While speaking with Ed Boon at the Mortal Kombat X Pro League Finals in Los Angeles, we got on the subject of the guest characters that have appeared both in the Mortal Kombat and Injustice series. I was able to get a little insight into how the team decides which guest characters to include as DLC for NetherRealm’s fighting games, as well as whether we’ll ever see the studio tackle a fighting game based on horror film icons.
According to Boon, there are a variety of ways the team can come to settling on a guest character to include with the game. “Probably the biggest one is simply someone suggests someone,” he says. “With Mortal Kombat, we stepped outside of the universe with characters like Freddy Krueger, Jason, Alien, Predator, and stuff like that, so the movie stuff kind of mixes things up. Fan feedback is another big one; just hearing some very loud, insistent people saying what they want. And what’s available; obviously we can’t just choose what we want to do, like ‘we want Robocop so he’s in the game!’ You have to do something that can be accommodated as far the company. So there are a number of variables, including what the players have been asking for. We’re always listening to feedback.”
Since the 2011 Mortal Kombat, NetherRealm has included several horror movie icons as DLC for the Mortal Kombat series. Since the release of that game, we’ve seen appearances from Freddy Krueger from Nightmare on Elm Street, Jason Vorhees from Friday the 13th, Alien from Alien, Predator from Predator, and Leatherface from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre in the series by way of DLC.
When asked about the possibility of using this trend of guest characters to throw them all together in one big horror icon showdown, Boon was not dismissive of the idea. “Yes, yes! You know, as we’ve been accumulating them, that idea has been coming up more and more frequently,” he says. “You brought it up and a few other people have brought it up like ‘why don’t you do a horror movie fighting game?’ Maybe one day we’ll do it.”
Boon also defended the notion of guest characters in Mortal Kombat and Injustice, touting the popularity of the inclusions and stating that he’d like to include guest characters in Injustice 2 when the time comes. “I always think there’s a novelty to it and there’s a certain amount of people who think that when they see a guest character that it took the slot of a DC character that they wanted to have,” he says. “But you know, Scorpion in Injustice was the most downloaded of all the characters. There was a coolness and a novelty factor to seeing the mixing of the things. Alien and Predator in Mortal Kombat X were the most downloaded of those, so I would be surprised if we didn’t do any of that [in Injustice 2].”
For more from our conversation with Ed Boon, you can check out our in-depth chat about Injustice 2’s long-term vision (including post-release DLC), as well as our humorous discussion answering our burning questions about Mortal Kombat.
While Boon doesn’t say this is a thing that is happening, the horror film icons that have appeared in Mortal Kombat to this point have been awesome additions and his openness to this idea is exciting. I’d love to pit some more of horror’s greatest and most gruesome threats against each other.