Mortal Kombat (arcade)  1992


Emulation: mame


First finishing move -fatality, first secret character in fighting game, first banned game ever

Arcade system: Williams/Midway Y Unit

Mortal Kombat 1 arcade

Gameplay video

Original trailer

Magazine commercial- Leisure line (1993)

1) Mortal Kombat was one of the games Senator Joseph Lieberman centered his arguments on during the 1993 investigation by the United States Congress on extreme violence in video games. The investigation caused SEGA to develop the Video Game Council, which would later evolve to the Entertainment Standards Review Board (ESRB). Since then, even with the ESRB, video games have actually increased in violence.
2) The original name for the character Sub-Zero was going to be Tundra.
3) Johnny Cage's real name is John Carlton (according to the game's storyline). The name was taken from the Midway game programmer John Carlton, who worked for the NBA Jam arcade series.
4) The original name for the character Goro was going to be Gongoro. According to John Tobias, the team decided to shorten it.
5) According to Ed Boon, the main characters are all caricatures of some of their favorite characters from martial arts and sci-fi movies: Kano, with his infra-red eye, is based on Arnold Schwarzenegger's make-up in The Terminator. Liu Kang is, obviously, the likeness of Bruce Lee. Raiden, the electric God of thunder, is based on the lightening-wielding character from Big Trouble in Little China. Sonya was loosely based on martial arts star Cynthia Rothrock.Cage based on actor  Jean-Claude Van Damme.
6) The arcade version was originally extremely graphic and gory. When it was released to the first four home systems (Super Nintendo, Game Boy, Sega Genesis, and Game Gear), all the elements of gore were removed (blood, fatalies, etc.) so Genesis and Game Gear could receive SEGA's "MA-13" rating and Super Nintendo and Game Boy would fit Nintendo's censorship guidelines (Nintendo had no game rating system and the Entertainment Software Rating Board(ESRB) would be established two years later). When the blood was removed from the SNES version and Game Boy Version, it was replaced with sweat and fatalities for all versions were modified so there was no gore. The Sega versions though had a secret code that could convert the game into an "MA-17" version with all gore intact.
7) The code for this game includes the ASCII string 'NOOBSAIBOT' (originally in "Mortal Kombat II" rev. 3.1), suggesting that the character may have made his first appearance here, instead of Reptile (which took up less memory).
8) While fighting on the Pit stage, if you look closely at the glowing moon in the background, you will sometimes see a silhouette fly past it. These shadows will either be Peter Pan and the Darling children, a witch on a broomstick, a kite, a blimp, a rocket, a flying saucer, or Santa Claus in his reindeer-pulled sleigh. The shadows appear about every 6 games.
9) Michael Jackson used to own this game. It was sold at the official Michael Jackson Auction on April 24, 2009

10) Reptile-  As the story goes, on November 1992, while preparing an upgrade to fix several bugs, Ed Boon shut himself in his office for a weekend and added the secret character Reptile all by himself. However, no indication was ever given of his existence. It wasn't until a later revision of the game (which added Reptile popping up before matches to give clues of his existence in the game) and a July 1993 VideoGames Magazine article in which Boon and Tobias specifically clarified how to find Reptile, that the mass public became aware of the existence of a character that was already in the game for months.

11) Possible catalyst to the implementation of a rating system.

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