Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3
STORY:  "You have been chosen to represent Earth in Mortal Kombat. Be warned. Although your souls are protected, your lives are not. I cannot interfere any longer. Your Earth is being governed by the gods of the Outworld!" These are the words of Raiden...

For centuries Earth has used Mortal Kombat to defend itself against the Outworld emperor Shao Kahn. But, Shao Kahn has become frustrated by the failed attempts at taking Earth through tournament battle. He enacts a plan which began 10,000 years ago. During this time, Kahn had a queen named Sindel, but she died at a very young age. Kahn's shadow priests lead by Shang Tsung, make it so Sindel's spirit will someday be reborn, but not on the Outworld, but on the Earth realm itself.

This unholy act enables Shao Kahn to step through the dimensional gates and reclaim his queen. Thus enabling him to seize the Earth realm at last. Upon breaching the portal onto Earth, Shao Kahn slowly transforms Earth into part of the Outworld itself. Kahn strips the Earth of all human life, and claims all the souls his own. The remaining humans are scattered throughout the planet. These are the selected warriors that must defend Earth once again.

There you are, Scorpion... Ohh how we've missed you!

The "ultimate" update to Mortal Kombat 3 was surely one of the arcade "headliners" of 1995. After a mixed reaction from fans, UMK3 saw the return of some of the staple characters missing in the original MK3, like: Scorpion, Kitana, Jade and Reptile. Also featured in this sequel are several new backgrounds (and the removal others), a wide variety of ridiculous secret codes that players can input before the match starts (which created tons of hype), a few hidden characters, and two new "tournament" modes. 


Off with his head.... again.


One of the new modes in the new "tournament" option is a 2-on-2 Kombat Mode (similar to an Endurance match) but with human players on both sides. The other is an 8-player tournament mode (requiring quite a few tokens) to start up. These two modes offered some innovation to the traditional 1-on-1 2D gameplay (which was starting to feel slightly aged), and naturally added more replay value to the title.

Motaro brings the intimidation factor.

Some returning characters from MK3 received new moves & combos this time around, which were added to balance the gameplay. However, the core gameplay system was nearly identical to the prequel. The graphics as a whole didn't change either, though the "dark and gritty" new background environments nicely compliment the look and feel of Ultimate MK3. The music and sound effects also meshed well with everything else, making it one of the best sounding MK titles to date. The new characters animated fairly well, and it was certainly nice to see old school favorites like Scorpion and Kitana showing off some new moves.



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Page Updated: May 18th, 2023
Developer(s): Midway                                Arcade
Avalanche Software      SNES / Genesis
Eurocom                              Saturn / PlayStation
Publisher(s): Midway
Designer(s): Ed Boon
Platform(s): Arcade, Sega Saturn, Sega Genesis, Mega Drive, Super Nintendo, Windows, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 (PSN), Xbox 360 (XBLA), iPhone
Release Date(s): October 1995                      Arcade
Nov. 6th, 1995                      Windows '95
Nov. 19th, 1995                   Windows '95
June 28th, 1996                  Saturn
June 1996                               SNES, Megadrive, Genesis
Dec. 12th, 2001                   Game Boy Advance
Mar. 1st, 2002                      Game Boy Advance
Oct. 22nd, 2006                 XBLA
Nov. 12th, 2007                   NDS
Dec. 7th, 2007                      NDS
Dec.16th, 2010                   iOS
Aug. 30th, 2011                  PSN - in MK: Arcade Kollection
Aug. 31st, 2011                  XBLA - in MK: Arcade Kollection
Characters Liu Kang, Sub-Zero, Sonya Blade, Kung Lao, Jax Briggs, Sektor, Cyrax, Sindel, Stryker, Nightwolf, Sheeva, Smoke, Kano, Kabal, Kitana, Reptile, Mileena, Ermac, Shang Tsung, Jade, Rain, Noob Saibot, Scorpion, Motaro, Shao Kahn

Featured Video:

Related Games: Mortal Kombat 3, Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat 2, Mortal Kombat 4, Mortal Kombat Gold, MK: Deadly Alliance, MK: Deception, MK: Armageddon, MK Trilogy, Mortal Kombat VS DC Universe, Mortal Kombat 9, Mortal Kombat X, Mortal Kombat 11, Mortal Kombat 1, Street Fighter: The Movie, Darkstalkers 2, Fatal Fury 3, Tekken 2, Marvel Super Heroes, Street Fighter Alpha, Street Fighter: The Movie, Mace: The Dark Age, Samurai Shodown 3, Killer Instinct 2, WeaponLord

Gameplay Engine  8.0 / 10
Story / Theme  7.0 / 10
Overall Graphics  7.5 / 10
Animation  8.0 / 10
Music / Sound Effects  8.5 / 10
Innovation  7.5 / 10
Art Direction  6.5 / 10
Customization  6.0 / 10
Options / Extras  7.5 / 10
Intro / Presentation  7.0 / 10
Replayability / Fun  8.0 / 10
"Ouch" Factor  8.5 / 10
Characters  8.0 / 10

 8.2 / 10

 Review based on Arcade version     


Final Words: Ultimate MK3 is possibly the version of MK3 that Midway wanted to ship initially but didn't have the time. With a much improved character roster, UMK3 was unquestionably better than the prequel, although the "type-you-an-ass-kicking" style combos still wasn't received well by all players.

In any case, Midway gave fighting game fans more of the same (a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your tastes). UMK3 was also one of the most hilariously gruesome 2D fighters ever, and overall had a less serious tone than the first two games. In retrospect, Ultimate MK3 is one of the best and most playable installments of the entire MK series.
~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen 
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