Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks Review 3 Reasons To Buy

Mortal Kombat Screenshot

Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks Review 3 Reasons To Buy

  • Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks offers Single or Two-player co-op gameplay. Play as Liu Kang or Kung Lao, each with their own unique repertoire of four “Attack Styles” plus Special Attacks, and Fatalities. Unlock additional characters and abilities through various gameplay systems.
  • More Comprehensive Fatalities, New Multalities, Brutalities and Classic Special Attacks.
  • Interactive Environments in. Melt enemies in acid pits, impale them on spiked ceilings, and hang them from hooks. Combine background interactions with Combat to solve unique action-orientated puzzles.

Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks developed and published by Midway was released in 2005 for PlayStation 2 and Xbox. This game is an Action/Adventure title driven by both intense single and multiplayer action. Similar to the recently released Mortal Kombat: Deception, background interactions (i.e., acid pits, living trees, spiked ceilings, etc.), multiple new fatalities, and action-based puzzles will also play an important role in the player’s quest for an “outstanding” victory. Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks will feature an impressive line-up of Mortal Kombat characters, as well, that make frequent appearances as enemies, in boss battles and during several additional in-game interactions.

The Feel of a Multi-Genre Video Game

Mortal Kombat Screenshot
Graphics and visuals just as diverse as the gameplay.

Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks is a very diverse game, blending elements of fighting, action, adventure, puzzles and some role playing. These different genres work well together and the arcade-style controls allow gamers of all skill levels, yes even beginners, to pick it up and play immediately.

At the start of the game you can choose either Kung Lau or Liu Kang. Each are martial arts experts with different moves, combos and animations. Kung’s specialty is a Dr. No-inspired bladed hat while Liu is able to shoot fireballs. There are more characters to unlock and fight against including Scorpion, Reptile, Johnny Cage, Sub-Zero and Kano. The enemy characters are an eclectic mix, running the gamut from ancient Asian mythology to Western cartoon and comic book villains.

Unlike most games, regardless of genre, Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks is blessed with both great single and multiplayer modes. A co-op mode, known as the Ko-op mode to you Kombat fanatics, is an excellent team-based experience that lets you partner with a friend to take on a seemingly endless gang of enemies. The neat thing about this mode is that you or your partner don’t have to be evenly matched in skills.

Gameplay of Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks

Mortal Kombat Screenshot
Exciting battles and features of Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks.

As in an RPG, experience points are awarded for specific accomplishments. In this case, making uninterrupted combos and fatalities. You can make hundreds of points for a good fatality. The points can then be spent on purchasing more moves, combos, fatalities, brutalities and throwing moves. You can even upgrade some of your moves to make them longer and more powerful. Every move or item that you purchase is fully explained and demonstrated in the menu.

There are plenty of carrots-on-a-stick to keep players enthused in Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks. Unlockables include mini-games, movies, moves, artwork and games demos such as a playable version of Mortal Kombat II.

The controls are fairly simple yet intuitive. The typical MK moves are still here, your jumps, quick and heavy attacks and of course, launch attacks (the infamous uppercut). Your special moves are now as easy as ever to pull off. Instead of having to bash mind-numbing button combos, the R trigger acts as your special move modifier. You do have a power meter for your special moves, so you won’t be able to just sit there throwing fireballs all day.

Throughout the co-op journey you will find various health power-ups that will keep you and your buddy replenished. At any given moment you can steal your partner’s health by attacking him. Conversely this could also happen to you.

Interactive Environments

Mortal Kombat Screenshot
Colorful scenes and environments.

Along with an arcade gameplay style, the game also shares an arcade-style look. The graphics are colorful and clean, but they vary in quality depending on the style of the character. The environments may not have a lot of depth to them, but they do have interactive elements such as spiked walls and pits that you can use to help you destroy the enemy.

Since it’s not a split screen you can’t properly battle enemies to the left and right at the same time since the screen isn’t big enough to go in both directions. This will leave one of you vulnerable to attacks from enemies of either side that remain off-screen. There’s really no way around this except to try to remain close to your teammate at all times and avoid splitting up.

Last Remarks

MK Shaolin Monks has one of the shortest learning curves compared to most of the games today, which is a good thing. The controls are fairly simple yet intuitive. If you’re looking for a fight you came to the right place. If you’re looking for something more than just a fight you’ve also come to the right place. Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks puts the mental fun back in fundamentals.

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