his defeat to Liu Kang, Shang Tsung begs his master, Shao Kahn, to spare
his life. He tells Shao Kahn that the invitation for Mortal Kombat
cannot be turned down, and if they hold it in Outworld, the Earthrealm
warriors must attend. Kahn agrees to this plan, and restores Tsung's youth.
He extends the invitation to Raiden, who gathers his warriors and takes
them into Outworld. The tournament is dangerous, as Shao Kahn has the "home
field advantage," and an Outworld victory will unbalance the furies and
allow Outworld to subsume Earthrealm.
Epic selection screen for
the time... possibly SSF2's only rival.
fans still consider Mortal Kombat II to be the best installment out of the
early MK series. Maybe because the MK team at Midway improved on nearly every single aspect
of the original title... and exceeded all expectations. MK2 sees the return of most of the original cast,
with the exclusion of Kano, Sonya, and Goro. Additionally, the boss of MK1,
Shang Tsung, makes his appearance as a regular playable character (with a new
look to boot), and joins newcomers, such as: Mileena, Baraka, Kung Lau and Jax. In addition, two new boss
characters await players at the end of MK's iconic Arcade Ladder, those being
Kintaro and Shao Kahn. MK2 also includes a variety of "secret"
characters (Jade, Smoke & Noob Saibot) whom players can fight against if
they meet certain conditions during the 1-player mode.
The Pit 2 was one of the
coolest stages... still is.
Along with all new Fatalities, MK2 adds
"Friendships" and "Babalities" to the
array of entertaining finishing moves... and no doubt, surprised the hell out of
returning players with unexpected humor. These additions were designed to add levity to the game simply because some people
took the violence and gore a little too seriously. Friendships involve
the victor performing a "joke" on the loser, instead of killing them.
Because of the pure randomness of the Friendship and Babality moves, rumor
spreading become prevalent during the course of MK2... adding even more hype to the
franchise, no doubt.
MK2's gameplay feels very much like the original, but perhaps was a bit more
accessible and more fun to
play (multiplayer) this time around. As you probably just noticed, I did put
"multiplayer" in parentheses, and that's because... one does not
"play" 1-player MK2. Allow me to explain:
See, the computer AI is so cheap and abusive (primarily in the arcade version), it's not
really even a fighting "game" that can be played. The CPU AI was
written with a certain (evil) code that "mirrors" and predicts the
player's movements as soon
as they've inputted their command, whether it's walking, jumping, or attacking.
It's a bit tricky to explain with words alone, but basically, fighting against
the CPU is more like looking for ways to exploit its cheap, and incredibly
unfair (yet stupidly effective) tactics.
story: I returned to MK2 for a run through the arcade ladder in 2015...
and holy hell, my brain hurt by the time I beat Shao Kahn.
It was not fun.... I forgot how cheap the AI was in the arcade version. However, I'm 95% sure the
default CPU AI was toned down in the SNES version (which I played more of as a
the arcade version).
Yes... Cage could uppercut
his opponent's head off 3 times. It doesn't need to make sense... it's
Mortal Kombat 2!
To sum up the greatness of MK2...
the sequel was faster, bloodier, gorier, louder, and even improved quite a
bit in the graphics department. MK2 made just as big a splash, if not a bigger
splash than the original made when it released in arcades (a pretty difficult
do for any fighting game). As a 10-11 year old when MK2 came out,
I can tell you that it was hard to make a
case that Mortal Kombat II wasn't "the shit" when it came
out. Nearly everyone I knew was playing it or at least talking about
it... and MK2 certainly gave players enough to talk about! Secret
secret Fatalities, Babalities, Friendships, Easter eggs... you name it. (This
trend of hidden secrets continued and "fully blossomed" in the sequel,
Speaking of secrets, it was pretty cool that the original "secret"
opponent in MK1 (Reptile) became fleshed out and playable in MK2.
As a whole, the new characters introduced in MK2 also made for a
more balanced and better-looking roster. The moody new stage environments and
BGMs are straight up badass as well. Some new combo possibilities were introduced in this
installment, which helped make the game a bit more competitive (but still not quite
as competitive or technical as other 2D fighters of the time). The epic-looking stage
Fatalities, multiple traditional fatalities, and the obscurely hilarious
Babalities & Friendships were the icing on the cake to the most playable
iteration of MK to date. One of the only
noticeable flaws of MK2 (besides the cheap CPU AI in the arcade version)
was that the entertaining "Test Your
Might" mini game from the prequel was nowhere to be found. Besides that,
for a fighting game.... MK2 basically "had it all" in 1993/1994.
Ed Boon, John Tobias
Nintendo, Sega Genesis, 32X, Game Boy, Game Gear, Sega Saturn, PC, Amiga, PSP
(featured in Midway Collection), Xbox 360 (XBLA), PS3 (PSN)
25th, 1993 (Arcade)
May 16th, 1994
(SNES/Game Gear/Game Boy)
Oct. 27th, 1994
Nov. 11th, 1994
Dec. 5th, 1994
(32X/Sega Master System/Amiga)
Mar. 28th, 1996 (
Mar. 29th, 1996
Aug. 30th, 2011
(PSN - in MK: Arcade Kollection)
Aug. 31st, 2011
(XBLA - in MK: Arcade Kollection)
Mortal Kombat 2
was naturally a smash hit in arcades and on home consoles, marking the original "heyday"
of the seires... as many of the sequels
to come would fail to live up to it. There was a lot to like about MK2,
considering some of the other crappy "me too" 2D fighters that were floating around in the early-mid
90s. Indeed, many 2D fighting games in the mid 90's were attempting to mooch off
of the success of Mortal Kombat (and Street Fighter).
Personally, I must've put over 200 hours into MK2 on my SNES and in the
arcade. I was always a fan of the "hard-hitting moves"... and uppercutting
your opponent off the stage for the win, or doing Katana's badass fan combos just never seemed to get old.
Like many other 90's kids, I had so many fatalities memorized. I'm pretty sure I
knew how to do every move in the game (and 20 years later, I've forgotten nearly
all of it).