Earlier this month, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and NetherRealm Studios confirmed the imminent launch of Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath, a new story expansion for one of the best fighting games of 2019. While I was very disappointed to learn that Dr. Dre wouldn’t be contributing his production skills to this project, I did get a kick out of seeing new playable characters in the form of Fujin, Sheeva, and Peter Weller’s RoboCop.
After diving headfirst into all of the content that this package has to offer, I can confirm that Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath is a great expansion hampered by the fact that it’s grossly overpriced and feels out of place in certain areas. Here are more of my spoiler-free thoughts on the narrative, characters, and why I came to this brutally honest conclusion.
Back To The Future
Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath takes place immediately after Fire God Liu Kang destroys both Kronika and the crown she uses to alter time and history through the Hourglass. While asking Raiden for guidance in restoring the timeline, both allies are confronted by Shang Tsung, Fujin, and Nightwolf. Japanese-American actor and the star of the first live-action Mortal Kombat movie Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa reprises his role as the evil sorcerer and claims that Liu Kang needs his help to forge a new history. Despite hesitancy from Raiden, Liu Kang agrees to the temporary alliance, and shortly thereafter Shang Tsung, Fujin, and Nightwolf travel back in time to steal Kronika crown before she is able to capture it.
With the exact same story structure as Mortal Kombat 11, Aftermath is noticeably shorter at five chapters but remains action-packed from start to finish. Players are also given the option of choosing between two different fighters in one chapter and tasked with taking on two adversaries back-to-back in multiple chapters. There’s also a good and bad ending available based on the final choice that you make during the last battle. While I don’t want to get into any spoilers for those who are interested in playing, I do want to at least say that Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa puts on the performance of a lifetime and if you’re a Shang Tsung fan then you definitely will want to check out this expansion when it best suits you.
Fujin and Sheeva Are Badass Additions
When it comes to describing the newly added fighters, it goes without saying that Fujin and Sheeva are my clear cut favorites and play crucial roles in the overall storyline. Known as the God of Wind and Raiden’s brother, Fujin’s smooth fighting style and devasting combos are an incredible sight to behold. Fans of Goro will definitely appreciate Sheeva and how she is able to easily dissect her opponents by stomping the life out of them or literally brutalizing their bodies from head to toe with all four of her arms. RoboCop isn’t included in the Aftermath storyline and only serves the purpose of being a cool guest character that can be used in other modes.
In addition to completing the Aftermath expansion storyline, players can also unlock endings for these three characters in the Klassic Towers mode. All of these endings remain consistent in portraying each character’s persona and giving players just a little bit more content to sink their teeth into. As was previously announced, a free update for all Mortal Kombat 11 players was also released yesterday including new stage fatalities, arenas, and friendships. NetherRealm does plan to reveal three more characters as skins at a later time but it’s currently unknown when this will happen.
Still An Expensive Expansion
With all that has been said thus far about the enjoyable storyline and characters, we still have to address the pitfalls associated with this expansion. First and foremost, the price of $39.99 is still a bit too pricey for what’s being offered especially if you purchased Mortal Kombat 11 Premium Edition for $99.99 when it launched last year. If you never purchased the game in the first place then you definitely will get more bang for your buck now as Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath is $59.99.
Alternatively, if you purchased the basic edition of Mortal Kombat 11 and you now want Aftermath and the Kombat Pack bundle then you’ll have to pay $49.99 to upgrade. This type of business practice with the skewed price points is a great lesson as to why it’s a good idea to wait for a definitive game of the year edition for a title you really want as opposed to buying day one. Warner Bros. and other publishers have remained consistent in this practice when it comes to DLC and we can definitely expect this to continue as we enter into a new console generation later this year.
The other problem that I have personally with the expansion lies within the fact the decision on DLC characters could have been better thought out. Fujin and Sheeva totally make sense because they are also heavily featured within the storyline, but RoboCop seems out of place and easily could have launched alongside Terminator T-800 and Spawn in the previous Kombat Pack.
Furthermore, Shang Tsung, Nightwolf, and Sindel are absolutely critical to the events of the Aftermath storyline. Strictly from a business standpoint, it would have made more sense to make Shang Tsung the featured DLC character for this expansion as fans of the original Mortal Kombat film would have been totally on board with buying this package to see Tagawa’s return. Lastly, we still don’t have an official confirmation on who the other three fighters will be despite rumors that have been flying around all over the internet. NetherRealm will obviously reveal these details in their own way and time but as far as selling fans on the content, it would have gone a long way towards revealing this info upfront at this point.
Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath is a great expansion overall but it may still be too pricey for some. If you invested in the Premium Edition last year, I would recommend waiting if you can until there is a sale. If however, you love Mortal Kombat and you are eager to play against others online then feel free to pick it up as soon as possible.