This week marks the release of Mortal Kombat 11, the latest entry in NetherRealm’s brutal fighting series. Even after nearly a dozen iterations, Mortal Kombat remains one of the most beloved franchises in gaming, and its newest installment is perhaps the most ambitious yet, featuring an expansive roster, a wealth of customization options, and a time-bending story-orchestrated by the first major female antagonist in the series’ history, Kronika-that unites past and present versions of characters.
The narrative in particular is one of the standout elements of the game. «Watching the character interactions between young and old selves [is] a highlight, and with the exception of a somewhat flat Sonya Blade, the solid performances are endearingly sincere with some unexpected moments of introspection,» GameSpot’s Edmond Tran wrote in our Mortal Kombat 11 review-in-progress.
Ahead of its release, many other outlets have also begun publishing reviews of Mortal Kombat 11. We’ve collected a sample of them below to give you an overview of what critics have to say about the highly anticipated fighting game. For an even broader look at its reception, be sure to check out GameSpot sister site Metacritic.
- Game: Mortal Kombat 11
- Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC, Nintendo Switch
- Developer: NetherRealm
- Release date: April 23
- Price: $60 / £50
GameSpot – 8/10
«MK11 isn’t just a sequel for series fans and NetherRealm devotees, it’s a gateway into the realm of fighting games for anyone who has a passing interest in watching ruthless warriors beat each other silly. Streamlined mechanics keep the act of fighting furiously exciting no matter what your skill level, and comprehensive tutorials encourage you to dig into the nitty-gritty. There’s a diverse roster of interesting characters and playstyles, and the story mode is an entertaining romp. The unfulfilling approaches to the game’s dynamic single-player content and progression may feel like they’ve totally whiffed (at least at this early stage), but Mortal Kombat 11 hits where it matters.» – Edmond Tran [Full review-in-progress]
IGN – 9/10
«It’s a rare fighting game that hits just about every note as strongly as Mortal Kombat 11 does. Everything from its methodical and deep combat to its fantastically absurd story mode and its rock-solid netcode, right down to its extraordinarily comprehensive tutorial is absolutely exceptional. It’s only when you get into its drawn-out progression that it trips up: the keys to unlocking Mortal Kombat 11’s rich vault of customization options are locked behind the frustratingly gimmicky and grindy barriers of the Krypt and Towers of Time. This series continues to prove that there’s real fighting depth beyond its notoriously gory Fatalities, and this one in particular stands out as a spine-ripping good time.» – Mitchell Saltzman [Full review]
GamesRadar+ – 4/5
«Mortal Kombat 11 struck a rare chord in me where, even after playing twenty hours in a few days, I want to go back and play more. I doubt I’ll be next in line to compete at EVO, but as a casual player who enjoys putting extra time in-I love what NetherRealm Studios has put together.» – Aron Garst [Full review]
US Gamer -3.5/5
«There’s a lot to love in Mortal Kombat 11. It’s a fantastic fighter with a roster of 25 varied characters, tons of customization options, beautiful graphics, and one of the best story modes in a fighting game. It’s a shame that modes like the Krypt and Towers of Time inject annoyance and tedium into what was an excellent experience. The progression is complex and obtuse, when it should be easy and straightforward. MK 11 could been an all-time best, but it’s just a contender.» – Mike Williams [Full review]
Hardcore Gamer – 3.5/5
«Mortal Kombat 11 is the most beautiful game NetherRealm Studios has ever developed that’s backed up with familiar combat honed to perfection over the years. The story may stumble towards the end, but overall is the best narrative ever included in a NetherRealm game thanks to an excellent combination of comedy, emotion, and character-driven moments. Mortal Kombat 11 provides a solid if unremarkable cast of characters to choose from and plenty of ways to customize them. It’s just a pity that much of the activities and rewards revolve so heavily around grinding and microtransactions.» – Kevin Dunsmore [Full review]