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Mortal Kombat II (SNES) artwork

Mortal Kombat II (SNES) review

"Overall, Mortal Kombat 2 will be remembered more as the game which started ultragore fests instead of what it should be remembered as - an excellent fighting game, second to only the Street Fighter series in terms of sheer playability."

Mortal Kombat 1 failed miserably on the Super Nintendo. Even though the blood inherent in all the MK series' games isn't really that important, the ''cool points'' lost by Nintendo were ones they would never regain...

Not even with a remarkable conversion of Mortal Kombat 2.

Almost everyone will claim that some form of Street Fighter 2 is the best of the fighting genre that the Super Nintendo can offer; Mortal Kombat 2 is often seen as a gimmick game, relying on blood and fatalities to attract gamers. Well, that is true. However, lying beneath this gimmick is an outstanding fighting, one that is better then all other games NOT named ''Street Fighter''.

Mortal Kombat 2 resumes shortly after the end of the first game. Each year, fighters battle in a tournament, blah blah blah, winner gets the earth. Well, the year before, the good guys lost. As a result, the bad guys won, and open a portal to Outworld. Outworld is a nasty place, full of venomous reptiles, hideous beasts, and shrieking banshees. It's kinda like Trenton, New Jersey, actually... Anyways, it's your job to control a fighter, each with a different background story and reason for fighting.

The actual storyline of Mortal Kombat 2 is pretty good. If you bother to read it, anyways. Little attention is paid to it in the game, excluding the endings, which provides a brief summary of what each character does after they win the tournament. The story takes a backseat to the fighting, which is exactly what the doctor ordered in a fighting game.

Ah, the fighting game. First made prolific in the arcades, before finally hitting its stride, first on the Super Nintendo, then on to the Sega Genesis. In case you're not familiar with the concept, you control a fighter, moving left to right on a fixed screen, as you attempt to beat the living s- errr daylights out of your opponent.

Mortal Kombat 2 takes these basic concepts and adds it's own style. You have the standard array of fighting moves - a high and low punch and kick, a block button, plus some special moves that are executed by various combinations. The speed and range of each attack varies from character to character.

However, Mortal Kombat 2 is fresh and different due to two aspects - blood, and more blood. Nearly every attack results in a smattering of blood against the screen, or the walls. And after you've defeated your opponent, you can perform a fatality.

Fatalities were something started entirely by the Mortal Kombat series. While your opponents are dazed at the end of the fight, you can destroy them by various methods. You know, the typical stuff - ripping out their heart, slicing them in half, dissolving them in a puddle of acid. It matches the extreme of Street Fighter 2 (absolutely no blood) with another (gobs and gobs).

If you're squeamish, or heavily aligned to the right politically, then Mortal Kombat 2 isn't really your game; more likely your antichrist. Likewise, kids under the age of eighteen probably shouldn't be playing it either, unless their parents deem them mature enough.

Overlooking the blood for a second, Mortal Kombat 2 is a great game because of the gameplay, not the blood. Combat is even, and any character can beat any other character; there's no great mismatches like in Street Fighter 2, excluding the tough-on-purpose boss characters. The multiplayer is also extremely strong. In this aspect, the blood is a positive thing.

Graphically, Mortal Kombat 2 looks as it should. Red is the most prevalent color, obviously. However, levels are appropriately dark or light, and characters look as they should. They're not outstanding for the time, but neither are they crap either.

Musically, Mortal Kombat 2 is strictly average. There are a few memorable sounds from the game, but they're all effects, not themes. The face of a programmer comes out and yells ''TOASTY!'' during uppercuts; if you know the secret, it's how you fight one of the game's many hidden characters. There's also nice voice samples of a scary announcer type dude.

Overall, Mortal Kombat 2 will be remembered more as the game which started ultragore fests instead of what it should be remembered as - an excellent fighting game, second to only the Street Fighter series in terms of sheer playability. Mortal Kombat 2 is by far the highlight of the series, and one of the premier examples of 2-D fighting.

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Community review by sgreenwell (Date unavailable)

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