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Final Mortal Kombat 11 Tier Lists

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
I stopped playing MK11 competitively awhile ago. I still stayed relatively up to date on the meta, and still practiced & kept my characters fresh so I could realistically play at any given moment and perform pretty well. But anyway, it seems I must have missed something. When did Sonya go from around a top 10-12 or so character, to a bottom 5 character?

Side note, the “LAST tier list” or “FINAL tier list” titles for these tier lists make me chuckle. Just because there won’t be anymore balance changes, that doesn’t mean these tier lists won’t change or are final. And I mean that even in regards to those who are posting them. Obviously I understand they can mean that these are the last tier list(s) that they are going to make. Regardless tho, it still is funny to me.

This also further reinforces my belief that NRS really has hardcore conditioned a lot of you to such a remarkable degree.
 

xWildx

What a day. What a lovely day.
Seems about right. Due to customs, the top tier is basically just the better version of any of the characters below them. There’s no reason to choose outside top tier other than aesthetics.

Hopefully MK11 is the last time we’ll see customs/variations.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Other than Geras falling out of top tier this list is barely different from how people saw the game a few months after launch. The game started stale and just stayed that way imo
This isn’t true at all. Cetrion wasn’t even considered a top 10 character for awhile (in SF’s 1st tier list for example, which was a month after release, he had Cetrion at 12th). Scorpion was said to be a top 5 character for quite a long time. Sonya was thought to be one of the best characters if not THE best character, not to mention Cassie being somewhere near the top 5 as well. Baraka was up there for a long time as well, Skarlet wasn’t too too far behind. Oh and don’t forget a lot of people putting EB in the top 3 or so, some even saying he was arguably the best character. This list is a lot different than how people saw the game a few months after launch.
 

Kiss the Missile

Red Messiah
I should've specified. I didn't mean immediately after launch. I meant months later when people were starting to see how wild Liu was
 

M2Dave

Zoning Master
When did Sonya go from around a top 10-12 or so character, to a bottom 5 character?
I believe that she was the most damaging character on release day doing 40% mid screen and over 50% in the corner.

As far as Cetrion is concerned, many people thought that she was low or mid tier when the game came out, but she was arguably broken. LOL. Side switch teleport had significantly less recovery frames and required no defensive meter if I recall correctly. The amplified aerial beam had less recovery frames too. Boulders had more push back, even when flawless blocked. The run away game was unstoppable.

Other than Geras falling out of top tier this list is barely different from how people saw the game a few months after launch. The game started stale and just stayed that way imo
I obviously agree about the meta, but some characters did experience major shifts. I would add Johnny Cage, Kitana, and Sheeva to Juggs' list. Characters like Kano and Kotal Kahn received massive buffs while characters like Jade, Kabal, and Sub Zero became better due to custom moves.
 

Marinjuana

Up rock incoming, ETA 5 minutes
Things that stick out to me

Jax hanging out upstairs, don't have any objections, just used to seeing him lower.

I wonder why Rambo is considered so bad as to earn being called horrendous.

Except for the aforementioned Rambo, all tiers were "decent" or better. I like that way better than the arbitrary letters that always have an S tier, but it also matches my view on the balance of the game.
 
Things that stick out to me

Jax hanging out upstairs, don't have any objections, just used to seeing him lower.

I wonder why Rambo is considered so bad as to earn being called horrendous.

Except for the aforementioned Rambo, all tiers were "decent" or better. I like that way better than the arbitrary letters that always have an S tier, but it also matches my view on the balance of the game.
I don't mind a letter system, so long as the letters are actually used properly. So if you have almost all of the cast in S tier, that person doesn't understand how to properly use a lettered system.

Interestingly with Rewind's list, with his tier naming convention, it gives the impression that outside of Rambo, he sees everyone as okay at least, which is pretty balanced, generally speaking.
 
Didn't people figure out how broken Cetrion is because of that wind move?
Also I think Jade should move down 1 tier. She's around the same tier as Geras, Kano, Johnny... not better than them
 

Marlow

Premium Supporter
Premium Supporter
This isn’t true at all. Cetrion wasn’t even considered a top 10 character for awhile (in SF’s 1st tier list for example, which was a month after release, he had Cetrion at 12th). Scorpion was said to be a top 5 character for quite a long time. Sonya was thought to be one of the best characters if not THE best character, not to mention Cassie being somewhere near the top 5 as well. Baraka was up there for a long time as well, Skarlet wasn’t too too far behind. Oh and don’t forget a lot of people putting EB in the top 3 or so, some even saying he was arguably the best character. This list is a lot different than how people saw the game a few months after launch.
You could also add Raiden to that list. Started out as bottom five, even after the first few patches, but slowly got tweaked into a middle tier character.
 

Arqwart

Resident "Subhuman Piece of Trash" Edenian Player
Geras, Raiden, Kano, Kotal, Jade, Kollector, Erron, Scorpion, Noob, and Sonya all had volatile tier placement histories; Kitana, Shao, Frost, Skarlet, and Baraka never escaped their low / mid-low placements; Cetrion, Jacqui, Liu, Johnny, and Cassie all stayed in or near the top; and custom variations only did anything notable for Jade, Kotal, D'Vorah, Kano, Noob, Shang, and Kabal while everyone else just sorta continued sitting wherever they already were on most tier lists.

While I'm glad most everyone is viable in some way shape or form, it's rather sad seeing the bottom tier crew members that have been sitting there for ages (some as far back as release) still sitting there. They're objectively better than release due to poke changes, jailing changes, custom variations, and buffs; but they just.. didn't get enough to make up for the top tiers also getting those things. I especially feel bad for those who spent real world money to buy Shao Kahn. Honestly feels like it was a scam.
 

M2Dave

Zoning Master
Kitana, Shao, Frost, Skarlet, and Baraka never escaped their low / mid-low placements;
In my opinion, Kitana was top 10-15 when razors required no meter. She had exceptional chip damage and excellent pressure and flawless block mind games. Razors were also underrated as a meaty and preemptive anti-aerial tool. Kitana with pre-patch razors was the closest thing resembling fun that I ever had while playing this game. LOL.

I also believe that pre-patch Raiden was a superior character when the electric burst jailed after most strings. Sonic Fox used to rank that version of Raiden extremely high. I never agreed, but he was a better character than he is now.
 
not to mention Cassie being somewhere near the top 5 as well
Cassie had a completely safe herpderp ender in her Up Glow Kick. She very much got nerfed down from her former glory.

But yes, Sonya is the best example of early tier lists being wrong. And then, due to these early impressions where people won't just poke her out of her B1 fishing, she got her health put down to 950 anyway.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Cassie had a completely safe herpderp ender in her Up Glow Kick. She very much got nerfed down from her former glory.

But yes, Sonya is the best example of early tier lists being wrong. And then, due to these early impressions where people won't just poke her out of her B1 fishing, she got her health put down to 950 anyway.
There’s never a “right” or “correct” tier list. And there’s never a tier list that is set in stone. Tier lists are, and will always be, subjective. Even the tier lists that are based on MU numbers are subjective, considering MU numbers are subjective.

Early tier lists are a reflection of the knowledge available at that time, the experience, the current meta at the time, and characters being how they are at that time (meaning before they’re nerfed, buffed, or changed in any way).

Tier lists are virtually irrelevant. The only real uses they have is helping newer players, and potentially providing healthy discussions about the game, characters, MU’s, the meta, etc. But the actual lists themselves on their own provide very little real value.
 
There’s never a “right” or “correct” tier list.
While this is true, you can for sure call out the stupidly wrongheaded parts of tier lists. If someone put Shao into the top spot on their tier list, are you really going to consider that has as much validity as every list ever putting Jacqui at the top?
 

Marlow

Premium Supporter
Premium Supporter
While this is true, you can for sure call out the stupidly wrongheaded parts of tier lists. If someone put Shao into the top spot on their tier list, are you really going to consider that has as much validity as every list ever putting Jacqui at the top?
Probably not, but I'd be curious behind the reasoning. Unless they're just doing it to troll people, maybe they have a valid reason that they think makes Shao top tier. Maybe they think Shao is just straight up being played wrong, and that there's a better way to play him, or that people are sleeping on one or two of his moves, or whatever.

Either way, it would likely go against popular opinion, but it's not like there's a definitive right or wrong placement for characters.
 

Marlow

Premium Supporter
Premium Supporter
Early tier lists are a reflection of the knowledge available at that time, the experience, the current meta at the time, and characters being how they are at that time (meaning before they’re nerfed, buffed, or changed in any way).
And really, Sonya is exactly the type of character that's going to start a game being top tier. Very simple to pick up, simple 50/50 gameplan that people don't know how to defend, solid damage, and a solid projectile. She's the exact type of character in a fighting game that does really well early in the games life, and then fades once people figure out how to block her stuff and she gets dinged with a few nerfs. She's also textbook why calling for early buffs/nerfs in the first month of a games life can be a bad idea.