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There are a lot of major video game anniversaries taking place right now, and next year will be no different. One of the bigger celebrations will be 30 years of the famous brutal, bloody and violent western fighting game, Mortal Kombat.
Ahead of its anniversary milestone, the series’ co-creator, Ed Boon, has decided he’ll be sharing some “fun” behind-the-scenes footage – allowing fans to see first-hand (well, kind of), what it would have been like to see these games created, from the perspective of a “fly on the wall”.
The first move he’s shared is Scorpion’s iconic “Get over here!” spear attack. Here’s the clip, which also shows it in action in the original Mortal Kombat:
Boon also shared a series of follow-up tweets, which we’ve compiled here:
We certainly did a ton of prep for our video shoots, but some ideas came to us while filming. With Scorpion’s spear, it started with “You know what would be a cool ass move?”. From there you can be a fly on the wall and see us working through the details.
One of those details was how fast Scorpion threw the spear, which had to be quick so he could catch opponents by surprise. This meant keeping the animation simple & very few frames. We also wanted the spear to pass over a ducking opponent, so we kept it at chest height.
We were so tight on memory, that we didn’t even capture any motions for the victim reactions. Instead we borrowed from their existing animation frames. You can hear us talk about reusing one of the victim’s “knockdown” animations when they initially get hit by the spear.
We also borrowed the victim’s “fatality dizzy” frames to show they were stunned after being pulled in. Reusing existing animations was one of the many tricks we used to save memory, which was so much more limited in 1991.
A few things make me laugh watching this so many years later. Try counting how many times you see my arm reach out from the right side, trying to (ninja) mime the move. Also hearing @therealsaibot (John Tobias, fellow Mortal Kombat co-creator) describe how he wants to make the rope like a snake by saying “shh shh”.
Also… did you notice how young Ed Boon really likes to use the word “WAH” to describe things? WTF?
Finally, while there was SO MUCH more involved with us creating this classic move (fx, sounds) it’s still kool to see the germ of an idea that eventually became so synonymous with Mortal Kombat, and duplicated SO MANY TIMES in future games, movies, tv, animation & comics!
Fingers krossed, I’m hoping to release more (fly on the wall) videos like this in the future as we lead up to Mortal Kombat’s 30-year anniversary.
2021 has seen the release of a new live-action Mortal Kombat movie, sales of Mortal Kombat 11 pass the 12 million mark worldwide and the release of a new animated movie. NetherRealm has also called time on its latest entry in the series – revealing it would be ending DLC support to focus on the “next project”.
Are you excited for Mortal Kombat’s 30th anniversary in 2022? What did you think of Ed’s history lesson above? Leave a comment down below.