Mortal Kombat Trilogy

Midway's violent fighter keeps going and going...

Publisher: Midway
Developer: Point of View
Genre: Fighting

Well, it's finally come: Mortal Kombat Trilogy for the Saturn. Enjoyed by PlayStation and Nintendo 64 owners for months, now we Saturn gamers are the lucky ones blessed with the disk. Was it worth the wait? Kinda...

What Saturn owners get is a darn-close straight port of the PlayStation version that came out over six months ago. Every character and stage from the original, from classic Rayden and Kano to the freshly re-filmed Johnny Cage, from the original Pit to the MK3 graveyard, Midway has jammed this disk full of the graphics from the entire series. And let's not forget the now-playable boss characters included in the lineup of Kombatants.

They've even included a new fatality. Taking a cue from those Ultra combos in Killer Instinct, a quick keypad press can throw a huge flurry of punches and kicks, finishing up with a devastating, body-exploding uppercut. This is a "brutality."

Gameplay-wise, everything else is the same -- three rounds of pure, 2D violent fighting. All of the elements have been taken from the third game in the series, including the run button and combo counting. There's a new factor in MKT: aggression mode. Players on the offense can build up a meter that, when full, gives the fighter a temporary increase in strength.

Now onto the nit-picks. We said darn-close port of the PlayStation version. To be specific, the Saturn version has a few obvious spots of inefficient programming: dithered shadows and transparencies, slight slowdown before a match, and small moments of pausing in the two-on-two matches. But like the PlayStation version, there's still the loadtimes during a Shang Tsung morph. Can't do much to avoid it, CD's just aren't as fast as the gameplay.

The unfortunate thing about Mortal Kombat Trilogy is its timeliness -- it's lost the impact it once had. And with MK4 hitting the arcades shortly after this version's release, Mortal Kombat Trilogy for the Saturn may be a little too late for the party. But there's no mistaking one thing: this game still has that MK charm. If you haven't enjoyed it yet on other platforms, give Mortal Kombat Trilogy a boot-up or two.