In Mortal Kombat X, concept artists have helped to redesign and redefine klassic icons for a new generation. In this Mortal Kombat Online exclusive update: artist Justin Murray takes us deeper into the design process, revealing unused and unseen visions for the soul warrior: Ermac!
When Warner Bros. revealed their Mortal Kombat: Kollector's Edition back in 2011 - it was a revelation. Stuffed with extras; the various packaged specials helped make Mortal Kombat the highest selling installment in franchise history!
Fans clearly remember it fondly.
With the announcement of Mortal Kombat X: Kollector's Edition - one key omission from the extras line-up has sparked a groundswell for change from within the fan kommunity - and beyond it.
Mortal Kombat Online has learned from reliable sources that various project artists were disappointed their work would not be immortalized in print for the current project. This echoes a chorus of cries from vocal fans - eager to hold a physical record beyond in-game and online images.
When asked by a fan about prospects of a book, long time Moral Kombat Designer John Vogel noted: "... it would be a shame if there wasn't one".
The Art of Mortal Kombat collector's book set a simple but effective benchmark, taking players deep inside the creative process by showcasing the work of various NetherRealm Studios conceptual artists.
Across the many fighting games - Mortal Kombat has demanded some of the most aggressive design revamps of any series. Despite the iconic status of many of its characters, few remain visually similar, undergoing sometimes radical aesthetic changes from game to game. This adds even greater value to the visual record published in art book form, capturing a snapshot in the evolution of the various fighters. It's a quality many fans of the series respond to - and something Mortal Kombat Online can also get behind.
To users on Mortal Kombat Online he's known as Bleed: A long time contributor with a talent for developing characters in 3D models & 2D sprites [gallery].
To date; Gabriel "Bleed" Melendez has been noted as one of the driving forces behind a much discussed fan-made Mortal Kombat (1992) HD remake. His talents as a character artist have been exemplary, producing a professional level of content that has had fans salivating, and license owners justifiably concerned.
In the wake of Warner Brothers' intervention in "Mortal Kombat HD: Kommunity Edition" -- Melendez has become the voice of fate. A conduit through which a major corporation has made its presence known. When news of the shutdown spread, we talked to Bleed about what went down, and his general feelings about the project. You've read excerpts in the Saga of Mortal Kombat HD feature. Here is the unedited Q&A:
After 20 years as a successful franchise, its the sequel to the eponymous Mortal Kombat that many still regard with fondest memories. For fans who live and bleed Mortal Kombat, however, the tournament-centric original can never be completely forgotten. Such is the dedication of a focused group of industrious fans, who've applied themselves to independently designing and developing a playable revamp of the original dubbed: Mortal Kombat HD.
Determined by consensus; the objective of Mortal Kombat HD was to create a slavishly complete, high definition remake of the 1992 arcade classic. Built from the ground up, using popular 2D freeware engine MUGEN as a playable base and 3D models -- the project would be made of all original resources, designed to imitate the original as exactly as possible. Therein would lie the problem, however, leading to an effective shutdown of any intention to release a working product, rendered by Warner Brothers late last week.
While the enthusiasm of fans may lead them to desire otherwise, Warner Brothers' position represents an open and shut case. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but it's also a self-evident example of copyright and trademark infringement. Exceptions may exist at the prerogative of intellectual property owners who choose to overlook infringements, but they are always within their rights to shut down unlicensed fan projects.
On the surface, this would appear to be an effective end to the MKHD fan game as it was intended. To release any playable version to the public would be to court personal ruin. No fan will play it. Much less clear, however, is the exact motivation for Warner Brothers' intervention. While there is broad intellectual property protection and brand management to consider -- there is an extensive history behind MKHD.
Pop Culture Shock Collectibles continue to set the standard in high-end merchandise based on some of the worlds most popular fighting video game series. The statue makers have a new addition to their Mortal Kombat Klassic 1:4 scale line-up and Mortal Kombat Online has the exclusive first look!
By his own admission, the John Tobias of twenty years ago had no idea he was creating one of the most successful franchises to come out of American gaming. As a young artist in Chicago, Tobias had big ideas, envisioning a fiction that endures to this day (in some shape or form), but the journey to 1992's breakout hit -- Mortal Kombat -- would take more than ideas.
Together with Ed Boon, Tobias holds the credit of co-creator of Mortal Kombat -- an acknowledgment that goes beyond the arcade and home consoles, to result in a massive multi-media phenomenon spawned from ideas and characters!
In Part 1 of our conversation with John Tobias, he took us through some of the early influences that helped shape the series to follow. From abandoned name choices, props and influences, to movie references and guest stars, the games origins are there to scrutinize.
In this second part of our twentieth anniversary retrospective, we continue the conversation, entering the explosion of Mortal Kombat into other mediums, and addressing the final chapter of Tobias' time with the series before his departure in 1999.
According to the traditions of the Chinese calendar, 2012 is determined the current Year of the Dragon. If impressions are anything to go by, it was purely serendipity that made this the perfect date for the twentieth anniversary of a series so widely identified by its iconic Dragon Logo.
The origin of the Dragon Logo symbol was just one of the topics covered when Mortal Kombat Online entered in to a conversation with a man whose legacy now far exceeds his time with the Mortal Kombat franchise.
It has become tradition for Mortal Kombat Online interviews to begin with the simple question of, in their own words, who the subject is. In the case of John Tobias, introductions are hardly needed. Together with Ed Boon, Tobias is credited as being the co-creator of Mortal Kombat -- a video game dynasty that dominated arcades until their eventual demise at the turn of the millenium, and continues to rule on home consoles.
As the man responsible for creating the original characters (and premise) that have populated Mortal Kombat in its every iteration, the influence of John Tobias is felt throughout the series -- even in the latest game, which set out to reboot the franchise by rewriting its history.
Join us in returning to the original source as John Tobias discusses Mortal Kombat's origins. In Part 1, we review how the series got its start, the names and faces that nearly led it down a different path, and the impact and legacy the original games have had.
Today, Midway Games confirmed what had been rumored for a while: the first next-generation Mortal Kombat title, up until now called "Mortal Kombat 8" by the community, is officially titled Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. As the title suggests, it will be a crossover with the characters and setting of DC Comics. Further information about the game should be forthcoming.
There has been a definite drought of information regarding Mortal Kombat: Armageddon recently; however, our friends over at Midway know that interest in new information is strong. To that end, to give us a bit of a teaser as to what to expect, they've released to us seven exclusive load screen images! These loading screen images features grudge matches made popular in the games (and one from the movies!); they show Johnny Cage and Goro, Cyrax and Sektor, Kitana and Mileena, Reiko and Shao Kahn, two images of Sub-Zero and Scorpion, and Liu Kang (in zombie form) and Shang Tsung!