• Publisher: Midway
  • Release Date: Sep 16, 2005
Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks Image
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
8.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 170 Ratings

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  • Summary: Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks is an Action/Adventure title driven by both intense single and multi-player action. Similar to "Mortal Kombat: Deception," background interactions (i.e., acid pits, living trees, spiked ceilings, etc.), multiple new fatalities, and action-based puzzles also playMortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks is an Action/Adventure title driven by both intense single and multi-player action. Similar to "Mortal Kombat: Deception," background interactions (i.e., acid pits, living trees, spiked ceilings, etc.), multiple new fatalities, and action-based puzzles also play an important role in the player's quest for an "outstanding" victory. Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks features an impressive line-up of Mortal Kombat characters, as well, that make frequent appearances as enemies, in boss battles and during several additional in-game interactions. For the first time ever, Mortal Kombat fanatics can explore all the mythos and rumors of the Mortal Kombat universe from an entirely new perspective. Action/Adventure fans will be blown away by the intuitive kombat system, puzzle solving and epic storyline that can be experienced in either the single player mode or through co-op play. [Midway] Expand
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Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks Gameplay Movie 4
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 31 out of 41
  2. Negative: 0 out of 41
  1. AceGamez
    90
    A shining triumph of beat 'em up glory, spinning off from the traditional MK one-on-one gameplay and showing us all just how excellent the old-school beat 'em up can be in this current generation of gaming.
  2. Game Informer
    85
    I haven't had this much fun with a co-op game in quite some time. [Oct 2005, p.122]
  3. The combat system is easy to learn but has enough depth that it will take time to master.
  4. PSM Magazine
    80
    It's a game that gets back to the basics and is chock-full of Mortal Kombat goodness, especially for two players simultaneously. [Dec 2005, p.84]
  5. The mighty "God of War" is a little more deserving of your action cash if you've only got the funds to buy one game where you run around killing stuff. But Shaolin Monks is a very close second-best in the heaving action sector, thanks to its good looks, decent play and a gory, blood-soaked style that's well in keeping with the Mortal Kombat legacy of pain. [PSW]
  6. The story is weak, boss fights are hard, but the action is extremely enjoyable and in a game where the main focus is the action, which is all that counts.
  7. games(TM)
    50
    It’s a non-offensive way to while away a few hours digging up the past, but the core gameplay doesn’t hold a candle to the title it’s so fondly remembering. [Nov 2005, p.108]

See all 41 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 39 out of 41
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 41
  3. Negative: 2 out of 41
  1. SergioG.
    Jul 10, 2005
    10
    It's da bomb.
  2. Apr 24, 2011
    10
    A enjoyable co-op or single player adventure game! Mortal Kombat fans and casual gamers will love this,any other who says this is not goodA enjoyable co-op or single player adventure game! Mortal Kombat fans and casual gamers will love this,any other who says this is not good must be really,really a big die hard street fighter fan! Expand
  3. CraigJr.
    Oct 4, 2005
    10
    Wow, its the best Mortal Kombat ever...anyone who thought MK2 was awesome will surely fall in love with this one. The Vs. mode is the best Wow, its the best Mortal Kombat ever...anyone who thought MK2 was awesome will surely fall in love with this one. The Vs. mode is the best feature, it brings each background from MK2 to an intesely interactive 3D 'environment', upping the exotic factor of the old school backdrops to a really utilizable MK utopia. While the game is offstream the usual flow of the series as it is a remake, it offers some of the deepest rush seen in the beat-'em-up genre, with gameplay depth far deeper than god of war and even Devil May Cry, and some of the most intense coloured lighting effects so far, its strange how little the difference between PS2 and Xbox versions is. No doubt Midway has out done itself this time. Making a fully functional adventure game in just one year, keeping the originality to its maximum and providing the most of the capabilities of the consoles, its just an artistic masterpiece. A sure to buy folks ! Expand
  4. May 5, 2020
    10
    PERFEITO!!! Melhores jogos de ps2 fácil, extremamente divertido um absurdo de jogo.
  5. Feb 24, 2021
    10
    Goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooood
  6. Jun 8, 2014
    9
    OVERALL: Maybe the best 2-player cooperative game, certainly the best of those in the Beat-em-Up genre (yes, better than the Sega DieOVERALL: Maybe the best 2-player cooperative game, certainly the best of those in the Beat-em-Up genre (yes, better than the Sega Die Hard/Dynamite Cop games, better than Shank 1, better than Double Dragon Neon, better than Dynasty Warriors _).

    PRESENTATION: 8
    Graphics are good, especially in their adherence to the mortal kombat aesthetic and in character designs, at least by PS2 standards. The exception is the Sub-zero special effects, which look like ugly static bitmap blue clouds plastered over what's supposed to be "frozen." Enemies blast into bloody gibs if you hit them hard enough, which I loved. Sound effects are great. The cutscenes, CGI and rendered, have really great fight choreography, although they are extremely silly in the classic mortal kombat style.

    CONTROL:10
    Although moves only affect one enemy at a time, MK:SM lets you move around really well with the left joystick so you don't lock-on. Combos are based on button presses, not directional inputs, which avoids the problems of Devil-Must-Cry games. There's dedicated throw button, dedicated jump button, (so already we're leagues ahead of modern beat-em-up games), attack button and launch/uppercut button. Holding down the shoulder button makes these buttons activate different character-specific special moves that draw from a recharging meter. You can also pick up, use and throw weapons. The feel of combat is perfect, and it's amazing how well all the character-specific special attacks from the 2D games translate into 3D space. You can also pick up, use and throw weapons. Fatalities are incorporated as instant kill or "rage" attacks.
    It's just simple enough to allow friends to pick-up-and-play, but deep enough to carry the entire game as you upgrade the special attacks and unlock more combos. There's a large variety of enemy types, incorporating most of the MK2 characters as well as background extras from the first movie. I personally prefer the MK:SM versus mode for one-on-one combat to any of the fighting game series of mortal kombats.
    In addition to combat, there's also some basic platforming. Puzzles work well because they all amount to throwing or knocking enough enemies into specific obstacles, so they're integrated into combat.

    DESIGN:3
    Here is where all the little annoyances appear, due to some bizarrely-obviously bad design decisions.
    For one thing, there are parts of the game where you need a walkthrough to figure out where to go, not to mention the secrets (including critically important unlockables like the survival mode, extra bosses to fight and extra characters for the versus mode) that are impossible to find without one.
    There's no way to drop-in/drop-out of cooperative versus single player mode, so you have to restart the game to change. There's not even a way to switch characters besides restarting.
    Also, both players share one health bar, which seems like the worst possible design choice in terms of player health.
    There are only 4 playable characters in the campaign mode, even though there are 8 in versus mode and more besides that as bosses.
    But it's a mark of how great the core gameplay was that this is the only game I have ever gone through the hassle of getting the Action Replay cheat system to work for. Using cheats, you can play as not just the 8 fully-coded-for characters, but also as any enemy that appears in the game (although most of the enemies have limited movesets).
    It also gets very difficult at the end. I'm not too proud to admit I had to cheat heavily to get past the final boss Shao Kahn, who is very cheap in the classic mortal kombat final boss way.
    And it's short. 4 hours!? But better a brilliant short game than a good but padded one.
    Despite the flaws, it remains the best 2-player cooperative campaign I ever played, and even as a single-player game it rivals the best of the beat-em-ups.
    Expand
  7. AlexN-M.
    Jan 17, 2007
    0
    This game is poor! You think that you will be good and make a "Fatality by pushing two buttons in the same time? Your wrong! My note is 0! No This game is poor! You think that you will be good and make a "Fatality by pushing two buttons in the same time? Your wrong! My note is 0! No more comments about this POOR game! Expand

See all 41 User Reviews

Awards & Rankings

61
20
#20 Most Discussed PS2 Game of 2005
10
#10 Most Shared PS2 Game of 2005