* AssPull: [[spoiler: Sindel suddenly slaughtering the heroes near the end of the story feels like a rather rushed way to kill off several of the cast members for the sake of the storyline, which made a point about heroes making 'unthinkable sacrifices'.]]
* AwesomeMusic: Nearly all of the music of the original games gets a remix, including several very well done orchestral remixes.
* BaseBreaker: Quan Chi. He's either a [[Troll trollish]] MagnificentBastard or a boring VillainSue and a spotlight hog.
** [[VideoGame/GodOfWar Kra]][[GuestFighter tos]]. You've got the fans who think he's a great addition to the roster, the fans who are vehemently against his presence in the game, the fans pestering Netherrealm Studios to add a 360 exclusive character, and the fans who just don't care about him being in the game.
*** With the reveal that the fourth DLC character is [[Franchise/ANightmareOnElmStreet Freddy Krueger]], the fanbase is further split between those who think he's a welcome addition and those who feel that he's even less fitting in the game than Kratos is and that the reveal is a disappointment after the hype leading up to his release.
** Shang Tsung's ''Bang Bang!'' fatality. Some find it a hilarious TakeThat towards the Joker's censored fatality in ''VideoGame/MortalKombatVsDCUniverse''. Others see it as completely OutOfCharacter or ill-fitting for Shang Tsung.
** [[ScrappyMechanic Babalities]] are back in the game. Without Friendships or Animalities to accompany them.
** There's also the announcement that goes both ways: Unmasked Sub-Zero, YAYYYYY! Wait, Retro [[spoiler:Cyber Sub-Zero]], BOOOOOO!
** [[spoiler:Cyber Sub-Zero]] is a HUGE one among the fans thanks to being seen as not only unnecessary, but a rather cheap way to change the timeline as well.
* BestKnownForTheFanservice: Inverted AND averted within Story Mode. Most of the female characters remain clothed to some degree, with one surprising exception at first. No, not Sonya. Or Kitana. Or Jade. Or [[NightmareFuel Mileena.]] Or even Sheeva. It's [[spoiler:''Sindel'']]. In what is the only display of "frontal nudity" of any kind in the entire series, when [[spoiler:Quan Chi resurrects her]] to match the events of ''VideoGame/MortalKombat3'', she is brought back ''naked'', [[spoiler:with only a view shown of her upper chest above the nipples]].
* BreatherLevel: Challenge 150, Gor-Owned, is much easier than anything near it in the Challenge Tower. This is mostly due to the challenge involving [[spoiler:you playing as Goro. You keep his ridiculous armor and damage resistance, and you even get a considerable damage boost. Not even the requirement of having to defeat five people without healing makes this at all difficult.]]
* BrokenBase: Chapter 15 in Story mode has ''only'' two sides to it: either it's a WhamEpisode [[TearJerker that left many fans in tears]] after seeing [[spoiler:their favorite characters get killed by Sindel so easily and abruptly]] or it's a clumsy ''failed'' attempt at being a WhamEpisode because of [[spoiler:[[DroppedABridgeOnHim how sloppy the deaths were]], and because of the obvious DiabolusExMachina]].
* CompleteMonster: Quan Chi. Not only does [[FateWorseThanDeath he enslave the souls of people and make them into unwilling servants,]] he provides Shao Kahn help in bringing destruction to Earthrealm. He lies to Scorpion about killing his clan, brings Bi-Han back as a ruthless ghost in the form of Noob Saibot and resurrects [[spoiler: Sindel and brainwashes her to be loyal to Shao Kahn, which causes her to kill most of the heroes. He then enslaves the souls of all the dead heroes and Sindel and [[AndIMustScream ends the game with them in his possession,]] [[KarmaHoudini getting away with everything]] while preparing Shinnok's deadly return.]] Needless to say, there are people who really want to give him an ass-kicking.
* EightPointEight: IGN gave the game a "mere" 8 out of ten, with a one page review and some complaints about the single player mode. The latter falls under sloppy research, since they were that [[ItsHardSoItSucks it was too hard]], and that the story mode wasn't comprehensive enough. Note that when the reviewer states in the review that when he made remarks about the difficulty to other IGN writers, they noted "Sounds like ''MortalKombat'', then" and that none of the other fighting games except for [[VideoGame/GuiltyGear a]] [[VideoGame/BlazBlue few]] feature a story mode.
* EnsembleDarkHorse:
** Johnny Cage's [[{{Flanderization}} inflated ego]] has ironically made him a fan favorite this time around, as his douchebaggery reaches SoBadItsGood levels of funny. His being a JerkWithAHeartOfGold also helped.
** Also, Stryker gained a lot of popularity in this game, due to his GenreSavvy personality and re-tweaked look.
** Ermac's fanbase increased substantially after this game, mainly do to how {{badass}} he's portrayed in the game's story.
%% Don't add FetishFuel here. It's not accepted in TVTropes anymore.
%% Don't add FetishFuelStationAttendant either - It has been cut.
* GoodBadBugs:
** Some of Goro's and Kintaro's weaknesses can be exploited via these. They can't comprehend uppercut spamming on Normal difficulty, and are also impotent against diving kicks, especially [[spoiler:Cyber]] Sub-Zero's, [[spoiler:which is a Godsend when you fight both of them towards the end of Story Mode]].
** There's also [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=edtlQODAebI a glitch]] that lets you do most characters' X-Rays with other characters.
* HarsherInHindsight: The ending to ''Series/MortalKombatConquest'', where [[spoiler:Shao Kahn kills everyone]], is oddly prescient of this game, which ends with [[spoiler:Shao Kahn killing ''almost'' everyone]]. In both cases, Raiden unwittingly caused the destruction.
* HeartwarmingInHindsight: Johnny Cage hitting on Sonya at the very beginning of the game, as Cassie Cage's presence on the ''VideoGame/MortalKombatX'' roster shows.
* HesJustHiding: A good portion of the fans believe that [[spoiler:Liu Kang]] didn't die when [[spoiler:Raiden shocked him, and that he'll be showing up in the next game having made a FaceHeelTurn.]] Whether or not this is true is unconfirmed.
** In addition to the above, three others who some fans believe to still be alive and possibly return in the sequel are [[spoiler: Shang Tsung, Noob Saibot, and Shao Kahn]]. In the case of the first is that [[spoiler: Shang Tsung]] is known to be a death-phobic individual who may have had some sort of contingency plan in place and thus [[spoiler: had a back-up body to put his own soul into after Shao Kahn absorbed his souls to empower Sindel]]. As for the second, Scorpion was also known to have been [[spoiler: sucked into a soulnado and survived]], thus it wouldn't be impossible for him to have survived as well. As for the last, there are some who believe that [[spoiler: he wasn't killed by Raiden and the Elder Gods but merely sentenced to some sort of Phantom Zone like containment]]. Also worth mentioning in the case of the first two is that among those to be revealed [[spoiler: to have their souls enslaved by Quan Chi]], they were both absent possibly suggesting they are still alive.
* HilariousInHindsight:
** ''WesternAnimation/MortalKombatDefendersOfTheRealm'' gave us a non-canon glimpse of Cyrax and Sektor before they underwent automation; they were respectively shown to be Asian and Black. While we've known that (in canon) Cyrax has been shown to be [[AmbiguouslyBrown dark-skinned at the least]] since his ending in ''[[VideoGame/MortalKombat4 Gold]]'' (additionally, his bio for this game confirms that he's Motswana), this game's story shows us all of the major Lin Kuei warriors before they were converted into cyborgs. Sektor is shown to be Asian, thus meaning that he and Cyrax swapped races between the games and the cartoon.
** A year before the game was ''announced'', a Website/YouTube user uploaded [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cLW0WpxDe50 this video.]] At the time it was just a show off of ''[[VideoGame/MortalKombatArmageddon Armageddon]]'''s "Kreate-A-Fatality" feature, where the player could build their own character, with their own powers, fighting stances, weapons, etc. But now that [[Franchise/ANightmareOnElmStreet Freddy]] was confirmed to be [[DownloadableContent DLC]], the video seems (unintentionally, of course) prophetic...
** CanonForeigner [[http://mortalkombat.wikia.com/wiki/Hydro Hydro]] [[MortalKombatLegacy becomes a cyborg]]. [[spoiler:So does Sub-Zero!]] Made funnier by the fact that a fangame (''[[{{MUGEN}} Mortal Kombat Project]]'') has [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1FuP15-olQ Hydro]] with the same cyborg design as ''[[VideoGame/MortalKombat3 MK3]]''!Cyrax and Sektor, which eventually became [[spoiler:Cyb-Zero]]'s [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oItKXtVflj4 downloadable costume!]] Even better: [[spoiler:Cyb-Zero]]'s moveset is ''very'' similar to Cyborg Hydro's in the aforementioned fangame.
** ''[[Film/MortalKombatAnnihilation Annihilation]]'' features a scene where Rain announces to Shao Kahn that he's captured Kabal and Stryker. Cue ''9'', and both of them are BashBrothers.
* HolyShitQuotient: The X-Ray moves and Fatalities in particular have high [=HSQs=], though there's no shortage of this in the game's storyline as well.
* IdiotPlot: Several fans accuse the game of being this due to Raiden's excessive WhatAnIdiot moments.
* MagnumOpus: With its sheer amount of content, attention to detail, and gameplay that was finally deemed tournament-worthy, it's safe to say that this game has successfully knocked ''Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3'' off of its pedestal as the series' example.
* MemeticMutation: Combining Sub-Zero's versus portrait with those of other characters has yielded [[http://oi53.tinypic.com/15nlx09.jpg hilarious results.]]
** This dialogue, from Challenge #20 in the Challenge Tower:
--> '''Scorpion''': ''I HATE TEDDIES!''
--> '''Mileena''': ''But I worked so hard on it. You MUST accept it!''
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRrzi5ndp1o Thanks a particular leak about DLC,]] "DLC BASEMALE is my main/is God Tier" looks like it's working its way up as well.
** Stryker and [[spoiler:Police!]]Kabal's conversation in the middle of Chapter 12:
--> '''Kabal''': ''Stryker, check her'' [Mileena] ''out! What do you think? Friend or foe?''
--> '''Stryker''': ''Foe.''
--> '''Kabal''': ''Dressed like that?''
--> '''Stryker''': ''Definitely foe.''
** ...And Kano is still frozen.[[note]]The last time that Kano is seen in the story mode is when he is frozen by Sub-Zero. [[spoiler: Though he likely thawed out of the Ice eventually as Noob Saibot mentions that he received a warning from him about Sub-Zero's defection]].[[/note]]
%% Don't add Narm here. It's a DarthWiki element, and, as such, must be left out of any page.
* NarmCharm: Some of the game's corny dialogue and extreme [[WorldOfHam hamminess]] is what makes it so good.
* NightmareFuelStationAttendant: Mileena, again.
* OlderThanTheyThink: People praise the game for innovating when it comes to single player content in a fighting game. This is despite that [[{{Blazblue}} it]] [[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros has]] [[VideoGame/DragonBallZBudokai happened]] [[VideoGame/GuiltyGear several]] [[VideoGame/DragonBallZBudokaiTenkaichi times]] [[VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy before]].
* PortingDisaster: Maybe due to insufficient testing to ensure compatibility on a variety of configurations, the PC version may play perfectly to some, while others experience problems like inconsistent framerate - you may play the first round of a fight going with a fast forward button, then the second in slow motion - or sudden framerate drops when some visual effects are played. It can be remedied only by fiddling with some configuration files. Also, the compression of the cutscenes is lower than in the console releases, which causes a jarring contrast with the higher resolutions allowed on [=PCs=]; fans have released a higher-res movies pack.
* RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap: If ''[[VideoGame/MortalKombatArmageddon Armageddon]]'' didn't rescue Stryker, this game surely did. Aside of an even cooler riot suit, any traces of his previous CreatorsPet-ness [[TookALevelInBadass have been replaced by pure, unadulterated]] {{badass}}ery. Having a good VA (Matthew Mercer), as well as a mellow, GenreSavvy personality doesn't hurt either.
** Some mention also deserves to be made about Liu Kang. In the past, he was regularly overshadowed by everyone else. This is changed by having him be more of a chosen one ("He must win" [[spoiler: Though Raiden realizes that the message meant something else entirely]]) and by developing his relation with Raiden [[spoiler: by making them become estranged enemies by some of the latter's decisions sometimes having detrimental ramifications]].
* TheScrappy: Sindel after the events of Chapter 15 [[spoiler:where she effortlessly curbstomps 10 people at once killing all but Johnny Cage and Sonya.]]
** This game has a lot of players wishing that the sequel involves [[RageAgainstTheHeavens kicking the collective asses of the Elder Gods]], for doing nothing to help the heroes.
*** It's almost like the story is ''intentionally'' making you hate the Elder Gods with the unbridled fury of one thousand white-hot suns to garner a KickTheSonOfABitch[=/=]RootingForTheEmpire reaction from [[spoiler:Shinnok's inevitable escape from the Netherrealm.]]
**** Raiden is now this for the TropePantheon runners due to his many WhatAnIdiot moments. Among fans, he's usually treated as just being put through bad writing and still maintains a good deal of popularity.
***** The demon in the Krypt is not only seen as a [[JumpScare nuisance]], but makes many players [[ParanoiaFuel not want to go back there]].
* SpecialEffectsFailure: In the Vita release of this game, there's a ''big'' ArtShift when going from cutscene to gameplay, much more than was noticeable in the home-console version (which was practically seamless). It doesn't help that most shirtless characters look like their muscles are just painted-on now. The PC version also has this problem if your resolution is set higher than the resolution the cutscenes play at.
* ThatOneBoss: All the bosses in grand tradition are this, but Shao Kahn regardless of match up is an SNKBoss that will send you crying for mommy.
* ThatOneLevel:
** Challenge #251, you must KO Shao Kahn with Shang Tsung, AFTER facing Baraka and Sindel on maxed out AIs. This is on top of the fact Shang Tsung has a rather mediocre move list.
** Challenge #257: Hell, pits you against Noob Saibot with reduced damage taken, damage boosted X3, a super meter that never drops below 2/3, and input-reading AI. Fun times. Fittingly, this challenge is simply called "Hell".
** Challenge #269 requires [=KOing=] 3 Shao Kahns as Stryker, with no health restore. It practically forces you into a tedious HitScan spam.
** Challenge #300: You have any choice of chracter, but you must fight all three bosses back-to-back with one health bar as they get bonuses up the wazoo.
* TierInducedScrappy: Shang Tsung. He can only morph into to the character being fought, and they can block this to prevent it. His moves aren't that great, one of which even leaves you open for attack, and is easy to do by mistake when throwing combos involving uppercuts. And 2 of his big advantages, his grab and Soul Steal, are useless on the bosses. He can be played okay in the right hands, but even then, he's moderately good at best.
** Sheeva as well, considering that for all her power her specials offer, she doesn't have much to work with in combos and specials and is rather large to boot.
* VillainSue: Some feel Quan Chi approaches or outright becomes this thanks to being really important to the villain's schemes and being a KarmaHoudini. {{Subverted|Trope}} as however it helps greatly [[spoiler:when it's implied that Shinnok is possibly receiving information from his future self, and thus allowing the two to plan accordingly. Indeed at the very end the two state that everything has gone according to plan.]]
* WhatAnIdiot:
** Raiden just stands and watches the Lin Kuei cyborgs abduct [[spoiler:Sub-Zero]]; that this comes ''after'' warning Cyrax against the Cyber Inititave & his saving [[spoiler:Smoke]] from that same fate makes it especially glaring. An argument could be made that [[spoiler:his inability to understand his message from the future ("He must win") could fall under this, as he keeps thinking that it means a specific combatant from Earthrealm, even after Liu Kang's victories over Shang Tsung & Shao Kahn didn't ward off Armageddon]]. In fact, Raiden from the original timeline could fall under this too, because [[spoiler:he could have very easily specified who the message "He must win" was referring to, though to be fair, he was just beaten up and about to be killed, so he must have had little time to clairify]].
*** For one, he didn't go to the Elder Gods until the last possible minute, nor explain his visions.
** Hey Sonya, Ermac's got a hold of Jax! Want to help Jax out? No? Okay, let's just hope nothing bad happ--Oh wait, there go his arms. Good thing you're here Sonya, now you can stop the bleeding!
** Shao Kahn himself at the very start of the game. If he simply killed Raiden there and then [[EvilGloating as he started his]] [[TheReasonYouSuckSpeech gloating]], the timeline wouldn't have changed and he wouldn't have been annihilated by the Elder Gods.
** Sindel's [[spoiler:[[NoHoldsBarredBeatdown slaughter of the]] [[CurbStompBattle whole team]] [[TheWorfEffect of heroes]]]] wouldn't be that bad if they just attacked her all at once or at least used their projectile attacks at her first.
** [[spoiler:Kung Lao]] was probably unwise in not keeping his head on a swivel in Shao Kahn's arena. As a result, Shao Kahn turned his head ''into'' a swivel.
** [[spoiler: Raiden really shoudn't have brought out his lightning against the fiery Liu Kang when trying to stop him from rushing against Shao Kahn. As a result, Liu Kang gets fried.]]
* WinBackTheCrowd: This game basically won over the fanbase and then some after a dry spell of games that were either derided as being broken (''VideoGame/MortalKombatDeception''), rushed (''VideoGame/MortalKombatArmageddon''), or mediocre (''VideoGame/MortalKombatVsDCUniverse''). The sheer effort placed into this game and all of the features included made this a hit.
* TheyWastedAPerfectlyGoodPlot: Noob Saibot! After discovering his identity you would think he is trying to have his revenge and make a huge action that defeats the villains. Well, maybe in a sequel if he survives.
** It's possible he became (even more of) a puppet to Quan Chi without realizing it. And, in the original timeline, even after it's been revealed who he was, he developed a whole new agenda (which included making Smoke into his own servant) rather than pursuing [[CycleOfRevenge vendetta against Scorpion]].
* UnintentionallyUnsympathetic: Scorpion has been getting some of this sort of reaction from those who were introduced to the franchise via MK9. Granted, it is unfortunate that he lost his clan, and especially his wife and infant child, in a brutal massacre and is intended to be a tragic figure. However it doesn't justify him aligning with the likes of [[CompleteMonster Quan Chi]] and by extension [[OmnicidalManiac Shinnok]] and instead makes Scorpion look more like an [[JerkWithAHeartOfJerk angry asshole]] [[NinetiesAntiHero who jumped out of a Dark-Age, Liefeld-inspired comic book]]. To the credit of the creators, this is somewhat acknowledged at the beginning of Chapter 16 when Raiden [[WhatTheHellHero chews him out for his continued service to Quan Chi]] which will do nothing at all to revive the Shirai Ryu or at the very least [[VisionaryVillain do something]] [[WellIntentionedExtremist with some sort of good intention]].
* TheWoobie: You can't help but feel for Raiden after all's said and done. Accidentally betraying your friends, being manipulated by every evil bastard between Outworld and the Netherrealm, watching your world destroyed in an invasion, finding no help from your superiors, and ultimately, figuring out it all went south [[spoiler:because you couldn't even understand your own doomed message.]] Even if he played with the IdiotBall, Raiden deserves a Friendship by the end of Story Mode.
** Liu Kang as well. He is groomed to be the chosen one by Raiden only for the latter's mistakes to screw everyone, including [[spoiler: his good friends Kung Lao and Kitana]] into oblivion. This makes him lose trust in Raiden and [[spoiler: ends up getting killed when he fights his mentor out of fury, cursing him with his last breath. Even worse, his arcade ending and Shang Tsung's has him kill Raiden and become a violent thunder god doomed to be killed by Tsung thanks to his annoyance with Raiden.]] No matter what, Liu Kang and Raiden are doomed to have their friendship ruined.
** [[spoiler:Cyber]] Sub-Zero is this both in Story and Arcade Ladder. [[spoiler:In both cases he is doomed to AFateWorseThanDeath, both an initial, temporary one, and a second, possibly more permanent one]].
** Kitana. She feels guilt over failing to kill Liu Kang, which displeases her father, Shao Kahn. She then finds out her life was a big lie and has [[spoiler: her mother brought back evil. She ends her life begging her to return to normal before she kills her and dies in Liu Kang's arms and is enslaved by Quan Chi. To top it off, she and Liu Kang are [[ShipTease teased to love each other.]]]]
** Long story short, this game made the setting a CrapsackWorld. It is utterly heartwrenching to see the domino effect screw over nearly ''everyone''.
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