The Mortal Kombat series saw a return to form with its latest release on home consoles. A more intricate combat system, stunning visuals and a remarkably immersive plot made it a hit. Now the Mortal Kombat reboot sees release on the PS Vita, and fortunately it sports the same quality and content as its home console predecessor with a few added touches to compliment the new hardware.
Mortal Kombat’s story mode tells the re-imagined tale of the first three games from the 16 bit era, resulting in a lengthy but wonderfully entertaining narrative of the tournament’s history. It establishes the backgrounds, rivalries and drive for over two dozen characters, and does a great job of introducing each of them. Even veteran Mortal Kombat fans will find a treasure trove of exposition about their favorite characters, along with a much more coherent explanation of how the series was meant to flow. It’s brilliant; frequently cheesy and over the top, but brilliant.
Mortal Kombat goes back to its routes, with combat taking place on a 2D plane, classic character specific special moves returning – such as Sub Zero’s freeze attack – and gruesome Fatalities returning. However, combat has clearly evolved, with new X-ray moves that see your character brutally break the bones of your opponent – performed by filling then spending and energy bar – and special moves with increased power can be performed the same way, akin to Street Fighter IV. Additionally your position affects what kind of attack you use and juggling your enemy and carefully blocking or breaking attacks becomes a major part of the experience. It’s clearly been designed with tournament play in mind, offering deep strategy which benefits from precision and timing. Combat has depth and requires real skill at the highest level yet remarkably remains accessible with simple controls allowing you to perform combos and special moves with ease. Even Fatalities and X-ray moves are simple to perform thanks to the option to use the touch screen.
Mortal Kombat on PS Vita is brimming with content, making many additions to the home console versions. The 300 strong challenge ladder with silly but entertaining mini-games and fights with special conditions are present alongside 150 brand new challenges that makes use of the PS Vita’s features, such as the tilt and touch screen. The Krypt, which contains a comprehensive collection of unlockable concept art, Fatalities and costumes, has been expanded further with new art and 16 exclusive costumes. You even get all the balance tweaks the home console versions were patched with and the DLC characters. It’s truly packed with content, encouraging mountains of replay. And if you do tire of singleplayer play, you can always take the fight online for scraps over WiFi and AdHoc.
Indeed Mortal Kombat is a fantastic fighting game. There is a noticeable downgrade in visuals over its home console versions but having it run at 60 frame per second is a fair trade for it. Mortal Kombat makes the transition to PS Vita wonderfully.
MLG Rating: 8/10 Platform: PS Vita Release Date: 04/05/2012
Disclosure: Midlife Gamer were provided a digital copy of Mortal Kombat by the promoter for review purposes. The title was reviewed over the course of two weeks on a PS Vita. For more information on what our scores mean, plus details of our reviews policy, click here.