#5 – Shang Tsung:
Following the four-armed dragon hybrid Goro, Shang Tsung might have felt like an afterthought in Mortal Kombat â€“ until he transformed into a previously defeated kombatant, stealing all of their signature moves. The choice to give players access to the character as well as his ability to transform in Mortal Kombat II was a bold move and, despite Shang Tsungâ€™s limited arsenal of unique special attacks, the character still provides experienced players with a stylish way to dispatch opponents.
#4 – Mileena
Mileena and Kitana entered the tournament in Mortal Kombat II, doubling the amount of female fighters in the series (since Sonya was tied-up at the time). As mentioned earlier, Kitanaâ€™s fan attacks top Mileenaâ€™s reliance on the more traditional ninja-sais but what the purple-clad kombatant lacks in moves, she makes up for in disturbing style. Throughout the series, the developers have reveled in Mileenaâ€™s Tarkatan/Human pedigree â€“ creating one of the most disgusting-yet alluring fighting-game characters ever created, as exemplified in herÂ upcoming/creepy Mortal Kombat fatality.
#3 – Smoke:
Smoke debuted as a hidden fighter in Mortal Kombat II but it wasnâ€™t until he returned as a Lin Kuei cyborg, not to mention the seriesâ€™ first post-release unlockable fighter, that the character emerged as an iconic MK staple. Many players will easily recall the satisfaction, and ease, of pulling off the characterâ€™s teleport uppercut, harpoon, roundhouse combo in their local arcade. Smoke has gone through a number of questionable transformations in subsequent installments but, no matter what Boon and Co. do to the character, itâ€™ll be hard to unseat Cyber Smoke as one of MKâ€™s best.
#2 – Sub-Zero:
Despite the fact the original Sub-Zero was killed at the hands of Scorpion in the first Mortal Kombat game, his younger brother took up his mantle, aiding in establishing Sub-Zero as one of the most exciting characters in the franchise. Even though the character has undergone numerous physical transformations, heâ€™s always been a consistent and worthy leading-man in the series â€“ and utilizing his cryomancer abilities in kombat (most notably the ice freeze projectile) never gets old.
Not to mention, Sub-Zero remains an anti-censorship staple, with a near two-decade long legacy of not just facing off against Outworld threats, but outraged parent groups as well – as a result of the characterâ€™s infamous Spine Rip fatality.
#1 – Scorpion:
The Mortal Kombat franchise has never suffered from a shortage of ninja assassins. Throughout the years, the MK developers have done a good job of explaining the army of masked fighters in the MK universe by weaving an engaging tale of warring ninja clans. Subsequently, itâ€™s easy to forget that originally Scorpion was nothing more than a color variant of Sub-Zero.
However, despite his humble beginnings, Scorpion has not only become the most recognizable character in the series â€“ he also sports some of the most iconic attacks (such as his notorious harpoon/â€Get over hereâ€ move) as well as fatalities (Toasty!). Â Throughout the nine Mortal Kombat installments (not to mention movies, comics, and now a webseries), the character has offered some of the most engaging story chapters in the overarching canon.
If you enjoyed our list, donâ€™t miss our choices for the Top 10 Best Mortal Kombat Fatalities.