News Archive - May, 2014
Injustice 2: Could Gods Among Us be in for a Sequel?
Could there still be a slither of truth to Injustice Sequel rumors?

With the promo poster leaked and a new Dragon Logo confirmed - we pretty much know to expect a Mortal Kombat announcement come June 2nd [8amCST to be precise]. All of this seems to have dashed earlier reports of an Injustice sequel, but as the old saying goes (or something like it): "The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."

Fan Regime: Will the Gods be Back Among Us in a Sequel? [Image by @justsayF]

Font of pre-release hints and Creative lead Ed Boon steadily included the DC Comics fighter throughout his early nods to a new project. In a world of grimly serious fans, it would be understandable if the smoke screen is all just a little bit of fun -- but what if it isn't? Wouldn't the greatest joke of all be convincing everyone a soon-to-be-announced game doesn't exist?

Our money may be square on a new Mortal Kombat, but it would be negligent to ignore the lingering possibility of an Injustice sequel.

What if MK is actually the answer and not part of the question: Who's Next? In Injustice: Gods Among Us, a parallel universe Justice League does battle with a corrupted Superman. What if a "Regime Resurgence" means the warriors of Earthrealm are the next to crossover to stop the mad heroes?

Teasing MK and not delivering seems like playing with fire, but now that the studio is a Warner Brothers backed developer, what's to stop them working on (or overseeing) multiple titles? The hugely successful Batman: Arkham franchise took a break from the vital element of Rocksteady Studios when Warner Bros. Montreal developed Arkham Origins.

Then there's the emerging possibility of developing technologies. All of this Mortal Kombat x DC Comics gave us the perfect opportunity to illuminate a concept for future crossover gaming. A platform of distribution and co-branding that could resolve the lingering resistance of a hardcore fanbase and create a crossover that pleases everyone. Read and comment on the feature article: Editorial: The MKvsDC Crossover Nobody Sees Coming.

What ever is coming: The countdown officially ends 8AM CDT, June 2nd! Make sure you register to be part of the new game experience and share your thoughts & opinions with us on the forums!

World Box Toys 1:6 Scale Kung Lao Action Figure Pre-Order
World Box Toys Unleash Shaolin Fury with High-End 1:6 Scale Kung Lao Toy!

They're as elusive as the most mysterious of Mortal Kombat clans, but the quality of their work is making them rapidly well known. World Box Toys impressed in 2013 with their 1:6 Scale Sub-Zero Action Figure -- now they're doing it all over again with an exciting choice of follow-up: Kung Lao!

In a world where one masked mascot fighter usually precludes another, this really is an impressive departure from the merchandising norm. The only thing more exciting than the choice is the quality of their work! Kung Lao receives the same attention to detail as Sub-Zero -- boasting not only an array of articulation, but all the design details that made Kung Lao one of the best looking fighters in the last game!

Like Sub-Zero; the Kung Lao figure is an approximate 12" (1/6th scale), with a complete accompaniment of removable accessories and customizable additions. Building on a World Box standard, Kung Lao features: Sculpted Head, Crazy Durable Body 2.0, 2 Hand Sets, 1 Trademark Hat, Clothing, Arm Bands, Wrist Guards, Red Belt, Red Ribbon, Boots, Injured Neck, Bloodsplatter, Razor Hat Spark, and more.

Real fabrics and intricate sculpted detail make these some of the most realistic high-end action figures you can find. Interaction between figures is also a unique draw, with Sub-Zero & Kung Lao compatible both ways for brutal fatalities and more! Take a closer look by clicking the thumbnails below. [More images at]

BigBadToyStore are now offering pre-order for an estimated arrival during Q4 of 2014. With a premium price tag of $144.99 -- these are clearly high-end toys for big boys! The series is said to continue next with Scorpion & Jade, but we currently have no details on the Hong Kong toy makers schedule. We'd love to hear your experiences, if you've had them! Register to find and comment on this and other stories in the Media & Merchandise forum.

Spotlight: Updated Mortal Kombat Dragon Logo Comparison
Comparing the iconic original Dragon Logo with its sharp new redesign!

It started with a simple white circle, but in a matter of a day - it transformed into an all-new Dragon Logo!

The klassic symbol for Mortal Kombat has become the avatar for everything from Ed Boon's twitter (@noobde) to the official MK Facebook! As we count down to a June 2nd reveal -- it's a done deal! This is the new symbol: Kombat will kontinue!

Click to Enlarge: Comparison of Klassic & Updated Dragon Logos.

Fans have been pretty quick to embrace the new design, which differs only slightly from the classic serpentine silhouette. The new logo could be best described as tightened up. The eye is more narrow and focused forward. The nostril smaller and similarly oriented. The mouth is a fraction less, with a more steady, graphically appealing curve to its overall shape. The dragon clearly bears his fangs along with a flickering tongue.

A sharper, more vertical axis generally compliments what looks to be a far more aggressive symbol than the classically indifferent dragon of the original version. Who could complain about that? Not series co-creator Ed Boon! According to him, the NetherRealm team like their new logo, too!

What are the implications of the new logo? Well, that's certainly something to ponder. The last game introduced a busier, bevelled Dragon Logo - updated with three-dimensional detailing. This simplistic, black & white symbol takes us back to simpler times of the iconic original. Could this reflect the philosophy of the new game?...

At present, most theories for the Mortal Kombat (2011) sequel centre on a continuation of the rewritten timeline. That has us expecting a starting point based on version of a Mortal Kombat 4 plot. That story saw the fallen elder god Shinnok wage war on the Heavens from whence he fell. Does this more aggressive dragon represent the predicament or attitude of the Elder Gods in this new game? Don't forget -- it was they who empowered Raiden to claim victory at the end of the last game's story mode!

There is, of course, the massive success of the previous game to consider [read more]. At the height of its pop culture powers; Mortal Kombat made brilliant use of brand awareness by sometimes running only the iconic dragon trademark in its promotions. That seems to be the philosophy of the apparently leaked poster. Perhaps now was simply a good time to give the old bird a bit of a revamp.

What ever the case, we like it! We want to know if you like it, too! Register to share your thoughts and theories about the logo on the forums! We're asking the MKOmmunity the question of the moment: Who's Next? Vote in the User Poll and check out some of our thoughts about who might be next: Top 10 Armageddon Comebacks & Top 10 MK2011 Kontinues.

Is This The First Promo Poster For Mortal Kombat Sequel? [Updated]
Who's Next? Official Channels Release Mortal Kombat Teasers

Is this the first promo poster from the next Mortal Kombat? Following up on our Ed Boon Twitter Mystery update -- what might be the first promotional poster image for a new Mortal Kombat sequel! [Image Source: AllGamesBeta]

Who's Next?

Anecdotal reports are coming in to tell us the mystery poster [pictured above] was uploaded to Reddit, before being deleted some time later. IGN are reporting All Day Gamers as the original source

Earlier, NetherRealm Studios Director Ed Boon updated that mystery white circle with the Injustice: Gods Among Us regime logo -- but has since switched for a white on black version of the Mortal Kombat Dragon Logo and the Who's Next? tagline of the poster!

Filled: Ed Boon Twitter Mystery filled with new Mortal Kombat tagline?

While the simple spine X-ray, font & logo could all be creations of an enthusiastic fan -- it's worth noting that Boon's twitter profile matches up with all the elements. The dragon logo differs slightly in its dimensions from classic versions. A fully conceived poke at the rabid fans chasing a sequel - or indication of the legitimacy of the post?

Update: Hey, that Boon's a real trend setter! The official Mortal Kombat Facebook has adopted the new black & white dragon logo and "Who's Next?" tagline, too!

So, who is next? Check out Mortal Kombat Online's Top 10 2011 Kombatants Ready to Kontinue and Top 10 Absentees Ready for a Comeback!

Register to give us your much need input on the forums! We're less than a week away from the end of Boon's June 2nd countdown, as well! Join the speculation and get ready for something concrete very soon!

Look To La Luna: Ed Boon Twitter Update Creates Avatar Mystery
What does Ed Boons new white circle avatar mean? Why is this news?

What's black and white and read all over? Ed Boon's twitter feed (@noobde) since he updated his avatar and profile background! [Update: Who's Next? Is This The First Promo Poster For Mortal Kombat Sequel?]

In what is sure to go down as one of the most compelling moments of the hype train -- the NetherRealm Studios Project Lead has switched his old question mark avatar out for a white circle on black.

The cryptic meaning behind the geometric development is too vague for us to nail down any definitive theories, but the Mortal Kombat franchise is certainly no stranger to circles.

With less than a week to go in the Boon prompted countdown to June 2nd -- this could signal a place holder for the long awaited return of the classic MK dragon logo! There's also Shinnok's Amulet -- a suitably Euclidean artefact at the centre of the original Mortal Kombat 4 plot -- which we expect to see reprised in some fashion in a sequel. [Relate Article: Kountdown: 10 Returning Kombatants Ready to Kontinue!]

Twit: Shock as Ed Boon enters his stark minimalist phase.

This may seem like a lot of noise to make about a simple aesthetic choice on a Twitter feed, but it's not without its baring. With Warner Brothers forsaking many of the traditional channels utilized by Midway before them; Ed Boon and his Twitter livestream have become a primary source for reliable promotional information and teasers, as well as a direct conduit for fans.

Ed certainly isn't the only NetherRealm favourite tweeting up enticements! The original live-action Raiden and real life J. Mokap - Carlos Pesina - made it known he's been back in the motion capture studio! Granted, he seems to be in and out of the ball suit periodically, but we enjoyed the Kombat-centric tease:

Is this Lin Kuei laff-fest further confirmation that a Mortal Kombat sequel is imminent? We like to think so, and so do you! 80.9% of the voting MKOmmunity think that's what we'll see come this year's E3! Helping inspire this confidence is voice actress Karen Strassman (Kitana, Mileena), whose resumé included "Mortal Kombat 2" until recently [full story]. Of course, Kiefer Sutherland revealed similar involvement, but there have been a few doubts.

What ever is coming, we expect to know what it is very soon! The June 2nd countdown lands right around the pre-E3 timing of previous launch trailers for Mortal Kombat (2010) & Injustice: Gods Among Us (2012). For those playing at home, June 2nd is also a potential Mortal Monday -- as hinted by the official YouTube station!

So, how does the mystery white circle play into this?...

Ed's White Hole: This video clip isn't helpful at all! Obviously the work of Quan Chi.

At this point, we're clearly floundering. We need all hands on deck if we're going to solve this one! That means YOU! Register to join the hype train and rampant speculation on the forums! You can also join other conversation topics, such as the Characters Ready for a Comeback list! Help get the word out by liking & sharing stories via @MK_Online and Facebook!

Kountdown: 10 Returning Kombatants Ready to Kontinue!
Top 10 Mortal Kombat (2011) characters wed like to see return!

After three long years, we've got Mortal Kombat sequel fever! At the behest of series director [Ed Boon]: we're counting down to June 2nd -- that's next Monday (if you haven't noticed)! It's also right around the time we've seen the unveiling of pre-E3 launch trailers for Mortal Kombat (2010) & Injustice: Gods Among Us (2012)!

Over 80% of the MKOmmunity is convinced the June 2 countdown will fulfil our desires. There are other theories and some new ideas, but with reported leaks and the general timing, we've got good reason to talk MK sequels!

As speculation about sequel content starts to mount; one of the leading queries is exactly which characters will make it back for another go around. By the end of the time distorting Mortal Kombat reboot plot -- a majority of Earthrealm's greatest champions were left for dead in the bowels of Netherealm! Last week, we looked at the Top 10 Replacement Kombatants Ready for a Comeback who could fill that void! This week; the Mortal Kombat Online Kountdown is turning an informed eye toward the survivors who could carry over into a next gen sequel!

With the previous game retelling a simplified and slightly altered version of the original trilogy: all signs are pointing toward a reprisal of the plot from 1997's Mortal Kombat 4. We eagerly anticipate the rise of fallen Elder God Shinnok -- whose evil plan appears to be going very well! Who will help or hinder the villain in this hypothetical sequel? Here are our Top 10 Returning Fighters from Mortal Kombat (2011):

Some kombatants didn't make it out of Mortal Kombat (2011) alive!

#1 Quan Chi

With Mortal Kombat 4 providing our strongest point of reference for a probable Mortal Kombat (2011) sequel -- Quan Chi can almost be considered the same calibre of no brainer as his master: Shinnok. Maybe more so, when you take into account his extensive presence throughout the plot of the last game!

Quan Chi was insinuated into the plot of each of the first three games -- all of which predate the creation of the character, and his game debut(s) in the intertwined MK4 & MK Mythologies: Sub-Zero. Back in those days: Quan Chi's ultimate goal was his own power play under the guise of servitude - leading to the infamous retrieval and exchange of an ancient, powerful amulet. The artefact was possessed by Onaga in later backstory, but is more ironically the source of power for: Shinnok. The ol' switcheroo for a duplicate would eventually allow Quan Chi to seize power in the original story, but not without some bumps along the way.

After pulling the strings throughout 2011, it would be preposterous to leave Quan Chi out of the action in a sequel. As Shinnok's man in the field, he's responsible for laying all groundwork for the imminent invasion from the Netherrealm! His omnipresence rubbed some fans up the wrong way, but it's fair to say it also secured him as one of the most recognizable characters introduced after the original trilogy. In that respect, he services an expectation of returning characters quite well. Even if that's only so you have an immediate go-to choice to beat the snot out of!

#2 Raiden

Raideeeen! You gotta lotta 'splainin' t'doooo! It's fair to say Earthrealm's protector came out looking worse for wear at the end of Mortal Kombat (2011). Having had the visions of Armageddon that prompted our time-twisting reboot - Raiden has struggled to orchestrate a better outcome for the universe. Shao Kahn's conquest of all things may have been averted, but the price has come at the expense of some of the worlds' greatest defenders. The thunder god can personally claim the accidental murder of Liu Kang among the many whose lives were lost as a result of his altered reality.

The original MK4 opened with Raiden feeling remorseful for the slaughter of his fellow gods, and his past failings that led to the death of a forgotten realm. He's got plenty to feel morose about in a sequel, and we can't shake the thought that he's probably on the same path to darkness that saw him using a zombie Liu Kang as a puppet during his alliance with the villains in Armageddon. That's reason enough to expect Raiden to stick around in the playable list, but we think he'll probably serve to rally a new crop of defenders before things get that dire.

The new timeline really positions Raiden at the centre of the plot. With some heavyhitting favourites down for the count (ie; Sub-Zero), we also expect iconic stalwarts like Raiden to bolster the playable list with a quotient of the familiar. There's every chance the fighters who died will find their way back in, but if they don't, we certainly believe characters like Raiden can provide a tournament-level throughline that satisfies a demand for consistency. If the next game goes beyond MK4 to reach Deception or even Armageddon the arc of the story only demands Raiden's presence even more!

#3 Scorpion

Love or hate him - Scorpion remains one of the most instantly recognized characters associated with the series. According to Ed Boon, Scorpion was even the highest selling downloadable content in Injustice: Gods Among Us. No mean feat when matched against DC fan favourites and feature film characters!

The ninja's plot of damnation and revenge is one of the best known stories in the MK canon, owing its extended life to a crucial development in Mortal Kombat 4 that revealed his true enemy: Quan Chi! That reveal remains pending in the new timeline, thanks to a significantly simplified version of his saga that kept him an ignorant servant of Quan Chi from tournament 1. It was a pared down version that couldn't owe its in-fiction context to Raiden's time manipulations -- but seemingly used the opportunity to smooth his story arc out. Erratic entry points into the action were ironed out, and the MK4 twist seems ready made to be a ticking bomb within the ranks of Quan Chi & Shinnok's Neathrrealm army. Sub-Zero may be dead, but this time around, we may see another component of the Scorpion rivalry be on-hand.

Mascot status alone is reason to expect Scorpion to be front and centre when the sequel arrives. He connects with a wide variety of players and fans, who've rebelled in the past when the character was absent (MK3), If Sub-Zero doesn't make it to the dance, then it's smooth sailing for the deadman. A character not nearly as stagnant as some would like to believe.

#4 Sonya Blade

When it comes to the heroes who starred in Mortal Kombat (2011), there's slim pickings for returning characters without some serious shenanigans. Only two of Earthrealm's chosen warriors were left standing when Raiden finished off Shao Kahn -- Lt. Sonya Blade of the US Special Forces was the more compelling of the two! We wouldn't discount the value of Johnny Cage as an MK original, but of the pair, it's Sonya who has the connections to make for the more noteworthy return.

In the original MK4; Sonya (and Jax) were forced to partner with Black Dragon nemesis Jarek in the name of the greater good. This invariably led to a trifecta of betrayals in alternate arcade endings that threatened the lives of one or more in the triangle of death. With arch-nemesis Kano still kicking around, as well as the various Black Dragon clansmen yet to be seen in this timeline -- we think that will be a very interesting dynamic to revisit and flesh out.

If the dead heroes find their way back into the plot, then we'll be interested to see Sonya provide a human perspective. The death of Jax is just the latest tragedy in Sonya's life, which could propel the story forward in interesting ways. In the event Kitana doesn't find her way back into the plot -- it will be Sonya who represents the fairer sex as the first lady of kombat. That in itself makes her a compelling choice for a return. The chance to install her as a senior presence amongst a new crop of chosen recruits -- also an interesting thought. One of the few 2011 story mode locks -- a must. (Fingers crossed we get a better design to go with that.)

#5 Noob Saibot

A prevailing theme in our previous Top 10 Kountdown was the desire to embellish Shinnok's army with more name value. Noob Saibot may have found his way into MK4 as a memorable hidden character, but his integration into the plot suffered as a result. A servant of Shinnok and The Brotherhood of Shadow since UMK3 -- Noob is a natural choice to join the other members of his Netherrealm clan when they wage their war against Edenia, The Heavens and anybody else who might be in their sights.

As a faceless, all black palette swap first seen as a powerful secret character in MKII -- Noob Saibot had a certain mystique and charm. When Deception dropped the bombshell of his true identity -- that of deceased Sub-Zero and Scorpion's arch-nemesis: Bi-Han -- the character had finally arrived. He received an update in 2011 - one of the best. It's easy to understand why Noob Saibot has been on the steady rise as one of fandom's cult favourite characters!

Refining what was already done very well would make Noob Saibot a welcome return to a sequel. With his allegiance to Quan Chi putting him directly beside arch-nemesis and revenge killer Scorpion -- he could be the component that completes one of MK4's most memorable plotlines in his brother's absence. Deadliest of enemies and slaves under Quan Chi's power -- but for how long?

#6 Rain

By popular demand, Rain found his way into Mortal Kombat (2011)'s first generation DLC program as the third of four characters in their Season Pass. If MK4 plotlines are to play out as originally depicted - Shinnok will be launching his campaign through the conquest of the realm of Edenia!

While it's Tanya who should arguably have the responsibility of inviting the devil into their realm -- it would be wonderful to see more Edenians involved in this plot. It wasn't until the Sega exclusive MK Gold that the heavily involved Kitana was instated as a playable character in the MK4 line-up. If that same predicament is reprised, this is another one of MK4's failings that can be a priority focus in the new version. Kitana, Sindel & Jade were all killed off in the last game. Shinnok's plot may ultimately circumvent the Edenian component -- but if it doesn't, Rain could once again be the recipient of some much needed character development.

Revealed to be a power hungry demigod in Armageddon -- Rain could further have a unique perspective if Shinnok is successful in launching an onslaught on the Heavens -- a major plot point in MK4. If Argus appears to offer name-gods as sacrificial lambs, then Rain has multiple personal stakes in the sequel conflict. A character who adds a unique gimmick to the playable roster.

#7 Cyrax

In the 2011 story mode, Cyrax appeared in his original iconic role as an automated killing machine programmed by the Lin Kuei clan. In one of the expanded plotlines of the mode -- Cyrax appeared in human form, revealing his reluctance to be a part of the cyber initiative. This plants the seeds for the story that unfolded in MK4 update - MK Gold - where Cyrax was famously recovered from the desert by the US Special Forces and freed of his programming!

With Jax among the dead, we'd love to see the Special Forces ranks replenished with this enjoyable storyline. In both timelines, the development has the benefit of diversifying both groups - Lin Kuei & Special Forces. It was a plot line cribbed from the original cyborg Smoke, but as we know of 2011 - Smoke never became a cyborg. Which really only makes it all the more available to be Cyrax' arc.

Cyrax's stock has been on the rise since his return in 2002's Deadly Alliance. Strong performances by tournament players gave Cyrax some solid competitive credentials. Live-action web series Mortal Kombat: Legacy upped his profile in one of the most broadly appealing episodes: the final of the first series. As a returning character, he's earning his place in the pantheon of classics. A unique playable option to bolster whatever sequel mix comes.

#8 Mileena

We don't really know what Shao Kahn's defeat means for the fate of Edenia. The paradise realm was conquered and merged with Outworld, but became separated as a result of Liu Kang's victory in the original timeline. Whatever the case, the royal lineage appears to favour Mileena.

As long as Kitana & Sindel remain dead -- Mileena has the genetics to claim Shao Kahn's throne, and the deceptive appearance to claim Edenia's. We weren't particularly fond of the 2011 reboot's retooling of the Tarkatan-clone daughter of Shao Kahn -- which included an infants personality -- but we'll assume that wouldn't stand in the way of this new take on Mileena's classic story.

Prolonged plot relevance could be an issue, but that goes hand-in-hand with voice actress Karen Strassman's resume update [full story] - which included a "Supporting" role for "Mortal Kombat 2". In the scheme of things, that could very well mean a playable appearance that features only a brief role in any story mode -- perhaps as an unlikely ally in the fight against Shinnok.

#9 Kenshi

The blind sword saint Kenshi was the second character included in Mortal Kombat (2011)'s downloadable content cycle. Introduced in 2002's Deadly Alliance, he has proved to be one of the most enduring characters introduced after MK3! The minimal nature of his involvement as a DLC extra only fuels the desire to see him playable and ready to go from launch!

If Raiden is recruiting heroes to replace the deceased chosen warriors, then you'd have to assume Kenshi is a natural. His stakes in the conflict may not be the most personal, but we don't know what to expect in terms of new characters, or new additions. In the original timeline, Kenshi found himself among the ranks of the Special Forces. We'd be happy to see that happen again, but also quietly hope more tailored rivals can be created to challenge him. If Kenshi does make a return, we could speculate Ermac won't be too far behind. It was the soul warrior who educated blind Kenshi in the art of telekinesis in the original timeline.

We liked what they did with Kenshi, but getting him into the main roster is a fine opportunity to play around with this character. With samurai warriors a trope unvisited by the Asian infused series, we might like to see something in that vein incorporated into main, or alternate designs.

#10 Shang Tsung

MK4 remains the basis of much of our speculation, but as noted at the end of the last kountdown -- there's every chance events from Deadly Alliance, Deception & Armageddon are incorporated into the sequel. We saw a playful "deadly alliance" reference during the story mode of MK2011, when Shao Kahn employed the combo of Shang Tsung & Quan Chi during his Outworld tournament. Could they reunite in an upcoming sequel to further the betrayal of Shinnok?

Impressions leave most believing Shao Kahn killed his sorcerer when empowering the resurrected Queen Sindel -- but Shang Tsung's mastery of souls is legendary. Was Tsung truly killed? Perhaps merely aged by the sapping of souls he'd consumed? If we're already considering the possibility of dead characters returning, you can bet we're investing in any shred of ambiguity that circumvents the need for resurrections.

Shang Tsung has been a favourite villain for the series throughout its long history. The kung fu sorcere of the original MK was a welcome presence in Mortal Kombat (2011), and could be a fun way to play with his appearances in the original sequels -- which saw him get younger with each outing. As a returning fighter, we'd be pleased to see him.

Narrowing the returning list to just ten was very difficult! We know we missed some very legitimate choices. Register to comment on the Top 10, share your own list, and join the speculation on the forums! There's just 1 week to go until the June 2nd countdown ends! Be with us as we anticipate the next big game from NetherRealm Studios!

Amazon Sale 75% Off PC Codes - Mortal Kombat, Injustice
Amazon Offer 75% Discounts on NetherRealm Studios Digital Games!

If you haven't had the chance to try Mortal Kombat (2011) or Injustice: Gods Among Us and you want to catch-up before June 2nd arrives -- now's the time!

Amazon are currently offering 75% off Steam download codes for both Mortal Kombat ($5.00) & Injustice: Gods Among Us ($7.50)! That's a downright phenomenal saving of up to $22.49!

Related Article: Mortal Kombat: Komplete Edition PC Requirements

Special thank to MKOmmunity User McDaniel for sharing this incredible deal with us on Twitter! We tweeted it out earlier. Get special updates like these and more by following @MK_Online and Facebook. Be sure to like & share stories to help the community out!

Injustice Hotfix 5.22.14 Continues Batgirl Modification
New Injustice Hotfix Addresses Continued Batgirl Exploits

We may be counting down to NetherRealm Studios' next big release -- but that hasn't stopped the NRS demons keeping up maintenance on Injustice: Gods Among Us! The latest update continues the work of Hotfix 3.5.14, tinkering with the gameplay mechanics of DLC addition: Batgirl.

    Hotfix 5.22.14 Update:
  • Decreased the hit advantage on Batgirl’s Flying Bat special move to prevent a combo loop. reports an update for PlayStation 4 and PC is still being investigated. Recent server migrations for Mortal Kombat has not effected Injustice, which did not use the soon-to-be-defunct Gamespy platform [full story].

Injustice Mobile also received a 2.02 update to the recently launched 2.0 Multiplayer Upgrade. Players will receive Season 1 MP Rewards next week.

Share your thoughts about the Batgirl modifications and any other Hotfixes you'd like to see on the forums. You can discuss all things DC Comics in the DC Universe Injustice forum. Current topics include: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, The Flash CW Series, Gotham Fox Series & Injustice 2 Roster Speculation!

Kountdown: 10 Kombatants Ready for a Sequel Comeback!
Mortal Kombat Online Top 10 Characters to Return in a Mortal Kombat Sequel

Like the mythic serpent Ouroborus that devours its own tail; so too has the story of Mortal Kombat begun to consume itself! According to the conclusion of the last game: Earthrealm's greatest mortals have been fatally decimated! It's a grim new reality brought by a time twisting tale that rewrote the saga of the original three games -- all part of Raiden's ultimate attempt to curb the race towards Armageddon.

Love or hate it -- the story of Warner Brothers' Mortal Kombat pseudo-reboot has brought us to a moment of unique anticipation: painfully familiar, but completely uncertain. Sequel plots aren't the only uncertainty, of course. We may be officially counting down to June 2nd -- but we still don't know for certain what NetherRealm Studios' next project will be!

80.6% of the MKOmmunity currently believe a sequel is on its way. Voice actress Karen Strassman's resumé seems to agree, but mixed sequel rumours persist. On Mortal Kombat Online we've got grand designs for a revolutionary next gen compromise - aaand nobody's quite sure what Kiefer Sutherland's talking about.

What we do know is that we're hungry for that next Mortal Kombat sequel! Since the 20th Anniversary (2012), it seems the most substantial offering was Scorpion Injustice DLC. Whether its revealed in June, or not, we're thinking about what's going to happen next! With all signs pointing toward a reprisal of the plot from 1997's Mortal Kombat 4 - we eagerly anticipate the rise of fallen Elder God Shinnok, and a war between Heaven and Hell with the realms caught in between!

Shinnok confers with Quan Chi in the final moments of Mortal Kombat (2011).

In step with its arcade contemporaries; Mortal Kombat 4 attempted to move things forward by introducing a swath of new playable characters. Its roster shake-up wasn't nearly as dramatic as '97s Street Fighter III or Tekken 3 -- but it does supply several unsullied fighters ready to return to the series!

Of the characters introduced after MK3 -- only Quan Chi & Kenshi (DLC) appeared in the reboot. We think there's a good chance they'll be back, along with many others, but for now we're narrowing our focus on the Top 10 Returning Replacement Fighters! Those are characters who missed the 20th Anniversary and haven't been played since 2006's Armageddon!

#1 Fujin
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero (1997)

Given everything discussed in the open: We're going to consider Shinnok a no brainer for a big boss return. Keeping him unplayable in a next gen sequel would be a great opportunity to quell one of MK4's biggest complaints - whilst also restoring some mystique to the ruler in Hell. With the fallen elder god out of the way - our inevitable #1 Replacement Killer is Fujin!

The wind god is best recognized as a disciple of Raiden, whose cause he aided in the connected stories of Mortal Kombat Mythologies and Mortal Kombat 4. When Shinnok rampaged against the Heavens, Fujin stood steadfast beside the protector of Earthrealm! He even briefly assumed Raiden's post as guardian of Earthrealm when the thunder god was promoted to Elder God status -- a role he later relinquished! As a result, Fujin had to wait until Armageddon to get his next playable appearance, where he began to develop doubts about his long time ally.

Far be it from us to judge a god, but Raiden's efforts to prevent Armageddon seemed to come at an awfully high price! Single-handedly responsible for directing the demise of most of Earthrealm's greatest fighters -- including his personal execution of Liu Kang (by mistake) -- Raiden has never invited more doubt than now! If Shinnok is again successful in laying waste to the Heavens - we expect Fujin to be there fighting the good fight. More importantly, though, we hope he'll be keeping an eye on Raiden. 'Cause, between you and me, I'm just not sure about that guy!

Better still: Fujin's mastery of wind gives him an elemental distinction from other fighters. He doesn't just replace an discarded character, but offers NetherRealm Studios a chance to create a whole new experience! With the imagination they let loose in Injustice: Gods Among Us -- this returning God is a must!

#2 Tanya
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat 4 (1997)

Truth be told, Tanya left a forgettable impression in her first entry into the series. In a game criticized for its cumbersome arrival in the Tekken dominated polygon era; Tanya felt like a missed opportunity to break away from the increasingly tired aesthetic of 2D palette swap designs. Were her character more complex, design might not have been so damning, but her treacherous role was most adequately summed up by color choice: yellow.

So, what makes Tanya our second most anticipated Replacement Killer? They say time heals all wounds. When Mortal Kombat Online talked to series co-creator John Tobias, he spoke of the price of his expanding ambitions for the MK4 story [full interview]. We have to believe an MK4 do-over is another opportunity to right the wrongs of the past.

Tanya was a crucial element of the original MK4 story, facilitating Shinnok's escape from the Netherealm through the conquest of Edenia. Her turn from Edenian Ambassador's daughter to emissary of Shinnok is reminiscent of Rain's original UMK3 plot [a character we'd like to see Tanya interact with], but with so little of that story told during the 2011 reboot, there's room for Tanya to have the floor in her own story mode chapter. [Related: Tanya: Confessions]

She was originally introduced as a counterpart replacement for Mileena and we think she could serve a similar role again. Since Mileena survived the 2011 reboot, we're looking at Tanya as a potential playable replacement for Kitana. We aren't ruling out the Princess's return just yet, but we enjoy the meta-text of tournament players being pushed to choose her polarizing opposite.

We look to Deception & Armageddon for Tanya's last and best appearances. The benchmark for design is set there -- and after the pushback of MK2011's somewhat disappointing female character design, we hope they'll aim higher, taking full advantage of the privileged position of an Ambassador's daughter.

Tanya: Confessions - Brazilian comics told her story well. [Review: Issue #1]

#3 Kai
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat 4 (1997)

Much like Tanya; newly minted White Lotus Society member Kai was an unremarkable addition to the series in 1997. As an ally to Liu Kang, he served his purpose as the next generation of heroes, but as a substitute for White Lotus warrior Kung Lao -- he paled.

Absent from the series until Armageddon; Kai received one of the less successful revamps from the 2000s, appreciated, though it was. Like Tanya, however, we're putting our faith in the ability of the team to find gold in the vast untapped potential of the character!

Like MK4; we would expect Fujin & Raiden to welcome Kai into the heroes' fold. Given that Kung Lao & Liu Kang are both numbered among the dead, that may mean Kai once again carries the burden of being a replacement for iconic heroes -- but at least this time he won't be treading on the toes of the big hero of the series (Kang). Likewise, we hope that NetherRealm Studios can tap into qualities that make Kai unique. Generic martial arts fireballs gave him little appeal, but his hand walk stance opened exciting possibilities that a next gen sequel could finally cash in on!

At the end of the original MK4; Raiden gave Kai the ultimate honor of carrying his staff as he journeyed out into the world. That was actually a very cool moment, and something we might like to see happen again, especially if Raiden falls on his crazymofotimecop sword.

Furthermore, we'd like to see Kai revamped to address one of the biggest conundrums to face the series since the beginning! If Earthrealm is in peril -- where the hell is the rest of the world? A majority of Mortal Kombat heroes hail from the United States or China. Unravelling the Lin Kuei as a multi-cultural Chinese clan was one way to go about things, but embracing Kai as an African warrior would be a natural fit. In fact, a bit of research into African warrior culture would do the character a world of good!

#4 Reiko
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat 4 (1997)

Under the right conditions, we think Reiko could be a bit of a game changer. To explain, we have to flash back to home console versions of the original Mortal Kombat 4. It was then that Reiko arguably had his greatest moment: Walking through a portal in his FMV ending sequence to don the helmet of the thought-dead Shao Kahn!

If you weren't around to experience the furore of genuine theories, you probably can't comprehend how big a deal Reiko was. Before climate change or Creationism, there were the Reiko/Khan sceptics & true believers. Each was on a downward spiral toward damnation, but having fun all the while, I'm sure.

Cutting through the conspiracies seems logical, but that needn't mean completely disassociating Reiko from Shao Kahn. Fans have clamoured for a chance to play the unplayable boss of Mortal Kombat. We're inclined to agree with the decision to resist that -- Challenge Tower & PSVita not withstanding -- but a scaled down version in a sequel could be very palatable!

Reiko was, of course, originally introduced as a member of The Brotherhood of Shadow, and a leader of Shinnok's armies. Having him reprise that role in the next game is a no brainer. We liked his Kahn-inspired straps and armor in Armageddon, but would love to see a design that's consistent with that thought, but offers something new to the Netherealm hordes.

Reiko dons the helmet of Shao Kahn in MK4.

#5 Drahmin
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance (2002)

The scope of the Mortal Kombat 4 story was a saga unto itself, but unless you read the official tie-in comic, or sought out Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero, you didn't really get a sense of it.

In MK4, the fallen Elder God Shinnok only had a handful of allies in the playable cast -- and half of those were motley pick-ups from Shao Kahn! We know Reiko (#4) led the forces of darkness in Shinnok's conquest of Edenia, and war on the Heavens. The comic at least gave those forces a sense of mass through throngs of demons, but come on. We want to see other warriors!

Drahmin served as Quan Chi's special enforcer in the lead-up to (and during) Deadly Alliance, helping keep a very cranky Scorpion off the sorcerer's tail. As of the end of MK2011's story mode, Scorpion is still working for Quan Chi, but if Sub-Zero can snap out of his deadite-cyborg funk and turn on his master, Scorpion will be ready to unleash hell on Quan all over again. Which might just make Drahmin a handy guy to have around!

Of course, with a nickname like "The Oni Tormentor" -- he'll probably be just as good at giving angels grief when Shinnok attacks the Heavens! All in all, it's a nice chance to revisit an old character, who contributes just as much by being an identifiable name in the Netherealm horde! We could have coupled him with MKDA tag team buddy Moloch -- who might be a good replacement sub-boss -- but of the two, it's Drahmin who has the most to offer as a playable character. Assuming, of course, NetherRealm Studios can cook up some interesting things to do with that big bloody club!

#6 Sareena
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero (1997)

Once again: Team Shinnok is in need of greater representation. Who better to call upon than Quan Chi's personal demon assassins? Sareena is the most identifiable of a trio of characters who were introduced in Mythologies -- later becoming playable in a portable version of Deadly Alliance and 2006's Armageddon. Her plot is closely tied to the Sub-Zero bros, so while we're suggesting Sareena, we're also going to submit that this could be the perfect time for Kia or Jataaka to enter the fray.

In the original timeline, Sareena's flirting with Bi-Han (Noob) and later Kuai Liang (Cyber Sub-Zero) eventually led her to be granted asylum by the latter's new Lin Kuei Clan. Prior to that, she was just a demon clinging to the hope of humanity, serving Quan Chi as one of three deadly slave assassins ["slavssassins", if you will]. The potential subversion or adaptations of these storylines are many. If Sareena remains loyal she kicks some hero butt, or joins Quan Chi in a coup against Shinnok -- as was the style of the time (in MK4). Alternatively, it could this time be Sareena who rescues Sub-Zero, last seen enslaved as an undead cyborg.

With Kitana and Jade also out of the way, there's certainly room for Sareena, Kia or Jataaka to fill the void as counterpart playable options.

#7 Ashrah
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat: Deception (2004)

We've got a bit of theme going here and there's no good reason to break it. A couple of meagre additions won't cut it. The Netherrealm forces need to beef up a their playable list and Ashrah is another established demonette who can put a name and face to the playable cast.

It can be easy to forget, but Ashrah is a charter member of The Brotherhood of Shadow. Much like Sareena and her ilk -- Ashrah is a noted servant of Quan Chi, similarly interested in acquiring her humanity and independence. We also know that Quan Chi ordered her own sisters to kill her for defying an order. That sounds like a perfect plot for the untold tales of Mortal Kombat 4!

The best thing about including Ashrah in this game would be that it predates her appearance in the original timeline. This means there's a full story arc mapped out for her if they want it, and a chance to revamp the character in an unseen demonic form. It was during Deception she began to take on a more chaste, human appearance. It would be a lot of fun to see her dark side, before she began slaying demons with the Kriss blade!

Ashrah slays Noob Saibot to be freed of the Netherrealm in Deception (Arcade).

#8 Frost
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance (2002)

Even the most staunch fan of Frost would have to acknowledge she's a tough sell in a Sub-Zero world. For any of her idiosyncratic differences in play style, she's ultimately always going to be viewed as a lesser ice wielding warrior. Of course, in a timeline where neither Sub-Zero is active, that suddenly makes Frost a whole lot cooler.

First introduced as the winner of a Lin Kuei recruitment tournament, Frost had a natural aptitude for the kori arts. As her story unfolded, we learned she also had a lust for power, which led her to a self-made downfall when attempting to wield her new master's dragon medallion. Ordinarily, this kind of taint would probably lead Raiden to breeze right past her, but with most of his go-to heroes dead, and the world going to Hell, he might be inclined to overlook a few character flaws.

It seems kind of unfathomable that Mortal Kombat would wheel out a sequel without Sub-Zero. He's an icon equal to any other mascot and one of the most frequently featured characters, missing only Special Forces if you include both incarnations. Still, maybe that means he's ripe for a vacation. When Scorpion failed to show in MK3, there were plenty of disgruntled fans. At least Frost would soften the blow, offering up all the old favourites in a new package.

#9 Tremor
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat: Special Forces (2000)

For this year's April Fool's Day, we infamously cooked up a gag about a Special Forces remake. We're glad not too many people's feelings got hurt, but it was disappointing that so many dismissed it as a prank based purely on the notorious 2000 third-person shooter.

While it's true Special Forces wasn't a high point for the series, that doesn't speak to the quality of the idea. We chose MKSF for our April Fool in the hope it would spark debate and possibly begin a rethink amongst fans, who in many cases have latched on to the myth of the game, rather than the content itself.

We don't see a remake or sequel coming any time soon, but in 2012 we did see Tremor finally return in some fashion as a non-playable opponent in the PlayStation Vita version of Mortal Kombat [feature story]. A brown classic costume palette swap might not have seemed like much, but it's one of the rare times the character, or any Special Forces detail, has been referenced by the post-Tobias staff.

Tremor may look like an overgrown palette swap, but that's the premise of a character waiting to be revamped. As a Lin Kuei brute who defected to the Black Dragon Clan, he's a more unique alternative to Jarek, who essentially served as a Kano replacement in the original Mortal Kombat 4. In this timeline Kano's still alive and kicking, making Jarek a little redundant. Tremor, on the other hand, could easily serve as an adequate replacement for Jax -- his MKSF arch-nemesis who was killed in the last game. Having Black Dragon fighters join the fight against Shinnok would certainly carry over dramatic tension for Sonya (survivor of the last game) from MK4.

Fans have gravitated to the elemental connotation of the character, who otherwise really only used his bulk as a weapon. Earth-based attacks are as fine an idea as any to give him a greater sense of identity, but we'd leave it to NetherRealm Studios to tease unique fighting out of this cult fan-favourite. The work they did with Injustice grapplers like Bane and Solomon Grundy could be an exciting development for Mortal Kombat!

#10 Shujinko
First Appearance: Mortal Kombat: Deception (2004)

There were a handful of characters we thought about making our final pick, but like Special Forces; Shujinko is a character in need of a deep rethink. We believe he deserves a second chance to be a greater hero -- or villain -- than the last time.

Deception's Konquest mode tells Shujinko's life story, putting him in co-existence with major events from the Mortal Kombat timeline. We considered Blaze for a similar reason -- particularly given his importance to the Armageddon plot Raiden is trying to stop -- but Blaze would theoretically be a much more obtuse presence, given his ties to The Dragon King and Armageddon.

Of course, we've almost exclusively talked about a Mortal Kombat (2011) sequel in terms of the MK4 plot. It's worth remembering that the previous game condensed three whole games worth of saga into a single, simplified story mode. For all we know, the events of the next game could also take into account elements of Deadly Alliance, Deception, or even Armageddon itself -- the event that prompted this journey into a divergent timeline!

What ever the circumstances - Shujinko is there, or somewhere beyond. As a powerful fighter who believes he's serving as Champion of the Elder Gods -- it wouldn't be a stretch for him to wander his way into an actual fight against the enemies of the Elder Gods! Alternatively, we know he journeyed to the Netherrealm late in life, involving himself with the deceptive fallen Elder God: Shinnok. If he's destined to be a fool in any timeline, we could just as easily see Shujinko serving Shinnok! An especially delicious concept if he retained his Konquest-style borrowed move set -- a potentially sly reference to Shinnok's MK4 origins as a composite character.

Those borrowed moves could also play into his role as a Replacement Killer. Granted, very few of the characters he trained with, before or after the MK4 timeline, are dead. New timeline, new moves?

Shujinko absorbs the fighting techniques of other fighters.

It was tough to narrow it down to ten. Did we miss your favourite? Register to comment on the Top 10, share your own list, and join the speculation on the forums! Be sure to join us as we continue to countdown to June for the mystery reveal!

FIGHT! ScrewAttack Death Battle - Fulgore versus Sektor!
Its a Full Metal Main Event when ScrewAttack Death Battles review Fulgore v Sektor!

You watched the fight announcement preview -- now the ScrewAttack DEATH BATTLE is finally here! Representing UltraTech and The Lin Kuei respectively it's a full metal main event as Fulgore takes on Sektor!

Once, long ago, Killer Instinct was actually touted as the Mortal Kombat killer. While the Nintendo-centric series amassed a strong cult following, its fusion of Kombat and Street Fighter influences always felt a step or two behind its older brothers. It's fair to say years in obscurity reflect the contrast of Mortal Kombat's ultimate dominance as a cross-platform, pop culture phenomenon.

Of course, as fans on the forums know; Killer Instinct made a bold comeback in 2013, resurrecting the franchise for a new generation with on-going micro-transaction updates! This came two years after Mortal Kombat had its own franchise rebirth -- KI forever following in its footsteps. What does all of this mean? Well, it's the premise of a franchise grudge match that hasn't necessarily picked its competitors evenly.

Death Battles profess to look only at the games and characters' abilities to determine their outcomes. If you ask us, they go a little too far. If you haven't watched the view [embedded above] - this is your last chance to jump before we engage cyborg spoiler mode!

Tekunin Warrior: 2006 Official Sektor Concept Art.

Previous ScrewAttack battles featuring Mortal Kombat fighters have shown inherent advantages to one participant over the other. Lightning manipulating Thor faced the electric Raiden; soul manipulating Shao Kahn faced psycho soul powered Bison. This Death Battle was a welcome return to a more even thematic platform, at least in the basic premise. The way we see it -- this was a match-up of an A-list character from a B-list series, taking on a B-list character from an A-list series. That alone has the potential to weight the advantage in favour of one over the other, but there's a debate to be had over which way it goes.

ScrewAttack look to the in-game content for their references when breaking abilities down. With very few cross-media appearances: neither character was bolstered or penalized by inferior adaptations. They were, however, matched on a literal interpretation of their in-game abilities. In this respect, we would have to acknowledge that Fulgore seems to have some legitimate edge -- but how adequate is this comparison?

For Sektor to have a shot, you have to respect that brute force and bulk aren't always the best way to win. There's no denying Fulgore has a full metal shell that gives him a weight and power advantage, but Sektor could be well equipped to handle these abilities.

Ninjas or not [not] -- The Lin Kuei are a clan of martial arts master assassins. They clearly value a certain amount of ninja-esque stealth and manoeuvrability. We're not convinced Mortal Kombat has ever applied its fighting styles with enough consistency or conceptual grounding to take them literally. If we did: Sektor's sambo would give him a strong Judo style grappling base, with kenpo being a system built on counter attacks. These skills would certainly be put to good use against the bulky Fulgore and his weight advantage. If you've ever been on the end of Sektor's teleport punches -- you know how well he can out manoeuvre foes and attacks.

Sektor's penchant for flame probably wouldn't do him a whole lot of good against his metallic foe, but missiles pack a punch, and have been shown to be system guided for precision in moves like the Robo-Sek fatality. As ScrewAttack note -- Fulgore's defeat came when he was ripped apart. Sektor's missiles are sure to soften up those joints and those pulse blades that were mentioned? Perfect for loosening and cutting UltraTech engineered joins. The conclusion? The Scarecrow!

Sektor Wins: "The Scarecrow" separates the men from the boys... and the limbs from the body!

Did ScrewAttack Death Battles get it right? Or does the Mortal Kombat Online piece by piece breakdown sway you in this close call? Register to have your say on the forums!

You can also catch-up and comment on previous Mortal Kombat Death Battles: Akuma vs Shang Tsung, Thor vs Raiden & Bison vs Shao Kahn! How does the Mortal Kombat record stack up? Do you think ScrewAttack Death Battles are being fair?

Art of Kombat: Mama Liked The Roses...
Celebrate the Day with a Mortal Kombat Tribute to Motherhood: Sindel!

Mother! You're alive! Not only that - it's the second Sunday of May! In the right parts of Earthrealm that means it's your special time of celebration: Mother's Day!

What better way to celebrate the gift of life and the importance of motherhood than with Mortal Kombat's most famous mother: Queen Sindel? She's the sometimes ruler of Edenia, mother of Princess Kitana, and Shao Kahn's deadly instrument of invasion! Oh, Mom. You always know just the right undead attacks to destroy us all!

Sindel is also the subject of many terrific works in the Mortal Kombat Online famous Fan Submission archive! We're reaching into the list to showcase some of the loving tributes to mortal motherhood! You can be a part of future Art of Kombat features if you register to submit your work for future consideration.

We start our Mother's Day masterpiece gallery with some fine works from around the web. Fezat1 goes back to the beginning with "MK3 Sindel". It's an image with energy and style that elevates the simplistic design of the 1995 arcade fighter. His stylized cartooning combines angles and curves to reflect the right combination of poise and physical capability. Salamandra88 plays it similarly simple, with an updated design. The short, sleeveless jacket remains in "Queen Sindel" -- not exactly regal, but in keeping with the bold, revealing design the character is known for.

Closer to home: taps the punk rock energy of the original MK3 character [above]. His "Sindel" also seems to course with the comic book influences that defined Tobias-era MK. Chalk skin with a bikini goth look draws on Sindel's resurrected state, whilst conjuring comparisons to Steve Hughes and the Chaos! Comics stable. The swirling hair adds great drama and movement. Symbols on the boots remind us the undead queen is in service to Shao Kahn!

seems to have responded to Sindel's punk rock energy, as well. He channels it in a rocking redesign that reminds us of the modern world she invaded! Chunky heels, warrior queen accessories and a hard bod give a new view on the classic character. In contrast: & collaborate to create a coloured version of a more romantic Sindel. The colors of the Queen lean more regal, with a trademark flair of decorative boots and flowing hair.

By name or reputation - long time enthusiasts should know MIDWOOD! The Japanese fan-artist has been documented many times throughout the years - noted for his muscular, hyper-detailed, hyper-imaginative manga re-imaginings!

Pictured above: "SINDEL" is a piece that arguably demands the capitalization of its title! MIDWOOD's unique approach is a maelstrom of ideas - hardcore & built for kombat with ripped muscle and a macho armored bulk! Look closer, however, and there's a cathedral-like quality in the ornate royal designs. Flowing fabrics look like tapestries and the white-eyed Sindel takes on the divine aggression of Japan's sainted god-heroes. We really must recommend you get a closer look. The detail in his work isn't done justice by thumbnails! There's a forest for the trees quality that means you really need to put initial reactions aside!

When you're done with MIDWOOD. Cool down with some terrific black and white pieces by very talented pencil and pen users! Autumn-Sacura, & have contributed some terrific drawings [thumbnails below]!

Art of Kombat is on its way to becoming a monthly tradition for Mortal Kombat Online! We love looking back on the works found in our Fan Submission Archive and turning the spotlight on some very talented artists! Check out our previous seasonal instalments: St. Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day & April Fool's Day!

We're looking ahead to June, when Ed Boon's mystery countdown should tell us something very interesting ahead of E3! With that in mind, our theme for June remains open. You can help steer us in future directions by registering to submit new works that will inspire us!

By joining Mortal Kombat Online you become part of an archive of thousands and will be automatically featured in the Fan Submission forum when submitting! You can discuss each featured MKO submitted Art of Kombat works by clicking the piece to enter the forum. We hope to see all you mothers there!

Interrogation: Is Kiefer Sutherland in Mortal Kombat - or not?
Multiple sources continue to cast doubt over Kiefer Sutherlands involvement in new MK!

NetherRealm Studios Project Lead Ed Boon is tweeting down to something in June. The cryptic countdown hit 24 today, and it's got Gameinformer feeling just a little self-conscious.

Tell me, Michael. How could a billion Chinese people be wrong? What about just one Sutherland?Back in February: IGN reported the claims of TV's 24 star Kiefer Sutherland. Comparing it to his work on Metal Gear Solid; the actor remarked on his completion of a voice role in an unnamed Mortal Kombat project [full story]. Like a lot of sites, Gameinformer picked up the story -- but is it true? [Related Article: IGN Report Kiefer Sutherland Mortal Kombat Role]

When Mortal Kombat Online asked fans who the Hollywood actor could best play in a hypothetical sequel -- they chose Shinnok! Could this be for the analogous deceptions associated with a ruler of Hell? If you believe Boon's twitter queries to the actor -- maybe!

Mortal Kombat Online learned from an anonymous source that Sutherland's claims came to the surprise of the Mortal Kombat developers. You would probably expect them to know what's going on, but this certainly wouldn't be the first time a game was developed beyond the original team. With Warner Brothers assuming ownership, Mortal Kombat as a license has already begun to span considerable distance from its source, and we know new spin-off projects have been broached, such as Mortal Kombat HD [read more].

There are several options. "Mortal Kombat" may be an anachronism for another upcoming combat style project. There may be another wing of development beyond the knowledge of the developer. Or, this could simply be a campaign of doubt launched in the face of other evidence -- such as the updated resume of Kitana & Mileena actress: Karen Strassman.

Only one thing's for certain: As far as we know - Mortal Kombat: Special Forces HD was made-up for our annual April Fools joke. That doesn't mean it isn't happening, though. Wink.

24 v MK "Jax Bauer" Stryker fan-edit by @TheRayden02 [via @noobde]

Register to join the countdown updates & speculation on the forums! You can start and join lots of great community discussions - including some terrific feedback to our story on the potential future of franchise crossovers! Is Sutherland in MK or not? Weigh-in on the debate.

Editorial: The MKvsDC Crossover Nobody Sees Coming
Is cross-title gaming the future of pleasing everyone in a crossover?

It was the bombshell that rocked us in April 2008. Revealed in a Mortal Kombat Online exclusive: Mortal Kombat versus DC Universe turned the core fighting franchise on its head -- introducing MK's first all-out crossover with another franchise! It brought an end to then-rampant sequel speculation, and created an indelible link with the superheroes that starred in 2013's Injustice: Gods Among Us.

Six years on from that memorable first image [pictured top] - we are again anticipating what might be announced when a mystery countdown ends June 2nd. Sequel rumors persist for both Mortal Kombat and Injustice -- leading to speculation of overlapping, or simultaneous development cycles.

Always up for a lark: NetherRealm Studios Creative Director Ed Boon has thrown "Injustice Too" into the collective vernacular. The overseer of both MK and Injustice is probably just engaging in a little harmless subterfuge, but it alludes to a hypothetical outcome few have even dared to consider.

The next generation is changing the game and we think there's a concept that would make use of dual franchise development. An idea that would land Warner Brothers on the cutting edge of attempting to please everybody. Before we get to that, some history:

Scorpion battles Batman as top selling DLC in Injustice: Gods Among Us.

While it's fair to say crossovers remain a controversial subject - they are also incredibly lucrative. Hollywood has become awash in franchise-building crossovers; while combat gaming series like Super Smash Bros. have been doing big business for years.

Hardcore fighting games have had mixed results, starting life with a string of wacky encounters like: drink mascot Pepsiman (Fighting Vipers), the manga dinosaur Gon (Tekken 3), Daytona USA car Hornet (Fighters Megamix), and others. Various Soul Calibur guest fighters stretched fan acceptance with crossovers from: Tekken, Legend of Zelda, Spawn & Star Wars. The gold standard was arguably set when Capcom extended the life of their lagging Street Fighter franchise in the late nineties - delivering: Marvel vs Capcom and Capcom vs SNK.

Earlier in the year, we learned Scorpion was the highest selling download content for Injustice: Gods Among Us. The same was true for Freddy Krueger: hotly debated horror icon who appeared in Mortal Kombat (2011) in conjunction with a major movie reboot. We don't know exact numbers, but it's clear the appeal of fantasy crossovers extends the promotional reach of games regardless of die hard fans' objections.

The standardization of guest characters in fighting games is obviously in no small part due to the simple battle for consumer dollars. Maximizing revenue to expenditure is important to any business. Capitalizing on the overlap of two established franchises is an easy logic to build, but there's obviously a gamble where the established audience is concerned.

With Mortal Kombat and Injustice: Gods Among Us, Warner Brothers dabbled in a solution to fan outrage by including their guests as DLC. The distributor/consumer compromise was struck eloquently by including their franchise guests as late inclusions in pre-paid 4-character Season Passes. Cost adjusted individual purchase options kept things fair, offering the grace of choice to players.

DLC guests were a good use of the digital medium, but even opt-in extra purchases couldn't erase fandom's perception of missed opportunities and series dilution. As long as DLC extended lifespans are finite: fans will perceive one horror movie icon as one less franchise-relevant kombatant.

As technology and the digital domain develops, so too does the strategy of developers. Killer Instinct, Tekken Revolution & Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate have used next gen consoles to experiment with "free-to-play" hub gaming. Based on optional micro-transactions, they build the opt-in experience into the fabric of the game by offering a basic, free version that can be expanded per user prerogative. By establishing a core platform, it opens the window to infinite development and a new way of expanding series. It remains to be seen if this is a creative boon, or an open window for micro-transaction burglary. It is, arguably, the basis of our speculative crossover, though.

MKvsDC: What if you picked a side & worlds really collided?

A sense of value is one of the principles working against the free-to-play micro-transaction model. Download or disc: it's tough to go past the satisfaction of buying a complete game. It dramatically mitigates suspicion of price gouging, and instantly justifies a purchase with a core measure of content.

Mortal Kombat versus DC Universe was a strong seller in 2008, revealed to have sold over 1.9 million units in a December Midway 10-K Filing. Gamespot reported Mortal Kombat reached an impressive 3 million sales in August 2011. Warner Brothers proved the pulling power of their heroes when solo in the fighting genre: Injustice: Gods Among Us reportedly outselling their rivals by almost 2:1 during launch month. Impressive, but data gathered from dedicated Mortal Kombat sites showed a dramatic drop-off in interest during the Injustice cycle, suggesting a limit to overlap.

From all of this we can clearly infer there is a market for a Mortal Kombat/DC Universe crossover, but not necessarily as much as a pure sequel to each franchise. So -- what if they could have it both ways?

Warner Brothers' MMO DC Universe Online crossed boundaries when it offered cross-platform play between PS3 & PC, and more recently between PS3 & PlayStation 4. What if a similar concept were applied to Mortal Kombat and Injustice as two games developed in a single cycle?

In 2008, the tagline said Worlds Collided. What we're suggesting is that - in 2015 - it would be more than possible to have games collide. Two separate, individually purchased disc releases that support peer-to-peer competition and micro-transactions in both games. In effect, a crossover experience with and between a complete "Mortal Kombat 2" and an "Injustice 2".

Think of it this way: If you have Scorpion in Injustice and play online against someone who hasn't bought that DLC -- your match will still occur. The same would apply for a MK versus DC crossover mode, where owners of Mortal Kombat could challenge players in Injustice, and vice versa.

NetherRealm have made great effect of their hotfix patches in an alternate use of the DLC delivery system, but are yet to dabble in downloadable story matter. It would be a no brainer to allow owners of MK2 and/or DC2 to be able to buy the crossover characters from the other game, but perhaps the Versus experience would be best serviced by also providing a third Versus story mode for download. This could also be free to anyone who has save files from both games.

In essence: It's three games for the cost and labour of one mammoth AAA development cycle. An experiment that would allow NetherRealm Studios to break new ground that makes use of their unique position as marshals of two major franchises. It could conceivably be the crossover that pleases everyone -- allowing fans of either franchise to keep their experience pure, or branch out into the extra crossover experience. A revolution of the franchise crossover, with a simple tweak of development logic.

Pleasing Everyone: Could cross-game online support be the future of crossovers?

Is any of this likely? Well, no. Unlike our Special Forces HD April Fool, we aren't operating under any pretence of this being likely. This is purely a fantasy hypothetical scenario. An idea that addresses the concerns of enthusiastic fanbases, rumors of an Injustice sequel, Ed's playfully inclusive "Injustice Too", and a concept that could very well be the future of franchise crossover gaming. Something conceivably possible with the technology available, but a sideways shift in the conventional approach.

Does this capture your imagination? Does it change your perception of a crossover? Register to share your thoughts on the forum about a potential MKvsDC2, and which side you'd choose. Be sure to join the June 2nd Countdown for the next big reveal, while you're there!

Ed Boon Twitter Countdown Leading to June Reveal?
NetherRealm Studios Creative Director Tweets Cryptic Countdown!

Anticipation for the next game from NetherRealm Studios has already been high, but it's about to reach fever pitch as we scramble for clues in the race to this year's E3!

Always on hand to add fuel to the fire: Creative Director Ed Boon has begun what appears to be a thinly veiled countdown that hits zero on June 2nd! This puts the mystery a week ahead of the June 10-12 Electronic Entertainment Expo.

Update(s): 27, 26, 25, 24/24, 23/23, [22], 21, 20, 19. [3122], 11, 9, 8?, 7, 6/6, 5, 4/4?/4, 3. [Follow along on the forums.]

An announcement would certainly fit current Warner Brothers/NetherRealm modus operandi. Mortal Kombat [original story] and Injustice: Gods Among Us [original story] both received launch trailers 5 days before E3. The question remains: What game will we see when the countdown ends?

Kiefer Sutherland and Karen Strassman have both claimed Mortal Kombat working credits: the latter referring to "Mortal Kombat 2" in her résumé.

Ed Boon again prompted rumors when he discussed a Mortal Kombat II: Director's Cut HD remake at GDC. [Related Article: Cancelled Mortal Kombat HD Behind-the-Scenes Photos] Then there are those lingering claims an Injustice sequel was announced during a DC All Access panel at Wondercon [full story].

What ever's coming - it seems the answers will be here in June! Register to follow the countdown and share your theories on the forums!

Creative Director Dashes Wii U Mortal Kombat Virtual Console Hopes
Creative Director Ed Boon dashed hopes for classic Nintendo Kombat ports.

It's been a rough ride for Mortal Kombat fans dedicated to Nintendo home consoles. From game 1, Nintendo fans have more often than not had the short end of the kombat stick. In 2012, Gameinformer ran a comparison of 16-bit era games, highlighting the steep superiority of the bloody Sega versions of MK. If for some reason you've still wanted to revisit those bloodless days -- don't hold your breath!

Series co-creator Ed Boon knocked out hopes for a Wii U Virtual Console rerelease, describing the odds as a definitive: "0.0%". [That, or 0.0% was his expression when anyone showed any interest in Nintendo ports.]

Fortunately, fans have plenty of ways to get their hands on the classics! Mortal Kombat: Arcade Kollection bundles versions of the first three games (including Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3), available digitally through PlayStation, Xbox & PC platforms.

Warner Brothers certainly haven't shunned the Nintendo through all this. Injustice: Gods Among Us keeps the spirit of kombat alive through big action, DC superhero brawls. In 2011, Boon also expressed NetherRealm's interest in exploring the unique Wii U controls with Mortal Kombat [original story]:

When thinking about the Wii U and controller, I would like to think we will do something innovative and cool. We are all very excited. Whenever there is new hardware we start to think on a bigger scale. When you see that screen and controller in there, to me things start connecting in terms of what we can do with our game, enhancing the experience.

Hope springs eternal for the cancelled Mortal Kombat HD remake, with rare behind-the-scenes photos freshly leaked. Register to find and discuss more stories like these in the 2D Kombat Klassics forum!

Injustice Mobile: WBID Sharing Resulting in Bans
Injustice Mobile Crackdown Resulting in WBID Bans

With the release of Injustice Mobile 2.0, new features have introduced new consequences for players. The arrival of multi-player has resulted in a ban crackdown on WBID sharing and other methods deemed unsporting.

An official statement about the bans was released via the Injustice Website. Something for players to consider, not just now, but for any potential future releases.

Since the launch of the Injustice: Gods Among Us mobile game multiplayer update, it has come to our attention some players are being banned from playing the game.

We believe for the majority of cases, this is happening due to our implementation of catches in the game that stop hackers/cheaters from playing the online battle mode. Those catches have resulted in banning of players who were not necessarily trying to cheat the system for a variety of reasons and we’re trying to resolve these issues.

One of the causes of this issue is the sharing of WBID credentials, something that players have been doing in order to unlock console content without having to play through the console game. Using a WBID profile in this way is actually hacking and the game will recognize that WBID account as such, and anyone using that WBID will be banned.

If any individual has hacked a particular WBID, all players sharing those WBID credentials could be banned. It is recommended that everyone signs up for a unique WBID.

If you are being banned for another reason, please go here to report the issue:

Having issues with the online service? Enjoying the new multi-player interface? Share your experience and discuss all things DC in the DC Universe Injustice forum! Don't forget to enter the Injustice Multiplayer Sweepstakes contest: original post.

Lost Kontent: Mortal Kombat HD Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Cancelled Remake Exposed

Back in March, Mortal Kombat Online took an overview of the winding Saga of Mortal Kombat HD. The ill fated project began life as a contemporary remake of the classic games, using new actors to recreate the original sprites in an HD digitized format. As revealed by an unnamed source who worked on the project: the game was shelved by Warner Brothers for internal reasons [full story].

Little has been made known or available from the aborted Mortal Kombat HD project, but thanks to make-up artist Tanea Brooks -- we've now got our most intimate look at some of the work that took place!

Evidently, sprites for Liu Kang (MKII, MK3), Kitana (MKII, MK3), Sonya Blade (MK, MK3), Kung Lao, Shao Kahn & Stryker were all given the HD test treatment. There was clearly a strong desire to match the originals as closely as possible, with several photos demonstrating comparisons with the original sprites. The actors all certainly bear strong resemblance to their classic counterparts!

Hope springs eternal for Mortal Kombat HD, with NetherRealm Studios Creative Director Ed Boon discussing the concept of "Mortal Kombat II: Director's Cut" during Giant Bomb Livestream from this year's GDC [full story].

Fuelling speculation is the shutdown of a fan-made MKHD Kommunity Edition, and the recent reveal of "Mortal Kombat 2" by 2011 Kitana/Mileena voice actress Karen Strassman. We've heard rumors of an Injustice sequel being in development. Could Mortal Kombat HD be on the slate as well?

Visit for the full behind-the-scenes gallery. Register to share your thoughts and speculation on the forums. Find more classic content and stories in the 2D Kombat Klassics forum!

Mod Koms: Hack Unlocks Mortal Kombat II Hidden Characters
Fan Modder Makes Mortal Kombat II Secret Bosses Playable in New Way

They peered out from behind the Living Forest, like two ninja pals sharing a private joke at the player's expense. Gray and green - mysterious and alluring. They were Smoke & Jade -- and together with Noob Saibot -- they left an indelible mark as all new Mortal Kombat II hidden characters! [Related Article: The Top 10 Hidden and Unlockable Characters]

Under the right set of circumstances - they could be challenged! A well timed portal activation, or mastering victory through kicks could open the challenge to high speed, high difficulty challenges! This couldn't numb the longing of many an arcade warrior to control them. Alas; despite years of rumors and half truths - they were never playable. Until now!

As reported by CVG; M.A.M.E. hacker & MKOmmunity User has cracked the code to make playing as Smoke, Jade & Noob Saibot easier than ever -- provided you've got mad skillz, of course.

The method will require some editing, and there's still the chance of some persistent glitches, but Abystus' method primarily sets itself apart by leaving the entire playable roster in tact. As Abystus himself put it, he's made them "real" playable characters, true to their CPU play style - and is still working to resolve any lingering bugs.

Get the full method and any updates by visiting his post on the forum. You can check out a completed Jade playthrough in the embedded video page top. Check out more videos posted by on the forums.

Register to find and discuss stories like this on the 2D Klassic Kombat forum. You can also find and share more fan ingenuity on the Fan Submission forum!

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