Neatherrealm Studios announced they are working on the next installment in the Mortal Kombat franchise: Mortal Kombat 12! This news came very suddenly. No one knows why or what this game will be about, but that hasn’t stopped speculation!
There were some hints that a twelfth game was being made, but no trailer came. More speculation rose when Ed Boone talked about a new project, and fans immediately assumed that it would be another Mortal Kombat game. Sure enough, their suspicions were confirmed.
There aren’t currently any details regarding a release date or what the game will be about exactly. Hence, fans are mixed about the recent news.
However, let’s go over some of the recent rumors. Spoilers ahead, so be warned!
What Do We Know About Mortal Kombat 12?
There hasn’t been much talk regarding Mortal Kombat 12‘s characters, setting, or plot. However, we do know that it will stick with its tried and true 2D fighting game formula. This has been Mortal Kombat‘s traditional take in fighting games since its first game in 1992.
It’s also safe to assume that this game will still go for over-the-top story beats and characters with brutal combos and iconic fatalities. As for what tone it will go for, though? No one knows. Throughout the Mortal Kombat series, the tone has shifted wildly from campy to gritty. It’s anyone’s guess where on this spectrum Mortal Kombat 12 will land.
As mentioned earlier, the character designs and guest characters are yet to be seen. Yet there are some givens. The cast of Scorpion, Sub-Zero, and Liu Kang has always been consistent throughout the franchise’s history. It’s a good bet they will appear.
Still, nostalgia can only get a game so far. The game must also play well if it wants to compete with, say, Street Fighter 6.
How Should The Story Of Mortal Combat 12 Go?
Ever since Mortal Kombat 2011, the series has delved into the path of alternate timelines. Younger characters meeting their future selves have started becoming a hallmark of the franchise. However, it works out better than some would think, because this doesn’t conflict with the older stories. Hence, the lore stays consistent.
Toward the end of Mortal Kombat 11, Liu Kang replaces Raiden as the new Elder God of Earthrealm. This is significant because of how far Liu Kang has come from being just another warrior for the Shaolin. If many of the other characters have met their younger selves, this may impact how their futures pan out.
One possible plot would delve even more into the whole time rearrangement. This could gain the attention of a potential new villain, or even bring back old ones, much like in Marvel’s Avengers: Endgame.
Of course, no one knows for certain. Still, considering the path Mortal Kombat has been going, such a plot for Mortal Kombat 12 would make sense.
The Older Stories
Mortal Kombat has been around for over 30 years. As a result, the older stories always seem to be the ones that get altered in the newer games. Between Scorpion killing Bi-Han, Kung Lao croaking because of his own arrogance, and Jonny Cage and Sonya Blade having a daughter, the series has changed the end feeling of those older games quite a bit!
However, every change majorly impacts the story. From something as small as Quan Chi manipulating Scorpion to as large as Lu Kang dying and being revived as a zombie, it’s all hugely affected on the story.
Plus, with all the timelines being altered from Mortal Kombat 9, 10, and 11, it seems to follow the Terminator series logic of time travel.
Change just one thing from the previous timelines, and it changes everything.
In Mortal Kombat 9, Raiden tried to save Smoke from being turned into a cyborg. Then, Sub-Zero was the victim. If this trend continues, who knows what kind of time-travel shenanigans the characters could encounter!
Fans Are Not Convinced
Despite the sudden news and the reputation of Neatherealm Studios, fans weren’t exactly happy with how the sudden shock announcement of Mortal Kombat 12. Why? Well, there’s no trailer, gameplay footage, character design, or even a solid release date. Hard to get excited when you don’t know what to be excited for.
There’s also little news of what guest characters would appear. Although, Ed Boone confirmed that Ellie from The Last of Us won’t show up, to fans’ dismay. There are still plenty of potential characters that could show up. Maybe Ash Williams will appear and bring groovy back.
Also, the lack of pre-release material is nothing new.
Neatherealm Studios has a reputation for doing little marketing for their games. Yet they have still managed many successful releases.
Punch It Out With Capcom
It seems likely that Mortal Kombat 12 might release around the same time that Street Fighter 6 will release. So far, Capcom has already marketed Juri Han and Cammy White’s new designs and fighting moves. Thus, fans are really excited to go another round with fan-favorite characters from this game.
Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat are considered the golden standard for all fighting games. These two have been rivals in the arcade and consoles since the mid-90s. If Neatherealm Studios wants to reignite that rivalry, they really have to do something incredible to compete with Capcom.
No one can really say which game is truly the best. But one thing fans can agree on is that each game has some kind of appeal to it. Street Fighter might not be as bloody or violent as Mortal Kombat. Yet they definitely are as addicting as Mortal Kombat. Could this be Mortal Kombat‘s chance to finally vanquish Street Fighter?
Only one way to find out: the waiting game.