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March 4, 2014 / Jett

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe Impressions


It was only a matter of time before Mortal Kombat tried follow in the footsteps of Marvel vs. CapcomMortal Kombat vs. DC Universe may not have the same ring to it (or make that much sense), though it didn’t necessarily have to. Even though this game came out before Street Fighter IV revitalized the genre, it managed to sell well in its own right.

Years after NetherRealm evolved their formula twice over with the Mortal Kombat reboot and Injustice: Gods Among Us, now is a really odd time for me to play this for the first time. While it’s not necessarily worth going back to play this now, the game isn’t without merit.

I figured that from a gameplay perspective, this would have aged horribly. To my surprise, the foundation of the combat engine is sound. The general concepts behind how combos work is still fun and definitely a predecessor to what eventually became MK and Injustice. It didn’t take long for me to grasp the basics and start pulling off combos.

There are however, a lot of peripheral elements to the gameplay that haven’t stood the test of time. I could have done without the Quick Time Events for throws and the falling sequences that required button-mashing. I also disliked how many of the animations were recycled across different characters. Little things from how characters reestablish themselves after a round aren’t too bad. However, every character having the same jumping attacks really does limit the variety.

My biggest knock on how the game plays is that it doesn’t necessarily do either franchise justice (no pun intended). The scale of the fights aren’t as dramatic as the battles that DC characters would have, and they’re not as violent as they’re not as violent as what you’d expect from MK, especially when the game doesn’t feature traditional fatalities. If you can take it at face value, then as a fighting game it’s not bad.

This may not have the trimmings of a modern fighter, but I was very impressed with what I played of the game’s story mode. People celebrate how the 2011 Mortal Kombat reboot raised the bar for single player fighting game experiences, though MK vs. DC kind of did it first. Each match features cutscenes that bookend the action, which seemed really well done from the few chapters I played. The game sports two separate story arcs; one for each side.

I even put in a little bit of time online. Did you know that there are still a few dozen people that still play this game online? Odd, but true, based on my experience. Hopping into a match was a breeze and the netcode in the one ranked match I played help up splendidly. Sure, one match does not make for great netcode, but I didn’t really feel like facing off against what’s left of the MK vs. DC online warriors. For the record, I’m 1-0 in ranked play, which is something I’ll probably carry with me to the grave.

Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe doesn’t hold up against its predecessors, though it’s far from unplayable. There’s enough of a solid fighting game here to sink your teeth into if it really came down to it. I’m actually a bit surprised with how much of the core experience is still fun. Unless you’re looking to experience the predecessor to two of the finest modern fighting games on the market, there isn’t much of a point to go back and play this one.


Buy Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe – Silver Shield Combo Pack Now On Amazon.com

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