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Product Available at: Best Buy Canada
Having been a big fan of the previous Mortal Kombat games, since Mortal Kombat II on the SNES, I was quite excited to see the launch trailer for Mortal Kombat X... especially since it featured music from System of a Down, and directed by their bassist. I felt it was required I bought this game as soon as I could. It also helped that I had $35 in Best Buy Reward certificates, but that has nothing to do with this game. NetherRealm Studios definitely hit the nail on the head once again with this game, enhancing features from the previous game such as the Krypt and Towers. This game brings together comedy and gore into one messy and gritty beauty.
WARNING: below you may find some spoilers, however nothing in regards to the end of the game is found below.
Once you place the game into the system, you have to wait for it to install. WOW technology has come a long way. After waiting, and loading it up, you are greeted with the only introduction movie on the disc, which is something I look forward to for any game I purchase, but was quite disappointed with MKX's video, basically just an explanation that you are going to be picking one of 5 teams and everything you do will contribute to that team. After a week, which-ever team has the most points is given an award or prize of some sort.
You are forced to pick a team off the bat. But don't worry, you can change teams later on through the Options menu. Can anyone say easy exploitation?
Whatever, I am not big into online play anyway, I just love offline Story and offline multiplayer. But what's this? I can't play story mode for whatever reason, nothing telling me a reason as to why or anything. So my friend and I decided to do some rounds to check out the characters and play styles.
Not only do you get to pick a character, but each one has three different styles to choose from which changes their combo's and specials. Personally, this kind of annoyed me, but the more I think about it, the more I realize this is going to lead to some very interesting matches. One thing you will notice from the character selection is a few missing favourites: Night Wolf, Baraka and Kabal just to name a few. There is a reason for this however, which I will touch upon in a little bit.
After scouring the characters for someone fun to play with, I selected a random opponent and random arena. The resulting game-play was a little difficult to get used to however this is due to either the PS4 controller being more sensitive than the PS3's or the game itself is a little more touchy. Once annoying part I found was that your Kombos can be cancelled by holding or spamming the directional button, causing your character to just keep dashing over. A little practice is all it takes to stop moving around, but then it gets difficult to get close enough to your opponent while still attacking.
Upon finishing the match and navigating back to the main menu, I discovered that Story Mode was now unlocked. It seems that on first run, you are required to either train or do a single match. I am not sure if this is intended by the developers in order to get used to the playing style or a glitch. But I can finally play the story!
During the intro video (YES! Something a little more decent!) you are informed how Shao Kahn ignored the rules and decided to invade Earth-Realm anyways. This resulted in many of our friends to parish, and now act as Quan-Chi's zombies, this includes Night Wolf, Kabal and Sindel. I guess this would be why we can not select them as playable characters, which is annoying considering you still fight them during the story line. During the storyline, there are scenes where you have to press or mash specific buttons in the second or two you are given. This isn't difficult but can be easily missed if you get imersed in the video. I noticed that if the video playback is letter-boxed, you are safe to sit back and watch. But once the screen is full, prepare to press a button OR get ready... to... FIGHT!
As I said previously, the Krypt is back with the ability to spend your Koins and unlock more content such as Concept Art, Fatailities, Brutalities and much more. However, now there are surprises lurking at random turns. Pressing the right button at the right time will earn you more Koins to spend, otherwise you are attacked, but cannot die. There is also a bit of a puzzle aspect, having to pick up items and use them at specific spots to unlock more areas to spend your hard earned Koins. To be honest, I actually am enjoying exploring it and finding relics of our Hero Fighters.
Overall, I am on Chapter 7 after roughly 4 hours of game-play, so I really hope this is longer than the previous game. But with Living Towers providing a changing array of challenges and with local multiplayer, the replay value is endless. The only disappointing thing I have about this game is the seemingly completely integrated online portion, which is quite reminiscent of MAG (PS3) which suffered the fate of the company taking their servers offline and game serving as nothing more than a coaster, but you can still play Diablo 2 online if you want and that game is about 10 years older than MAG. I am really hoping that if this ever happens with Mortal Kombat X, that the offline content will still function.
If you are a fan of fighting games and want something to play with your friends and you enjoy watching inhuman acts be done that if done in the real world would actually mean certain death, and I do mean the X-Rays, I suggest picking this up! However, what's REALLY disappointing about MKX, is the option to choose Easy Fatalities (5 for $0.99). I find this REALLY cheapens the experience and makes the developers seem a little money hungry. But to each their own I guess.
Signed, Alex Boddam.