* AlternativeCharacterInterpretation: Shujinko's status as an UnwittingPawn makes it possible for him to be seen as TheWoobie, with shades of IronWoobie. While easily manipulated, he was merely a guy who wanted to face Shang Tsung in Mortal Kombat, [[AscendedFanboy actually got the chance to join that world]], [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone never meant for any of this to happen]], [[TheAtoner and works his butt off to rectify his mistake]].
* BaseBreaker: Bo' Rai Cho. Either you like him for being a FunPersonified CoolOldGuy or hate him for turning his already established ToiletHumor from ''Deadly Alliance'' turned UpToEleven.
** Kira and Kobra also counts. Kira is either a cool and {{Fanservice}}y EvilRedhead or a ReplacementScrappy with the moveset of both [[MovesetClone Kano and Sonya]], and Kobra is either a subversion of the {{Shotoclone}} archetype or a blatant [[CaptainErsatz rip-off]] of [[Franchise/StreetFighter Ken Masters]] and one of the worst characters of the franchise (along with Hsu Hao, Mokap and Meat).
* BigLippedAlligatorMoment:
** Motaro appears out of the blue in a random Earthrealm village in the Konquest mode to give you some koins, then vanishes. It's a rare occurrence and the player has to be quick to make it happen, so it's more of an EasterEgg.
** Meat randomly appears with a British accent in the Netherrealm in the Konquest mode to give you some koins, then disappears.
* CrazyAwesome: Havik. How many fighters do you know crack their own necks to regain health, and slide across the floor like a penguin?
* DesignatedHero: Shujinko, mostly because he can't see through Onaga being a bigger dick, but you're still encouraged to rob everyone blind for the hell of it if you want to unlock everything, and a lot of problems are "solved" by just sucker-punching random people.
** The random punching is more an example of VideoGameCrueltyPotential.
* EnsembleDarkhorse: Onaga happens to have quite a following. Despite his status as an SNKBoss for some, many liked his design, his stature, and his story. He was even [[http://www.trinidadcarnivaldiary.com/?p=2817 featured as a costume]] in Trinidad's 2009's Carnival celebrations!
** Havik, due to his unorthodox playstyle and hints of him and his people being {{Cloudcuckoolander}}s.
** Nightwolf as well, which is an interesting shift considering how [[TheScrappy hated]] he was around the time of ''VideoGame/MortalKombat3''.
** Ashrah is also this, to a lesser extent.
* FanPreferredCouple: Fans seem to be fond of pairing up Ashrah and Raiden despite [[CrackPairing no tangible connections existing between the two]] aside of being members of the Forces of Light. As noted on the Characters page, this is rooted in [[ThemePairing how similar the two appear to each other]], with many mistaking originally Ashrah not only as Raiden's DistaffCounterpart, but his wife.
** Say everything about them, but Kira and Kobra does have their supporters (see BaseBreaker above), with shippers as part of them.
* GameBreaker: A '''ton.''' The majority can be corralled under two things: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQftCLpsk_A moves that lead to unduckable throws,]] and moves that can be repeated ad-nauseum until the timer runs out. It's the core reason why this game was frowned upon by the professional fighting game community.
** Dairou's Tombstone Drop is this. It's an unblockable ground pound that falls ''extremely'' fast and has a very quick recovery time, and the only way to avoid it is to anticipate it coming and jump. Unfortunately, given this game's mechanics, that's a lot easier said than done.
* GoodBadBugs: Perform a Fatality and a Hara-Kiri at the same time to get [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-egksufiao these.]]
* NightmareFuelStationAttendant: Mileena.
* ReplacementScrappy: Shujinko was the target of a lot of hate for replacing Liu Kang. He's [[TooDumbToLive terminally naive]] and stole the special moves and even ''appearances'' of the other characters during Konquest mode. It doesn't help that Boon hamfisted him down the fandom's throat [[CreatorsPet by labeling him "The next generation Liu Kang"]] in an interview, or that his name ''literally means'' [[MeaningfulName "Protagonist"]].
** Kira, who can basically be described as Kano and Sonya's lovechild.
* RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap: Nightwolf. Prior to ''Deception'', he had just as much of a {{Hatedom}} as Stryker did when he was introduced.
* TheScrappy: Aside of Shujinko, [[ReplacementScrappy Kira]] and [[CaptainErsatz Kobra]]. Kira [[{{Fanservice}} less so]] than Kobra.
** Also [[FlatCharacter Darrius]] and [[GameBreaker Dairou]].
** [[spoiler:Zombie Liu Kang]]. Many fans saw it as a slap in the face that this is [[CameBackWrong what happened to]] the [[spoiler:Mortal Kombat Champion]], and he even made Website/ScrewAttack's "Top Ten Worst Fighting Game Characters" list.