If months leading up to the launch of Mortal Kombat X taught us anything it’s that NetherRealm Studios’ fighting game franchise is back in a big way. A few years back the series may have been on the ropes, but the success of Mortal Kombat 9 helped rejuvenate interest, and even bring new fans into the fold.
That’s all to say that anticipation is very high for the release of Mortal Kombat X this Tuesday. The game has been rapidly building buzz and it’s soon to hit a fever pitch when gamers finally get their hands on legitimate copies of the game. But first, reviews.
Although Game Rant has yet to go hands-on with Mortal Kombat X, a handful of outlets have already released their reviews for the game. By and large critical opinion seems positive, with most praising the game’s visuals and mechanics. Some outlets are holding off on full reviews in order to test the online multiplayer – a smart choice given Mortal Kombat 9’s netcode problems – but even those provisional critiques have been positive.
Game Informer (Brian Shea)
“Mortal Kombat X is a fantastic successor in every sense. The mechanics may be similar to 2011’s strong release, but with so many new modes and features permeating every part of the experience, it’s a worthy upgrade. Mortal Kombat X is more than the continuation of NetherRealm’s successful vision for the franchise; it’s one of the best fighting games in years.”
The Escapist (Josua Vanderwall)
“Mortal Kombat X offers the best story mode I’ve ever personally seen in a fighting game. Its cohesive plot and extended cinematics makes you feel much more like a participant in a film than a player on the couch. The fighting is frantic, fluid, and dynamic, with the glorious goriness of the X-Ray moves often turning the tides of battle.“
Shacknews (Steven Wong)
“The new characters, stages, and gory Fatalities all maintain the same Mortal Kombat feel we’ve come to expect since the previous game. Variations give characters more flexibility and dimension, while the interactive stages play as much into fighting strategies as combos and special moves. There might not be any Friendships involved, but this is Mortal Kombat at its bloody best, and it’s a blast to to tear opponents open.”
VideoGamer (Brett Phipps)
“Mortal Kombat X is the most entertaining fighting game on next-gen. It’s bonkers in the best possible way, serving up some eye-watering kills (Cassie Cage’s X-Ray move will make every man wince, every time) and entertaining matches that don’t require great skill to create. Depth lies in learning each character as the story introduces them, which forms a springboard to use them in other modes that surround it. Story mode is engaging enough to keep you plodding through in short bursts, the Krypt offers content that will make you want to earn the Koins to unlock everything, and all other modes change up the combat enough to keep you interested. This is the best Mortal Kombat game, and also the most hilariously brutal.”
US Gamer (Bryan Dawson)
“Mortal Kombat X offers everything a fan could ask from except possibly their favorite character. The graphics and animations received a huge boost thanks to the power of the new consoles, and while not perfect, the net code is vastly improved over previous NetherRealm fighting games. The story mode has been streamlined to make it shorter, but it still retains the cinematic flare fans have come to expect. Faction Wars add an additional layer of polish, even if they aren’t as impactful as NetherRealm intended, and Test Your Luck will provide hours of fun for more casual players. “
EGM (Ray Carsillo)
“Mortal Kombat X feels, in many ways, like one step forward and two steps back. I can’t get over the lack of depth when it came to Story mode, and the fighter variations aren’t as interesting as I’d hoped. However, once I finally found my favorites, the actual fighting still felt great. And with the Living Towers promising to keep the game perpetually fresh, I found there’s still plenty here to keep me coming back for more in the future.”
Games Radar (Lucas Sullivan)
“Mortal Kombat X has tons of polish, unique mechanics, and the genre’s best story mode, but it doesn’t do enough to keep players invested if they weren’t already planning on it.”
Polygon (Michael McWhertor)
“Mortal Kombat X is friendly both to casual players who want to experience its rich suite of single-player content and knock around with some friends, but deep enough for competitive players who want to plumb its roster and variations. It’s a robust, feature-rich competitive fighting game that hones what’s worked for NetherRealm Studios in past games, and even shows hints of restraint and maturity amidst the gory hyper-violence. Paired with an ambitious online meta-game, Mortal Kombat X is one of the best fighting games in the series.”
Score: 9/10 (Provisional)
From these early reviews it sounds as if Mortal Kombat X offers stronger combat options and some truly unique modes, but its story mode may be lacking for some players. Even so, we can’t imagine fans being disappointed based on these critiques.
Mortal Kombat X releases April 14, 2015 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.