In the modern day society, it is hard for people to even think about living their day to day lives without some sort of technology. Since the start of the 1990’s, technology has slowly started to creep up and if we fast forward to 2017, we can see how luxurious it has made our lives and how much easier it is to contact someone (via text message) or apply for jobs (online), as examples. Technology has provided us with continuously new and improved cell-phones, computers and so on, with enough room for more and more development. Technology has also provided us with something many people, especially youth, enjoy doing; playing video games.
I myself am in no way a “hardcore gamer” if a gamer at all, however there was always one game series I could not get enough of. That game is Mortal Kombat. The next few postings on this blog page (on this topic) will revolve around Mortal Kombat characters and briefly touch on a few events and locations within the series. Postings will consist of either three, two or one character discussions at a time, depending on alliances and allegiances. Prior to discussing the first few selected characters, allow me to give some background on Mortal Kombat.
The first Mortal Kombat game came out in 1992, where it was playable in the arcade or on Super Nintendo systems. The last (for now) release of the game was in 2015, called Mortal Kombat X (MKX) playable for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows. From 1992 to 2015, a span of 23 years, 20 Mortal Kombat games, two Mortal Kombat movies, a few TV series and many comic books have been released. This illustrated just how popular the series is and how so many different people love playing the game and/or watching both the movies and TV show, as well as reading the comic books. It was classified as one of the best fighting games ever to be released, and continues to flirt with that statement. The first Mortal Kombat movie, made in 1995, was the first action movie I had seen in my life and little did I know at the time, my passion for it began. Two years later, in 1997, Mortal Kombat Annihilation, the second movie came out. Although the first movie received great reviews and the second one did not, I personally thoroughly enjoyed them and to this day cannot get enough of them, I can however completely understand why many did not like it. This is where I began to slowly look more and more into Mortal Kombat. Their superhuman abilities, the storylines, the character backgrounds, their appearances and their alignment are all aspects that kept me wanting more and more Mortal Kombat. Instead of discussing in-depth the background involving creators, writers and actors/actresses, the posts regarding Mortal Kombat (as mentioned above) will instead revolve around more the main characters, both good and bad and will occasionally include my personal opinion. Perhaps the discussion of the production crew can be saved for another day. I will finish each character discussion with their current alliances (both in the past and present) and whereabouts. I want to give you fair warning of possible spoilers and yes, it will be a little complex to follow as we will jump from game to game and timeline to timeline, I apologize in advance. I also would like to mention that I will cover main storylines for characters and not each and every one made, depending on the game themselves. I encourage you to give your two cents and advice or helpful comments while reading. Well, let’s get started!
Simply put, Raiden is the God of Thunder, Protector of Earthrealm and easily one of the most powerful characters in the Mortal Kombat universe. An original character, he eventually did reach status of an Elder God. Raiden is known for his guidance and teachings to all selected Earthrealm warriors. He shares a personal “Father/Son” relationship with protagonists Liu Kang and Kung Lao. Being a God, Raiden’s origins are up in the sky – in Heaven, although he does reside in Earthrealm. With his knowledge, he leads all Earthrealm warriors into Mortal Kombat against the “Forces of Darkness” – which I will elaborate on. The whole Mortal Kombat Tournament began when Raiden found out that Shao Kahn, an evil conqueror and one of the main villains, wanted to conquer Earthrealm. He turned to the Elder Gods for assistance and they provided this Tournament. If Earthrealm were to win, Shao Kahn would be unable to conquer it and therefore Earthrealm would be safe. However, if Earthrealm warriors were to be defeated then Earthrealm would be no longer the same under the evil tyrant’s power and leadership. Raiden’s greatest enemy seems to be Lord Shinnok, who is another main villain. Raiden has fought against him in several instances and won, seemingly locking him up in the Netherrealm, another realm in Mortal Kombat. It goes without say that Raiden is a good warrior, fights on the side of the “Forces of Light” and does his best to help and mentor others. Raiden is also a member of the White Lotus Society, a faction he was the creator of which consists of warriors defending Earthrealm, and his allies consist of Liu Kang, Kung Lao, Johnny Cage, Sonya Blade and Kurtis Stryker to name a few. He currently took a different approach to protecting Earthrealm. Rather than being defensive while Earthrealm is on the attack, Raiden will seek and destroy all enemies without mercy or remorse and those who dare approach and even think about conquering Earthrealm.
It is said during the second Mortal Kombat movie (Mortal Kombat Annihilation) that Raiden and Shao Kahn are brothers, but this is a faded thought. Faded or not, it is still somewhat prevalent and something to always keep in mind while watching or playing the games.
2. Liu Kang
Character number two selected to discuss is a fan favourite and well known “good guy” – Liu Kang. Liu Kang is an “original 10” character from the series, appearing in all games (in one way or another) and both movies. He fights on the “Forces of Light” and is classified as a Shaolin Monk and his origins lie in China, therefore making him an Earthrealm warrior and one of the greatest to ever participate in the Mortal Kombat tournament. He has defeated numerous characters, including major antagonists and villains Shang Tsung and Shao Kahn. He is also a member of the White Lotus Society and trains at the well known Wu Shi Academy. It was during the “Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance” game introduction that he was killed, while at the Wu Shi Academy by Shang Tsung. Personally, I was very angry with this as he is the main hero and a major piece of the Mortal Kombat universe. I was happy to see him return slowly back into his regular form after going through a few “awkward” stages which saw him as a zombie and half-dead human. Due to a confusing back and forth with different timelines, Liu Kang regained his regular form that the fans have come to know and love with only his equipment and clothing changing, as was constant with all characters. He is best known for his “Bicycle Kick” and while performing it, he seems to yell and make a unique sound or battle cry. He is loyal and follows Lord Raiden in conquest and does his absolutely best to continue to train and save Earthrealm – he is unlike most warriors. Unfortunately for Mortal Kombat fans, including myself, Liu Kang is currently an undead servant of Quan Chi, as at the end of the ninth Mortal Kombat installment (known as MK2011 or MK9), he was accidentally killed and his soul was collected by Quan Chi who used it to create an evil “revenant” version of him. His alliance remains (for the time being) with Quan Chi and Lord Shinnok, both evil characters.
3. Kung Lao
Both a Shaolin Monk and a member of the White Lotus Society, Kung Lao fights for peace. Being a close friend of and always hinted as Liu Kang’s cousin, he is sometimes frustrated as not being seen as equal or as strong and mature a fighter like Liu Kang. Fans know him for his trademark razor sharp hat, which he throws as a projectile and is capable of slicing body parts and limbs off without any trouble. The hat also acts as a boomerang and he can throw it and have it return to him shortly after. He is the descendant of the “Great Kung Lao” who was defeated by Goro (a four armed beast known for his power and brutality) 500 years ago. Unlike his family however, he has no direct desire to be a Mortal Kombat champion but instead, as mentioned, fights for honour and peace. He saw the tournament as an opportunity to bring honour to his past ancestors, he however was not selected to be a representative and therefore remained in the shadows and waited for his opportunity to present himself. He did so during the final battle, where he joined Liu Kang to fight off evil forces. He is currently another character who is in a rough position. Shortly after defeating Shang Tsung and Quan Chi, he was murdered by Shao Kahn – an unsuspecting move as he was celebrating his victory. Quan Chi collected his soul and did to it what he did to Liu Kang’s, corrupted it and made him a revenant, serving Quan Chi in the Netherrealm. Like Liu Kang, he was very close to Raiden.
To finish off, I would like to bring up a specific scene in MKX, wherein Raiden is seen reflecting on memories involving himself, Liu Kang and Kung Lao and said that they were like sons to him and he would “move the Heavens” to get them back. Passionate fans believe that this relationship will rekindle, but no official word has been released.
Forces of Light, Forces of Darkness and the Battle of Armageddon
The term “Forces of Light” refers to all good-aligned warriors/characters in the game Mortal Kombat: Armageddon. The group gathered for the Battle of Armageddon, which was a war between the said “Forces of Light” and “Forces of Darkness”.
As you may already know, the term “Forces of Darkness” refers to all evil-aligned warriors/characters, including SOME neutral aligned warriors/characters in the game Mortal Kombat: Armageddon.
The Battle of Armageddon was the war between the two groups as mentioned and it took place in the southern plains of Edenia, a realm in Mortal Kombat. The winner of the battle would go on to decide how the fate of the universe would unravel, either good or evil. During the battle and among all the brutality, a Pyramid began to rise quickly. This Pyramid is known as the Pyramid of Argus. Keep that name in mind for future postings. Atop the Pyramid stands Blaze, a fire-elemental creature who needed to be defeated and his power would be absorbed by the one who did defeat him, thus claiming that specific warrior rightful leader and all powerful ruler.
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