous previews.

Provided is a first-look gallery of images showing off the new mould, now complete with tail. It should be assumed that the final sculpt is subject to change, as has been the case for other statues in the line. Syco have announced delays to the shipment of 18" Rain premium statues, citing more fan feedback as the impetus for further revision [read on].

Motaro was chosen by Mortal Kombat Online and will be offered with an exclusive pre-order priority of purchase to MKO users, when available. As with the majority of the Syco range, it will be sold with a 20% discount link when applicable.

At 14", the completed Motaro will stand to scale with the rest of the standard 10" line. Skarlet was recently revealed in a similar preview, joining a second run Scorpion with "enhanced" gold paint, and various statues, including Liu Kang and Jade.

For questions about these products and more, consult the official Syco Q&A; thread on the Merchandising forums. Get more updates and additional galleries by following @MK_Online and liking us on Facebook.

Full Fight Anywhere Live-Action Kitana Vita Trailer
Fight Anywhere, Kombat Anyone -- Kitana Stars in Live-Action Promo for MK on PSVita!

Following recent demos at PAX East [full story]; NetherRealm Studios Producer, Hector Sanchez, has returned to PlayStation.Blog to showoff the full version of a new Fight Anywhere, Kombat Anyone trailer!

As previewed last week; the stylish campaign features returning UK model, Rachelle Glover, as a roofbound, fan-wielding Princess Kitana. The completed trailer rounds out the philosophy driving Mortal Kombat on the PlayStation Vita, which offers players a full cast of characters and the ability to fight anyone, anywhere, using ad-hoc live battles, or WiFi.

The live-action promo follows-up on the already infamous trailer that started self-fulfilling rumors of Augmented Reality in the game [full story]. We're reasonably confident this one should be much better understood.

Mortal Kombat arrives on the PlayStation Vita May 1st (May 4, Europe). For more Vita updates and much more, follow @MK_Online and like us on Facebook

PAX East: Mortal Kombat PlayStation Vita Preview Recap
The Final Word from PAX East on Mortal Kombat & PlayStation Vita!

Hector Sanchez - Livin' La Vita Loca in his latest Twitter avatar!Coverage from this years PAX East has all but trickled out, leaving a string of hands-on previews and reviews mostly telling us what we already know. By far, the biggest story from PAX East is the last minute inclusion of Augmented Reality -- the result of PlayStation Vita tech, a lot of confused misreadings of a high concept commercial, and NetherRealm Studios' willingness to seize on a good thing when they see it.

Mortal Kombat Online was on top of the twisting story of "Augmented Reality" throughout its many transitions of truth and fiction, reporting the latest earlier in the week.

If the inclusion of real time photographed backgrounds of anything isn't enough of an augmentation of your reality, there's always T4Show.com's hands-on demo with Hans Lo [embedded below], hosted by T4 founder and two-time ECW Tag Team Champion, Stevie Richards, to mess with your grasp on things!

Mortal Kombat continues to be a great endorsement for the Vita console, unique hardware features at the heart of the majority of the demo. Challenges like the Fruit Ninja inspired mini-game, Test Your Slice, joins other touchscreen challenges in the much talked about all new 150 Challenge Tower tasks. Test Your Balance makes likewise use of the natural tools of the device, a complimenting factor Lo describes as a natural process, rather than a race to include each and every feature of the Vita.

Not to be outdone by his cohort, Hector Sanchez has discussed the nature of the medium and genre with Gamasutra. Sanchez takes confidence from the boom being experienced across the major fighting franchises, noting the ease with which games like Mortal Kombat can compliment a timeshort world.

The augmented arena (built upon a base of MKII Kombat Tomb sprites) will be restricted to practice mode, but with the Vita supporting adhoc and WiFi peer-to-peer fight options, the Komplete handheld edition will be ready to live up to every facet of its "Fight Anywhere, Kombat Anyone" promotional tagline [read on].

Mortal Kombat hits the PlayStation Vita May 1 (May 4, EU). Boasting a long list of unique features, including 16 new bonus costumes and the first chance to play as Shao Kahn in one of 150 new Tower challenges, the Vita is clearly packing more than simply another port.

Not to ignore console owners, PlayStation Store is still offering massive Mortal Kombat savings across the franchise line. Spring Fever deals of up to 50% off DLC and more lasts for a limited time [full story]. For more updates like this, follow @MK_Online or like us on Facebook.

Top 10: Hidden and Unlockable Characters
Easter Eggs are a Proud Tradition for Mortal Kombat! Here are our 10 Favourites!

In kinder, gentler times, children would gather each and every Easter Sunday, enjoying the simple pleasures of an annual hunt for chocolate eggs. These days, you probably more readily identify the tradition of "Easter Eggs" by pop culture's appropriation of hidden extras, and nestled nuggets of reference.

Mortal Kombat has made legendary use of easter eggs, milking a rich canon for hints and allusions, sometimes going so far as to hide kombatants themselves, deep within the game. At the beginning of the week, we talked about the impossible characters who existed in rumor and foolery [full story], but this Easter, the Mortal Kombat Online staff have crammed The Nexus to pick our Top 10 Secret Kharacters!

#1 Reptile
We found Reptile in: Mortal Kombat (1992)

When it comes down to it, you simply cannot go past the original!
Still famous for having haunted arcades, twenty years later; Reptile is the character who set the tone for mystery and easter eggs in Mortal Kombat forevermore! Combining the powers of Sub-Zero and Scorpion, Reptile was also ultimately the original "palette swap," posing a legitimate challenge to any player clever enough to decypher his taunting clues. Delivered sporadically at the beginning of rounds, Reptile's clues remain a beloved piece of MK history, "Look to La Luna" a lasting phrase familiar to gamers worldwide. Each clue was key to unlocking the secret battle, fought on The Pit after a double flawless fatality.

Singlehandedly programmed into the original game by Ed Boon, Reptile is the product of one KFC-fuelled weekend and a lasting moment of brilliance. MKO affiliate, tabmok99, loves everything about Reptile, but notes of his creation, "Blue + Yellow = Green. Boon's name for the character pretty much singlehandedly determined his storyline..."

Introduced as a fully realized character in Mortal Kombat II, albeit, still using the equivalent colour changed sprites as a foundation -- Reptile became an integral piece of the MK canon, vital to the elaboration of Outworld and the villains it spawned. ~Crow~ regards this as a defining quality, "I generally think of him only behind the original two ninja, in terms of popularity. His story arc has always been progressive (or regressive, in [the] case of appearances), and that's a rarity; with secret characters of any sort." It was this story derived from the character himself, of a survivor undergoing a strange metamorphosis, that ultimately won Ninja_Mime over, too, "I was never really a fan of Reptile until they finally fully embraced his reptilian side, in Deadly Alliance. There aren't enough characters with tails and non-stop flapping tongues in MK."

#2 Ermac
We found Ermac in: Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks (2005)

Widely misreported as a glitch from the first Mortal Kombat, Ermac was one of the rumored characters featured in our look back at another proud MK tradition, the fake character [read more]. Actually a hoax based on internal coding references ("Error Macros") -- Ermac didn't make his first official appearance until Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, but when he did, it was the beginning of a wonderful relationship.

The popularity of the character has supported a revisionist history that not only incorporated, but welcomed Ermac into the canon of the first game! Fan support culminated in his inclusion in the MKII inspired adventure retelling, Shaolin Monks, where he was hidden in the Warrior Shrine to be accessed by interacting with the statues therein. An unlikely source for one of the greatest easter eggs, but a worthy addition, no doubt.

Having filled the void of red on the increasing spectrum of palette swapped characters, Ermac finally blossomed into his own man in Deception, receiving the basic costuming he still wears today. Nephrite was won over by the review, "He was always fun to play as, but now he also got a brand new (amazing) design which to this day remains my all time favorite MK design (his MKD primary costume)." The change was enough to make Ermac a favourite for ~Crow~ and Mick-Lucifer, too. Fitting, ultimately, that a character comprised of multiple souls could represent the dichotomy of a design low and high for the MK series.

#3 Noob Saibot
We found Noob in: Mortal Kombat II (1993) & Mortal Kombat 4 (1997)

Receiving the award for most frequent secret character, Noob Saibot made his debut in Mortal Kombat II, appearing again in the two sequels that followed. Famously named after series co-creators Ed "Noob" Boon and John "Saibot" Tobias, Noob is another fine example of a character created from the most basic premise, starting life as a black palette swap of Scorpion.

Each appearance would add something new to Noob, until the black clad ninja was revealed to be a "wraith" of the Netherrealm, representing the mysterious Brothers of the Shadow -- emissaries of Shinnok. The masterstroke of the Noob story would ultimately come from his first appearance, however, when it was decided MKII's plot-twist of a new Sub-Zero would be the direct result of the previous Sub-Zero's death -- and rebirth as Noob. Alluded to in Shaolin Monks and clarified in Deception, the alteration sparked controversy within the fanbase, but ultimately made Noob a better character, adding brilliant new context to his MKII debut.

#4 Smoke
We found Smoke in: Mortal Kombat II (1993) & Mortal Kombat 3 (1995)

Another palette swap from the second game, Smoke proved perfect fodder for creating a throughline in developing plots into MK3. While Sub-Zero was fleeing his former masters, it was Smoke who played the role of victim in the story of the Lin Kuei forced automation, a pre-existing name opposite Cyrax and Sektor. This vital history has made him an ever evolving character, most recently reverted to human form, after teasing the concept of a living nano-cloud in Deception.

In a time when unlocking characters required increasingly elaborate sets of circumstances, Smoke became one of the most accessible and iconic hidden fighters from the first games. Teased in MKII's living forest, a well placed uppercut would be enough to trigger "Toasty" Dan Forden, and the means to fighting Smoke, in the Portal.

#5 Blaze
We found Blaze in: Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance (2002)

The realization of a background detail featured in Mortal Kombat II -- Blaze was a simple and effective reward for players who went to the trouble of beating the games training Konquest Mode. Integrated into the Deadly Alliance plot by circumstances, rather than character, Blaze was allowed to remain a figure of mystery until Armageddon, when his secret history as an elementral construct created by the Elder God, Argus, was the catalyst for the entire game.

For his rise through the ranks, Ninja_Mime regards Blaze as a unique unlockable, "There aren't many characters in any series that have gone from an obscure background art element to a full blown boss character. This alone makes Blaze pretty notable." As a task oriented secret character who joined the plot, Blaze in many ways sums up a particular era for the MK secret.

#6 Meat
We found Meat in: Mortal Kombat 4 (1997)

Incredibly silly, but a classically inventive and economic use of existing resources, Meat was MK having fun! Appearing first in MK4 as the composite construct of wireframe flesh skins, Meat later found his way into the completionists dream line-up in Armageddon. As a fun character created by Shang Tsung who serves Shinnok, you can't really fault Meat. He is what the name says -- Meat!

#7 Jade
We found Jade in: Mortal Kombat II (1993)

Appearing with Smoke in the background of MKII's iconic Living Forest -- Jade has engendered a loyal following, but struggled to find lasting relevance in an increasingly expanding Kombat universe. Hinged on an affiliation with Kitana, she has sometimes been seen as superfluous, but with unique fighting gimmicks like her staff and boomerangs, Jade remains a character with immense potential, even if her first appearance is overshadowed by the other hidden characters.

#8 Khameleon & Chameleon
We found them in: Mortal Kombat Trilogy (1996)

A run through tournament mode would make fighting either incarnation a pinch, but for barriers to entry, Khameleon has the distinction of requiring the purchase of a Nintendo 64. Exclusive to the Nintendo version of Trilogy, Khameleon has been the more enduring of the "hidden treasure" fighters, both selectable rewards upon completion of the compilation title. The popularity of the console in the United States may bolster Khameleon, but her status has remained noteworthy, buoyed by specific plotlines tying her to Reptile and the survival of the "Saurian" race. Chameleon -- a translucent male with the powers of all the palette swap "ninjas" -- hasn't received that specific an induction into the canon, still a mystery, even after appearing as a late inclusion into Armageddon.

#9 Raiden
We found Raiden in: Unreal Championship 2 (2005), NFL Blitz (1997) & NBA Jam: Tournament Edition (1994)

Sometimes, MK secret characters find their way into completely unrelated franchises! As the protectoral god of Earthrealm, Raiden has been one of the enduring faces of Mortal Kombat, increasing in significance with each subsequent instalment. It makes sense, then, that he would be among the characters to have crossed over into other titles, the most memorable of them being Unreal Championship 2.

Notorious for indulging heavily in the success of their marquee franchise, former MK owners, Midway Entertainment, could always be counted on to include one or two Kombat cameos in a new title. NBA Jam was to have seen the creation of a special Soul Chamber basketball court, but controversy surrounding MK at the time led to distance between the two brands [full story]. Jam also featured the MKII palette swaps, Scorpion, Sub-Zero and Reptile. Shinnok joined Raiden in NFL Blitz, while the palette swaps had all the fun in The Grid, Scorpion, Sub-Zero and Noob, this time.

#10 Skarlet
We found Skarlet in: Mortal Kombat (2011)

Like Ermac, Skarlet began life as a rumor, but in 2011, the red femme fatale burst onto the scene as the only new addition to the playable line-up. Not an unlockable character in the traditional sense, Skarlet arguably represents secret characters for the DLC generation -- a character that was teased virally and in gameplay previews, before being released later as downloadable content.

In an age where savvy gamers are able to dissect code and files from discs in a matter of hours, the classic video game secret is in fast becoming extinct. Many other developers have abandoned unlockable characters all together, describing them as old fashioned and redundant. It would take a truly conceited effort to hide characters on a disc in 2012, but Mortal Kombat persists, holding on to one or two surprises with each release. At some point, will this be the exclusive domain of purchases, or is it simply time to get sneaky, rather than creative?

Regarding Noob Saibot, tabmok99 submits, "... in MKII, he didn't have his own lifebar text; it was programmed specifically by extracting letters from other lifebars so that dedicated MKII fans who went through the extra step of hacking the arcade boards would not be able to find out about Noob."

These are our favourite unlockable characters. There aren't too many more, there certainly are others. Some are version-specific, others simply didn't make the cut. Share your favourite easter eggs and unlockable kombatants on the forums!

2012 marks 20 years of Mortal Kombat! Join the nostalgia by posting your memories in the Year of the Dragon thread. For more updates and stories, follow @MK_Online and like us on Facebook.

Syco Collectibles Premium Rain Statue Preview
Premium Painted Purple Rain Coming Soon: 18 Inches from Syco Collectibles!

When it rains, it pours, and in the case of update previews from Syco Collectibles, it's usually a bumper crop. Hot on the heels of new Ermac design updates [full story], another of the UMK3 era palette swaps arrives in fully painted preview!

Rain has come a long way since his debut in '95 and the Syco Premium Statue shows just how far -- recreating the look the character sports in his latest iteration, as a 2011 DLC character!

Tall, dark, and handsome, Rain stands at 18", holding a pose that will probably make even more sense when a special alternate version is released, with water swirl base. The "whirlpool" alternate will surround the character's lower half with water rising from the exclusive, scene setting base.

The Edenian contingent will be well represented, fans already able to order Kitana and Jade with the standard discount links, while Queen Sindel is announced as coming to the series soon. Rain, too, can now be ordered at a 20% saving, but only if you click the correct link. Syco are offering a three-stage e-mail FlexiPay system for budget conscious konsumers, lock-in details available on the Syco website.

Scorpion has returned to the purchase line-up, a second run edition of the 10" statue available with new "enhanced" gold paint. As reported previously, Jade and Mileena are the next statue orders expected to ship from Hong Kong, departing later this month.

Motaro is among other upcoming releases, the statue chosen and previewed by Mortal Kombat Online [full story]. Ask questions about Motaro and more in the official Syco Collectibles Q&A; thread! Find even more pictures of the purple prince by following @MK_Online and liking us on Facebook.

PAX East: Vita Augmented Reality Arena Confirmed?
Fight Anywhere -- Vita Augmented Reality Rumors Become Fact at PAX East!

Just when you thought it wasn't going to happen, early reports coming from PAX East (Penny Arcade Expo) are suggesting Augmented Reality will indeed be a feature of Mortal Kombat when it hits PlayStation Vita, May 1st!

Confusion began with the release of a high concept trailer [embedded above] showing Scorpion and Sub-Zero's iconic feud spilling over into every day life -- the street, library and skate park. As major sites began reporting the commercial as evidence of augmented reality in MK, Warner Brothers sprang into action, debunking the myth directly to sources. Series Director Ed Boon even went so far as to tweet very shortly after reports, "Augmented Reality feature in MK Vita? No, just a really cool promotional video."

The misreported concept is an undeniably cool use of the PlayStation Vita hardware -- and clearly Boon and the team at NetherRealm Studios thought so too, enough to include it in the game in time for May!

A PAX East review posted by 2D-X.com includes apparent confirmation of the photo-background feature, a straight forward selection in arena options. Further integration comes from the use of the devices integrated microphone, which will no doubt be of great benefit as you spear friends into submission on your daily commute, inviting everyone on the bus to, "Get over here!!."

This isn't the first time rumors have become reality in the world of Mortal Kombat. At the beginning of the week, we ran a feature story on MK's illustrious history of pranks, rumors, and fake characters, which most recently resulted in the induction of Skarlet -- red masked assassin once rumored to be in MKII, now available as DLC, or packed in as content for Vita and Komplete Edition.

The "Fight Anywhere" motto is driving the latest Vita Kombat promotion, a stylish live-action demonstration of kombat in the real world. Kitana steps into an urban environment to show off her moves in the first teaser for the campaign [full story]. For updates and more follow @MK_Online and like us on Facebook.

Road to Evo: Texas Showdown Championships Preview
Its an Easter Weekend War as Texas Showdown Championships XII Hosts the Evo Series!

We continue thundering down the Road to Evo this Easter weekend, the next stop arriving down home in The Woodlands, Houston, for another big three days of Mortal Kombat!

For the first time, Texas Showdown Championships XII brings fully sanctioned Evo Series opportunities to participants in MK! Top contenders are already presenting themselves as hometown hero Mr. Mileena prepares to face-off against other confirmed competitors; Jwonggg, GamerBlake, Emperor Scar, Shanxter and others.

Eight pools are expected to compete Friday (12:00PM - 10:30PM), with double elimination Semi Finals on Saturday (10:00AM) and the Grand Final opening competition, Sunday, at 10:00AM. Registration at the door is still available, $50 "badge" fee, plus $10 per game. Participants should be advised some information may be subject to change. Competition will stream live via twitch.tv/shinkensou, sharing the stream with King of Fighters XIII and Soul Calibur V.

With a modest prize pool to be shared amongst the top three winners, Evo seeding points will be the big bonus for competitors crowding the Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel & Convention Center! A field of mixed rank will offer unique opportunities to those in attendence, with 50pts awarded to the MK winner, 25pts to runner-up, 10pts third, and 1pt to those finishing 4th through 12th.

Mortal Kombat Online is walking the long Road to Evo in July. For last minute updates, be following @MK_Online and discuss all the action live with the MKOmmunity on the forums. While you're at it, be sure to have yourself a happy Easter, if that's your thing. FIGHT!

Fight Anywhere: PSVita Live-Action Kitana Teaser
Kitana Takes to the Rooftops in the Latest PSVita Fight Anywhere Promo

Those boffins in marketing have done it again, offering encouragement to "fight anywhere, kombat anyone" in the latest promotion for the upcoming release of Mortal Kombat on PlayStation Vita!

The thirty-second spot delivers Kitana to non-specific city rooftops in dramatic fashion, where she brandishes her trademark fighting fans in a taste of things to come. A full version of the stylish trailer is expected to breach later this month, ahead of the May 1st (EU May 4) release of the game.

The teaser marks the return of UK model Rachelle Glover, who previously fulfilled the role of Edenian princess during European live appearances, and a tasteful "cosplay" promotional spotlight, last year [full story].

This is just the latest high concept pitch for Vita Kombat, which already appeared in a memorable trailer featuring series icons, Scorpion and Sub-Zero, taking their feud to the street, library, and beyond. The emphasis on portability and real-time match-ups sparked widespread misreports of an augmented reality feature, which was quickly debunked by series director, Ed Boon [full story]. Kombat on Vita does pack the punch of a string of widely reported exclusive features, though.

Containing the same previously downloadable characters found in console versions of Komplete Edition -- Vita also offers Sixteen bonus costumes, Touchscreen Fatalities and 150 New Challenge Tower feats. These features have been shown off in various other trailers [read more].

For updates on the full trailer and much more, stay tuned to @MK_Online and like us on Facebook.

Massive MK Savings in PlayStation Spring Fever Deals
Up to 50% Off In Massive PlayStation Store Franchise Spring Fever Saving!

Just in time for the first anniversary of the most recent game, PlayStation Store is in the grip of Spring Fever, offering massive savings on most things Mortal Kombat -- not just from the latest game!

As if Wheels of Destruction wasn’t enough of an adrenaline rush, Spring Fever is keeping the meter in the red (blood red that is) with this week’s franchise sale of Mortal Kombat games and add-ons. The awesome Mortal Kombat DLC and classic MKs you know and love will be set on fire, covered in acid, and finally put on sale for 30% off. PlayStation Plus subscribers score a flawless victory with an over the top 50% discount.
The spectacular Spring Fever deals extend across the major DLC options for the basic version of the 2011 game, going all the way to discount purchases of Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection and Mortal Kombat versus DC Universe!

    Spring Fever Deals:
  • DLC Warrior Skarlet (now $3.49, original price $4.99)
  • DLC Warrior Kenshi (now $3.49, original price $4.99)
  • DLC Warrior Rain (now $3.49, original price $4.99)
  • DLC Freddy Kreuger (now $3.49, original price $4.99)
  • DLC Warrior Bundle (now $10.49, original price $14.99)
  • Klassic Skins Pack 1 (now $3.49, original price $4.99)
  • Mortal Kombat vs. DCU (now $13.99, original price $19.99)
  • Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection (now $6.99 , original price $9.99)


  • PlayStation Plus Subscriber Deals:
  • DLC Warrior Skarlet (50% off, PS+ Price:$2.44)
  • DLC Warrior Kenshi (50% off, PS+ Price:$2.44)
  • DLC Warrior Rain (50% off, PS+ Price:$2.44)
  • DLC Freddy Kreuger (50% off, PS+ Price:$2.44)
  • DLC Warrior Bundle (50% off, PS+ Price:$7.34)
  • Klassic Skins Pack 1 (50% off, PS+ Price:$2.44)
  • Mortal Kombat Vs DC Universe Digital (50% off, $9.79)
  • Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection (50% off, PS+ Price: $4.89)

The Spring Fever franchise sale began April 3rd and will run for a limited time on the US PlayStation Store. No details on international equivalents. More deals and information can be found via PlayStation.Blog. Get the early word on deals like these by following us @MK_Online and liking us on Facebook.

Updates for Syco Collectibles Ermac & Jade Statues
New Pictures of Ermac & Jade Statues from Syco Collectibles

Previously featured in reveals and previews; Ermac and Jade have undergone some updated transformations in latest promotional pictures from Syco Collectibles.

Ermac approaches completion as the expected May release draws nearer, possessing bonus interchangable "soul hands" and glow-in-the-dark paint finish, where appropriate.

The statue recreates the most recent design for the cult-favourite character, who began life as little more than a falsely rumored palette swap, as discussed in our April Fool lookback article [full story]. Part of the 18" Premium Statue line-up from Syco, Ermac is still available for 20% discounted online pre-order.

Jade and Mileena are also on track for shipment from Hong Kong, expected to board a Nethership to you, April 21. The 10" polystone Jade has reportedly received a darker finish, by popular request, and boasts real metallic chains and a coloured clear resin staff [lighter than pictured]!

Syco Collectibles are also reissuing their iconic 10" Scorpion for a second limited run, this time with enhanced gold paint. Discount links are now live for Scorpion, along with Mileena and Jade.

Noob Saibot and Johnny Cage are in the pipeline, recently previewed at the development stage [full story]. Mortal Kombat Online also expects to bring more first-look details of the statue chosen by our users, Motaro, in the coming months! At 14", Motaro is to scale with the 10" line and receiving some alterations based on feedback to the original first-look.

For questions about these and other products, refer to MKO's official Syco Collectibles Q&A; thread. Get additional updates and preview galleries by following @MK_Online and liking us on Facebook.

Feature: Mortal Kombat is for Fools, Fakes & Phony Ninjas
The Secret History

It's been a long time since Reptile compelled quarter stuffers to look moonward, or Smoke and Jade shared a private joke behind a talking tree, but the element of secrets hasn't left Mortal Kombat entirely. While other franchises begin to abandon the long practiced chase of unlockable characters, MK keeps one foot in the shadows, taunting a rabid fanbase all the way to the end date and beyond.

Yesterday, Mortal Kombat Online enjoyed a customary April Fools rib. The lure of DLC additions and discarded characters may be rooted in truth, but you weren't fooled so easily. For MK fans of the past, however, it hasn't always been so easy to discern truth from fiction.

For fans eager to squeeze a little more out of obscurity, characters like Tremor and Wu Lae remain a luring prospect. Even the likes of Hydro -- a water-themed Lin Kuei character, created by Malibu Comics -- have fought for renewed existence, getting as far as a cameo appearance in the final Mortal Kombat: Legacy [last year]. There is another class of character, however, who contributes to the MK mythology as much, without ever actually having existed -- the rumored, or prank character.

EGMs Nimbus Terrafaux in Action! EGMs Nimbus Terrafaux Tests His Might!

Twenty years since the first Mortal Kombat hit arcades, it may be Nimbus Terrafaux [pictured above] who is the most longlived and recognised hoax character.

Boldly flaunting "faux" in a name reported to intentionally approximate 'Sky Land Fake,' Nimbus fooled enough people to remain a popularly requested character, years later. The creation of Electronic Gaming Magazine, for their cover-dated March 1994 issue; the April Fool was follow-up to another long-lasting EGM prank, Sheng Long -- the 1992 Street Fighter II hoax (inspired by rumors) that went on to inspire the creation of Akuma, and recent design of Gouken. In an age before every home had a PhotoShop equivalent, the mere existence of pictures was enough to fool some, but EGM weren't lazy, going so far as to create elaborate methods of unlocking, in both instances.

The quest to find the infamous Nimbus Terrafaux in the Genesis version of Mortal Kombat has taken a new turn. One reader claims to have found him! To prove it he sent us a picture of this character's existence on an IBM disk. These pictures look too good to be true. Are they? Or is this a very clever deception? It has been said that this is the method to find Nimbus. At the screen when Reptile gives the clue, "Look to La Luna," enter the following: RIGHT, DOWN, RIGHT, A, C, A, B, B, A, RIGHT, DOWN, RIGHT, C, B, START. If done correctly, the game resets and you can play as Nimbus.
- Instructions offered by "Tom Grace of Wernersville, PA" in the '94 EGM issue.

Infotainment World introduce Red Robin in 1995!

Magazines continued to the fuel the fooling fire in the years following EGM's original 1992 prank, thanks in no small part to the induglence of the fighting games themselves. In the same year as Nimbus Terrafaux; Gameinformer reportedly added "Emerald" to the mix [pictured top] -- one of many falsley rumored palette swaps, a curious addition to Mortal Kombat II, given the very public existence of Jade. Another example, Red Robin [above], reportedly came from the trusted source of the Mortal Kombat II Official Players Guide, produced by Infotainment World in 1995.
The red hued Scorpion sprite was described to bare a striking resemblance in play style to a character who actually was nestled deep within MKII, Noob Saibot -- the black palette swap unlocked by defeating Player 2 for a consecutive twenty-five matches.

Other hoax characters, like Aqua (short for Aquilluxborg Hydroxybot), would manage to blur the lines of fact and fiction in later, more sophisticated years, leaping off the pages of magazines to create further uncertainty. Appearing to be an unused character from Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Aqua is widely speculated to be the work of jokesters involved in specific PAL ports of the title, created by Avalanche Studios. For his unique absurdity, he was included in our April Fool.

Prodigal series co-creator, John Tobias, side-swiped the issue of existing material like this, acknowledging unused sprites in Trilogy when asked on Twitter.

The world of console ports has created many new rumors and false reports, but not all of them are false. Belokk, a demonic fighter from Mortal Kombat 4, is one of the most recognised examples of a discarded console creation, the work of Eurocom -- British development studio responsible for porting the game to PC and home consoles. Nintendo has been the exclusive home for the translucent female palette swap, Khameleon, in versions of both Mortal Kombat Trilogy and Armageddon. Likewise, Sega was the home of the little discussed MKII finishing move, the Fergality -- a reference to one of the developers.

In these enlightened times, some fans see red when a rumor comes about, but the cultural significance of uncertainty in Mortal Kombat goes far beyond hoaxes and unused material. For a franchise so famously associated with mysterious gimmicks and self-parody, the existence of rumored characters has become self-fulfilling fact.

EGM were once again at the centre of the emergence of one of MK's most popular myths-turned-fact, printing a steady stream of letters and rumors about the character called Ermac.

Widely believed to be a red palette glitch in the first Mortal Kombat, Ermac actually never existed. The name is now well known to refer to the internal workings of arcade code, "ermac" described in a 2011 tweet by series co-creator Ed Boon as, "... a macro I wrote for catching code errors/traps."
Ermac was finally realised as a character in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, joining the expanding rainbow of palette swap characters which had also come to include Rain. The red male would eventually be joined by his less popular female counterpart, Skarlet, who joined the lineup in 2011 as the first downloadable character [full story]. Skarlet now adorns covers of Komplete Edition, which packs the character on-disc.

NOTHING CAN PREPARE YOU... for Zebron!Blaze deserves an honorable mention as one of the seeds planted by the MK developers, themselves. Beginning life as a non-descript three-frame flame flickering on Liu Kang legs, the characters once affectionately dubbed Torch (by fans) eventually became fully fleshed fact, the reward for completeing Konquest training modes in Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance. Smalltown boy would make good in 2008, Blaze becoming lead antagonist in the feel-good story of Armageddon. He is second only to Zebron, who we all anticipate will join him in the canon, some day soon.

Are you still holding out hope for a character who never was?
We're celebrating twenty years of Mortal Kombat! Discuss secret characters, hoaxes and pranks on the forums and share your nostalgiac entry into Mortal Kombat in the Year of the Dragon thread!

Thanks to MKO Network Affiliate for providing materials and sources with permission [read more]. Follow Mortal Kombat Online on Facebook and @MK_Online, where we share the news that is almost always mostly true.

NetherRealm Studios Release Exclusive Discarded Character Sketches
Four Almost Used Characters Featured in MKO Exclusive - Possible DLC?

With a long and storied history of humor characters and discarded near-misses, April 1st seemed like an appropriate time to take stock of some of the kombatants who nearly rejoined the franchise in its most recent iteration. Afterall, April officially marks the first anniversary of the game that relaunched the franchise, in 2011!

EDIT (Apr. 2): Did we fool you? Of course not, you're far too brilliant for that! You've gotta admit, we made it easy for you, this year. Thanks to Pedro Cruz for his involvement in our annual fooly fool. Make sure you don't miss our lookback at some of the classic fake characters and April Fools in our latest feature article! See you next year!

In an exclusive reveal for Mortal Kombat Online, NetherRealm Studios have provided design sketches for four characters who nearly made it in, but were omitted in the eleventh hour. They represent all tiers of the new and old -- unused fan-favourites, a long rumored joke character, and a brand new fighter, never before seen. Don't get too discouraged, either.

WB Assistant Community Manager, Elisa Profillo, advises that while there is no official announcement to be made yet, copies of Mortal Kombat and the recent Komplete Edition [released Feb. 28], are both able to support mutually available downloadable content.

Avoiding any confusion, Profillo confirms the mock designs are: Sareena, Tremor, Aqua, and a new character called Wu Lae.

Introduced in the 1997 spin-off, Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero; Sareena began life as a love interest for then-Sub-Zero, Bi-Han, a demonic servant of Quan Chi. After appearing as an exclusive addition to the Gameboy Advance Deadly Alliance port, Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition, she advanced to her most fully realised role, as a playable character in Armageddon. Sareena is one of the characters who appears fighting inconsequentially in the background of The Pit stage, in the most recent game.

Like Sareena, Tremor first appeared in one of MKs early spin-off attempts, the much maligned 2000 third-person shooter, Mortal Kombat: Special Forces. Originally conceived for Mortal Kombat Trilogy, the character is widely rumored to have appeared misprint in some materials, ultimately replaced by Rain. Despite his relative obscurity, the character has remained a popular request within the fanbase. A recent tweet by series co-creator, Ed Boon, reflects the pariah state the character has often held in development, described as [visually] "... too much like Scorpion." Tremor is a physically imposing former Lin Kuei fighter, who defected to the Black Dragon clan.

Another character rumored from the Mortal Kombat Trilogy era is Aqua: a comically duck-billed ninja with an environmentalist revenge plot. Best known from appearances in UK PlayStation magazines, the character has long been presumed to be a prank endorsed by Avalanche Studios, GT Interactive, or others involved in porting PAL versions of the title. While material has been extracted from appropriate versions, the character has rarely been acknowledged beyond vague references and innuendo. It is likely Aqua was replaced by the more appropriate rumor character, Skarlet, who shared similar origins before appearing.

No information has been provided for Wu Lae [pictured top], but the brand new character certainly has a striking design. Somewhat medieval in appearance, the character appears adorned in armored tunic and spikes. With the game set in the past and demand high for returning favourites, it seems reasonable that Wu Lae was simply one of the many designs to have been cut in the twenty year history of the series. Addition: It has come to our attention that Wu Lae actually appeared previously in Armageddon, during Konquest mode sequences in Arktica. A member of the Tengu clan, this means the majority of these characters have a common association through the Lin Kuei.

In the coming months, Mortal Kombat Online hopes to share more retrospective content as we look back on twenty years of blood, sweat, and... more blood. For direct updates, follow @MK_Online and like us on Facebook. Thanks to PsychoFight and Niles Rainey for providing info.