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Mortal Kombat: Armageddon

Platform(s): PlayStation 2, Wii, Xbox
Genre: Action
Publisher: Midway
Developer: Midway

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Wii Preview - 'Mortal Kombat: Armageddon'

by Thomas Wilde on March 6, 2007 @ 12:40 a.m. PST

Mortal Kombat: Armageddon will feature the most complete Mortal Kombat roster ever, including every character from the Mortal Kombat fighting universe, revolutionary Create–A–Fighter and Create–A–Fatality modes, plus a brand new Konquest mode, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon promises to be the most complete, intensely lethal, fighting experience ever!

Genre: Action
Publisher: Midway
Developer: Midway
Release Date: April 23, 2007

As with the last game in the Mortal Kombat series, Deception, Midway is taking a little extra time to bring the newest MK title to a Nintendo console. In this instance, it's Armageddon, the 62-character grudge match that's supposed to end the current storyline in the MK series.

Of course, they can't add any more characters for the Wii version, since all of the characters are sort of already here. Every character that has ever appeared in a Mortal Kombat game is present in Armageddon, from the series mainstays to one-hit wonders like Jarek, Kai, and Mavado. The fighters who've been in one of the 3D MKs are almost unchanged from their previous incarnations, although they've all lost one of their two martial-arts styles, while the new arrivals receive the customary facelifts and extra costumes.

The Wii version of Armageddon is most notable for how it uses the Wiimote. One of the hallmarks of the MK series has always been how it requires the player to learn and memorize a series of increasingly arcane button combinations to master his character, from special moves to secret fatalities. Armageddon was, of course, no exception to this rule.

With the Wiimote, using your character's special moves is as easy as moving the remote from side to side. Each of the remote's motions corresponds to one of your character's style-independent techniques, like Scorpion's spear or Sub-Zero's freeze.

At the same time, Armageddon's Kreate-A-Fatality system is set up to work with the remote. On the PS2 and Xbox, Kreate-A-Fatality required the input of a series of button combinations; it was like pulling off a Fatality in past games, but you had to do it repeatedly and in a certain order within an increasingly tight timeframe. On the Wii, all you have to do is wave the remote around and you'll get the fatality you want. If you prefer the old way of doing things, though, Armageddon is compatible with both the Wii's Classic Controller and the old GameCube controller.

On top of that, Armageddon retains all of the extra modes from its previous versions, such as the infamous Kreate-a-Kombatant mode that allows you to make your own fighters (everyone who owns the game should be sure to make Jack Thompson!), the Mario-Kart-on-crack-with-blood racing mini-game Motor Kombat, and the best iteration yet of Konquest, an adventure game that explores the backstory behind Armageddon.

Like past late MK ports, the Wii version of Armageddon isn't a dramatic reinvention of the title. It's the same game with a few extra bells and whistles. Here, it uses the Wii's functionality to make the game arguably easier to play than it's ever been before. If you'd be an MK fan if not for the rote memorization the series usually requires, this may be the time to check it out again.


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