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Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe - Game review

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Published February 26th 2013
The creators of Mortal Kombat weaved a narrative as an excuse to throw DC characters into their playable roster. Ever wondered who would win in a fight between the God of Thunder and the Man of Steel? Me neither.



MK vs DC is a competent fighting game for the Xbox 360 where the first player to win two rounds is the victor.


Story

Two universes collide when Darkseid and Shao Khan wreak havoc in their respective dimensions. A bizarre event causes the two super villains to become Dark Khan and all of reality is threatened. 'Kombat rage', a nasty side effect of the merging universes, triggers fights between friends, foes and strangers. Chaos ensues.

Kombat rage is a convenient plot device that either strengthens or weakens characters to level out the playing field.

The story allows you take sides, DC or MK. Along the way you will see events from several perspectives. All of your struggles lead you to confronting the final boss, Dark Khan. As soon as the abomination is defeated you help to restore normality across the universes.

Look out for Joker's hilarious Star Trek reference.


Training and Multiplayer

If button mashing does not work for you try learning the move lists. Spar with an AI player in Kombo Challenge or Practice Mode. Alternatively, connect a second controller and play lots of one-on-one rounds with a friend.

Multiplayer is arguably the most enjoyable way to play MK vs DC because the average game lasts up to two minutes and if there are lots of people watching you can always pass the loser's controller to someone else and run your own mini tournament. Xbox Live is also available for those who want to take on the world.


Gameplay

The balance between characters could be an issue for competitive play. Green Lantern, for example, is able to use his ring to grip, lift and slam the enemy to the ground. Spamming this move is easy. Countering it is also easy however as it is a long range attack it can be difficult to out-maneuver. I tried retaliating by throwing knives (Kano) however Hal Jordan's iron will won the match.

In addition to punching, kicking and grappling you can also throw the other player across the arena. Sometimes you can throw each other off the edge of a cliff or a balcony and fight mid-air. The winner of this mini battle scores up to 30% of damage to the loser. This action is a gamble as a sneaky counter at the last second can reverse the outcome.

Klose kombat [sic] is a special grapple option where the camera zooms in and you can punch and kick up to four times by pressing the X, Y, A or B button. Be careful though, if your opponent picks the same button as you they will score a counter that will break the grapple and land a hit.


Overall

Read the Injustice: Gods Among Us comics for a better plot. The whole merging universes paradigm to justify Batman exchanging blows with Sub-Zero is simply ridiculous.

Despite the silly story, MK vs DC is an awesome brawler with enough technical aspects to keep things interesting while maintaining a decent learning curve to prevent gameplay from being too simplistic.
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Why? Pummel the Joker or bash the Batman.
Cost: RRP: $20
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