Viva la Kombat!
Posted 1 year ago By EastonAssass1n - Luke Brown
After the success of last year’s Mortal Kombat on consoles, it made a lot of sense for NetherRealm and Warner Bros. to port the game to the Vita. With the only real fighting game competition on the handheld a port of the similarly celebrated Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, there was plenty of room for Mortal Kombat to come in and establish itself as the go-to fighter on the Vita. By including virtually every last tidbit of content from the original retail release and subsequent downloadable content, as well as new features exclusive to the Vita, this version of Mortal Kombat is a package well worth the price of admission
There is almost no end to the amount of content in Mortal Kombat on the Vita. The lengthy and surprisingly engaging story mode returns completely. All of the game’s original characters, as well as those added to the console edition via DLC, make the cut, too. Mortal Kombat’s epic 300-part Challenge Tower is as intimidating as ever, as is the massive Krypt, which is chock full of every single unlockable found in the original console title. Oh, and you can still just play the game arcade style with any of the 32 available fighters, including the Sony-exclusive Kratos. It’s actually quite an overwhelming amount of features for newcomers, though that’s not to say the multitude of modes isn’t welcome. None of the content is filler material, and all of it is, for the most part, enjoyable. Some of the Challenge Tower segments can be a bit frustrating, but that’s kind of the point.
"Mortal Kombat on the Vita is one of the most impressive games on the device thus far."
Jamming all that content comes at a price though, and the Mortal Kombat’s characters and stages are left in a sad state of graphical representation. Character models look like PlayStation 2 renders, and the game’s backgrounds leave a lot to be desired. The shift from the fully-rendered (yet heavily compressed) story cutscenes to the actual fights is quite jarring, and almost sad. It’s really a shame the blocky, messily-textured characters don’t look better. But the good new is because the characters have been downgraded, Mortal Kombat is able to run at 60 frames per-second, and animations and combat looks and feels incredibly smooth. At the end of the day, the decision to cut back on the graphics for the sake of match performance was the right one. It’s just too bad yet another Vita game ends up looking like a slightly improved PSP title.
Of course, there’s still the matter of the new Vita-exclusive content. A whole new Bonus Challenge Tower has been included, and it makes use of the unique functionality a touch-screen handheld affords. Some of the mini-games, like the Fruit Ninja-esque game that uses skull and body organs instead of fruit, are quite silly, and some are better in theory than in execution, like the Missile Command-like game where you must keep a kombatant from hitting the ground by firing missile at them. There are also more standard fight-centric mini-games that require you to shake the Vita to earn upgrades, or wipe blood of the screen to regenerate health. There are 150 new challenges in total, which brings the overall total of challenges in the game to nearly 500.
For the most part, Mortal Kombat controls the exact same way in a normal fight as it did on the console. The biggest addition is the ability to pull off touch-screen Fatalities. Instead of tapping the d-pad or analog stick in the right rhythm, you can instead opt to swipe your finger on the screen in the correct motions. It certainly makes Fatalities easier to pull off since the margin for errors, like accidental jumping, is completely removed. That said, you’ve still got to remember to be in the right space for the move, as well as being able to hit the combination fast enough for it to register. A quick tap of the icon can also activate x-ray moves once your power meter is completely full. It’s not really that helpful considering all it normally takes to pull an x-ray move off is hitting the L and R shoulder buttons simultaneously. Unfortunately, the Vita gets the short end of the stick for Tag Mode. Most of the moves are fine, but the tag-team maneuver requires you to flick the right analog stick and hit a face button at the same time, which is incredibly awkward, and near impossible to do smoothly.
Mortal Kombat on the Vita is one of the most impressive games on the device thus far. There are hardly any flaws in the game, and the boatloads of content provided will give fans of the franchise plenty to do while they bide their time waiting for the next big Vita release. The dip in graphic fidelity is disappointing, but understandable, and once you get used to how perfectly the game plays on the Vita, you won’t mind the dip in presentation very much at all. Not only is Mortal Kombat now arguably the best fighter on the Vita, but it also makes a strong case for being one of the best games on the handheld so far.
+ New Vita-exclusive content is cool
- Tag mode controls can be awkward
6 months ago :: Gravity Rush
1 year ago :: FIFA Soccer
1 year ago :: Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
1 year ago :: Rayman Origins
1 year ago :: Dungeon Hunter Alliance
1 year ago :: Asphalt: Injection
1 year ago :: Michael Jackson The Experience HD
1 year ago :: Lumines Electronic Symphony
1 year ago :: Uncharted: Golden Abyss
Download us here!
Game Junkies podcast and audio interviews
Release Date : 2012/05/01
System : PS Vita
Publisher : Warner Games
Developer : NetherRealm Studios
Category : Fighting & Wrestling
ESRB : M
7.0 / 10
8.5 / 10
8.0 / 10
8.7 / 10