A Mortal Kombat vs. DCU Update

A Mortal Kombat vs. DCU Update

Over at Worlds Collide, Midway Games has kept busy providing the latest info about their upcoming crossover fighter Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe. In this week’s episode of the MKast, a podcast run by MKDCU producers Hans and Hector, talked with John Edwards (not that one), Senior Designer, and John Tobias, the series’ co-creator. They gave some new info, and gave a peak behind the curtain of the game’s development.

At the Leipzig Games Convention, a full speed build was on hand, and Midway showed off some of the special moves the Joker will be using in his quest for the biggest laugh. On the podcast, Edwards brought up Katana, who has long been his favorite character. In fact, using her in Mortal Kombat 2 tournaments is what got him into the games industry. A lot of her classic combos will be present in MKDCU, along with a couple of Mileena’s moves from the older games. Edwards promised that every character will have unique special moves, even including different grabs and throws, combos, and fighting styles. Several characters do have teleports, for example, but some are defensive and some are offensive, and each has different times when they can be used. Katana’s for example can lead directly into a combo, while Sub-Zero’s is used as an escape when he’s cornered.

Hector let slip that there will be multiple fatalities for each character, specifically referencing The Joker, as they moved the conversation to these finishing moves. Ed Boon, the series head, often initially designs the fatalities though anyone on the design/development team can come up with one as a possibility. Boon will then draw up a stick figure version of the fatality before bringing the idea over to the motion capture facility across the street from their design studio. They bring the “mocap” footage in, and splice in the other animations (parts that can’t be physically motion captured).

Edwards said that aside from physics, the gameplay isn’t directly affected by “next-gen” system specs. However, having all the extra storage space for enhanced graphics, sound, and all those individual moves and animations has been liberating for the design team. However, they still run out of space when they’re constantly cramming new animations in.

Rage Mode! It’s been teased elsewhere, but here’s what Rage Mode is at this point in time. Currently, it lasts about 6 seconds, though that may be changed before the game comes out. Rage ties into the story, though they’re not saying how yet. The Rage meter builds up through everything you do, attacking, defending, special moves, etc. It’s designed to stop people from crouching and running away (Rage may be able to break through blocks). When Rage is active, it works as armor reducing your opponent’s attacks, but as of right now your attacks don’t do extra damage. It will not be “game-breaking,” as Edwards said, eschewing the rest of gameplay too much.

After the talk of Rage, John Tobias joined Hans and Hector. Tobias is illustrating the upcoming comic book that ties in to the game. He’ll be penciling it, and doing the full color art for the cover. They actually did a comic book for the very first game, though it had extremely limited production. He talked a bit about his influences and memories in the comic book world, and how he originally aspired to do comic art before getting into games.

When he first heard of the idea he “reacted the way everybody did. My face looked like I bit into a hot pepper.” Now that he’s seen more of it, and seen the story, he thinks it’s cool. The “core of the characters” have some similarities, especially with the more martial arts themed characters like Batman. The comic is only 12 pages, but will help establish the story and how they join together. Tobias is also currently working on a non-MK related comic limited series that’ll be shiping next year.

Goro is Tobias’s favorite character all-time from the Mortal Kombat world. The original idea was for him to feel like a gigantic wall that you just couldn’t knock down. He was actual a stop-motion figure that they animated frame-by-frame. Tobias also really liked Liu Kang, who was created to be the classic hero in the MK realm. Whether Liu Kang has a central role in the new game remains to be seen.

Some other tidbits:

There will be ranked matches, and an online leader board.

There will be biographies included for all the characters to catch players up on both sets.

As is all the rage lately, MKDCU will have a collector’s edition alongside the standard $60 game-only version. It will definitely include some comic book sketches by John Tobias, along with other unannounced goodies.

Oan Senate is one of the background levels, as well as the Gotham City Rooftops (See art above) and Street levels. A level is set on the Justice League’s Space Station, and has a huge presence on the story mode. Many more still to come.

Check out Worlds Collide to listen to the MKast and get all this and more info

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