DF Retro: Mortal Kombat - The Legend, The Arcade Tech, The Console Ports - 16 Versions Analysed!


Join John for a very special, extended episode of DF Retro. Midway's classic Mortal Kombat is under the microscope, with a look at its beginnings, its meteoric success in the arcades and the inevitable ports to console systems - and beyond.
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The bezels created for Mortal Kombat were created by ArsInvictus and you can download them here.
Be sure to check them out if you're using PC emulation
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  • 1995Supra Black
    1995Supra Black5 dni temu

    I'd take the SNES version over the Genesis version any day. The graphics and audio were so much better. Sure, the blood wasn't in it, but it was closest to the arcade. I never noticed the controls being bad at all.

  • Real American Negro
    Real American Negro21 dzień temu

    Mortal Kombat 4 was good and was the most fun to hit people in

  • Real American Negro
    Real American Negro21 dzień temu

    I want a Mortal KOMBAT deception remake.

  • starskie96yt
    starskie96yt22 dni temu

    under-promise and over-deliver nets the best results for me with anything. make all your short-term goals and you'll reach your long-term one

  • T M
    T M24 dni temu

    MK1 genesis soundtrack was fantastic. love that FM chip.

  • Chris Stokes
    Chris Stokes28 dni temu

    Random fact : some ports of streetfighter 2s intro was changed depending on your country and litterly some cart to cart versions for showing a white fighter hitting on a black man !!!

  • Diurno MX
    Diurno MX28 dni temu

    Honestly the AMIGA version is NOT that bad. I think though that the MSDOS version is slightly better than SEGA MD and SNES.

  • Diurno MX
    Diurno MX29 dni temu

    There is a hacked MK version for Sega MD/GEN, called MK2 unlimited. It adds characters and backgrounds from MK1, and adds sounds and music etc. And frames of animation, its great.

  • Diurno MX
    Diurno MX29 dni temu

    I honestly LOVE the Sega Genesis music on MK1

  • FhargaZ
    FhargaZMiesiąc temu

    26:23 Atari ST owner: 😥

  • BrooksterMax
    BrooksterMaxMiesiąc temu

    Great episode. The sprite comparison of all versions was a really cool touch - getting those scales right must have invovled a bit of work. I did actually get the Amiga version at the time, but didn't fully understand the limitations at the time!

  • Edward Nielsen
    Edward NielsenMiesiąc temu

    Probe was such a shit developer.

  • Bonginkosi Motloung
    Bonginkosi MotloungMiesiąc temu

    1:07 The best fighting game controller I will use in 2021

  • Dukeljk
    DukeljkMiesiąc temu

    The Genesis Music is amazing. The drums sound real.

  • Alan Stefan
    Alan StefanMiesiąc temu

    I needed Digital Foundry in the MK 1 era, I didn't know what I was missing w my SNES, should've gone for PC CD Rom version

  • ok tariq
    ok tariqMiesiąc temu

    The sega gensis mortal combat one of the best games ever made , its not about graphics but fun

  • Jason Myers
    Jason MyersMiesiąc temu

    I had it on the SNES & disappointed it had the blood censored out.I was so jealous of Genesis gamer's getting blood in their version.

  • Trevor Mills
    Trevor MillsMiesiąc temu

    Umm goddamn this is dank episode

  • Danie Bello
    Danie BelloMiesiąc temu

    What’s awkward about a reverse 69 flying ground pound?

  • Khabaal87
    Khabaal87Miesiąc temu

    Anybody noticed the Sega Genesis has transparent shadows beneath the characters that are missing in all other versions? *THE GENESIS !!!* The console that was also known as *Dithering Drive* in Europe... out of all the plattorms the game was released on... Now I am sure that all the other game devs for the Genesis were just lazy dipshits! xD

  • MadsterV
    MadsterVMiesiąc temu

    I wish you didn't add interpolation to the MK footage... it looks weird, the original is fine enough.

  • MrFutureEconomist
    MrFutureEconomistMiesiąc temu

    Amazing Video. Great job. Mortal Kombat Isa very important part of our history. "Kano Wins, Flawless Victory"

  • Cantor Yakov
    Cantor YakovMiesiąc temu

    Derek should try Amiga mouse gameplay

  • connardman
    connardmanMiesiąc temu

    Some will remember the konami code, but I will always remember the blood code from Mortal Kombat. This shit is just imprinted in my brain forever.

  • bjedo3
    bjedo3Miesiąc temu

    *raiden laugh*

  • albie 2112
    albie 2112Miesiąc temu

    Key takeaway.....fast forward 30years from mortal monday and nintendo is still doing nintendo things (censoring shit for no good reason and staying "more for kids", 3rd party ports having to cut corners because of their hardware and yep, continuing to make inferior hardware every gen)

  • albie 2112
    albie 2112Miesiąc temu

    awesome memories and nostalgia. I remember Mortal Monday vividly. I was 20yo, stopped by Ebgames at the mall, right down the street from my job, to get Mortal for genesis. When Mk2 came to arcades, it was insane, such an awesome game/sequel. That summer me and my two friends would go the boardwalk arcade like 5 nights a week, smoke weed on the drive down and play everyone at Mk2. Put your quarters up on the screen!!!! I love the consoles, gamer for life. But you newer kids missed some cool shit back then

  • Mark Callaghan
    Mark CallaghanMiesiąc temu

    Fantastic analysis

  • Joshua White
    Joshua WhiteMiesiąc temu

    I want to see a remake with the same style graphics but photo realistic. Real actors, little cut scenes transition seamlessly into gameplay.

  • Yuzoboy
    YuzoboyMiesiąc temu

    37:35 - This was absolutely hilarious to hear. Its almost like someone played it on a grandfather clock. 🤣

  • Ryan Smith
    Ryan SmithMiesiąc temu

    I count him saying "perhaps" 6 times in this video. Perhaps he says "perhaps" too much?

  • Trump Ameri
    Trump AmeriMiesiąc temu

    People from Midway are 50 years ahead of the time.... making mortal combat game nobody never make this effect... only maybe RockStar Games GTA.... but still when i see first time mortal combat on Sega mega drive i was speechless completely

  • Trump Ameri
    Trump AmeriMiesiąc temu

    Best fighting game in history... mortal combat game 1 2 3 .... nobody never will be on this level... of course only unbeatable Sega mega drive sistem and small controller ABC xyz button.... best possible solution for this masterpiece

  • TheGameGuru
    TheGameGuruMiesiąc temu

    dude if people back then would seen how MK11 fatalities look today, they brains would've short circuited

  • J. R.
    J. R.Miesiąc temu

    I was expecting some light comparisons between games, but this turned out to be like a very entertaining, well done and informative full-on documentary. You earned another subscriber!

  • Ross Darlow
    Ross DarlowMiesiąc temu

    Loved the intro graphics and music, John. Nice touches!

  • Round Earth Shill
    Round Earth ShillMiesiąc temu

    Goddamn this is some quality content

  • Ryan Blackwell
    Ryan BlackwellMiesiąc temu

    Man I haven’t heard that throne room theme song in years! Now I have to find the whole soundtrack!

  • James Sun
    James SunMiesiąc temu

    I dreaded the original graphic the first time seeing it in the arcade. I still do. I am glad that the game was successful enough for them to go 3D in the newer installations

  • Munch
    MunchMiesiąc temu

    What is the racing game at 3:28?

  • Lee Townsley
    Lee TownsleyMiesiąc temu

    I want to see the Gameboy Sub Zero fighting the Arcade version.

  • Mr B
    Mr BMiesiąc temu

    Are the Arcade Machines , my first Arcade machine was , Asteroids and controlled the ship with track ball

  • Omar Aguirre García
    Omar Aguirre GarcíaMiesiąc temu

    Excellent video, awesome production

  • Matt B
    Matt BMiesiąc temu

    MK Arcade Kollection had the highest quality and clearest sound of any release including the arcade. The sound had zero compression from I remember. It would be great for someone to reach into those sound samples and make a patch for the arcade roms.

  • Miguel Roman
    Miguel RomanMiesiąc temu

    I bet Van Dam regretted not taking part in mortal kombat as he would still be making money from the franchise imo!

  • Not Great at Gaming
    Not Great at GamingMiesiąc temu

    Thanks for the Genesis ABACABB reference. Now I have the song Abacab by Genesis stuck in my head.

  • Swift_Arsonist
    Swift_ArsonistMiesiąc temu

    we need an arcade collection for the switch. tag ed boon people

  • in4moon
    in4moonMiesiąc temu

    MK1 for famicom ... this was my life

  • Jandoor Thumpinbrushwheel
    Jandoor ThumpinbrushwheelMiesiąc temu

    The Amiga version was an absolute disgrace, and there was not even an AGA version which could have had the higher resolution of the Megadrive/Genesis with the colour of the Snes version. Mortal Kombat 2 was almost as bad - no AGA support, no 8 channel stereo sound etc. At least it made use of extra memory if available to load in extra animations, effects and sound samples, but thats about it. A truly dire port.

  • Jandoor Thumpinbrushwheel

    Jandoor Thumpinbrushwheel

    Miesiąc temu

    @123doomdoom Well, as a long time Amiga fan, I know what the machine is capable of, which makes lazy, sloppy garbage ports less acceptable to me as I like to see the machine sing.... not shit it's nappy as it does on this dire conversion. Still, each to their own.

  • 123doomdoom


    Miesiąc temu

    I wouldn't go that far...I quite like it.

  • Rodrigo Rodrigues
    Rodrigo Rodrigues2 miesięcy temu

    Mortal kombat 2?

  • Irochi
    Irochi2 miesięcy temu

    I have to correct you there; Megadrive/Genesis was not the only version with blood; both Master system (you even include footage of said version with blood unlocked in this very video) and GameGear did actually also allow players to unlock the gore also by using a code during the initial message (2, 1, 2, DOWN, UP)

  • Mr Nice Guy
    Mr Nice Guy2 miesięcy temu

    32:00 GB = 5’11 Arcade = 6’0

  • Ricky Earl
    Ricky Earl2 miesięcy temu

    This needs more views

  • DM .h
    DM .h2 miesięcy temu

    Blo yr nose?

  • GustavoYmusica
    GustavoYmusica2 miesięcy temu

    Man this was a great one! Just amazing work. Thank you.

  • TheMrZombified
    TheMrZombified2 miesięcy temu

    I remember playing MK multiplayer on Sega 32x dial up. I look back at those times with good memories.

  • Diwwah
    Diwwah2 miesięcy temu

    You would need to have a real MT-32 device or the excellent MUNT emulator to hear the MT-32 music and sounds as intended.

  • Digital-Thralldom
    Digital-Thralldom2 miesięcy temu

    The best and truest to the arcade port of any Mortal Kombat was part 2 on 32x. There was no earthly reason to own that half a$$ed add on besides that port of MK2.

  • 8runie
    8runie2 miesięcy temu

    Everytime I see or hear about Mortal Kombat I want Chinese food. Does that happen to anyone else?

  • Noah Hildebrandt
    Noah Hildebrandt2 miesięcy temu

    Loved the video! If you have the desire and the resources, it would be awesome if you were able to give MK2 and 3 the same treatment!

  • toodlebug500
    toodlebug5002 miesięcy temu

    Fantastic work John! How about tackling Lemmings ports... ;)

  • Pistaxin
    Pistaxin2 miesięcy temu

    God, I had a pirate multigame card in Gameboy when I was kid and I played a lot to Mortal Kombat for some unknown reason 😆

  • n64ra
    n64ra2 miesięcy temu

    Please do NBA Jam! While not 16 versions, it'll cover Arcade, Super Nintendo, Genesis, Game Gear, Game Boy, Sega CD, Saturn, and Arcade1Up. Then do NBA Jam: Tournament Edition which has even more versions - Super Nintendo, Genesis, 32X, Game Boy, Game Gear, Sega Saturn, PlayStation, Jaguar, and Arcade1Up.

  • betterinsodapop
    betterinsodapop2 miesięcy temu

    Woof, the Shang Tsung morph issue on the SegaCD is brutal. Kinda ruins an otherwise excellent port.

  • TheSfaok
    TheSfaok2 miesięcy temu

    One of the best Christmas presents I ever got was a Gameboy, Mortal Kombat and the game guide. I still think it's as good a port as it could have been at the time and when you've nothing else to play, you learn to love games like that.

  • criz nittle
    criz nittle2 miesięcy temu

    I remember playing the shit out of this on Gameboy, and it was just awful. I don't know how i ever unlocked playing as Goro with those controls.

  • steve blot33
    steve blot332 miesięcy temu

    Hey John, 37.30 -38.15 minutes in, you said that it sounded wrong. Your clearly short of hearing Autechre ... today !!! that's classed as a tuuuuuuuune

  • Cameron Berkenpas
    Cameron Berkenpas2 miesięcy temu

    I bought this on Sega CD, ran home... and was immediately disappointed. Yeah, it's objectively better than the Genesis and SNES versions, but you still had smaller prices, missing details in the backgrounds... It just felt like the Genesis version on slight steroids to me. Oh well... While far from perfect, at least I was pretty happy with MK2 on the 32x.

  • Arbiter
    Arbiter2 miesięcy temu

    I miss these videos. Hope John has something like this in the works.

  • Jarrett
    Jarrett2 miesięcy temu

    whoa whoa whoa, I would NOT call MK2 a disappointing sequel, lolol. (It's like the best in the whole series).

  • Jarrett
    Jarrett2 miesięcy temu

    Watching this 1y later. I also had a Gravis gamepad, replete with the removable thumbstick from the dpad's centre! Edit: No mention of MK Trilogy?

  • Norman M
    Norman M2 miesięcy temu

    Mortal Kombat II

  • MisterDrumsNoob
    MisterDrumsNoob2 miesięcy temu

    We don't deserve mr. John Linneman

  • kevin weinz
    kevin weinz3 miesięcy temu

    John, was there any truth to the PC Engine/TG16 port? I figured that would have turned up if it had any real meat to it.

  • BazekBlu
    BazekBlu3 miesięcy temu

    Sega CD has the best-sounding music

  • Wilco -
    Wilco -3 miesięcy temu

    Great memories of the PC version, it was amazing! And the joypad issue I solved by using an 8-button joypad keyboard emulator, which sat between my keyboard and PC and allowed me to map any keyboard button to any of buttons, so awesome!

  • Lee Townsley
    Lee Townsley3 miesięcy temu

    Also the Amiga version, if memory serves, came on a whopping 7 floppy disks. All of that floppy swapping wore out its welcome VERY quickly.

  • Adam Coggins
    Adam Coggins4 miesięcy temu

    And here we are today with MK11 on a Switch, it amazes me how far we've come, made me nostalgic for my old Game Gear though

  • Mandrake
    Mandrake4 miesięcy temu

    Disappointing sequels?!!!... I hope you're not referring to the excellent MK2 and MK3!

  • CptBladd
    CptBladd4 miesięcy temu

    The production quality alone in this video is amazing. Great work John! Can't say enough good things!

  • DJ Dizzy
    DJ Dizzy5 miesięcy temu

    Fantastic work you guys. To see MK get the DF analysis treatment is an incredible watch.

  • Larry Taylor
    Larry Taylor5 miesięcy temu

    I loved mk1 on genesis and i even thought mk2 played better on genesis but the Super Nintendo version looked better.

    DLAROC5 miesięcy temu

    Sega Genesis version was not the only version that retained blood and gore. Sega GameGear also had a blood code with fatalities.

  • Patrickduffy7676
    Patrickduffy76766 miesięcy temu

    What's your opinion on the Mortal Kombat Champion Edition ROM Hack? Would you say that the ability to play as the bosses elevates this altered SNES version above the other home versions?

  • A31Chris
    A31Chris6 miesięcy temu

    I don't know what system you used for the PC CD version but if it came out in 96 it should have been Win95 compatible. If you have a 32 bit WinXP system lying around you could have used that. What I do on mine for old games is put CD in and before installing I go to the install program and tell it to run in Win95 compatible mode. Then after it installs I go to the install folder and in properties tell every file that will let me to run in Win95 compatibility mode.This should solve any compatibility issues. I even run the picky original DOS 7th Guest CD with the Win95 DLL installed this way and it runs flawlessly. Others from this era I run this way with no trouble: House of the Dead and MK4 among others.

  • A31Chris
    A31Chris6 miesięcy temu

    That was interesting about the Lynx version and I didn't know one was ever planned for the Jag. The Jag version could have been great depending on who ported it. Probe would have been a disaster considering their job on Primal Rage for the system. Lazy, sloppy. Backgrounds and sounds don't line up etc. I don't know if they were just overworked or just didn't care. My money would have been on High Voltage Software doing it considering their fantastic port of NBA Jam TE to the system.

  • Crimson Ghost
    Crimson Ghost6 miesięcy temu

    Nintendo was largely responsible for the forming of the ESRB. They didn't like Sega beating them so they found a way to cut into their profits.

  • J Bates
    J Bates7 miesięcy temu

    why is your Sega Genesis so pristine?

  • Maxim Ukhin
    Maxim Ukhin7 miesięcy temu

    speaking of the street fighter 2 ports, i hope sooner or later they will cover street fighter 2 ports (including champion edition and turbo), the game that defined fighting game as a whole

  • Yosef Selim
    Yosef Selim7 miesięcy temu

    Haha. Uh, you know you're meant to unplug the Amiga mouse and plug in another joystick, right?

  • Nathaniel Smith
    Nathaniel Smith8 miesięcy temu

    I remember seeing the new Street Fighter 2 arcade in the bowling ally next to Simpson's. I was in 1st grade I believe. 1st fight I believe I picked Ryu got to India and lost lol.

  • Lucas deABREU
    Lucas deABREU8 miesięcy temu

    How funny it is that an amateurish project (MK1 HD) has better gameplay animation than the current, AAA-budget MK entries

  • AJ Singh

    AJ Singh

    7 miesięcy temu

    pffft...yeah right

  • Matt Roe
    Matt Roe8 miesięcy temu

    Great Content!!

  • Reg Teg
    Reg Teg9 miesięcy temu

    The nostalgia of that intro ie the dragon logo, the music, the drums, that sinister laugh from Shao Khan. I wish I were young again.

  • Ro Magirk
    Ro Magirk9 miesięcy temu

    I still remember my uncle buying me MK for the genesis,without me asking for it,after i had spent the day watching comercials for it...it was a good day.

  • Dark Pulse
    Dark Pulse9 miesięcy temu

    Oh my god, I just realized you used music from 2197 in that intro. Kudos to you, John, you have great taste!

  • Zach Morgan
    Zach Morgan9 miesięcy temu

    37:35 28 year old easter egg: Breaking Bad theme

  • Süleyman El Kanuni
    Süleyman El Kanuni9 miesięcy temu

    I hate when they say; RYDEN!😡😠

  • TehDrewsus
    TehDrewsus10 miesięcy temu

    Ugh... Automatic minus points to any video that pronounces Raiden as "Ridin". It may certainly be more commonly pronounced that way, but we've heard the name pronounced IN GAME for almost 30 years now.

  • Rodrigo Prado
    Rodrigo Prado10 miesięcy temu

    20:00 minute ahead it's Sega CD not Seha Genesis version... I had both when I was a kid!!