Mortal Kombat 11 is at its best when it subverts nostalgia for the series, giving way to a more modern MK game that constantly leaves you guessing with each match. Throughout its nearly 30-year run, the Mortal Kombat franchise has always been about swift, gory action that culminates in some showstopping finishers–which helped put fighting games on the map in the ’90s. It’s quite the legacy for arguably the most infamous fighting game series around, and no other entry better shows off how thrilling and grotesque fights can be than 2019’s Mortal Kombat 11.
Taking cues from its predecessors–Mortal Kombat X and the DC Comics fighting game Injustice 2–MK11 is an evolving game, and the game we have now isn’t the game we had at launch. Celebrating its first year anniversary this month, MK11 shows that the series is firing on all cylinders with its competitive tournament scene and a suite of updates. These have improved current characters and introduced new ones, including the most recent guest appearance, ’90s comics icon Spawn.
While MK has had a reputation for sticking close to its gimmick of cartoon violence, MK11 features the most refined combat and in-depth customization to date, proving there’s much more going on under the hood than some people think. Furthermore, it doesn’t get enough credit for also being a highly approachable fighting game, giving newcomers plenty of tools and training options to ease into the mechanics. Mortal Kombat 11 is the most content-rich MK game to date, and it’s fun to log back in after some extended time away to see what’s new in the Towers of Time or how the latest additions like The Terminator or Nightwolf fit in.Shortly after the Final Kombat tournament in March, which shifted focus into an online-only event following the continued spread of COVID-19, we had the chance to talk with Mortal Kombat co-creator Ed Boon, along with president of Image Comics and Spawn creator Todd McFarlane about MK11. In addition to taking a look back at the release of the game, Boon expressed enthusiasm for MK11’s future, which NetherRealm Studios will still be supporting for some time.