Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 is a fighting game in the 'Mortal Kombat' series originally released in arcades in 1995. It serves as an update to Mortal Kombat 3 and includes more fighters. That exact same experience is now available on your iDevice thanks to Electronic Arts. The gameplay remains true to the original 2D, however, the digitized character sprites are now rendered in 3D along with each of the fighting arenas. They all look wonderful on Retina displays. The sounds are also from the original and that's a good thing. All the fatalities, babalities, animalities, and friendships you remember are all here. Amazing right? I thought so. As soon I started the game up, a huge wave of nostalgia hit me.
So first off in the review, how are the controls? Well instead of a controller, there's a virtual joystick of sorts and a button layout on screen. As a Mortal Kombat veteran, this touch-based control scheme seemed awkward at first since I'm used to a controller in my hands. As a result, this is my only gripe with the app. But with practice, you can get used to it. There are two different set ups for your buttons. A 5-button setup and a 'Klassic' 6-button set up for when you're feeling nostalgic. I found the 5-button setup to be the best since it simplifies your moveset to make up for the awkward virtual joystick. Here's the breakdown: the 5-button layout consists of a 'Specials' button for special moves, a 'P' for punches, a 'K' for kicks, an 'R' for run, and 'B' for block. You use these in conjunction with the virtual joystick for variations of moves. The 6-button layout consists of R, B, HP, LP, HK, LK and no specials button. Special moves are performed by doing joystick movements with the appropriate buttons.
Next up, the game modes. There are 4 different game modes in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and they are Arcade, Local Multiplayer, Survival, and a new mode I've never heard of-- Shao Karnage. Arcade is simple. You fight your way up a ladder until you reach Shao Kahn, the final boss. Shao Kahn, unfortunately, is sanely difficult to defeat but if you develop the skill and determination you can best the Emperor of Outworld. There are 4 difficulty levels and the higher the difficulty, the higher the ladder becomes. There's Novice, Warrior, Master, and Grandmaster.
Local multiplayer allows you to play with someone else who plays UMK3 on an iDevice using a Wi-Fi connection. Extras include leaderboards, achivements, stats, and character bios. Treasure are also available for collection after every ladder victory. There are 10 'Lost Treasures'. Survival mode is about fighting and defeating as many Kombatants you can on one health bar before you die. How many can you defeat? Lastly, there's Shao Karnage. The goal here is to beat the heck out of Shao Kahn and score points before time runs out. If you want further proof of how difficult and annoying Shao Kahn is to fight, look no further.
Bottom line is that UMK3 is the closest you can get to the best of the original trilogy. The best, of course, being Mortal Kombat Trilogy that was released on the original Playstation. But alas, this is still a great buy and we highly recommend it if you're a Mortal Kombat fan! A perfect blend of nostalgia and fidelity with updated visuals fit for a mobile device.
AppPicker Rating: 5 / 5 Stars
Pick It Up in the App Store: UMK3 (iPad)
More app from Electronic Arts