Capcom has announced the impending arrival of Street Fighter 6 with a teaser trailer that quietly spotlights two main characters. One is an enduring icon and stalwart of the series, while the other represents a fighting game "first" that could prove to be a minor industry gamechanger. Lets take a look at what it could mean for Mortal Kombat:
It really is a shame that Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection has been more or less abandoned on Steam/PC.
This past weekend, I went to the Houston Arcade Expo for my annual classic arcade gaming fix. While there, I noticed that for the first time they not only had Mortal Kombat II, but the original Mortal Kombat and Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 as well. Of course, I had played for several minutes on UMK3 before realizing, "Hey, I could be playing this at home..."
I have Mortal Kombat Arcade Kollection for both Xbox 360 and Steam, but my Xbox 360 is currently packed away. So, that night, while waiting for friends to be ready to play Team Fortress 2, I plugged in my USB gamepad and launched MKAK for some classic MK action!
That was the plan, any way. What ended up happening was that the game hung at the title screen. It said "Press Enter" -- but completely ignored when I pressed Enter.
After doing some research, I found that the problem was that Arcade Kollection requires Games for Windows Live, which Microsoft had ended up abandoning [in 2014]. While many games were patched by their developers to use Steamworks instead, MKAK was already essentially abandoned by WB Games, and was never patched. In fact, MKAK is only available for me because I purchased the game; it's no longer available on Steam for purchase.
Fortunately, there is a fix! I mostly got the fix from this guide, though I ended up modifying it via trial and error, and looking at one or two other sites as the steps as given don't work on Windows 10.
The procedure is:
In 2016, Mortal Kombat X gets even bigger than before with the arrival of Kombat Pack 2! Announced officially in September: the pack will include new character skins, a klassic arena, and as unveiled last week: four new playable characters!
Revealed during NetherRealm's Best Fighting Game acceptance at The Game Awards 2015: the Kombat Pack 2 character trailer launched as many questions as it answered. The full story won't crystallize until next year, but some preliminary questions can be answered. Here's what we know, so far:
Last December, NetherRealm Studios unveiled their latest free-to-play app: WWE Immortals! The partnership between NRS, Phosphor Games, and the wrestling giant meant an interesting meshing of style and subject matter!
With Johnny Cage jumping into the ring as a guest fighter in Immortals, we've been thinking about how Cage might come to blows with WWE - but what about the other way around?
World Wrestling Entertainment has been a powerhouse in its current incarnation since the mid-eighties. Its lineage goes even further back, tapping into the traditions and culture of a century of professional wrestling! Today, WWE runs at least 6 hours of original content every week, on an unending cycle year after year. There's a lot to learn from that, and we've narrowed it down to five key things the makers of Mortal Kombat could consider after their brush with WWE!
It's a pretty simple equation: There are going to be 2 guest characters in Mortal Kombat X and one of them is a Predator. The other one must be the Xenomorph of Alien franchise fame then - right?.. Wrong.
In what seems like a two-prong masterstroke of viral provocation and legendary pranking: NetherRealm stocked their Kombat Pack with two characters famously tied to absent big screen rivals -- Jason Voorhees leading the charge as the other DLC guest.
The Friday the 13th slasher was a hotly requested commodity during the previous game's download cycle, inspired partly by the presence of slasher nemesis: Freddy Kreuger. If you're a long-lived Nightmare on Elm Street fan, you probably have the dark sense of humor to appreciate the hilarity of dividing two horror icons -- and stars of Freddy versus Jason -- between separate games.
The question now - will the same fate befall sci-fi cinema's Predator and Alien?
In August, the Alien has certainly been on Creative Director Ed Boon's mind. On-going news regarding a soft reboot in a fifth Alien film inspired musings about the success of repeat visits to the franchise. On August 16th, he remarked; "All those remakes failed to rejuvenate their franchises, and while Aliens is my favorite action movie of all time... despite how the last 2 were disappointments... I wonder if they should just leave the Alien franchise alone."
It seems Uncle Ed has grown tired of reboots that don't quite hit the balance of honoring and reinvigorating their brands, "After remakes/reboots of Robocop, Total Recall and Terminator I'm finding it hard to get excited about Alien 5." A sentiment many shared after the Alien vs Predator concept made its way to film - twice - under maligned direction by Paul Anderson, and the brothers Strause. [Related Article: Paul Anderson on Mortal Kombat and Film Adaptation]
On the surface, Boon's critiques sound like arguments against including the Xenomorph as Mortal Kombat DLC, but the finer details present nuanced arguments in different directions.
More than 188,000 viewers tuned in to watch Mortal Kombat X live at the Evo World Championships on Sunday.
This peak ranked MKX third among Evo broadcast finals, beating Marvel vs Capcom 3 by roughly 20,000 viewers, and trailing only Super Smash Bros. Melee and Evo darling Ultimate Street Fighter IV. Both top finals crossed the 200,000 viewer mark, with USFIV peaking at over 228k on the official stream. This year was pegged to be the celebratory swansong for SFIV as Capcom's primary fighter, with Street Fighter V coming in 2016. Guilty Gear Xrd trailed at around 121,000 viewers.
This year's performance clearly confirmed what many fans already knew: Mortal Kombat is at home on the competitive world stage!
In truth, Mortal Kombat had already established its credentials as a tournament brand over the course of three years on the Evo bill.
It began in 2011 -- rewriting the script on the competitive viability of the series with the release of Mortal Kombat. The franchise reboot combined iconic identity of the original three games with a rethink of their basic gameplay mechanics. The year that came next was arguably the biggest in the games' competitive lifecycle, helped by an Evo seeding series that incorporated top North American tournaments into a yearlong tour. The 2012 Evo Championship was the culmination of a 6 month narrative that gave rise to top players -- runner-up REO, CD Jr, Ketchup and Mustard -- whose status warranted a documentary featurette series released in 2013.
The establishment of these player identities was important in helping sites like Mortal Kombat Online convey the intrigue of the scene in an accessible manner -- a factor all too often overlooked by the insular culture.
Growth came naturally and the series sustained as all good fighters should -- making it all the more shocking when Mortal Kombat was omitted from the Evo Championship line-up in 2014 [full story].
The rise of another NetherRealm Studios fighter - Injustice: Gods Among Us - was perhaps over estimated as a replacement, while Mortal Kombat was simultaneously under estimated as a continued force. Mortal Kombat Online pitched in prizes to support an unofficial 2014 side tournament. The event attracted the tournament faithful and marked a coming out for dominant 2015 player & winner Sonic Fox. The side event went on to be the most watched MK2011 Evo final on YouTube with a flood of 260,000 views [reported by EventHubs]. At the time of this writing, the unofficial 2014 final has over 570,.000 views.
The series returned to its rightful place with the April release of Mortal Kombat X and the announcement of the 2015 Evo line-up. It was a no brainer. And while top players were pragmatic about MK's omission in 2014, the continued support of fans and the audience shows this is a series that demands attention, and deserves a place at the biggest event on the eSports calendar as much as perennial favourites.
With only the second Mortal Kombat X downloadable character upon us [this week]; it's fair to say Mortal Kombat Online's focus should still be on NetherRealm Studios' current fighting game. Despite a rash of persistent software issues; the tenth instalment has been a blockbuster success for "next" generation consoles (and PC) - fuelled by a massive launch! MKX has burnt bright - but also brought into focus the encroaching influence of big business. Now more than ever, that means a certain monotony of patterns.
To date; Warner Brothers' MK output may have been sporadic, but the more things change, the more they stay the same. The two year release cycle instituted by Midway Games has roughly been upheld over three NetherRealm titles, supported by the introduction of an intended parallel franchise: Injustice: Gods Among Us.
For the forward thinking: a post-launch burst of occasional DC Comics tweets in NetherRealm Creative Director [Ed Boon]'s feed lends to a sense of inevitability. If an Injustice sequel is indeed coming, it's likely that pre-production is already well under way, or entering development stages. Jokes about flash drives aren't the only reason we're thinking about a superhero fighting sequel, but they mount a case for what might lie ahead, and that warrants talking about.
So... You may have heard that Mortal Kombat X has introduced the series' first confirmed homosexual character: Kung Jin [pictured right].
Quickly after launch, Mortal Kombat Online began receiving enthusiastic submissions from key interest websites [eg; @UKGaynews] - all eager to share and assert the breaking headline. While firsts of any kind are always interesting, we weren't so sure we wanted to dedicate coverage to this one.
There were a few factors behind the hesitation -- an intent to hold-off on detailed content spoilers, chief among them.
We also weren't entirely certain the claims were true, or even in need of special acknowledgment. Then news broke of Marvel Comics preparing to announce popular X-Men character - Iceman - will be gay after fifty-two years of publication. In this adjacent pop culture news, the real importance of Kung Jin became immediately crystallized.
First - clarification. We say Kung Jin is a "confirmed" homosexual character. Uncovering the intent behind the source of speculation was an important detail - one that needed more than interpretation.
It all stems from a dialogue sequence between Kung Jin and Raiden - a flashback during the Mortal Kombat X story mode. Jin is the black sheep to his family's mythic ancestor The Great Kung Lao and his contemporary heroic progeny (also Kung Lao). Raiden sees potential greatness in the now common thief, but Kung Jin lacks confidence in himself, and those charged with defending the light:
During last week's GameStop Expo, Performance Design Products previewed their custom Mortal Kombat X Fight Pad. The fight pad itself is based on their PDP Versus controller for the previous generation of consoles. I happened to pick up a PDP Versus controller about a year ago; the following is my review of the gamepad.
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 right] - 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: