Review by leeko_link
Reviewed: 09/04/12 | Updated: 10/01/12
This Was So Much Better as a Handheld Port
Mortal Kombat II was one of those game where you can't find any fault with it at all. It was everything the first wasn't and it was meant to stay that way. Fortunately the Sega Master System port of that game just doesn't apply to that, you see unlike all other home console port of MKII, the SMS version is really based on its younger brother's version rather than its arcade counterpart.
Not that spectacular, there are two real battle arenas and only eight fighters. Compare that to the other home versions which got twelve fighters and over nine levels of kombat. Another letdown was that there are no added visual charm to the game, the only real addition was that the camera was no-longer zoom-in so players could see the fight from a distance a bit more. The layer of the level also take a big step backwards as the color palette became more lackluster. Whereas the Game Gear port feature colorful backgrounds with a great atmosphere, the SMS version ruins that by making them as nothing more than bland backdrops with the feeling to that of a black and white scrolling slideshow. The character animation were also dull and tedious, since the sprites are much smaller they would tend to get pixelated in the process too making the character look weird at times.
No badass soundtracks and bone crushing sound effects make this port a pile of boredom. You're best putting this on mute than ever turning your volume up. Shao Kahn and Dan Forden also doesn't make as much noise here compare to the rest, other than a round shout that's all you'll ever hear from Kahn in this game.
On the Game Gear, this would be a much forgivable control method but like the first SMS MK game, this port got hamper by the same bad control. Like before, the SMS d-pad is terrible with this kind of game, plus the speed of the game makes the control a bit difficult to handle. Performing special attacks and finishers required delays and with control like this, constant delays make the situation much worst. Gameplay were about the same as the Game Gear port and the A.I. are forgivable as they were but since it's harder to perform anything special here defeating the A.I. could be a bit punishing. Like the first game before it, blocking is done by using the punch button with the d-pad (since the SMS controller lack a proper START button) so in one way it felt like a MK game but on the other it seem to attempt a blocking method made popular by the Street Fighter series. It's kinda sad too considering that this decent game got horribly ported to a two buttons only console when it should had stay exclusive on the handheld consoles instead.
Like the Game Gear port, this game does feature two hidden fighters to fight against if players are that eager to face them. Also another step-up from the handheld version was the option to multiplay this game without the need for link cable but when you add up all the problems that this game had, getting this version for the multiplayer alone just doesn't feel right since there are better home versions of this same game with much superior multiplayer options than this port ever had.
Is it Worth Buying?
Not really, you are better off getting the countless other superior home versions of this game. Like before get this only if you're a die hard MK collector or just want to play this for laugh. Unless you never play the Game Gear port or had no other home console other than a SMS then you could start with this but like I said before, if you got other advance home consoles, get any of those version of MKII instead (if it had any).
Rating: 1.0 - Terrible
Product Release: Mortal Kombat II (EU, 12/31/94)
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