Review Information
Reviewer Name: kungfukid
Game Difficulty: Easy
Difficulty Options: True
Game Information
Full Title: Mortal Kombat 3
Year Released: 1996
Game Type: Fighting
Max Players: 2

Ok, some of you may have played the first two installments in the Mortal Kombat trilogy and thought they were excellent games for the SMS! And you'd be right, I have written extensive reviews on them both here a few months back. At the time they came out in 1993 & 1994 they completely surpassed anything that people thought the old Master System could do. Amazing Graphics, spooky sound, blood, gore and - in the second game - clearly understandable speech. Until now I have shy'd away from writing anything on the subject of MK3 - and there's a reason for that. It is unbelievably bad. And by bad I don't mean in a fun 'so bad it's good' championship hockey way. I mean bad as in a 'wanting to chew off your own ears and pull out your eyeballs to avoid ever having to see it or hear it again' bad. I queued up in miserable Glasgow weather on both days that MK1 & 2 came out and was not disappointed on either occasion, so when I heard that Tec Toy had ported the third game to the sms a few years back I was so excited that I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. Boy was I dissapointed.
Game play is far inferior to the original two games, jumping is unresponsive and annoying - a lot of the time you try and jump forwards but just go up and down, and jump kicks often miss the intended target - it aint me, I'm good at nearly every fighting game for the system. Special moves are done with more luck than judgment, and if someone can work out how to do a finishing move then please enlighten me! In a fighting game you should be able to use your skill and judgment to beat an opponent - not just mash buttons and hope for the best as this game WILL degenerate into...
The graphics are a lot worse than each of the predecessors although to be fair that was almost to be expected since it was simply a port of the Game Gear game with a reduced colour palette. But even still there are terrible examples of lack of detail. The energy bars are just blocks of red and green. No scores are apparent. The finish him screen is pathetic and small. The players movements are so jerky it is like watching a flickbook. You can't recognise any kind of a face on the main sprites etc. The backgrounds in some areas are non-existent, and in others are just very poor.
Sound & Music
In terms of the sound - gone is the advancement to speech in the 2nd game and we have reverted back to nothing. The spooky appropriate tunes from the first two games are gone too - instead we have efforts that made me check my eardrums weren't bleeding after turning the game off in disgust for the 6th time.
As mentioned in the gameplay - the controls are terrible. Where in the first two installments of the series moves could be pulled off relatively easily, and the controls were responsive enough - here, in what should be an improvement having had two predecessors to advance from they just took two steps back. The poor controls are what causes much of the frustration involved in playing this game - the fact that you know the controls for special moves and finishers from the first games means nothing here, let me warn you!
Replay Value
Music & Sound
Replay Value
As for lastability / replay value - it does have some! Yes, if you want to build up some frustration and rage before going out and mugging a granny or something then give this game time - it'll do it to you! But that's about the only reason to play it more than once.
Ok, so in conclusion - if this game had come first, there would have been no sequels, it would have been a massive flop and we'd have all remained convinced that the sms couldn't cut it in porting an arcade beat em up. It makes you appreciate the first two all the more so it does serve a purpose. But that's it. It's good to have as a collector piece, being from Tec Toy and as such a rarity in Europe and the US of A, but don't be tempted to put it in your machine - you'll only be disappointed.
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