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Question Why does every Mortal Kombat have to be completely different than the last?

I can totally understand it in the present day, but I meant when it was first changed massively during the 3D era (but I can't remember the controls for those off the top of my head so maybe that was for a technical reason then too?). But I still don't like away-towards/towards-away inputs, I tend to fuck them up a lot. Either I've got terrible motor skills or my controllers are getting old (probably both... albeit mostly the former), but they're moves that often tend to fail to register when I try them. :(

Still at least we've got the vitally important 'switch stance' button to make up for it :D
Ah, I never properly played the 3D era titles as I didn't like them. Of that era, I mostly played Mortal Kombat Unchained on my PlayStation Vita simply out of bordom on my commutes to and from work. The mini games were a lot more fun that the actual game :p.

For back, forward motions, go into training mode and do them and see if the input is registering or not. Do it slow and deliberate and also fast. That'll rule out your Controller or not.

Personally, I prefer back forward motions to quarter circle motions; I botch up the latter more (and it's totally me).
 

mrapchem

Noob
Actually, this is a terrific question.


In playing all the classic MK games all the way up to MK11, NRS/Midway has established a lengthy history of completely reinventing the proverbial wheel when it comes to Mortal Kombat games. There are literally three examples where NRS kept gameplay relatively intact from title to title. For all the other Mortal Kombat games, they've had the tendency to completely overhaul literally everything.

Mortal Kombat 2 is the first MK game that was a true legacy title. All but 2 of the original cast returned, and not only did they all retain their special moves (and their inputs), but they all got even more special moves. As a matter of fact, this game is literally the perfect sequel because it is an expansion of the previous title in every way - more characters, more moves, more finishers, more stages, more secrets, everything. Yet, it was created directly on the foundations of it predecessor.

The next example of a true MK legacy title is Mortal Kombat Trilogy. I consider Trilogy its own title separate from MK3/UMK3 because it was the first MK title to be released exclusively on home consoles (Playstation 1 and Nintendo 64 for you youngins out there) and its gameplay was completely different from MK3, even though it borrowed heavily from it. It kept the run mechanic, kept all the MK3 characters and their moves, but added more onto them. It even added a brand-new mechanic, the Aggressor.

And then the final example of a legacy based Mortal Kombat game is Mortal Kombat Deception - it kept the 3-stance system that was started in MK Deadly Alliance, along with the 3D-era sidestepping mechanics. Most of the returning characters kept the fighting stances/special moves that they had in the MKDA, but they also had many of their classic moves returned back to them. Sub-Zero got his Ice Clone, Raiden got his teleport and Superman, Scorpion got his teleport back (though it became a kick for some reason). Some of the returning characters weren't completely built on legacy; Scorpion had one of his fighting stances completely exchanged for an inferior one, and his weapon changed also.

Other than these three games, every other MK game has undergone a drastic overhaul when compared to the game before, and though it provides for some fond memories and excitement for a new game, it also elicits confusion for veteran players and does not allow for the development of a consistent MK meta for players to build on. Going back the example of MK9, anyone that began their foray into competitive fighting games with MK9 had to rewire their fighting game circuits in order to become proficient in MKX. Virtually none of the fighting game skills transferred over directly from one game to the next because their metas were too different to even compare.

DJT showed us all during his EVO MK9 finals match against REO the importance of patiently walking your way in towards a zoning opponent. Such a moment is nigh impossible to replicate in MKX, nor is it even necessary because the run button combined with ridiculous jump-in punches nearly nullify any kind of zoning in that game. Character walk/dash speeds were very important in MK9, but in MKX nearly everyone walked at the speed of continental drift because dashes and running were so powerful.

And now currently, any skills that players gained during the MKX era are useless in MK11. Meter is different, variations are completely different, there's no run button because walking/dash blocking replaced it, breakers were replaced with breakaways, the wakeup system is night-and-day different, thereby killing okizeme, etc...

I suppose that what I'm trying to say is this: the lack of legacy in NRS titles is in fact one of the most consistent pieces of legacy that NRS has offered for the Mortal Kombat games, whether it's to the benefit or the detriment of the games and players. Personally, one of the things I love the most about another franchise that I enjoy, Super Smash Brothers, is that no matter which one I play, the skills I gained in playing the previous titles will translate to the current and future titles. I know all of Donkey Kong's moves, all of Yoshi's moves, Bowser, Pikachu, Dark Samus, etc. But even though I know my characters moves and inputs and have a basic idea of how they will play before the next game come out, the differences in the engine and mechanics, plus some of the properties of the attacks themselves ensure that I never feel like I'm playing the same game as before.

None of the Smash games feel anything alike. Even among Smash 4 and Ultimate, which are the most similar, there are so many differences that the experience is completely different, even though Ultimate kept all of Smash 4's characters and mechanics. NRS can do the same thing with Mortal Kombat - build on legacy, while adding new things to make the games feel different. Casual players won't notice or care one way or the other - they buy and play the game because of its name. But us veteran players would likely enjoy the franchise much more if we didn't have to deal with the frustration of losing things that we liked and gaining unsuitable replacements, as we start completely from scratch from game to game.
 
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colby4898

Special Forces Sonya Up-player
I like it. I remember being disappointed at Injstice 2 reveal because it looked identical to 1. However at least you know what you're getting. I love MKX and don't really enjoy MK11. This makes me hope the next game is a legacy injustice so I at least know I'll probably enjoy it
 
To say they abandon the previous game and start from the ground up isn't exactly accurate when they're continually using aspects of every past game they make when designing the new one. The outcome is a new fresh thing, yes, but it's always built from what came before even if it may not seem like it.

I could see it being rough for a casual player to have to learn a new game each time, but to a competitor it should be just another adaptation in the road. On the flip side learning a new game is a lot of fun so I personally don't think the NRS style of making something new each time is bad at all, or even outlandish.

Street Fighter, while definitely a legacy game series, comes out with huge changes each game too and I believe it to be one of the series' strengths along side what NRS does with MK.

It's no different than learning Tekken one day and then DBZ the next, which lots of people do.
 

Metin

White Ramses
in terms of gameplay there are not too much differencies tbh. Finishing moves, rosters, visual improvements are out of topic.

MK1 to MK2 - Combo improvements.
MK2 to MK3 - Chain combo buttons and run button.
MK3 to UMK3 - Some nerfs.
UMK3 to MK4 - Weapons, Stage interactables. Half jump attacks.
3D console Era - i didn't like any of them and i have not much information about their gameplay, all looks same to me but i am sure there are minor differencies.
MK9 to MKX - run button again is it new? No. improved 50/50 game. Variation system.
MKX to MK11 - Breakaway, Fatal Blow, Flawless Block. Wakeup system. Breakaway and Fatal Blow are garbage new mechanics tbh but i like Flawless Block idea, sadly it is not enough to enjoy the game for me. Armour Break isn't new imo, you can break armour in MKX too but MK11 version is is more mature.

Anyway if i do the same list for Street Fighter Series i can find this much differencies in it to be sure. Longlived "MK games are completely different than previous ones" theory is nothing but an overrated myth.
 

IlluvialCE

Ruler of the Skies
To say they abandon the previous game and start from the ground up isn't exactly accurate when they're continually using aspects of every past game they make when designing the new one. The outcome is a new fresh thing, yes, but it's always built from what came before even if it may not seem like it.

I could see it being rough for a casual player to have to learn a new game each time, but to a competitor it should be just another adaptation in the road. On the flip side learning a new game is a lot of fun so I personally don't think the NRS style of making something new each time is bad at all, or even outlandish.

Street Fighter, while definitely a legacy game series, comes out with huge changes each game too and I believe it to be one of the series' strengths along side what NRS does with MK.

It's no different than learning Tekken one day and then DBZ the next, which lots of people do.
I definitely disagree with a lot here. The games are VASTLY different in ways that no Tekken or SF game are. From the pacing of matches, moves characters have, how movement works, how system mechanics work. I would wager to say that outside of Smash Bros there is no fighting game franchise on the planet that reinvents itself as hard as MK does but even then Smash characters retain familiar moves and playstyles in every subsequent entry. The changes in the system mechanics from one SF to the next are nowhere near as drastic as going from a game like MK9 to MKX or MKX to MK11. The way characters control, the moves they do and the core foundation the system mechanics are built off of are consistent enough that you don't have to completely relearn the very act of controlling your character from game to game.

The "Learning Tekken one day then DBZ the next" bit is all that relevant. Its not a matter of CAN someone learn each NRS MK game cause ofc anyone can. NRS has its hardcore following of players that mostly just stick to its games and there doesn't really seem to be a whole helluva lot of overlap between the greater FGC and the top NRS talent. Its kinda weird how "separate" the NRS scene feels for lack of a better word. That's an entirely separate tangent though so I'll save that for another day. The point is just why is MK such a reinvention, specifically. IJ1 to IJ2 feels like a natural evolution. Characters remained fairly the same, system mechanics were built upon or changed slightly but not overhauled. If you like IJ1 you were pretty much guaranteed to like IJ2 and vice versa.

It just blows my mind on a personal level that you could make Kabal without a gas blast working like it always did, or a Sub Zero without his clone. The very moves the characters do when buttons are pressed are completely different from game to game, that almost never happens. There just feels like there is 0 legacy between the games. MK11 just feels like its from a completely different series from MKX or MK9. Even MKX to MK9 feel like entirely different franchises though slightly less so due to the system mechanics not being completely gutted and rebuilt from the ground up like in MK11.

Again, no shade at any of the 3 NRS MKs, they're all dope in their own ways. Its just weird as hell to me how they're handled, personally.

At the end of the day its all opinion of course. If you feel there's more in common than I do that's 100% valid.