Released in 1992 by Midway Games, Mortal Kombat burst onto the arcade scene with an unprecedented level of violence and controversy that would forever change the landscape of fighting games. With its unique blend of gruesome fatalities, memorable characters, and engaging gameplay, Mortal Kombat 1 was a groundbreaking title that set the stage for a legendary franchise that continues to thrive today.
Mortal Kombat was the brainchild of Ed Boon and John Tobias, two visionary game developers at Midway Games. Inspired by the success of Capcom's Street Fighter II, they sought to create a fighting game that would stand out in a crowded genre. The result was a game that leaned into its own identity with ferocious intensity.
What set Mortal Kombat apart from its competitors was its unique combat system and its iconic Fatalities. Unlike other fighting games of the time, Mortal Kombat incorporated a button layout that included High Punch, Low Punch, High Kick, Low Kick, and Block. This allowed for a deeper level of strategy and complexity in battles.
But it was the Fatalities that truly captured players' imaginations. These finishing moves, executed after defeating an opponent, were a gruesome spectacle. From Sub-Zero ripping out an enemy's spine to Scorpion breathing fire to incinerate his foes, Fatalities added a layer of shock and excitement that was unparalleled at the time.