Mortal Kombat 1 – Online Stress Test Impressions

Mortal Kombat 1 – Online Stress Test Impressions

The buzz around fighting games is at an all-time high. Street Fighter 6 smashed it out of the park, Tekken 8 looks to take the franchise to another level and NetherRealm’s reboot of Mortal Kombat breathes new life into the series. With the latter gearing up for its September release date, an Online Stress Test took place and here are my initial impressions.

NetherRealm has a signature style which is evident in each of its releases. Mortal Kombat 1 refines and improves the format adding further depth through the new Kameo system. Before you enter a match, you can select a fighter and an assist character that you can summon to support you in battle. They enter the fray with a directional input and a single button press to unleash a visceral strike. This opens up a ton of opportunities allowing you to experiment in order to extend combos.

Precision Strikes

Similar to other titles by Ed Boon, there’s a focus on combinations and juggling your opponent. This does mean that if you mash random inputs, your fighter will awkwardly throw attacks, whereas, with the set combinations, you will perform fluid martial arts sequences in a slick and stylish manner. This does mean that you must learn the character and become familiar with the many layers in order to be competitive.

Fatalities are much easier to perform in Mortal Kombat 1. Rather than a mixture of 4 or 5 buttons, the characters available in the stress test have a simple 3-button combination. This results in brutal finishers akin to previous releases. It’s amazing that Ed Boon and crew can still raise the bar with how horrific and demented the fatalities are. The blood-drenched finishers are hideously brilliant and remain a highlight of the game. 

Fatal Blows return to give you the opportunity to get back in the fight. When low on health, you can deliver a savage attack which highlights zooms in on skeletal damage and is a great precursor to fatalities. A new addition to this is that both of your selected characters take part in the maneuver which extends the sequence. This does encourage you to experiment with Kameos to see how their moves and Fatal Blows complement one another.

Climbing the Tower

The Stress Test includes the Klassic Towers single-player option and the Online mode. Klassic Towers pits you against one of the four available fighters and one of the three Kameos. The characters on the Stress Test are Sub Zero, Kenshi, Kitana and Liu Kang. Each warrior has a unique stance and attack which differentiate them from each other. I would have liked to have seen a grapple-based character in the beta, however, the ones on offer showcase a range of fighting styles and special attacks. In terms of Kameos, Kano, Sonya and Jax are available. With the franchise’s rich history, I would hope to see a huge roster of Kameos to choose from in the final game, however, there is only space for 16. Hopefully, this will increase by September.

Currently, the online component is not stable. While certain matches were without issue, others stalled and kicked out opponents. Obviously, this is just a test and I’m sure NetherRealm will improve the stability in time for its release.

Mortal Kombat 1 is shaping up to be another flawless victory. The cinematic presentation is stunning and helps to communicate the narrative without losing focus on the fight. Luckily, we don’t have long to wait to experience the full game as it is due to be released on the 19th of September. Are you going to be picking up the reboot? Do you think this will knock out the competition? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter, and don’t forget to subscribe to us on YouTube for more great video game content.

Thank you for keeping it locked on COGconnected.

  • For amazing videos, head over to our YouTube page HERE.
  • Follow us on Twitter HERE.
  • Our Facebook page HERE.
  • Our Instagram page HERE.
  • Listen to our podcast on Spotify or anywhere you listen to podcasts.
  • If you are a fan of cosplay, check out more of our cosplay features HERE.