|System: Xbox, PS2, Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Midway||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Midway||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Released: Oct 2006||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1 - 8||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|Review by Colin||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Colin Thames
Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, as the title would suggest, is not the end of the world, but it may signal the death knell for the series. This game has the looks but it just doesnt have the moves.
There are tons of characters in Armageddon, as well as some new modes and combat elements, but all of these new additions cant disguise the fact that this is the same old Mortal Kombat at the core. This is a dated fighting game that has run its course. Unless youre a huge fan of the Mortal Kombat franchise, there is little here that can compete with the glut of new fighters that figuratively kick this ones ass.
Everything about MK: Armageddon is old and tired. You would think this game would play as smooth as a Rolls Royce by now but I find it quite unresponsive - and pardon the pun - sluggish. The characters movements are stiff and many of the stock animations appear at strange times making the entire combat process look awkward and even broken at times.
The stable of fighters is impressive. You name them and they shall appear. Characters such as Scorpion, Stryker, Sub Zero, Jax and Goro (the boss) are all included. There are more than 60 different characters from all the MK series. And if you cant find one that you like, then you can make your own with the Kreate-a-Fighter system. The customizing options are more aesthetic than anything else. Youll have full control over the shape of their heads, hairstyles and outfits but the moves that you select are mostly generic. The same can be said for the standard-issue fighters. Aside from a couple of special moves there is little to set them apart from each other. The kicks, punches and combos are all the same and are even mapped to the same buttons, which is fine if you dont want to memorize an entire new move set for each character. Each character will have one special hand-to-hand move as well as a special weapon move. Thats it. Fortunately each character will utter unique lines during their finishing moves but the dialog is so terse and cliché that it makes the Terminator seem almost Shakespearean. Thankfully Mortal Kombat has a good sense of humor and doesnt always take itself too seriously.
Limbs are torn from torsos, hearts are ripped - still beating - from the chests of the defeated, heads are caved in and the blood flows like wine at a Bacchanalian festival. Yes, the gore that youve been weaned on through the Mortal Kombat series has not diminished. The shock value has worn a little thin but its still a nice feeling to finish off your opponent permanently, after all the crap youve been through. All of these finishing moves are up for grabs with the Kreate-a-Fatality feature which allows any character to access any of these finishing move animations at the end of a match by pressing the various buttons before time runs out. Its great for those that crave instant gratification and want to see a lot of violence all at once but it comes at the price of making the individual fighters more and more generic since it restricts relegating these moves to specific characters.
In the single-player mode known as Konquest Mode, you will do as you have always done fight your way up the ladder by taking on more powerful opponents in a tier structured competition. There are more action adventure elements in this mode than ever which breaks up the monotony of the constant combat. You will do some exploring, avoid booby traps, amass some cash, find or purchase plenty of unlockables items and characters and try to make some sense out of the storyline not that it matters if you understand whats going on or not. Theres so much detail to the story that I just stopped pretending to be interested. Im no dummy, I just have a short attention span. Im sure you can relate. Hey did you watch Breaking Bonaduce last night?
There is an online kart racer called Motor Kombat which features all of the characters in a zany, mini-game style mode in which you race against your opponents using your unique skills such as shooting electricity or puking. These moves are necessary to hinder your opponents causing them to slow down or crash into a deadly trap. Up to eight players can take part online or locally. A one-on-one mode is also featured for online play. You can battle against stock characters or ones that have been created in the Kreate-a-Character mode. As in the single-player mode youll find the controls are a little sloppy and the animation stiff.
The sound effects are solid. The punches and kicks rival that of a well-recorded drum kit. Youll find yourself getting into a groove. The music is moody and well suited to the action. Graphically the game could use an entire makeover. Its dated. The engine needs more than an oil change and an air freshener on the rearview. While I appreciate some of the new additions to this version, its not enough to make me forget how much this game reminds me of Deception, Shaolin Monk and Deadly Alliance.
By Colin Thames
CCC Freelance Writer
The next iteration of the final chapter of the current generation's most violent fighting game franchise. That's a mouthful, but thankfully, not a mouthful of broken teeth. by Vaughn Smith
Introducing Mortal Kombat: Armageddon The latest chapter in Midways award-winning, best-selling video game fighting franchise. With the most complete Mortal Kombat roster ever, including nearly every character from the Mortal Kombat universe (past, present and future), a revolutionary Create-A-Fighter mode and Create-A-Fatality mode, plus a brand new Konquest mode, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon promises to be the most complete, intensely lethal, fighting experience ever!
It's a sign of the times when a series as violent as Mortal Kombat has consistently slipped under the radar of politicians and other concerned parties for the last few years. It's not that MK isn't violent anymore. In fact, the last few have been as violent as ever, it's just that the series has become an old comfortable shoe. I'm sure even those who were horrified by the spine-ripping shenanigans of the first arcade version would even recall it fondly. Maybe not. For better or worse, the series continues and fans have recently embraced the franchise again for bringing something new to the table over the last couple of years. Armageddon promises to continue that tradition.
We'll have more info at E3. Stay tuned!
Any Character From The Entire MK Library (Past,
Present & Future): From Liu Kang to Shang Tsung
to Shao Kahn, Mortal Kombat:Armageddon will feature
more playable fighters than any other Mortal Kombat
game to date.
Customized Create-A-Fighter Mode: For the first
time ever in a Mortal Kombat game, players will
be able to use an extremely robust create-a-fighter
feature to create and define their fi ghters
look, abilities and personality.
Create-A-Fatality System: Fans now have the ability
to create their own custom fatalities by stringing
together a series of attacks via a series of button
combos; those that prove worthy can take their very
own death moves online to showcase to the world.
Revamped & Improved Konquest Mode: What originally
served as a basic training mechanism has been upgraded
to a full-blown adventure with a deep story and
a variety of gameplay.
- Expanded Online Features: Improved Responsiveness, Deeper Customizing, Expanded Lobby Options and Much More.
CCC Site Director