Review by CAHowell
"Goody...More blood...All we need is some SEX..."
Krap or Gold? Who cares, it has boobs!
Ah, Mortal Kombat, last time we met, it was on the Gamecube with Deadly Aliance. Now that the MK team has got their heads out of their asses, they can create a decent MK game...Well, almost. MK: Deception is, I think, the 7th game in the series. While Mortal Kombat had it's peak back in 90's with the arcade game, the home consoles haevn't faired too well. While the Genesis versions of 1,2, and 3 did well, Nintendo gained their kiddy image via the editing in the SNES versions. Later PS games (AKA Sub Zero and Special Forced) were pure bull, and MKA for the GBA was the low point for the series. However, it turned around with Deadly Aliance: The first decent MK game in about 6 years. After selling more then a million copies across each system, MK returns to the fray with deception: A follow up to 2002's Deadly Alliance. So, how will MK fair this time around? Well, read the damn review to find out...
Graphics...Not quite....but deserves a cookie.
MK has had quite a interesting graphics life. First introduced with photo-capture software, it was one of the first games that used actual humans as the charaters. Now in full 3D, MK had changed a little from Deadly Alliance. First off, the character models are all redone, and have smoother polygons and better facial mapping. This, for the most part, is good, since the DA character models were quite faitful to the first game. Secondly, the Stages also look quite good, but still have problems. Fortunatly, the damned fog effect that was in DA is gone, leaving the game to look much more cleaner and polished. While the stages themselves look good, the backrounds look somewhat blah (Spikes, backround, weather effects). Even so, it is still very polished.
We now get to the other fields of the game: Konquest mode (A single player game), Puzzle mode (A Puzzle fighter parody), and the Chess mode. First off, the turd known as Konquest mode. Single handedly, these are the worst graphics seen on any next-gen console. Muddy, undeveloped, flat, and rushed describe them quite well (Character models feel uncomplete, mouth animation is horrible, etc), it's quite obvious that it was rushed to get the game out on time (Which is a crying shame, it could have been semi-playable if it was done right). Chess Kombat does it quite well, using chibi forms of the fighters. Only complaint is the fact that it is sometimes hard to see where the blocks are moving. Finally, Chess Kombat is quite clear, and is on par with the game game. Overall, the graphics range from horrible to beautiful, quite a bit of variety, if you ask me.
Not much to say...The music is on par with DA, which was average. The voice actors for the main game are quite good...If you think grunts and screams are briliance. However, with Konquest mode, the voice actors sound like they had throat cancer, blech...Could have used a bit more charm, but eh...
Gameplay...this is where it gets interesting...
Yeah, the biggie. First of all, the gameplay is pretty much the same as DA, since you can choose your own fighting style (Two hand to hand forms and one weapon based). Usually, the weapon is the slower, but the best of the three, while the other two offer a quicker defence. What IS back is the instant death traps (Presses, spikes, grinders, etc), where you will lose the match automaticly if you enter one of these spots. Fatalities are also back, and are now up to 2 fatalities per character. Also, you now have the ability to do a self fatality (Hari-Kari). Aracde mode is also similar to the original. However, the biggest mode is the ability to play on Xbox life. Just to lay it down for you: THIS IS THE FIRST 3D ONLINE GAME. Unfortunatly, you cannot earn koins in this mode, but you stilll can kick ass all the way across the country.
As well as the regular fighting mode, there are 3 other modes of interest: Konquest mode, Puzzle Kombat, and Chess Kombat. First off is Konquest mode. Basically, it is a somewhat bland training mode where you can learn about combat and walk around in real time. Unfortunatly, the developers spent a very little ammount of time in this mode, and made it look like one of the Playstation MK games. The 3rd person controls are pretty much horrible, and hard to use. Unfortunatly, you have to suffer through this mode to even unlock some of the better characters in the game.
Secondly is Puzzle Kombat: which is basically a Puzzle Figter clone with MK characters. Basically, you line up similar color blocks until you get a same colored MK symbol. Once it lands on the same color, it will not only clear any of the same color pieces that are connected, but drop the same number of blocks on the opponent. For the most part, it is a fun game to play with online players, but is too slow for playing alone.
Final major mode is the Chest Kombat. Basically, it is a modified chest where you select the ranks of your characters, and attempt to kill the head of the other side. When you get close to a enemy, you can attack them and take their spot. Fortunatly, this works quite well, since most of the enemies are already weakened (Health depends on ranks), and can easily be taken down with a few hits from your weapon. Whats even better is the mass ammounts of Koins you get for defeating a single piece on the board, and the bonus you get afterwards.
Finally is the Kyrpt, which is the same as it was in DA. Fortunatly, it is much easier to see where the better treasure is, but suffers from the fact that you can only get keys from Konquest mode. While most of the stuff is useless junk (Concept art, pictures, etc), there is still a few entertaining pieces you can get from this glorified shop.
While Mortal Kombat: Deception isn't a revolution for the series, it offers more then enough for the standard fighting game, and gives quite a few hours of unlocking things and playing against other players. One thing to note: If you do get a version, get the Kollectors Edition. While the behind the scenes video in it is similar to the DA version of the same thing (Note that they left our the lower rated games: Gold, Sub Zero, Special Forces, and the two Advance games), it has one gem that was taken out of the recently released MAT2: The first Mortal Kombat. While very old by todays standards, it is still a lost gem (Unfortunatly, there is no online play for it, but it's still good to see what the early 90's were like).
Graphics: 7/10 (Normal), 1/10 (Konquest mode)
Sound: 8/10 (Normal), 3/10 (Konquest mode)
Control: 7/10 (Normal, Puzzle, and Chess), 3/10 (Konquest mode)
Replay: Very High
Completion: 9-40 hours
FINAL: 29/40 = 7.8 out of 10
Reviewer's Rating: 4.0 - Great
Originally Posted: 10/06/04
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