by Arnav Sawant
Mortal Kombat 11 was released in April of this year with no hints of additional content. Last seen since Mortal Kombat 2011, characters from the first Mortal Kombat game make their return to play, or analyze, for further lore. However, guest characters continue to make their way into the franchise, such as Alien and Predator in Mortal Kombat X. This year, out of nowhere, Ed Boon, an employee at Netherrealm Studios, revealed Shang Tsung, the first character in this year’s first Kombat Pack.
Shang Tsung is a sorcerer who dabbles in dark magic and the otherworldly. In the Mortal Kombat universe, there are four major realms: Outworld, Earthrealm, Netherrealm, and Edenia. Shang Tsung is believed to be from Earthrealm but has spent most of his years in Outworld serving the now deceased emperor, Shao Kahn (who is also a playable character, available free, by pre-ordering the game). Shang Tsung was also the boss of the very first Mortal Kombat game, so this character reveal excited most long-time fans. At the end of the reveal video, three other major characters were announced, along with two anonymous guest characters. This tease was the push the game needed, and popularity soared exponentially.
The other three characters, Nightwolf, Sindel, and Spawn, were announced but with no reveal date. Nightwolf was just a normal man, living a casual life in the Matokan Tribe. He was a historian before Shao Kahn attacked Earthrealm during the events of Mortal Kombat 3. He saw the people of Earthrealm get murdered without mercy, helpless. However, he had known of this invasion. The natural spirits of his lands chose him as the protector of the Matoka. He adopted the name, Nightwolf, and swore to protect Earthrealm with his life. He has contact with the Elder Gods and Raiden, a demi-god of lightning in case of severe emergency.
Sindel was the ruler of Edenia, ruling with her daughter Kitana until her realm lost 10 consecutive Mortal Kombat tournaments. As a consequence, her realm was forced to merge with Outworld, with the ruler of that time being the one and only Shao Kahn. Rather than succumbing to him, she killed herself. Sindel is rather a mixed character, as she exists in multiple timelines with different results. In one timeline, she is alive with no memory of her suicide, as she was revived by Shang Tsung. In another she is revived by a different sorcerer, pledging complete loyalty to him and stopping Earthrealm. However, in any timeline that she is revived, she possesses extreme vocal powers. This makes her a formidable opponent.
Finally, the last non-guest character is Spawn. Spawn is a very mysterious character, also being significant as the first character to come in any DLC from the comic book series. He was a human that served for the US Marine Corps before being employed in the CIA. When Al Simmons (Spawn) wanted to retire, his boss ordered Simmon’s partner to kill him. He succeeded and, because Al was an assassin, he was sent to hell for his crimes. Simmons pleaded to see his wife once more to the devil. He was restored, but with no memory of his previous life. He now roams Earthrealm with a bloodlust that is insatiable.
And saving the best for last, Joker and the Terminator T-800. Both these characters were announced and revealed in the full Kombat Pack Trailer. The Terminator T-800 is the newest model and is the same one as in the upcoming Terminator movie. As for the Joker… He’s the Joker. Both these guest characters were extremely hyped up and well worth the wait. Now it’s time for the real wait. I can’t wait to see Joker performing some fatalities without the boundaries of the DC fighting games!