Well, so, surprise? Warner Brothers just announced that the latest installment in the Mortal Kombat series has now sold three million copies around the world. This comes after a variety of important milestones, namely it’s the first MK game released since Midway went belly up and the series was snapped up by Warner, and this is the first game in the series after the relatively polite Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, in which the violence was toned down a bit. (Can you imagine Superman being shredded to bits in a fatality? Scary.) Personally, it made sense that fighting games like Street Fighter, Soul Calibur, and Marvel vs. Capcom have done so well because they didn’t, y’know, almost single-handedly cause the formation of the ESRB rating system.
I never got into fighting games growing up. Side scrollers were the universal standard for games through the 80s and 90s (in much the same way first-person shooters are standard today) and fighting games were just a more sophisticated, confined version of that. You had to learn the individual fighters and their combos in order to succeed, some of which were devilishly complex. I played the original Mortal Kombat nearly twenty years ago, but back then it was a super controversial titles. They released a lot of games over the years and it seems that by the end, they were only selling to a diminished base of fans with silly stuff like kart racing for game modes. Yes, kart racing in a fighting game.
It is interesting to see Mortal Kombat still hold its own weight as a fighter, although I wonder if this was merely a ‘surfacing for air’ for many previous fans who wanted something that reflected the series roots.
Source: Time Warner/Warner Bros.