As I arrive at the Mortal Kombat 11 reveal event in KOKO Camden, London, it really shows that Warner Bros. and NetherRealm Studios have truly gone all out for this very special reveal occasion and following the hype and demand for a new Mortal Kombat, this is just what everyone wanted. Well, judging by the infamous queue that formed itself around the whole of Camden and blocking all walkways, at least.
Looking up to the front of the building we could see the slides of the logo, the cinematic reveal trailer, Xbox branding, and much more all done by a giant projector shooting onto the face of the venue. Whilst waiting to be ushered in I found myself surrounded by real ice sculptures of Sub Zero’s Lin Kuei clan and a lot of well-known cosplayers dressed to perfection in the form of Scorpion, Kitana, Jade, and many more. It was from this moment I knew something big was about to go down.
Upon entering the three-floor-high building, I was gifted a unique Mortal Kombat 11 Kombat coin and found myself on the first floor surrounded by art from the MK Kollective consisting of a baby Scorpion and baby Shao Kahn in a fetal position floating inside glass cases… which seemed a little creepy, but I rolled with it, swiftly moving on to the giant Scorpion in the corner of the room where you could get the perfect picture opportunity of yourself being held up by the throat from the statue, to much amusement.
After gathering a drink from the bar I noticed that all three levels of the building were adorned with Mortal Kombat 11 reveal banners and accompanied by what I would say to be about fifty Xbox One stations ready to play the game at after the reveal that evening. Press were specially invited down, cameras were set up to film the live stream reveal moments, and DJ’s were constantly blasting out music on the main stage amongst a themed set of what looked to be the fiery pit of the NetherRealm.
Making my way to the second level for the final countdown to the reveal, everyone began cheering and applauding as the gameplay trailer kicked the event off a very memorable reveal of returning characters Baraka, Skarlet and Sub-Zero – to name a few, sickening fatalities, new X-Rays, fatal blows, and small story moments. Ed Boon took to the stage to walk us through the customisation of characters and how you can really set yourself apart from the rest by changing your intros, victories, powers, moves, and just about everything else you can think of. We were then treated to a sneak peek look at a montage of brutal, gut spewing fatalities from a number of characters before moving on to the reveal of the first part of the Mortal Kombat 11 story prologue.
From watching the story prologue trailer we managed to get a good idea of the dark and morbid tone of the game but also a straight-up continuation of what happened after Mortal Kombat X making for a compelling watch. We were then shown another trailer for a returning character to the list, Sonya Blade, however this time around she is being voiced by UFC/WWE star Ronda Rousey and she couldn’t be happier at the announcement after telling the audience how it’s always been a dream of hers to voice a strong female warrior.
Moving onto another reveal (well, it is a night full of it so expect to hear it constantly!) we now get to see a new character in action called Geras, in his trailer he shows off his manipulation of time and sand, to much applause from the cheering crowds, and an opposing force to Dark Raiden’s plan. The evening continued with celebrity death matches taking place on the main stage from famous sportsman ranging from footballers to boxers, UFC fighters, and even wrestlers taking each other on to the crowd’s enjoyment.
The time had now come for me to have a go on NetherRealms next entry to the iconic series and I was quite impressed! I chose Raiden and quickly discovered the first new feature which is the ability to choose different custom fighting configurations. I chose the ‘Stormy Weather’ config and proceeded to wait for the stage to load whilst small silhouettes of our characters were having their own individual fight on the loading screen.
One of the first things I noticed was how fluid the gameplay felt, combos flowed well and inputs felt solid, nothing was delayed or slightly off at all. Moments where I used my staff to hit my opponent sometimes resulted in random X-Ray moves, showing off crucial exposure and damage to that part of the body, the random timing also kept it fresh on the eyes. A slight tap of the left trigger and you could pick up objects on the battlefield to smash your opponents with causing deadly, unwatchable moments of pure devastation.
The game itself is graphically very beautiful, clearly going off the Injustice 2 Unreal Engine 4, maintaining that high-end photorealism and detailed look over everything. It did feel a lot glossier than other Mortal Kombat games and I would definitely say that Injustice has rubbed off on the franchise in so many ways, sometimes you even felt moments of being in Injustice when on the customization screen as it’s incredibly similar. Whether you like that or not is entirely your decision but I felt it could have looked a little grittier and not so overly glossy in those sections.
Fatalities and fatal blows proved great to pull off – if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. When your character gets knocked down to around thirty percent health, you are given the opportunity to have a slight comeback with a powerful move, and this can cause some serious damage. Although you could never use it freely as you could in Mortal Kombat X with X-Rays, which was overall the most disappointing thing for me, I’d rather my opponent not be aware of the flashing fatal blow opportunity under my health bar so he’s always prepared for it… anyway, apart from that the game played very well and with no doubt in my mind will it sell amazingly well.
Watch the trailer for a behind-the-scenes Mortal Kombat 11 footage below:
Overall the night was a great success and I feel that Mortal Kombat 11 has definitely solidified its mark tonight, I’m looking forward to its release and the more info we’ll have in the coming weeks. It’s also been announced that more footage will be coming on January 30 so not too long to wait for all you n3rds out there! Let us know what you think after seeing the livestream below in the comments!
Mortal Kombat 11 will release on PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch & PC on April 23, 2019.