Game play: 20
Replay ability: 20
Total Value: 85%
Moooortaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal Koooooooooooooooombaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat! Test your might! Do do doooo dooo doooo!
Here is a cute story. When I was a young lad I was a Mortal Kombat master. I won a tournament at a local arcade out of 100 people for the best Mortal Kombat II player. I must have spent somewhere between $10,000.00 to $20,000.00 playing that dangfangled game. Anyway this review is about Mortal Kombat: Deception. It was released I believe in ’04, but it still reigns as the latest MK fighting game because the new Shaolin Monks is not a fighting game.
Overall I really enjoyed this game. It improved remarkably where Deadly Alliance left off. The story is solid I suppose, the game is fluid and they added some new stuff in that we hadn’t seen in a while in an MK game. I will continue on this later though.
Essentially if you played Deadly Alliance (DA) and you liked the way the game looked you will be pleased to know that much of it has been reused and yet improved upon in Deception. If you haven’t then be assured that you are getting a quality 3D fighting environment ripe with interactive backgrounds that can be rather hazardous to your fighters health bar. The game is colorful and crisp. The fighters move fluidly and the stylistic approach of the head MK artists really does immerse you in whichever realm you’re fighting in. As beautiful as the graphics are they really aren’t anything new.
Nothing really new here either. Many of the songs from DA were reused. However there were some new original compositions that were good. The Tomb of Liu Kang for example or the Nether realm music.
I think MK Deception really does score the best in its game play category. I started playing the game on a sick day around 8AM and didn’t quit until 11PM that night with only a small break. I was totally immersed in the game. Here are a few of the totally kick ass modes you will find.
Vastly superior to the DA Konquest mode. No longer are you subject to using the same characters again and again to make coins for the Krypt mashing out the same stupid 40 minute long combo moves. Instead the MK team very cleverly turned the Konquest mode into a mini RPG. You play as Shujinko a young student at the Shaolin temple. Eventually you’re put onto a long quest to collect items that will link the realms together. As you go though you find secret treasure chests that give you keys to unlock additional characters as well as costumes, and content in the krypt. Konquest mode itself becomes about half the game, and it takes on a life of its own. I found myself playing that more than the regular arcade fight mode.
Similar in nature to Tetris and the old Sega Genesis game Columns. You choose one of a number of MK characters, each of whom has a special move. The more points you collect by dropping blocks into place and eliminating them with the right colored dragon symbol the more your bar charges up. When it is fully charged you have a few seconds to release it against your opponent. For example Sub Zero has the ability to freeze all of your opponent’s blocks for 10 seconds. This is great fun with a friend or even just playing with the computer.
I must admit this is the mode I played the least. However, from what I did play it was well worth the effort to figure it out. It’s like standard chess except with MK characters. And when you take a square from an opponent’s piece you have 1 round of kombat. The winner gets the square. Awesome with a friend.
Traditional Fight/Arcade mode:
Not much to say, this is the standard MK mode we all know and love that made the series great. Mortal kombat between two characters to the death. Flushed out with 100s of special moves and many fatalities.
In addition to these modes, there is the Krypt. The Krypt is a large graveyard with tombs lettered with a price on them. Coffins AA for example which is on the bottom or front left can cost you 2100 Jade koins. You will collect many koins in the game in all modes; you use them to open certain coffins. Inside you can find many things: Unlocked fighters, alternate costumes, new backgrounds, music, videos, character bios, making of footage, really anything.
I gave this game the full 20 points for this category because it is truly what will make you want to buy this game. If there were only 10 games you could have for the year I would choose this game as one of them because it is great with one player or two. It’s not hard to learn and the controls and game play are smooth as silk. Combos have been reduced a little so the annoying process of button mashing from DA is gone. And you will chose much more wisely which moves you use with the new combo breaker skill that was added in. Time and time again you will come back to play this title.
Let’s face it. It’s a fighting game at heart. We don’t really care too much why these characters are fighting, the fact that most of the characters have been killed revived and killed again so many times never really seems to become an issue so long as we can still play as them. Overall, though I couldn’t give this category too low of a score because with the revamped Konquest mode MUCH of the storyline has been flushed out and much more sense has been made what with dueling story lines from several of the games. Shujinko’s quest actually begins long before DA started and maybe even before the original Mortal Kombat began. The thing is you start off as a teenager with him. And as you progress through the realms he grows older until he is finally an old man (perhaps 50 or 60 years of story time). And through that you will meet many of your favorite characters from past MK games and discover what motives drove them to which ends. There are still some holes in the story line, but because this is a fighting game 1st and only a mini RPG we can mercifully look over that and have fun smashing our friends to bits.
It’s a fighting game. Its entire basis is replay ability. You will find yourself coming back to this game over and over again, even if you have other MK games to play. I am currently playing through Deception and Shaolin monks. Both are great plays.
Ultimately, I believe that Mortal Kombat Deception is a strong addition to the MK family line of games. I was stoked to get it for Christmas (a year late) but am really having a blast playing through it. I urge anyone who hasn’t played this game or any of the MK series to pick this up and try it. You will not be disappointed.