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Mortal Kombat 2

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Reviewed by David Ruocco "FINISH HIM!" the announcer screams as you prepare to pull a combatant's head from his torso. Welcome to Mortal Kombat II, complete with blood and all the finishing moves from the arcade version. This 24 Meg. Nintendo conversion of the brilliant arcade beat-'em-up is near-faultless. Everything from the arcade game has been packed into the cartridge, including all fatalities, babalities, friendships and secret characters. Mortal Kombat II features 12 warriors pitting their finest skills and special abilities against the evil Shao Kahn, supreme ruler of the outworld. Before the final battles with Kahn, the warriors must prove themselves worthy by defeating all combatants, plus the demon Shang Tsung and the half-human dragon Kintaro. Mortal Kombat II is a much better game than its predecessor. It's more complex, looks better, and contains more moves. Once you learn the awesome combination moves that are available to each player, you'll be well on your way to defeating Shao Kahn. Characters include knife-wielding Baraka, Jax the backbreaker, lightning-powered Rayden and fan-throwing Kitana. Each of the players has a number of special moves and of course fatalities. Watch out for Mileena who eats her competition and spits out their bones across the screen. The graphics set new standards of animation and speed. The warriors are wonderfully detailed and digitised, and are about as realistic as you can get. You can't help but grimace when you perform a gruesome fatality. Backdrops are also excellent, with lots of color and detail. Sound-wise, nearly all the speech from the arcade game has been included, right from announcing the players names through to declaring the victor. In game effects are bone-crunching - this is a game to play loud! Controls are also perfect, with exactly the same feel of the coin-op. Because of the blood and violence, this game is rated 15+, which means kids under 15 cannot purchase it. If violent games aren't your cup of tea, or if you're a parent worried about what your children are playing, then steer clear of this game. But for those who can't get enough fighting action, Mortal Kombat II is the newly crowned king of the beat-'em-ups. Don't miss it!

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