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Mortal Kombat Uses Witchcraft to Silently Tweak Balance

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Why Boon didn’t advertise this feature before the game’s launch is beyond me, but apparently it features a very cool system for balancing broken characters and infinites. Unlike MVC3 and SF4, or most Japanese fighters for that matter, Mortal Kombat can be balanced without players needing to patch their game.

Using some hocus pocus trickery, they can update the game in the background to fix problems that might be skewing the balance. “It’s something that’s built into our system,” says Boon. “We can do it without having players have to download a patch. That’s something we’re very excited about. We can monitor what things players may have an issue with and then correct them as needed.” That’s right, no patch. Wow.

What a breath of fresh air after years of Japanese fighters dominating the industry. This feature alone makes me seriously consider any qualms I had with the fighter and proves that this installment is something that is meant to be taken seriously. If Mortal Kombat proves that it can be balanced and bettered over time, it very well may have the legs to overcome the Japanese heavyweights and, perhaps, may change their attitude towards balance.

See, Japanese developers often source the arcades as the reason for denying practical updates and balance changes, as many arcade machines do not have the ability to be updated. Since they take their competitive games seriously, they don’t want some arcades to be running alternate versions of fighters or for home users’ versions to differ from arcade users’. But now we have arcades with global stat tracking and replay sharing, so why the hell can’t they support their games post release with regular balance changes?

I hope that whatever system Boon has put in place for MK catches on and we see a dramatic shift in how these games are made. I never thought I’d be saying this, but, Mortal Kombat has my support if it can pull this off. My hat is off to you, NetherRealm Studios.

Your Comments

  • avatar
    Paper92 said Apr 20th 2011 3:12 PM

    If only MvC3 was like this… That’s a really big step forward for the industry as a whole, as well as fighter games. Adding in really small bug fixing would be great for all games, that way games are always top-notch, and wouldn’t require a meaningless update to do so.

    Reply
    • avatar
      pride said Apr 20th 2011 3:44 PM

      Or massive DLC Updates that just skew the balance towards another extreme.

      Reply
  • avatar
    godathand said Apr 20th 2011 3:38 PM

    Finally. I hope it’s as good as I imagine! I can’t believe my copy of MK hasn’t come in yet though. Whenever I order from Amazon its in the day it’s released… now I have to wait until friday because I ordered from Gamestop…

    Reply
  • avatar
    JimWhoa said Apr 20th 2011 4:39 PM

    This is great news for fighting game enthusiasts and a long overdue feature.

    Reply
  • avatar
    foxreels said Apr 21st 2011 12:40 AM

    Pretty sure that Monday Night Combat is able to do this too. Just sayin’.

    Reply
  • avatar
    pitman said Apr 21st 2011 5:29 AM

    First they push violence in video games and now this !

    *salute*

    Reply
  • avatar
    SukMyBoomStik said Apr 21st 2011 10:27 AM

    I’m pretty sure I read about this feature before the game came out. I can’t provide a source though so it is highly possible this information is coming directly from my ass. I couldn’t possibly be more pleased with the new MK though. I got bored with MvC3 after a few weeks but I find myself sitting at my desk twitching like a crack addict after marathon MK sessions the past two nights and can’t imagine myself getting bored of it any time soon.

    Reply

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