The creators of the game series are Ed Boon and John Tobias, and this game is what made them rich. Ed Boon is generally the lead programmer, John Tobias is the lead designer. Ed Boon provided the voice and motion capture of various characters of the game.
Plot. The Elder Gods have created various realms, and that they declared that the denizens of one realm could only conquer another realm by defeating the defending realm's greatest warriors in ten consecutive Mortal Kombat tournaments. Outworld has won nine tournaments in a row, and the next world to be conquered is the Earth realm. The Thunder God Raiden, recruits three special warriors to fight these evil forces: Liu Kang, a monk who enters the tournament to avenge the death of his brother, Johnny Cage, an actor who is sick and tired of being bashed by the movie critics, and Sonya Blade, a special forces soldier hunting a vicious murderer named Kano. The three must fight together against the evil forces of Shang Tsung.
Concept. When playing solo, players must fight against various opponents, which the first part includes a mirror match. While fighting, players are given the chance to test their might by breaking wood, iron, and diamond items, giving them a much higher score. After the mirror match, they must fight in endurance battles, which means fighting against two different characters. When one is beaten, the other one shows up, and must be defeated before the player himself is defeated. After three endurance matches, they face off against the four-armed Shokan prince, Goro. After Goro is defeated, they face off against Shang Tsung himself.
Design. The game's characters are rendered in 2D sprites. The characters look quite realistic for a game that did not have graphics that were so advanced as of today. Johnny Cage likeness and design is highly based on that of the action movie star, Jean Claude Van Damme. Ed Boon and John Tobias, originally wanted to make a game with the movie star battling villains of every movie, but Van Damme was in negotiations with another company to create a game, which unfortunately was never released. Liu Kang's likeness is based off of Bruce Lee.
Controversy. This game is the first of many controversial video games at that time. Most parents and officials were appalled by the high level of violence that the game had like characters bleeding with each hit, and losing a lot of blood after a Fatality was performed. Hearings on video game violence and the corruption of society, headed by Senator Joseph Lieberman and Herb Kohl, were held in late 1992 to 1993. The result of the hearings was that the entertainment software industry was given one year to form a working rating system or the federal government would intervene and create its own system. Eventually, the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) was conceived, requiring all video games to be rated and for these ratings to be placed on the games' packaging.
Music and Voice Acting. Dan Forden was the composer of the game and he is highly remembered for his famous catchphrase in the game "Toasty!". Ed Boon provided some voice acting, and he also voiced Scorpion famous word when unleashing his rope attack: "GET OVER HERE!"
Rantings. I don't like some of the fatalities in the SNES version. Because Nintendo was trying to make this game too censored, due to politicians trying to intervene in the gaming industry. Also, in the SNES version, the blood was replaced with phlegm instead. Also, I hated fighting against Liu Kang sometimes because he would be such a cheater or a cheeser, to put it correctly. The boss fight I hated was against Goro, when I was a kid, he would have me throw a tantrum.
Good Aspects. Mortal Kombat happens to be one of my favorite games. The fighting is awesome, the gameplay is memorable and it has high replay value. My favorite character to play with was Scorpion, because back in 1992-1993, Scorpion was the MAN. Everyone who was serious about Mortal Kombat, using Scorpion to kick some ass in Arcade mode or playing against a friend or family member.
Legacy. Mortal Kombat has left a great legacy, just like Street Fighter. Mortal Kombat was so successful that it earned two sequels. It has also spawned many comic books, toys, and two live action movies. The first live-action movie was directed by Paul W.S. Anderson (Resident Evil, Event Horizon, Soldier), and written by Ed Boon and John Tobias. The first movie met with success with fans and critics alike, but the second movie met the opposite. Mortal Kombat also spawned an animated series, "Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm", which many movie stars such as Clancy Brown, Luke Perry, Olivia d'Abo, and Ron Perlman lent their voices. The series also spawned a live-action TV Series which only lasted for one season. It was called: Mortal Kombat: Konquest.
Overall. Mortal Kombat is one of the best fighting games ever created, my favorite one is MK II, which featured new characters as well. This game gets a 9 out of 10