Metascore
84

Generally favorable reviews - based on 60 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 54 out of 60
  2. Negative: 0 out of 60
  1. May 6, 2011
    100
    Mortal Kombat is BACK. Remember how you felt when you walked through the arcade and saw MK for the first time? That feeling will come shooting back as soon as you put the disc in. FIGHT!
  2. May 2, 2011
    100
    Fighting fit and ready to rip off your head, it's definitely the best Mortal Kombat game released to date.
  3. Apr 22, 2011
    100
    It packs in a ton of characters, a lot of unlockable content that's actually pretty cool, and it returns MK back to its ultraviolent roots, something that was sorely lacking for most fans in the otherwise decent Mortal Kombat vs. DC game.
  4. Apr 22, 2011
    100
    An incredible package that should appeal to any fighting game fan or anyone who grew up with the series. Ed Boon and his team at NetherRealm have created a love letter to fans that will stand the test of time.
  5. Apr 20, 2011
    100
    With its shockingly terrific solo components and a multiplayer offering that gives you plenty of options, Mortal Kombat might just be the most complete fighting game ever released. Oh, and yeah, it's a lot of fun to play, too.
  6. May 18, 2011
    95
    It took nearly a decade, as well as the death-knell of the company that spawned it, but at last Mortal Kombat can competently stand toe-to-toe with the other fighting greats due to its gameplay, rather than its gore.
  7. May 15, 2011
    95
    I really hope that other fighting game developers are taking note as to what was done here. Because as a fan of the genre this is what I want to see more of: fun fighting, great story and less extra junk. And Mortal Kombat has done this VERY well!
  8. Apr 19, 2011
    95
    This is the best Mortal Kombat yet. It didn't blow my mind to the degree that Mortal Kombat 2 and 3 did back in the day, but when it comes down to the gameplay and longevity tied to it, this new entry towers above its 2D lineage.
  9. Apr 29, 2011
    94
    If you've ever liked fighting games and have a strong stomach, you simply need to check this game out. Everything that a Mortal Kombat fan has ever wanted out of the series is present and accounted for here. This title has trimmed all the fat, in the most gleefully gruesome ways possible. Fighting games simply don't come any more fun and exhilarating than this. It's a flawless victory.
  10. Apr 26, 2011
    94
    Mortal Kombat goes back to its roots, making it even better than past Mortal Kombat games. There is so much content and there are so many improvements that this title is the best fighting game you'll find in stores right now.
  11. Apr 19, 2011
    94
    Darkly decadent as one of its sadistic X-ray moves, the new and improved Mortal Kombat emerges as an impressively realized reboot that elevates the series to a new plateau of excellence. If your interest in Mortal Kombat has remained in stasis until now, unfreeze your expectations and take a dip in the dark side. You will that find ripping someone's head off is a lot more fun than you originally remembered.
  12. May 3, 2011
    93
    Ed Boon delivers with Mortal Kombat one of the best games in the franchise. The gameplay is almost perfect and the fatalities are fantastic, the length of the game is almost infinite and everyone can play it. Mortal Kombat is currently the best fighting game you can get.
  13. Apr 26, 2011
    93
    Bloody, gory, ridiculous...no matter how hard you try to put it down, you will soon find yourself picking it back up. It immerses players in ways few fighting games - aside maybe from the last Capcom console outing - have ever done before. A tour de force!
  14. Apr 19, 2011
    91
    Mortal Kombat has achieved something that I never thought I'd see in my lifetime: a fighting game that has more than enough single player content to keep casual players involved, with a gameplay system that can satisfy even the most hardcore fighting game fans. NetherRealm Studios' dedication and attention to detail on all fronts shows that they are much more in tune with what gamers look for when purchasing a new game more so than any other fighting game developer out there.
  15. Dec 12, 2011
    90
    The silky smooth combat combined with the classic twists on the fatalities in the game, of which there are at least two per character not including stage specific ones, and naturally some hidden things that I don't want to spoil here.
  16. 90
    Mortal Kombat is a great service to fans, but not only fans. It's also a great proposal for anyone who is interested in fighting games.
  17. May 9, 2011
    90
    Aside from those admittedly minor issues, Mortal Kombat is an impressive piece of work. It's got more than enough gore to satisfy the older fans, a deep combat system to draw in tournament-level players, and a huge amount of content. It's nice to see that after twenty years, the series can finally move towards being something other than a guilty pleasure.
  18. 90
    A brilliant homage to the 2D fighters that birthed it and brilliantly plucks features equally from more modern fighters as well as adding a few new ones of its own. Definitely brilliant – just not quite perfect.
  19. May 1, 2011
    90
    The latest Mortal Kombat is, in our opinion, the best in the series so far. This is more ambitious than the previous ones, has a perfect roster of fighters and offers more content than any other fighting game.
  20. Apr 30, 2011
    90
    After many years of missteps, Mortal Kombat is, at last, back to its 2D glory. The latest chapter of the franchise will satisfy even the most demanding fans of the series, offering a wealth of offline modes, including probably the best Story Mode we have ever seen in the fighting genre.
  21. Apr 25, 2011
    90
    While it's not perfect, this is easily the best Mortal Kombat to date.
  22. 90
    Mortal Kombat is one of the most enjoyable fighters on the market and a perfect throwback to the arcade glory days. With an extensive story mode, challenge tower, and massive online potential, MK is a bloody good time.
  23. Apr 22, 2011
    90
    While Mortal Kombat may not completely overwhelm you with features, it does offer more replayability than recent offerings from other fighting game developers - Capcom included. This game may not quite have tournament-level gameplay depth and that's mostly due to some minor issues with hit detection and the combo system, but this is still the most polished and pro-gamer-worthy MK we've seen in the last decade.
  24. Apr 20, 2011
    90
    The gameplay is by far the best in the series, the visuals are as detailed and gory as ever, and the presentation is second to none. This game changes the way we look at fighting games from a single player perspective.
  25. 90
    This installment serves as the ultimate throwback for die-hard fans like myself, while still being accessible and interesting enough to lure new gamers.
  26. Apr 19, 2011
    90
    Visually, Mortal Kombat looks great. If you are hoping for a highly detailed, gruesome experience, then Mortal Kombat definitely delivers.
  27. May 19, 2011
    89
    This new MK truly deserves the title "Mortal Kombat" since it feels like a new start for the series in many ways.
  28. Apr 19, 2011
    89
    What matters most with Mortal Kombat (and, indeed, any fighting game) is the fighting engine. It's good. It's fun, it's tight and it rewards skill.
  29. May 4, 2011
    87
    Mortal Kombat is so far without a doubt the best Mortal Kombat ever.
  30. Apr 20, 2011
    87
    Mortal Kombat is here. Its gameplay system can satisfy all kinds of gamers and the game offers tons of variety and hidden extras. It's really a return to form for the franchise.
  31. Oct 20, 2011
    85
    A very good reboot for the series. 3D-arenas have been axed, so the combat system is simpler and at the same time more refined. [May 2011]
  32. May 17, 2011
    85
    Mortal Kombat has rebooted itself into respectability.
  33. Apr 27, 2011
    85
    Mortal Kombat has finally made the jump to the current console generation. And the result is a true Mortal Kombat offering great fights and even greater finishing moves.
  34. Apr 21, 2011
    85
    But when it comes down to it, it really seems like the PS3 is the best fit for Mortal Kombat. (With that said, I'll probably end up doing most of my playing -- reluctantly, mind you -- on the 360, where it seems the bulk of my personal network of friends is competing.)
  35. Apr 20, 2011
    85
    Mortal Kombat, sans a few irritating slip-ups, is exactly what the fans desire. Good control, the 2D winning formula, the great backdrops and settings, the huge roster (Kratos rules, by the way), the new strategy awarded by the super gauge, the many various modes; it all comes together in a very appealing package.
  36. Apr 20, 2011
    85
    Mortal Kombat is a good fighting game and a great return of the series in the 2D battles. Less deep than other games, but funny and full of content, Mortal Kombat is the most violence game in the saga.
  37. Apr 19, 2011
    85
    Over-the-top, bloody, and bursting with content, Mortal Kombat is a return to form for the franchise.
  38. Apr 21, 2011
    84
    When you take it all into consideration, Mortal Kombat is a pretty good entry into the series, namely for the surprisingly high-quality story mode, but it falls short in other areas. You'll spew vulgarities almost every time you have to choke down a 1v2 fight and when the AI suddenly gains near-psychic prediction abilities, but when it's an even 1v1 fight, the game is a lot of fun. The choice to essentially reboot the series was a wise one, and now is probably your best chance to get caught up with the Mortal Kombat story, short of replaying the originals. However, some truly asinine fights will certainly dull the enjoyment from time to time.
  39. Apr 21, 2011
    83
    In one swift blow, Mortal Kombat reminds me why I dressed up as Sub-Zero for Halloween when I was six: It's brutal, aggressive, and awesome. The blunders with the auto-difficulty, story, and online can be easily patched or passed over by the return of the franchise to its arcade roots - where it belongs.
  40. May 16, 2011
    81
    It's not classic and fighter purists will find things to moan about, but that doesn't stop it from being a hell of a lot of fun. [Issue#205, p.82]
  41. May 27, 2011
    80
    Mortal Kombat definitely provides a fighting experience like no other. With a return to the original all-star cast, the involving Challenge Tower, the best Story Mode in fighter history, approachable gameplay, and mindblowing graphics, this is an affair that definitely requires your attention.
  42. 80
    Excellent fighting game recalls a faded genre of the Golden Age of the in the late nineties. This is an investment for quite a few months! [Issue#204]
  43. May 10, 2011
    80
    Mortal Kombat is back and this time it's pulling no punches.
  44. Everything old, pardon the worn sentiment, is new again with Kombat. [June 2011, p.76]
  45. May 2, 2011
    80
    Returning to give fans the proper dose of Fatality driven action, Mortal Kombat regains its passion.
  46. Apr 29, 2011
    80
    The new Mortal Kombat is easy to pick up and play, but will take a lifetime to master. Crushing bones and smashing skulls has never been so easy and beautiful as it is now.
  47. Apr 26, 2011
    80
    Mortal Kombat is a morbid celebration of recognition. The game does everything you'd expect from a product of the franchise. Especially online the qualities of the fast gameplay come to fruition, but offline the game doesn't let down by any means. It's too bad though, that the storymode, a large part of the singleplayer, isn't more than a few cutscenes intertwined with a bunch of fights.
  48. Apr 21, 2011
    80
    Feels like such a thorough piece of fan service, it's difficult to see how NetherRealm Studios will ever be able to follow it up, as it feels like there's little left to do. Still, for now that doesn't matter. Mortal Kombat feels like the return of an old friend - a thoroughly unhinged friend, but one we're delighted to have back.
  49. Apr 19, 2011
    80
    Keeping what's best in the saga, Mortal Kombat on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 is a delicacy, both in terms of form and content. One can argue that its combat system is considerably less flexible and deep than those of its competitors, but is still offers some subtlety, and dynamic combats that are very fun to play. Combining humor, a kitch universe and packed with loads of content to unlock, the Netherealm studio title joins the fighting games pantheon, but in its own style, without playing in the same arena as one Street Fighter IV, Blazblue or King of Fighters.
  50. Apr 19, 2011
    80
    Of course, if you're like the vast majority of the folks who wandered by my desk during the weeks that I played Mortal Kombat, you want to see one thing, and one thing only: utter carnage. And hey -- it's here in spades. Just try to remember that for once, Mortal Kombat is more than the sum of a few flying body parts.
  51. Apr 19, 2011
    80
    A successful sequel that both reboots and redeems the wayward series, though it's not a flawless victory. Character balance, inconsistent detection and a stingy coin reward system drag down an otherwise bloody good time.
  52. Apr 19, 2011
    80
    A great game. It's not the most polished fighter out there, but it has a distinct flavor and it'll be a hit at gamer get-togethers.
  53. May 6, 2011
    79
    Not the reinvention we hoped, but it's hard to hate something so desperately eager to please. [June 2011, p.64]
  54. Apr 19, 2011
    79
    Is Mortal Kombat going to take Super Street Fighter IV's crown? No. It lacks the nuance and depth of Capcom's champ; but by adding balance to its own familiar shtick, and giving us the ace Tower mode MK has made itself a real alternative.
  55. A solid, nostalgic fighter, but lack of depth in the core combat means it's unlikely to hold you attention for long in a crowded genre - and Street Fighter still pummels it into the dirt. [June 2011, p.102]
  56. Apr 22, 2011
    70
    Mortal Kombat emphasises both the atmosphere and the gameplay of the famous fighting game serie. It is not perfect, but 2D fans should really give this reboot a chance.
  57. Apr 21, 2011
    70
    Not too bad. Great tacky design and lots of content make this a fighting game worth your buck.
  58. Apr 19, 2011
    70
    A remake more than a reinvention, but one that retains all the simple gameplay and outrageous gore that made the original games fun.
  59. May 8, 2011
    60
    While fans will revel in the HD sheen of its signature gore, long-standing cynics and newcomers alike will find a game that, just as it did 19 years ago, pales in comparison to its more fluid, graceful peers. [June 2011, p.95]
  60. May 13, 2011
    50
    The fact that, in harking back to earlier days, the game feels stuck in the past, the fact the fighting system really isn't deep compared to other modern-day brawlers, the fact the gore is little more than a sideshow and the fact that most of the fan service appeals to fans who have grown up a great deal since the Nineties throws up numerous reasons to criticise, however.
User Score
8.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 376 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 5 out of 118
  1. Apr 20, 2011
    9
    WOW! I love this game. So glad they went back to the 2D fighting and fatalities. It is easy enough to play for a beginner yet still complex enough for the Hardcore MK fan. I also love all the original maps remastered in 3D HD. They look great. And KRATOS on the PS3 version is a really amazing idea. Sorry XBox guys, He's all ours!!!! lol Full Review »
  2. Apr 19, 2011
    10
    One of the greatest Mortal Kombat games in the series. This really does take you back to the original games with its 2D gameplay and gory fatalities. If you are a veteran of the series, this is a must have. The levels are greatly detailed, and the character models are pretty cool. Each character has several fatalities, and casual gameplay is rewarded by a point system generated by combos, wins, and fatalities. The game runs smooth, the online is fun, and the fatalities are gruesome. Pick this game up now. Full Review »
  3. Apr 24, 2011
    5
    Growing up, I spent tons of quarters - and later dollars - on Mortal Kombat 1 and 2 in the arcade and for consoles. Couldn't get enough of it. When Mortal Kombat 3 came out, however, the entire method of the game switched from one of mastering special moves to learning how to cheese with unblockable combo chains, with or without special moves, that would juggle your opponent to the point where they COULDN'T do anything. They spend a quarter and maybe get one button press before they were down and out. I adapted and got pretty decent at it, but I didn't have fun. Not like the past. Afterwards, Mortal Kombat just went on a downhill skid. And that's the biggest problem with the Mortal Kombat reboot - it goes back to the Mortal Kombat 3 style of play, not Mortal Kombat 1 or 2 where timing and skill mattered as opposed to picking a character with the cheesiest juggle combo. And that's all the new MK is about - juggling your opponent(s) into combos that can't be blocked and can't be broken and then unleashing a 9-10 hit string that takes down their life to near dead.

    Sure, giving the beat down is fun (at first), but if you're constantly being beaten on simply because someone chose a specific character, it's not fun. I was hoping for a return to timing and skill, not a return to the MK3 combo cheesefest.

    Story mode is OK, not really the greatest but probably the best in a recent fighting game, however the game loves putting you in 2v1 situations that are disgustingly hard (see combo cheesefest) even on Medium difficulty. The voice over work is some of the worst in recent game memory. X-Ray mode is interesting, but it gets old after the first few times while the characters' signature special moves are less powerful than many of the simple two-button combos themselves. Graphically, the game is OK, but nothing to shout about and looks dated by a few years.

    I'm sure people who only started playing MK when MK3 or UMK3 were out will be in love with this game. But as someone who grew up with MK, who remembers learning the moves, the skill and timing of how to deploy them, this game is an utter disappointment. Just another bland fighter where people are rewarded for learning how to play at the cheesiest, cheapest level.
    Full Review »