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Mortal Kombat Main Character Index
Main series: MK1 | MK2 | MK3 | MK4 | Deadly Alliance | Deception | Armageddon | MK vs. DC Universe | MK9 | MKX | MK11
Spin-offs: Mythologies: Sub-Zero | Special Forces
Non-video game: The Movie | Conquest | Defenders of the Realm | 2021 Movie
Individual Characters: Scorpion | Johnny Cage | Liu Kang | Raiden | Shang Tsung | Sub-Zero II | Kitana | Mileena | Shao Kahn | Shinnok and Quan Chi | Kronika


Here, we're going to list the characters introduced in Mortal Kombat.

For Scorpion; Johnny Cage; Liu Kang; Raiden; or Shang Tsung, see their respective pages.

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    Sub-Zero I (Bi-Han) 

Sub-Zero (Bi-Han)
"Now you will feel death's cold embrace!"

Debut game: Mortal Kombat (Daniel Pesina)
Other appearances as Sub-Zero: Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 (John Turk), Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero (John Turk), Mortal Kombat 9 (Jamieson Price), Injustice 2 (Steve Blum, Mirror Match only), Mortal Kombat 11 (Steve Blum, Mirror Match only)
Non-game appearances: Mortal Kombat: The Movie (François Petit), Mortal Kombat: Legacy (Kevan Ohtsji), Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge (Steve Blum), Mortal Kombat (2021) (Joe Taslim)
A professional assassin, originally named Bi-Han, of the legendary Lin Kuei clan. As his name implies, he has the ability to control ice. After succeeding in killing Scorpion, his rival, he is hired by Quan Chi to reclaim Shinnok's amulet. Along the way, he fights four of the Earthrealm gods (including Fujin), but before moving onward, he is confronted by Raiden, who reveals Quan Chi's true intentions. Furious at Quan Chi for duping him, he travels to the Netherealm to stop the evil plot, and on the way encounters Sareena, one of Quan Chi's Oni servants, and befriends her. He defeats Quan Chi, but this does not stop him from reviving Shinnok, and after retaking Shinnok's amulet in a surprise move, he escapes the Netherealm through a portal, leaving Shinnok trapped again.

Later he is hired to assassinate Shang Tsung during the Mortal Kombat tournament. He makes his way up the ladder until he faces a newly revived Scorpion, who exacts revenge by burning him alive.

Thus was the life of Sub-Zero.

NOTE: Tropes regarding the younger Sub-Zero and Noob Saibot should go into his and the Mortal Kombat II character sheets, respectively.
  • Adaptational Heroism: A Downplayed example in Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge as unlike the games there is no evidence he ever worked for Quan Chi, he also isn't the one who killed Scorpion. In the same movie, he kicks Kano off of a roof and berates him for dishonoring the tournament for bringing his goons, who weren't invited to participate. In the first game, he was only at the tournament to kill Shang Tsung, and didn't show any respect for the tournament itself.
  • An Ice Suit: His leather ninja gear wouldn't protect him from the cold, if he wasn't naturally immune to that.
  • Anti-Hero: Of the Nominal Hero and Only in It for the Money sort. Especially plays this to a hilt in Mythologies, which entirely focuses on him. This aspect of him seems to get a little bit better, but he still remains a Jerkass and gets killed by Scorpion.
  • Badass Baritone: In MK9 and the times Steve Blum voiced him. His Mythologies voice was more akin to Guttural Growler.
  • Black Screen of Death: His Spine Rip Fatality in UMK3, as none of the fighters had animations in place that would make it feasible to show, as well as to mock the controversy the move caused in the original game.
  • Bullying a Dragon: In 9, after Scorpion defeats Cyrax and Sektor in the tournament. Granted, Sub-Zero did (canonically) defeat Scorpion twice in Mythologies, but it's not a good idea to piss off the one hellspawn who seriously wants you dead.
    Scorpion: I will have my revenge, but I will not kill Sub-Zero.
    Sub-Zero: Will not? Or cannot?
    Scorpion: You! The Shirai Ryu are dead. You shall suffer as they did.
    Sub-Zero: To hell with your clan.
    Scorpion: No... TO HELL WITH YOU! [drags Sub-Zero into the Netherrealm]
  • But Not Too Foreign: He was originally the son of an American woman and a Chinese man. Said father was also descended from the Cryomancer race, thus making the Sub-Zero brothers not fully human. 9 retcons this by showing the parents of both of the brothers in a region that is pretty clearly in East Asia. It also explicitly states that both Bi-Han and Kuai Liang were abducted as children which contradicts the earlier backstory of the brothers having been born to an American woman with a sister and then later on being taken by their father to China.
  • Canon Name: 9 reveals that his birth name is Bi-Han.
  • Death by Irony: Somewhat. Scorpion claims his spine as a trophy after defeating him in battle, similar to how he died by his hand, but the actual killing was seemingly done by Scorpion's breathing hellfire upon him.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: In Mythologies, he beats the tar out of all four of the elemental gods. Sub-Zero also has the chance to defeat Shinnok, which would put his total up to 5.
  • Face Death with Dignity: In stark contrast to Scorpion, who essentially begged for his life before he killed him, Bi-Han was remarkably composed about meeting his death-by-hellfire at the former's hand. The only umbrage he seemed to take was when he found out that Scorpion was going to kill him for a crime he didn't commit, and pointed out this fact in vain before he was killed.
  • The Faceless: Unlike Kuai Liang, Bi-Han's face is never shown while he was alive. As Noob Saibot, his unmasked visage in 11 is disfigured, making it hard to estimate what he might have looked like back then.
  • Foreshadowing: Mythologies serves as one big build-up for his eventual fate as Noob Saibot.
  • Harmless Freezing: His ice blasts deal rather weak damage, but they do set enemies up for devastating further attacks.
  • Heel Realization: Raiden's words that darkness existed in his soul deeply troubles Sub-Zero. Too bad he didn't do much to change anything.
  • Hero of Another Story: Mythologies retroactively makes him into one by revealing he stopped Shinnok and Quan Chi's plot to conquer earth long before Liu Kang did.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: In the movie, he's pitted in a fight against Liu Kang. He seems to get the upper hand when he starts to freeze his surroundings and is rapidly cornering Liu Kang; unluckily for him, his chilling power backfires when Liu throws a bucket of water at him, which freezes, impales, and kills him.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: His justification for killing Scorpion, and presumably, for every other murder he's likely had to commit. It is somewhat reasonable in Scorpion's case, as not killing him probably would have gotten Bi-Han killed by his own Grandmaster, given their clans' rivalry.
    Scorpion: You killed me in cold blood.
    Sub-Zero: I had no choice.
    Scorpion: You could have let me live!
    Sub-Zero: Then I would be the dead one.
  • Insistent Terminology: Justified in that they're Chinese assassins, not ninjas, and he dislikes being called one.
    "Let's get something straight here: I am not a Ninja. I am Lin Kuei! Scorpion was a ninja."
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's rather coarse when seen alive in MK9, but shows a softer side around Sareena and Kuai Liang's idolization of him would indicate this.
  • Jobber:
    • Has a tendency to repeatedly show up during 9's story mode to get beaten up.
    • The trailers for 9 and X show him fighting Scorpion and losing, getting killed gruesomely.
  • Kill It with Ice: His preferred method of killing.
  • Legacy Character: The codename "Sub-Zero" has been handed down from father to son (and from brother to brother) for years. He is the fifth to bear the name.
  • Meaningful Name: While Chinese names are not usually hyphenated, "Bi-Han" has multiple translations depending on the characters used. These include...
    • "Eorced cold", referring to his obvious Cryomancer powers.
    • "Corrupted man", referring to the darkness Raiden sensed in him that led to his eventual downfall.
    • "Avoid regret", describing his openly ruthless and uncaring personality as Noob Saibot.
  • Misplaced Retribution: He (and, by extension, the Lin Kuei) wasn't the one who killed Scorpion's clan. It was Quan Chi.
  • Nominal Hero: Bi-Han's motivation in life is about self-preservation (hence why handing the amulet to Quan Chi didn't invoke any sensation of transgression on his part when Raiden admonished him for it). He'll do some heroic things (like sparing Sareena) but in the end, he's not someone who acts because it is the "right thing to do" (his brother is keener on being the heroic type).
  • Off with His Head!: His infamous "Spine Rip" Fatality, which involves ripping out the opponent's head and attached spinal cord from their shoulders (also a case of a Decapitation Presentation). Ironically, this is how he dies in the original timeline.
  • Only in It for the Money:
    • He entered the MK1 tournament just to assassinate Shang Tsung and collect the large bounty on his head.
    • He also tells Raiden in Mythologies that he was just earning his living after Quan Chi escapes with Shinnok's amulet.
    "I was just earning my living."
  • Palette Swap: Of Scorpion. Interestingly, he is not a mere Palette Swap of his own character in MK9. If you choose Sub-Zero's alternate outfit, he also gains the voice samples of Bi-Han instead of Kuai Liang, which means the alternate outfit is Bi-Han.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: Very devoted to the Lin Kuei.
  • Retirony: In his MK1 ending, it's revealed that assassinating Shang Tsung would've been his last job for the Lin Kuei and he would retire from his dangerous job afterwards. Unfortunately, by canon, Scorpion puts the trope in full effect, and possibly by Retcon, Bi-Han is shown to be so devoted to the Lin Kuei that he wouldn't even think about retiring.
  • The Rival: Of Scorpion.
  • Ship Tease: In Mythologies, there was a briefly hinted love interest between him and Sareena, which passed on to his brother in Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition.
  • Slide Attack: His "Slide" move.
  • Tragic Hero: Though "hero" is a bit of a stretch, seeing as he was an unrelenting assassin in life, unlike his little brother who was more compassionate.
  • The Trickster: In Mythologies, Sub-Zero is noted to be the most clever and most skilled of all the Lin Kuei.
  • Unexpected Character: Treated in-universe as this in his UMK3 ending.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Raiden chews a large bite of Cyromancer pie out of Sub-Zero when it turns out that he's supplied Quan Chi with the means of freeing Shinnok from his imprisonment in the Netherrealm.
  • You're Insane!: Once he discovers the true purpose of the Amulet of Shinnok, he is quick to call Quan Chi this - plus, to say that the amulet is worth nothing.


"Gotta stay sharp!"

Debut game: Mortal Kombat (Richard Divizio)
Other appearances: Mortal Kombat II (cameo), Mortal Kombat 3 (Richard Divizio), Mortal Kombat: Special Forces (David Allen), Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance (Richard Divizio), Mortal Kombat: Deception (cameo), Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe (Michael McConnohie), Mortal Kombat 9 (Michael McConnohie), Mortal Kombat X (Michael McConnohie, English; Ricardo Tejedo, Latin American Spanish), Mortal Kombat 11 (JB Blanc, English; Derek Pratt, Face Model; Luis Leonardo Suarez, Latin American Spanish)
Non-game appearances: Mortal Kombat: The Movie (Trevor Goddard), Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm (Michael Des Barres), Mortal Kombat: Legacy (Darren Shahlavi), Wreck-It Ralph (...sort of; Brian Kesinger), Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge (Robin Atkin Downes), Mortal Kombat (2021) (Josh Lawson)

Kano is the leader of the Black Dragon organization, a criminal empire of cut-throat madmen. A portion of Kano's face is covered with a metal plate as a result of wounds he sustained at the hands of Major Jackson Briggs prior to the events of the series, with the plated eye being a glowing red orb capable of emitting laser-like beams. He entered Shang Tsung's Mortal Kombat tournament after hearing rumors that Tsung's palace was filled with gold and other riches; after the final battle between Shang Tsung and Liu Kang, Kano teamed up with Sonya and Johnny Cage to fight Goro. During the battle, the island began to crumble because of Shang Tsung's defeat, and before they knew it, Kano and Sonya found themselves in a forest in Outworld. They were found and captured by Shang Tsung. Kano managed to save his own life by convincing Shao Kahn to accept him as a weapons instructor for his armies, and later, during the events of Mortal Kombat 3, Sonya tossed Kano to his surmised death from the roof of a high building, only for Kano to be healed back to life by Motaro.

Eventually, Kahn's forces were defeated. Earthrealm was free, and so was Edenia. Shao Kahn's act of promoting Kano, however, proved to be a lucky shot, as Kano was a very competent general. During the events of Deadly Alliance Kano declared his allegiance to the Sorcerers; however, he was attacked and apparently captured by Red Dragon member Mavado. In Armageddon's Konquest mode, Kano is found by Taven to have been held prisoner by the Red Dragon Clan for quite some time. Before escaping their facilities, Kano explains to Taven that the Red Dragon Clan had been experimenting on him, in an effort to create Human-Dragon Hybrids, yet without apparent effects on Kano.

Kano is pretty much the same as in the previous games in Mortal Kombat 9, but is a more willing soldier to Outworld than before, even going so far as to sell the forces of Outworld Earthrealm weapons to help in Shao Kahn's invasion of Earth. Pretty much, he's a race-betraying prick (although he gets his comeuppance late in the game by being frozen by Cyber Sub-Zero). During the lead-up to Mortal Kombat X, Kano has been keeping on the down-low in Earthrealm following Shao Kahn's invasion and subsequent defeat but supplying various Outworld conflicts with weapons to keep himself in business. When Kotal Kahn overthrows Mileena as emperor of Outworld, he immediately offers to give Kotal Kahn consultation and weapon supply services to secure a place in the new regime. However one must never trust Kano too much as he also sells Mileena and her rebel armies his expertise as well, allowing him to supply both sides of the same conflict and reap the benefits all over. Mileena pays Kano to assassinate Kotal Kahn but ends up losing to him in a duel. Afterwards, he escapes to Earthrealm and winds up in an Outworld refugee camp where is discovered by Sonya. The two battle and Sonya nearly kills him until Johnny talks her down and instead he is arrested and leads the Earthrealm Special Forces to the whereabouts of Mileena's rebel encampment and Shinnok's amulet.

Despite his arrest by Sonya, another Kano is later recruited by Kronika as part of her Evil Plan in Mortal Kombat 11, while the present-day one is freed by her as well.

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Not a single female kombatant is charmed by him, and his lecherous comments often mutate into a more murderous statement afterwards.
  • Abusive Parents: His ending in MKX shows him torturing and beating the crap out of his son as part of the Black Dragon initiation.
  • Adaptational Nationality: After Trevor Goddard's portrayal in the movie, he was changed from expediate American descent in the games to Australian. While Goddard played Kano as Cockney English, his accent was misinterpreted as Australian, leading to the retcon.
  • A Lighter Shade of Black: Several interactions with Raiden have him express he never takes action against Kano because, in his eyes, he is simply a petty crook compared to the likes of some other villains in the series. However, he voices his regret in certain other intros and expresses he should have killed Kano long ago.
  • The Alcoholic: Many of his intros, taunts, and even one of his Fatalities in 11 feature him downing a large bottle of booze. His default intro and Brutality win pose even have him drunkenly urinating on the ground.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Averted. While he does many cowardly things to often save his skin, he is never going to stoop to this with his enemies or rivals.
    Shao Kahn: Beg my forgiveness.
    Kano: Sorry mate, I don't grovel.
  • And Show It to You: His infamous "Heart Rip" Fatality. He holds the heart up for everyone to see, including the victim in several games.
  • Animal Motifs: 11 has a dog motif going on for him. He gets called such by Jade, calls himself a "dog with a bone" against Sonya and, against Kitana, says his pissing is a form of marking his territory.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • The Special Forces. He's quite... "invested" with his most personal enemy Sonyanote , and Jax is responsible for the metal plate on his face.
    • The Red Dragon clan. They're a longtime enemy of Kano's Black Dragon Clan.
    • Since he has an eye for Sonya and Cassie, he becomes this with Johnny Cage as well.
  • Arms Dealer: The primary market for the Black Dragon's operations are in weapons dealing. Kano is always looking for buyers for his wares, regardless of how they'll be used. He frequently deals with Outworld customers and sells weapons to any party in the realm, even if they're in conflict with one another or intend to use them against Earthrealm.
  • Awesome Aussie: A brutal killer who comes from the land down under. 11 adds a significant amount of references to Australian slang and culture to his character.
  • Bad Boss: In Special Forces. The other Black Dragon clansmen (barring the possibility of Jarek) are unquestionably loyal to Kano, who exploits them as distractions for Jax to deal with (and unlike Jarek, they might all be dead by Jax's hands, too).
  • Benevolent Boss: A twisted example. Despite his backstabbing tendencies, Kano cultivates certain loyalty in his clan through charisma and profit. Kabal trusts his lies without a doubt in 11, and other Black Dragons are seen to be decently loyal to him throughout the series. Even when being badmouthed or facing inevitable mutiny, Kano hardly drops his jovial demeanor and tries to recruit his underlings back. The only thing that makes Kano lose his cool is the prospect of his subordinates attempting to usurp him.
  • Bald of Evil: His appearance in MK3. The younger version of himself in 11 also has this appearance to contrast the more grizzled and bearded present self.
  • Beard of Evil: In most of his appearances. Started as a 5 o'clock shadow (shaven clean in MK3), and became a full beard since MKvsDCU.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: The heart still beats when he first rips it out of the body.
  • Berserk Button: Little ever fazes Kano. Even defecting Black Dragons that threaten or beat the crap out of him doesn't make Kano lose his snarky demeanor. However, what truly does make Kano murderously angry is being confronted for leadership over his clan.
  • Bicep-Polishing Gesture: Kano's counter move in 11 has him flex his arm to catch the opponent off guard and ram a knife through their arm.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Has elbow blades in MKX, yet they appear to be mostly for show.
  • The Bogan: Kano is a violent, depraved, uncouth Australian. Nowhere is this more prominent than in 11. He swears, he tries uncouth ways to chat up women, and he's prone to spitting, downing beer, and urinating whenever he enters the battlefield. Kitana actually says that Baraka is more civilized than him, and even Shang Tsung, of all people, takes umbrage at his existence and refers to him as a "disrespectful cretin".
  • Boring, but Practical: His Fatalities as a whole tend to lack the over-the-top spectacle of some of the other Kombatants, being simple, brutal, and sadistic.
  • The Brute: Serves as this somewhat to Outworld, selling them weapons. He's a go-to-guy in terms of direct combat and weaponry.
  • Bullying a Dragon:
    • Sure, Kano. Go ahead and threaten Cassie in Sonya Blade's presence, while on her base and surrounded. That sounds like a great idea. It goes about as well as you'd expect.
    • During his fight with Sonya in the movie, Kano says "Gimme a break" after getting caught in Sonya's signature leg grab. This proved to be a poor choice of words.
    • Does it again in 11. Let's go ahead and remind Past Sonya that Past Johnny's murder would erase Cassie from existence, while she already has her boot pressed down on Past Kano's neck. It's not like she isn't in prime position to simply draw a gun, barely have to move it to aim, and blow his past counterpart's brains out and kill them both at once. Worse for him, his threat about Cassie's Cessation of Existence is precisely what reminds her she can do this. This time, it comes back to fatally bite his slobbery ass.
    • Certain opening interactions with Raiden indicate Kano is aware the god does not see him as much of a threat. Kano is determined to make him think otherwise.
    • One of his intros with Shao Kahn involves him stating he's holding Kollector for ransom. Not even Shao Kahn's threat of murder stirs him.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: 11 has him proud of being immoral. He agrees with Raiden's assessment that he lives a life of "sin and licentiousness", admits against Nightwolf that he hasn't and never will care about others and, against Geras, advises him not to "double-cross a double-crosser". Against Kotal, he bluntly says that, yes, his business is about cheating buyers.
  • Carpet of Virility: Since Trevor Goddard's portrayal in the live-action film, Kano has usually been shown having a rather hairy chest.
  • Censored for Comedy: A variant; as a probable Take That! to Australia's censorship laws prohibiting Mortal Kombat 9 from being sold there, Kano in 11 has a number of expletives bleeped in his base game intro dialogues.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: He will take any offer that allows his own preservation. Sonya even calls Kabal out in a 11 intro for being dumb enough to believe him.
    Sonya: Who said I tortured you?
    Kabal: Kano. He's got no reason to lie.
    Sonya: Except, y'know, he's KANO!
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: His different Variations in MKX give his bionic eye and heart different colors. Cybernetic gives him his classic red eye, his Commando variation colors it yellow, and his Cut-Throat variation colors it blue.
  • Combat Pragmatist: The appropriately named "Dirtbag" variation Kano has in 11 sees him using every dirty street fighting trick to win.
  • Counter-Attack: The main thrust of his "Commando" fighting style in X, which allows him to catch-and-return enemy attacks with a range of grapples.
  • The Corrupter: Kano promises extravagant wealth and a place of belonging to those he handpicks into the Black Dragon. He is so effective at this he instilled Undying Loyalty in Kabal, to where his past self couldn't fathom Kano lying to him. He was also almost successful in corrupting Grey Cloud in the past before the latter barely broke free from his influence.
  • Cyborg: Only insomuch as needing a synthetic eye that has also been outfitted with a heat-emitting beam (justified as the surgeon who gave it to him has a high proficiency in areas of technology). The rest of him is human. However, in MKX, a lot more of his body has been cybernetically enhanced, in particular, his heart and right ear. His robotic eye is also different due to a bad altercation with Kuai Liang about a decade prior. "Cybernetic" is even the name of one of his three Combat Variations. His younger self retains it in 11 and it can be customized with gear.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He would give Johnny a run for his money in this department. At the end of the day, Kano rarely takes anything seriously despite his life of danger.
    Kano: Jackson Briggs...
    Jax: Ready to end this, Kano?
    Kano: Well, we ain't here to f*ck spiders.
  • Dead Guy Puppet: A variant; one fatality in 11 has Kano dance with the victim's body as they spew blood out of a beer bottle he stabbed into their throat.
  • Death by Pragmatism: Kano has the bright idea to kill young Johnny Cage so that both older Johnny and Cassie cease to exist, taking out three enemies at once. Unfortunately for him, Sonya exploits this idea as well and kills younger Kano, causing the old one to die as well.
  • Did Not Do the Bloody Research: In 11, Kano uses a lot more Australian slang than before but occasionally Netherrealm misses the mark; such as referring to money with 'quid' (a British expression, a 'quid' is £1)
  • Disney Villain Death: His fate in the Battle of Armageddon.
  • Dirty Communists: His Kold War outfit in MKX evokes the image of one by giving him a trench coat and Red Star capped beret.
  • The Don: With the Black Dragon more or less having become The Mafia of the Mortal Kombat universe, Kano is this.
  • Dual Wielding: His weapon style has him wielding a pair of Butterfly Knives.
  • Electronic Eyes: His right eye was replaced with a cybernetic prosthetic following an unfortunate battle with Jax. It's customizable in 11 as part of the gear system.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Entirely Played for Laughs. When Cassie makes a hilariously atrocious impression of an Aussie accent in front of Kano, he negatively remarks of American tourists and their penchant for doing the same.
    • For a more straightforward variant, Kano clearly has no patience for the Joker and considers the anarchy he creates bad for the Black Dragon's prospects.
    • He also isn't very fond of Skarlet's literal bloodthirst.
  • Evil Counterpart: He’s one to Jax, as both are being on opposing militaristic factions (Special Forces and Black Dragon respectively). Also, both Kano and Jax have cybernetic parts and in their respective MK9 endings, they both enter into Cyberspace to kill each other. In addition to this, Jax and Kano have their own children as well, but while Jax loves and cherishes his daughter, Kano tortures and abuses his unnamed son.
  • Evil Laugh: Though Kano frequently chuckles, he lets out an especially menacing laugh in one of his outros in 11.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: When voiced by Michael McConnohie or JB Blanc, he has a deep, Broad Australian accent.
  • Excrement Statement: His Brutality win pose and an intro in 11 have him lazily urinating on the floor.
  • Eye Beam:
    • It took three games, but he finally showed he was capable of doing it, in Fatality form, and later as a special move from Deadly Alliance onwards.
    • In the intro to Armageddon, he kills Stryker with one.
  • Eye Scream: Jax disfigured his eye once, hence his metal plate. It happens again in MXK issue 9 when it's shown Sub-Zero froze his cybernetic eye and shattered it, forcing Kano to get an upgrade.
    Baraka: What happened to your eye?
    Kano: Special Forces bastard took it.
    Baraka: I'll take the other one!
  • A Father to His Men: A VERY VERY low-end version of this but while he is a complete sociopath who would subject his own son to gruesome and sadistic torture to harden him, he doesn't take kindly to his fellow Black Dragons being harassed or killed. He especially seems to take a liking to Kabal, even if the feeling there isn't mutual.
  • Faux Affably Evil: His casual demeanor towards his foes belies a nasty streak as wide as Outworld. For female fighters, it slips into perversion and feigned admiration, even if it's clear he intends on killing them.
    Kano: Still mad as a cut snake.
    Sonya: A lot of my guys got killed because of you.
    Kano: But look how it brought us together.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: He may seem like a lazy and uneducated brigand, but Kano certainly has some skill with surgery and technology, as he creates Kabal's respirator and is hinted to regularly upgrade his eye and battery.
  • Gatling Good: He attempts to gun down Sonya and Cassie with a minigun during the events of 11, and it nearly works, too.
  • Giant Spider: Kano's Animality in MK3.
  • Grievous Bottley Harm: One of his Fatalities in 11 has him chug a beer bottle in one, smash it against the opponent's head and drive the broken bottle into their neck so that blood spews out of it while Kano dances with their corpse.
  • Guys Are Slobs: 11 plays up the trashy side of Kano's personality. He's seen relieving himself in one of his intros and Brutality victory animations, takes a big swig out of a beer bottle in several of his animations, and his arcade ending has him overlook cage matches between Sonya and Cassie while the two are dressed in skimpy clothing. His disgusting habits are negatively lampshaded by Kitana and Shang Tsung.
  • Handwraps of Awesome: He often wears these.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: In Nightwolf's Arcade ending, we find that after Kano unsuccessfully tried to tempt Grey Cloud into betraying the Matoka, and Grey Cloud gained the mantle of Nightwolf as a reward for standing up to him, the Australian got cut in half at the waist. Presumably, he managed to get lifesaving surgery in time afterwards, but that doesn't happen when Grey Cloud chooses another, female Matokan to replace him as Nightwolf, and drive the Black Dragon out of their land.
  • Happily Adopted: In the original arcade game, it mentioned in his origin that he was adopted by a rich Japanese woman and it doesn't appear that he holds any dislike for her.
  • Hated by All: By the time of 11, it's expressed through character banter that no one, not even the worst villains, trusts or likes Kano. The only character on the roster to get a worse treatment is The Joker, and for good reason.
    Shao Kahn: Not even I trust the Black Dragon.
    Kabal: Can't say that's a bad call.
    Shao Kahn: How does your clan survive?
  • Honest John's Dealership: If one of his intros with Baraka is any indication, he's not above selling faulty weaponry.
  • Hunk: Of the Aussie, villainous kind.
  • I Fight for the Strongest Side!: Subverted. One of his dialogues with Mileena in X suggests that he likes to align himself with the party that has the most advantage regardless of who it puts him up against (which explains why he's so ready to jump over to whatever invading force is visiting Earthrealm) but the reality is he'll play for any team that can line his wallet (hence why he's actually been selling weapons and consultation services to both Kotal Kahn and Kahn's enemy, Mileena, as regardless who comes out on top he'll be the one who profits from it).
  • I Am the Noun: In one match intro, where Kabal announces his intent to assume leadership, Kano threateningly tells him he is the Black Dragon.
  • Image Song: "Kano, Use Your Might", where the vocalist sings about how great Kano is, how she is on his side, and describes him as a fallen angel. Also doubles as "The Villain Sucks" Song.
  • Jerkass: Kano tends to be rather snide and selfish with any casual and affable moments being a cover for his nasty habits of greed and betrayal.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: After escaping punishment by the end of 9, Kano gets beaten up and imprisoned in X. Taken even further in 11, when, after escaping prison with Kronika's help and finally outliving his Arch-Enemy Sonya, Kano makes the mistake of taking Past Johnny captive when Past Sonya has a gun to the head of Kano's own past self. Sonya promptly fires a bullet through Past Kano's eye and erases his present-day self from history, killing him for good.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • Taunts Cassie's parents about her possible fate while she's kidnapped in the comics. Sonya actually has to hold Johnny Cage back from beating him up.
    • In Story Mode, "Uncle Kano" threatens to visit Cassie. Johnny's the only reason Sonya doesn't straight-up murder his ass. You'd think he'd learn...
    • Present Kano throws Past Sonya into a fighting ring without her gear, throws Past Johnny in there with her and orders them to fight to the death, then later abducts Past Johnny and threatens his and Cassie's lives while Sonya has Past Kano pinned by his neck.
  • Killed Off for Real: Within the rules of Kronika's shenanigans, the current Kano undergoes a Critical Existence Failure after Sonya kills his past self and subsequently fades from existence.
  • Knife Nut: In particular, the "Cutthroat" variation in MKX is centered around Kano's knife fighting skills. The knives are a customizable option through gear in 11, and he also has hidden blades in his boots.
  • Lack of Empathy: This has been present through most of his story, but is made clearer in 11. When Nightwolf accuses him of thinking nothing of others, Kano replies that he never has and never will.
  • Large Ham: Rich Divizio has stated he played Kano as over-the-top as possible. Trevor Goddard's portrayal in the live-action film famously makes him a boastful character who loves grandstanding. Michael McConnohie doesn't do too bad in 9 either, although he's more toned down in MKX, while JB Blanc goes in a more energetic direction in 11.
  • Laser Blade: MK3 turned his knives into laser blades.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: X finally ends with him behind bars after he and the other rebels are apprehended by the OIA (and it's fully canon) giving Sonya's grudge against him some true closure.
    • And after years of being a thorn in everyone's side and being a constant threat to Sonya, Cassie and Johnny, Past Sonya puts a bullet in Past Kano's head in 11, causing the Present Kano to fade from existence, forever.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: See the "sort of" under his Wreck-It Ralph appearance in the list above? Well, the character in question is only listed in the credits as "Cyborg", and features plenty of subtle differences from Kano like a robotic arm in addition to his eye and a lack of an Australian accent, but is clearly supposed to represent him, even performing his signature Heart Rip Fatality (yes, onscreen in a Disney movie). You'd assume, then, that it's just a Captain Ersatz of Kano, right? Except not only have the directors explicitly called him Kano on occasion, but he appeared in the film with the express permission of WB and NetherRealm. So he's a lawyer-friendly cameo that's actually fully endorsed by the original creators, if that makes any sense.
  • Loony Fan: If the comic book is anything to go by, he was a huge fan of Johnny Cage's movies before the first tournament. Johnny didn't take this well, especially after Kano picked a fight on the way there, and Kano's admiration ended quickly.
  • Made of Evil: According to Noob Saibot and Cetrion, Kano is so evil his soul has decayed to become pitch black and void of light. It surprisingly unsettles him to hear it from Noob, but other intros have him broodingly claiming that it doesn't matter.
  • Millionaire Playboy: He boasts to Shang Tsung he is the richest man in Earthrealm. Considering Kano can afford his cybernetic enhancements and a nuclear bomb, it's somewhat believable he is insanely rich.
  • The Mafiya: His fight club in 11 is stated to be in Russia. Although none of the named Black Dragon members is stated to be Russian (with Kano himself being Australian), an interaction with Johnny Cage has Kano say they set up there for his fans. Something which Johnny can't help but admire.
  • Moe Greene Special: How Sonya kills both Kanos off in 11, the older Kano being retgone thanks to his younger self suffering this, complete with lovely view of the hole on both.
  • Neck Lift: His Chokehold move.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain:
    • In his MK3 ending, his attempt to replace Shao Kahn's tyranny with his own backfires when, after annihilating Kahn and his forces, he is unable to take control of all the souls and suffers a violent death for his troubles. He dies unaware that "he saved the world he tried to conquer", his actions creating a power vacuum that the good can fill.
    • In the rebooted timeline, he ends up being responsible for Kabal joining Raiden's champions. Stubbornly believing that Kabal will drop his quest to redeem himself for the atrocities he committed as a Black Dragon and join Outworld, Kano takes Kabal's body after it is mauled and burned by Kintaro and has him revived through technology and Outworld sorcery. The sorcery grants Kabal super speed, and Kano's actions give Outworld a new enemy.
    • In 11, after Past Sonya defeats him, his modern self tries to pull a hostage gambit by threatening to kill a wounded Past Johnny and reminding her that if he dies so does Cassie since she'll never be born. Once Sonya was clued into this she used it to her advantage, resulting in Sonya shooting Past Kano in the head through his good eye. Subsequently killing his modern self as well.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis:
    • Cassie Cage will mock and degrade any of the other fighters, up to and including Shinnok. When she's up against Kano, she's as dead-serious as her mother.
      Cassie: Three strikes and you're dead, Kano.
      Kano: I only need two strikes to gut you.
      Cassie: Know what? That was Strike Three!
    • Even Johnny has little patience with Kano in 11.
      Johnny: Stay away from Cassie and Sonya.
      Kano: Can't. I'm like a dog with a bone.
      Johnny: You're gonna be a dog with a fist up its ass.
  • Nuke 'em: He wiped out over half of Kintaro's besieging forces with a handheld device that launched a nuclear scaled blast.
  • Older Than They Look: He's 60 come the events of MKX (as he was 35 during the first tournament). Despite still fitting the trope, he clearly hasn't aged as well as Sonya or Cage, although in 11 his present self is rather youthful-looking.
  • Only in It for the Money: His reason for joining Shang Tsung's tournament and for siding with Outworld and selling stuff for them.
  • Only One Name: Has only ever been known as Kano. It's not even clear whether that's his first name, his last name, or even just an alias.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: There are a few interactions where he drops his attitude and snark to actually consider what his opponent says. Best seen in one interaction with Noob, who is Made of Evil, says that Kano's soul is black as pitch. Kano is taken aback by this.
    • And, like everyone else, even he is utterly repulsed by The Joker.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • In 9, he's the one who saves Kabal (his former Black Dragon cohort) from dying and surgically implants him with his mask and breathing apparatus after Kintaro roasted him alive.
    • When he heard of Kabal's apparent demise at the hands of Mavado, it is said that he would have most likely hounded the Red Dragon leader and had his head if not for his post in Outworld as the leader of Shao Kahn's armies. Kabal had long since forsaken the ways of the Black Dragon at that point though.
    • In his arcade ending in 11, he lets Kronika go after defeating her. Considering most other characters kill her and easily take control of her hourglass afterward, there's no real reason for him to do this.
    • He reacts negatively to Erron Black telling Kano that he killed a fellow Black Dragon member, Kobra, to his face.
  • Playing Both Sides: Combines with War for Fun and Profit. According to his MKX bio, Kano has taken the role of technical adviser and weapons supplier to Kotal Kahn after Mileena was deposed as Outworld empress, but also gives Mileena's rebel armies the exact same support in their campaign to reclaim her throne. Prior to that, he had also been involved in moving guns into Outworld to fuel regional conflicts around the realm.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Kano is Only in It for the Money, and expresses wanton anarchy is bad for business when the Joker invites him in spreading chaos.
  • Psycho for Hire: He likes to get paid huge amounts of money, but also loves the killing.
    Kano: Turning on Shao Kahn was pooor sport.
    Jade: He hired you to punish me?
    Kano: Hired? I'm doing this one for fun!
  • Quality over Quantity: Unlike the Red Dragon, Kano's Black Dragon clan is comparatively very small and exclusive with membership. He outright rebukes the Joker's attempt at joining, claiming it's "invitation-only".
  • The Quisling: Basically, he's willing to sell out all of humanity.
  • Resignations Not Accepted: Of course, it doesn't stop most Black Dragons, but Kano tries to uphold this when confronting a defecting Tremor, Erron, and Kabal.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: His MK3 attire.
  • Reduced to Ratburgers: One of his mid-fight taunts in 11 has him stab a lizard that was crawling nearby and munch on it for a bit. Of course, being Kano, it may have been less "reduced to" and more that he just felt like it.
    "Nice bit of tucker!"
  • Ripple Effect Indicator: Just like Johnny Cage's example below, when his past self takes a notable injury in 11, the damage appears on the future self too. Unfortunately for Kano, a bullet blowing out half one's brain is decidedly more fatal than a bullet grazing the cheek, and Future Kano Dissolves into dust for it.
  • Rolling Attack: The Cannonball attack, in which he tosses himself at the opponent while keeping arms and legs folded into his body.
  • The Sociopath: Of the sadistic kind completely lacking in any empathy. Nightwolf calls him out for how unfeeling he is, and his response is to brag about it.
  • Sore Loser: Even though a past encounter with Kuai Liang ends in a stalemate with the man fleeing, Kano is incredibly sore over the fight still ending in Kuai's favor. He hasn't gotten over it in the present, where he moans he would have won with his new cybernetics.
  • Shout-Out: He quotes one of his movie lines in his intro dialogue against Sonya.
    "Hello, baby. Did you miss me?"
  • Sigil Spam: In Deadly Alliance and Armageddon, the back of his vest sports the emblem of the Black Dragon clan.
  • Slasher Smile: In his 11 fatality as he is beating his opponent's head in, it switches to a POV shot from the victim's perspective before the final blow. Kano has a wide and manic grin across his face. The final shot of his other fatality in that game has one grow across his face as he dances with the victim's corpse.
  • Stance System:
    • In Deadly Alliance, he has Xing Yi and Aikido as his unarmed styles, and Butterfly Knives as weapon style.
    • In Armageddon, he drops Aikido.
    • In X, his variations can be made up by the light color of his technological enhancements. They are Cybernetic, Commando and Cutthroat.
      • Cybernetic, appropriately enough, focuses on his Eye Laser and keeps his enhancements' signature red glow. His eye lasers can be shot either forward or upward; shooting it forward can stun the opponent for a few more hits. His Delinquent combo gains the ability to either blast the opponent away or set them up for a combo. Meanwhile, his knives during his Knife Throw are smaller, but it works for him because he can throw up to three when amplified. As a result, Kano is versatile both up close and from afar.
      • Commando makes him a pseudo-grappler and changes his enhancements' color to yellow. He gains the ability to parry high and low attacks and strike back with his knives. He also gains a few grab attacks, most notably a German suplex (making blocking him dangerous). Finally, his Delinquent and Kombat Boots combos end with him slamming the opponent on the opposite direction, meaning a cornered Kano can turn the tables.
      • Cutthroat focuses on his knives and changes his enhancements' color to blue. Many of his combos involve Kano using his Knife Nut abilities to excellent use, and he gains a special move that can also set the opponent up for more of these combos when amplified. He also gains a temporary damage buff that is Cast from Hit Points but ends if he receives damage, though considering his combo abilities during this move it's a small price to pay.
  • Straw Nihilist: A few interactions in 11 say that he lives his villainous life without regret because he doesn't think to be noble or heroic matter in the end.
  • Tattooed Crook: In MK vs. DC, he has a tattoo of the Black Dragon emblem on his left bicep; but the trope was employed in full force since 9, where he has both upper arms and chest tattooed.
  • Throat-Slitting Gesture: A victory pose for him in 3, 9 and 11. It's also presentr in the character select screen in X.
  • Too Dumb to Live: He holds Past Johnny hostage in order to stop Sonya from killing him, not a bad idea. He then reminds her that if he kills Johnny, then Cassie will have never been born because Johnny will be dead in the present. It doesn't even take Sonya ten seconds to piece together how to kill him for good.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In-game, he gets a huge one compared to his debut. In the first game, he had two special moves (since everyone was almost the same in terms of normal attacks, it's the special moves that are the deciding factor), his iconic cannonball and knife toss attacks. And they both carried heavy drawbacks. The cannonball required a 360 motion with the joystick that was rather clumsy to do and doing the knife toss relied on a strange back and worth wiggle (improvements to this were made in the home versions). To top it off, his knives looked intimidating but did the least amount of damage for a normal projectile (Sub-Zero and Scorpion's did less but more than made up for it with special properties). After being brought back in MK3, Kano becomes a lot more versatile with his different cannonball attacks and melee moves. Plus his attacks became more damaging compared to most other kombatants. Later games would give and take away his laser eye, but he's certainly much better than his first incarnation.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: According to Richard Divizio (the actor who portrayed Kano in all of the titles using digitized actors), Kano enjoys White Castle hamburgers (it's probable that this is Divizio's favorite meal as well).
  • Troll: While Kano has shown these traits before, 11 made it a huge part of his personality along with a penchant for Black Comedy, seen in his intro dialogues and the "Last Dance" fatality, where he dances with his opponent's corpse.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Realizes this and more during his mirror match in X.
  • Use Your Head: Kano has a hard noggin that he uses to inflict massive damage to his opponent and is even able to smash heads by headbutting people. Having a metal-plated eye probably helps, too.
  • Victory Is Boring: His arcade ladder in 11 depicts him sparing Kronika for her powers over time, and for a while, he enjoys things like subjecting Cassie and Sonya to cage matches against each other. He eventually comes to recognize this as monotonous and seemingly gives up his powers to resume his original thrillseeking way of life.
  • Vocal Evolution: His younger and older selves in 11 have notably different inflections, with his older self sounding much more grizzled and weathered.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Has had more than a few costumes, particularly in the live-action film, MKX and 11 that either have him go shirtless or wear a vest to expose his chest.
  • Wanting Is Better Than Having: In a surprisingly philosophical turn, this is the reason why he decides Victory Is Boring as noted above; in his rebooted timeline after his 11 arcade ending he sets things up so he mostly wins but not always. As such, he always has something to aspire to.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: One of his special moves in 11 is an exact replication of the "Lumbar Check" move used by wrestler Cedric Alexander, to the extent of being given the same name, and one of his normal throws is a scoop slam, particularly the variation used by Randy Orton.
  • You Have GOT to Be Kidding Me!!: Kano finds Joker's claim to criminality a load of bluster, and says that the Clown Prince sounds as arrogant as Johnny Cage. Perhaps why he wouldn't let Joker into the Black Dragon.

    Sonya Blade 

Sonya A. Blade
"Always gotta be the hard way..."

Debut game: Mortal Kombat (Elizabeth Malecki)
Other appearances: Mortal Kombat II (cameo), Mortal Kombat 3 (Kerri Hoskins), Mortal Kombat 4 (Kerri Hoskins), Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, Mortal Kombat: Deception, Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon (Christine Rios), Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe (Dana Lyn Baron), Mortal Kombat 9 (Dana Lyn Baron), Mortal Kombat X (Tricia Helfer, English; Rebeca Patiño, Latin American Spanish; Angélica Santos, Brazilian Portuguese), Mortal Kombat 11 (Ronda Rousey, English; Bridgette Wilson, English (Voice and Face Model, Klassic MK Movie Skin Pack DLC); Rebeca Patiño, Latin American Spanish; Angélica Santos, Brazilian Portuguese)
Non-game appearances: Mortal Kombat: The Movie (Bridgette Wilson), Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (Sandra Hess), Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm (Olivia d'Abo), Mortal Kombat: Rebirth/Mortal Kombat: Legacy (Jeri Ryan), Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge (Jennifer Carpenter), Mortal Kombat (2021) (Jessica McNamee), Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms (Jennifer Carpenter)

Mortal Kombat's Smurfette, at least at first. A member of a top United States Special Forces unit known as Outer World Investigation Agency (OIA), Lt. Sonya Blade is a beautiful, stern, tough-as-nails Earthrealm warrior. Her impulsiveness is catalyzed by her superior and good friend Major Jackson "Jax" Briggs. Sonya represents a very emancipated and headstrong woman, but for all her stubbornness and pride, she deeply cares about the lives of her friends and comrades.

Sonya and her team were in hot pursuit of Kano at the time of the original game; after following him to a remote island they were ambushed by Tsung's personal guard. To keep her team safe, she agreed to compete in the Mortal Kombat tournament. Shang Tsung, however, had no intention of fulfilling his end of the bargain and had her unit killed. After Tsung's defeat, she and Kano were taken prisoner to Outworld to appease the emperor, Shao Kahn, only to be later rescued by her comrade Jax. The two privates were among the few chosen warriors left to oppose the invasion of Earthrealm in MK3. Sonya meet her old nemesis Kano on top of a skyscraper during the invasion; in the fight that ensued, she managed to hurl Kano off the roof to his apparent death.

In Mortal Kombat 4, Sonya and Jax, having formed the Outworld Investigation Agency, team up with Raiden and Liu Kang to free Edenia from the Fallen Elder God Shinnok's grasp and prevent him from coming to Earth, as well as to capture the last known member of the Black Dragon Clan, Jarek, who apparently dies in his attempt to kill Sonya. Years later, Sonya would once again heed Raiden's call, this time to travel back to Outworld — for Sonya, this coincided with her search for two missing OIA operatives, Cyrax and Kenshi. She is killed in a fight with the Deadly Alliance and its minions, only to be resurrected and enslaved by Onaga, along with her fallen comrades. She would eventually be freed from Onaga's control by Ermac and Liu Kang, in time to participate in the events of Armageddon.

Mortal Kombat 9 sees Sonya being pretty much the same tough lady she's always been, although her pursuit of Kano is massively derailed by the events of the game, making her take a much more active role in the defense of Earthrealm. Sometime after the events of 9 (which saw her remain as one of the only surviving Earthrrealm warriors from Shao Kahn's invasion), she and Johnny settled down and had a daughter named "Cassie" but divorced prior to the events of Mortal Kombat X. She eventually reconciles with Johnny in the end... only to pull a Heroic Sacrifice later during the Special Forces' attack on Netherrealm at the start of Mortal Kombat 11, to Cassie and Johnny's horror.

This doesn't mean she's gone though, as another Sonya showed up as a result of Kronika's actions, oblivious to her future of having a family.

  • Absolute Cleavage: Her default attire in 9 manages to pull this off with a bulletproof vest.
  • Absurd Phobia: 11 reveals that she gets freaked out over having papercuts, of all things. Her daughter Cassie is not pleased to find out that she shares this particular fear with her mother.
    Sonya: Sorry, Cass. Must be genetic.
  • Action Mom: She's a badass Special Forces soldier, and stays that way even after giving birth to Cassie.
  • Action Girl: The first one in the series and consistently a tough fighter. She actually manages to make it through the events of 9 alive.
  • Amazonian Beauty: Given she's a soldier, it's reasonable that Sonya is the most muscular of the women, while still having quite the curves and pretty face.
  • Amicable Exes: She finally warms up to Johnny after Cassie kicks Shinnok's ass in MKX. To the point that they basically get back together by the time 11 rolls around.
  • Ascended to a Higher Plane of Existence: In her 11 tower ending, defeating Kronika promoted her from Major to goddess, as the protector of Earthrealm. She soon realized however she cannot do it alone, so she turned her friends and family to gods as well as part of her "God Squad": Cassie, Jax, and Jacqui. Oh, and Johnny too.
  • Asskicking Equals Authority: She's promoted to Major and given field command of the Special Forces after Jax's death in MK9. In MKX, she is a General, and she still can throw down with the best of them.
  • Attack Drone: Her "Special Forces" variation in X gives her one that floats next to her until a command is given. If not used, its lights will flash after some time and then it will disappear. Her "Demolition" variation causes a drone to appear to give her more grenades.
  • Aw, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Her concern comes to the fore whenever Johnny or Cassie's life is at stake.
  • Badass Bookworm: One mirror match dialogue in 11 implies she has an interest in marine biology, with one of them coming from a timeline where she actually fulfilled that dream.
  • Badass in Distress:
    • In MKII she spent the Outworld tournament chained up and had to be saved by Jax. In MK3, she was back on the frontlines, kicking ass and taking names.
    • In MK9 she's saved by Johnny Cage, then the second time by Jax. The latter occasion had her chained up and mouthing off at her captors.
    • In MKX Johnny rescues Sonya from revenant Jax. She returns the favor when Johnny's in danger thanks to Quan Chi and his Revenants.
    • In MK11 she's rescued by Johnny from Cyber Lin Kuei.
    • She's also spent some time as "damsel in distress" in the first movie, in Defenders of the Realms, and the Malibu and MKX (with other characters) comic books, being captured probably more times then all the other characters combined. She's still one of the most iconic fighters in the series.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: Her alternate costume in Deadly Alliance and Armageddon is a military dress uniform.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Every game has at least one outfit with her abs on display.
  • The Baroness: Her Kold War costume in MKX invokes the look of a classic Russian Sexpot villainess.
  • Berserk Button: If her fight dialogue with Jax in X is an indication, she does not ever want to be called "Mrs. Cage."
  • Big Damn Heroes: Shares this with Raiden in saving Johnny's life from Quan Chi in X.
  • Biker Babe: In her Arcade Ladder ending from 9.
  • Brainwashed:
    • To serve Onaga in Deception.
    • In the Malibu Comics' non-canon Mortal Kombat series, Sonya was kidnapped and hypnotized by Reptile into marrying Shao Kahn.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Corrupted by the Blood Code by Cassie in the MKX comics.
  • Braids of Action: Cammy would be proud of the single long braid Sonya rocks in both the MKX comics and the game proper.
  • Captain Ersatz: Very much one for Cynthia Rothrock a regular in the Hong Kong action films of the 1980s which inspired mortal combat.
  • Colonel Badass: In the MKX comics.
  • Combat Stilettos: One alternate outfit in Deadly Alliance features this.
  • Counter-Attack: Her "Covert Ops" variation in X has a lot of parry moves that let her intercept opponent attacks. In an interesting twist, the parries have different followups.
  • A Day in the Limelight:
  • Da Chief: She commands the Special Forces' Earthrrealm Strategic Defense.
  • Death Glare: Whenever Johnny is in the room making wisecracks and witty remarks, she directs them at him.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Boy, is she ever in the rebooted timeline. Whereas Johnny is more of a humorist snarker, Sonya is more of a brutally honest one.
    Sonya: Any last words, Ermac?
    Ermac: We will destroy you!
    Sonya: All those souls and that's the best you've got?

    Sonya: In the future, we carry tiny TVs with us?
    Cassie: Welcome to the Digital Age.
    Sonya: More like the Distracted Age.
  • Did I Just Say That Out Loud?: Her younger self in 11 wonders aloud just how on Earth did she end up shacking up with Johnny Cage after the guy shamelessly wanted to "tap" her. The entire room full of SF operators and her own daughter didn't appreciate having to hear that.
    Past Sonya: How the hell do I ever sleep with that guy? (looks at Cassie) ...who's your father. I can't believe I just said that.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Heavily implied in her '11' tower ending. After defeating Kronika and becoming a goddess, she realized she needs help in governing Earthrealm for eternity, but soon found out that in order to make a new god, an old one must be killed first in order to make room, so she searched for the oldest one, a god worshipped in a realm with an unpronounceable name, and killed it. It didn't help that the imagery used was that of a planet-sized squid monster.
  • Disappeared Dad: According to 9, she's been searching for her MIA father, although she fears that he might already be dead. In her Arcade Ladder ending, she encounters a ghost claiming to be that of her father, but it's unknown if the apparition is real or if it's an aftereffect of her PTSD in the aftermath of the battle with Shao Kahn.
  • Despair Event Horizon: In her Arcade Ladder Ending in 9, she almost falls into this after the deaths of her friends and companions. Fortunately, an apparition claiming to be her father helped pull her out of it and encourage her not to give up. (This is later proven non-canon, given the events of X.)
  • Divorce Is Temporary: By the time of 11 she is very happily back with Johnny again.
  • Doing In the Wizard: In the original games, Sonya's "Armed Forces", "Energy Rings" and "Kiss of Death" moves seemed to be a result of Supernatural Martial Arts. In the reboot games, her energy blasts are due to a laser blaster she wears on each arm and her Kiss of Death is a powder she takes out of a pouch.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty:
    • Her intro dialogues shows this to (ironically) her sergeant:
      Sonya Blade: Sergeant...
      Cassie Cage: Damn it, Mom! I'm Cassie!
      Sonya Blade: Right now, you're just a disrespectful soldier.
    • And again to the Tarkatan in 11.
      Sonya: How do I earn your respect?
      Baraka: Beat me unmercifully.
      Sonya: Drill Sergeant Blade, reporting.
  • Dual Wielding: In Deadly Alliance and Armageddon, she could use a pair of kali sticks in battle.
  • Dude Magnet: A lot of men have given her their attention, almost all of them have flirted with her in their intro dialogues.
  • Everyone Loves Blondes: At least Johnny would like to think so.
  • Family Versus Career: In MKX. Unfortunately, her career won, which is the cause of much of the familial strife with her ex-husband and daughter.
    Johnny: There was a time when you cared more about your family than your job... General.
    • In 11 she has reconciled the two options. She is very close with her daughter again and she's back together with Johnny.
  • Fanservice Pack: In the original game, she was played by a dancer. In 3, she was played by a Playboy model. This trope is most prevalent in 9, since she manages Absolute Cleavage with a bulletproof vest.]
    • Subverted in X and 11, which have given her more modest outfits.
  • First-Name Basis: Hardly anyone refers to her using her last name and when not this, she usually goes for a Full-Name Basis.
  • Four-Star Badass: As of MKX, she's been promoted to General.
  • Go-Go Enslavement: Shang Tsung abducts her on the pretext of challenging her, rather than Liu Kang, for the final match. By the time Liu and Johnny Cage show up, Sonya has, for no readily apparent reason, been dressed up in an unflattering leather dress (which actually covers more of her than the tank top and shorts she'd been wearing up to that point), is barefoot, and her hair has been thoroughly teased. Cage even teases her by saying the dress looks nice, which of course she responds with an eye roll.
  • Good Is Not Nice: Present in MKX. She's not the Four-Star Badass of the Special Forces, but is also one of the least friendly characters during the story proper (with Kenshi and especially Johnny taking her place). Fortunately, she realizes this during the middle of the story, and by the end of the it, she gets better.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Not drastic as most examples, but Sonya is very much aware that Cassie prefers to be with Johnny than her. This is part of the source of her animosity towards Johnny during the X storyline.
  • Green Thumb: In her friendship in UMK3, Sonya would salute and flowers would grow all over the floor.
  • Groin Attack: Sonya gets in on the act by stepping on Quan Chi's Netherrealm nethers in her chapter of MKX's story to detain him while Raiden undoes the revenant spell.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: Her fate in the Battle of Armageddon (it is not known who did it to her). In game, she can do this to her opponent with her "Scissor Split" Fatality.
  • Hand Blast: She can fire pink energy blasts from her fists. Originally, this seemed to be an internalized ability but starting from MK9 they are depicted as being generated by a high-tech weapon worn on her wrists.
  • Heroic Willpower: Here's the situation: you're tied up, hanging by a hook over The Dead Pool, with Sheeva watching you, and her boss has signed your death warrant, so it's clear what's likely going to happen here soon... and you still haven't lost your Deadpan Snarker attitude. ("What is it with you Shokan and underground cesspools?") Yeah, she definitely qualifies for this.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • In Legends: Scorpion's Revenge, Sonya appears to be able to read Simplified Chinese. In the movie, she reads an invitation to the Mortal Kombat tournament and asks her contact if Kano will be there as opposed to asking for a translation.
    • A Mirror Match pre-match intro in 11 shows that Sonya once dreamed to become a marine biologist.
  • Hot Scientist: Had aspired to become one if she didn't graduate from a military academy.
    Sonya 1: You graduate from the academy?
    Sonya 2: Nope. Got my degree in marine biology.
    Sonya 1: That was my dream.
  • Honorary Aunt: Is Jacqui's, although much like Sonya's own relationship with Cassie, she prefers to not have any familial ties mentioned while on duty.
  • Hotter and Sexier: She has a much more revealing outfit in MK9 than in previous games. Inverted by X.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: A dilemma she faces in X. As a General Commander of the Special Forces is a demanding and rigid career, repelling Outworld enemies at bay and protecting Earthrealm's safety, she sacrificed being a family woman and time spent raising her daughter, a decision she isn't happy with, but ultimately satisfied.
    Sonya: I gave up my daughter's childhood to make her world safe. That was the right thing to do.
  • I Have You Now, My Pretty: Appears in chains in Shao Kahn's arena in MKII. Shang Tsung abducts Sonya Blade on the pretext of challenging her, rather than Liu Kang, for the final match in the first movie. And almost became Shao Kahn's trophy wife in the Malibu comic books.
  • Ice Queen: In MKX and her younger self and intros in 11, Sonya sports a very grumpy attitude, especially towards Johnny Cage. According to Sub-Zero, Johnny even called her this trope verbatim - and unfortunately for the cryomancer, that was metaphorical.
  • Ink-Suit Actor: Like Kano, Sonya's model in the 3D games resemble her actresses in the movies. From Deadly Alliance to Armageddon, she takes after Sandra Hess, whereas in MK9, she takes a lot after Bridgette Wilson-Sampras. This tradition even carries on into 11, where she takes after her newest voice actress, Ronda Rousey (where there's also an even more straightforward case with a skin pack to downright turn Sonya into the Bridgette Wilson-Sampras version from the movie, complete with voiceovers by the actress).
  • Irony: She's the Jerkass of the heroes in MKX, taking over for Johnny, who was the biggest (if still laid-back) example of this, especially in MK9.
  • Kiss of Death:
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Defenders of the Realm gives Sonya a tendency to rush head-first towards her enemies while yelling "Kombat Time!"
  • Lonely at the Top: By the time she's a Colonel, she and Johnny are divorced, and her relationship with Cassie is strained.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Her energy rings are either supernatural (one of the MK3 guidebooks states it's her focused chi) or one of her weapons (MK9 onwards had her equipped with wrist bands that visibly shoot lasers, which are customizable as a gear option in 11).
  • Majorly Awesome: Her rank during Shinnok's invasion of Earthrealm.
  • Mama Bear:
    • In issue 9 of MKX comics, she leads an expedition into Outworld to rescue Cassie.
    • Kano threatens to harm Cassie if Sonya does not negotiate with him. Sonya ends up almost strangling him to death before Johnny steps in and tells her not to go through with it.
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Inverted. Her influence makes Johnny wiser and less insufferable. Cassie even tells her past self that she rubbed off on him.
  • Married to the Job: What cost her her marriage to Johnny and earned Cassie's resentment. One particular example is seen in the MKX comics, in which she chose to rescue Kenshi rather than attend Cassie's birthday party.
  • Missing Mom: Becomes this to Cassie due to her job. Johnny calls her out on this.
  • Mom Looks Like a Sister: In 11, since her future self died and her past self was transported to the future. Cassie lampshades this.
  • More Dakka: In X and 11, Sonya has grenades and attack drones integrated into her gameplay.
  • Murderous Thighs:
    • One of her earliest fatalities was a leg scissor hold that literally cut the opponent in half.
    • The movie has a more restrained version of the leg scissor, which merely broke her opponent's neck.
  • Ms. Fanservice: She's stunningly beautiful, never visibly ages, and all of her outfits either reveal or accentuate her athletic physique. This came to a head in 9, and was dialed back for X, where her default costume is a military outfit showing very little skin.
  • My Greatest Failure: Sees choosing her job over spending time with her daughter as this. She even admits this to Johnny in the comics.
    Sonya: "All I know for certain is if we fail, if we don't save her, then I gave up all those years for nothing. I never knew my own daughter, and she never knew how much her mother cares."
  • Mysterious Middle Initial: Her middle name has been confirmed to start with "A". Beyond that, we know nothing.
  • Neck Snap: A move from 4. She also uses a variant with her legs to break Kano's neck in the first movie.
  • Nice Hat: Usually present in her military-themed outfits.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: All evidence points to her being based off of Cynthia Rothrock from looks to the various hairstyles she's worn since the early days.
  • No Flow in CGI: Her ponytail in MK4.
  • Official Couple Ordeal Syndrome: Despite being put through the wringer during the events of 9, she does eventually get together with Johnny Cage, as evidenced by their daughter Cassie Cage appearing in X. They reconcile by 11, only for her to perform a Heroic Sacrifice in the opening chapter. Her past self's chapter leaves hope for their relationship to still happen and survive this time around.
  • Off with His Head!: She does this to Kintaro while under the Blood Code. With her bare hands.
    • Her second Fatality in 9 has her pop off her opponent's head with a garrote and both of her finishers in X involve decapitation (for the first a drone blows off their head with a grenade and the second she garrotes their head off then feeds it to her drone's machine gun before taking it as a trophy on her belt).
  • Older Than They Look: She's 51 in MKX (as she was 26 during the first tournament), but you really can't tell.
  • Painted-On Pants: Her earlier appearances.
  • Rage Breaking Point: In MKX's story, Sonya intends to beat Kano into submission and get him to reveal the whereabouts of Shinnok's amulet, but when he makes the mistake of threatening Cassie's life, she throws caution (and the plan) to the wind and nearly kills him had Johnny not interfered.
  • Rank Up: Several are mentioned in the various pieces of MKX. First, in the time of the Netherrealm War (before the prequel comics and the main story of the game), she's Majorly Awesome. Second, after the war but before the main story of the game, she's a Colonel Badass. Third, by the time of the main story of the game proper, she's a Four-Star Badass who is also a Frontline General.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni:
    • The red to Jax's blue in general. Jax is ferocious but capable of staying focused and is laid-back when not on the battlefield, whereas she is much more confrontative and rather short-tempered.
    • Also the blue to Johnny's red in MK9. In MKX, however, the red and blue between her and Johnny Cage switches.
  • Relative Button:
    • We get this gem between Sonya and Jax:
      Sonya: Mr. Briggs.
      Jax: Mrs. Cage.
      Sonya: You'll pay for that one.
    • Also between her and Geras. Not that she'll admit it openly.
      Geras: I will kill Johnny Cage.
      Sonya: Do it. He's a pain in the ass.
      Geras: You bluff poorly, Sonya Blade.
  • Rescue Romance: Her relationship with Johnny starts after they both took turns saving each others' lives: he saved her from Shinnok and then she returned the favor against Quan-Chi. Past Sonya starts warming up to Past Johnny after he took a bullet trying to defend her and she saved his life against both Kanos.
  • The Rival: With Frost, although neither of them has ever given a reason. The rivalry is given a small nod in MKX in her pre-battle dialogue with Sub-Zero.
    Sonya: Why no female Lin-Kuei?
    Sub-Zero: There are, Frost chief among them.
    Sonya: I'll kick her ass next.
  • Sadistic Choice: She is given one in her X arcade ending: in a dream, Kano gives her the choice between Cassie or Jax. She chooses the former and wakes up to Johnny Cage, who tells her that Jax was killed by an assassin's bullet.
  • She-Fu:
    • Her signature move starts with her doing a backflip, grabbing the opponent between her legs, and throwing them.
    • In both 4 and 9 she has a fatality where she does a handstand and tears the opponent in half with her legs.
  • She's Got Legs: As we can see in the first movie, and in her alternate outfit in 9.
  • Ship Tease:
    • Hinted in various media, starting with the first movie, between her and Johnny Cage. MK9 has Johnny trying to woo her.
    • In Defenders of the Realm, the teasing is instead directed at Jax, although it's (usually) of the Belligerent Sexual Tension variety.
  • Silver Vixen: For a woman in her early fifties, she surprisingly has a lack of grey hairs, stretch marks, and has a surprisingly still athletic body.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: It's implied that she fell for Johnny when he selflessly took a blast from Shinnok's amulet and fought Shinnok himself to defend her. She even started calling him Johnny from there on, signifying that she now sees him in another light.
  • The Smurfette Principle: It's hard to remember with the existence of the female "ninjas" (such as Kitana) that Sonya was the first and only female character in the original game. She is also the only surviving woman at the end of the story mode in MK9.
  • So Proud of You: Both the older and younger versions of Sonya make it known they're proud of Cassie.
  • Spam Attack: Her Bicycle Kick move.
  • Stance System:
    • In Deadly Alliance, she has Tae Kwon Do and Kenpo as unarmed styles, and Kali Sticks as weapon style.
    • In Armageddon, she drops Kenpo.
    • In 9, she has the Military Stance.
    • In X, her variations are Special Forces, Covert Ops and Demolition.
      • Special Forces grants her a drone that will attack opponents for various special moves. It can be placed at any part of the arena, which has laser and electrroshock blasts as part of its arsenal and can attack the opponent themselves in a kamikaze fashion.
      • Covert Ops employs her Garrote to parry the opponent's moves and counterattack. In an interesting twist, the parries have different attacks that can be branched out of them once they catch an attack, offering varied responses (some of which are only available when amplified). Her Military Stance from 9 also returns.
      • Demolition grants her grenades of two types: Frag Grenades and Stun Grenades. Upon being thrown, they can also be detonated prematurely. Notably, this allows for multiple, highly damaging combo routes she wouldn't otherwise have, but she can only have three grenades at a time before calling a drone to grant her more. The drone can also be amplified to throw the grenades directly at the opponent.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Her official bio has her at 5'9".
  • Stripperiffic: Her costumes tend to show her chest and midriff and emphasize her legs, but she dresses somewhat more modest than the other women. Subverted in MKX.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: After surviving to the ends of 9 and X, Sonya dies after the first chapter of 11 and is replaced by her past self. That said, Fire God Liu Kang might be able to fix that.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Shown to be cold and judgmental towards most people but has a soft spot for the people that she cares about.
  • Super-Cute Superpowers: She has a Kiss of Death fatality where she blows a kiss at her opponent. Sometimes the kiss takes the form of a floating fireball, but other games has it be a little pink heart that flitters towards the opponent, and once it hits, the enemy explodes bloodily.
  • Tank-Top Tomboy: She wears some variation on a tank top, muscle shirt, or some kind of vest similar to either in each game.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: With her ex. With a healthy dose of Belligerent Sexual Tension and hints of lingering affection.
  • The Protagonist: The first and only female main character to be featured and one of the few female characters to appear in almost every Mortal Kombat game.
  • Throw Down the Bomblet: Her "Demolition" variation in X is focused around grenades. She can toss frag or stun grenades and when she runs out, she can summon a drone who is able to supply her with more. The drone itself is also able to toss grenades (with the Enhanced version) and she has a back roll that lets her drop grenades on wakeup.
  • Tomboy: The way she dresses seem to suggest this.
  • Tomboyish Ponytail: More often than not since 3.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Happens gamewise, when she first debuted she may be the worst character in gameplay and certainly the worst to use against Goro. The only move she had that really worked on him was her energy rings and that move was clumsy to do in the arcade (you had to hold punch and then make your joystick motion). After being brought back for MK3 and the games after, she gained a number of special moves that eliminated the previous gaps in her gameplay and her character was generally made faster.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Dear God, with the way she treats both Johnny and Cassie in MKX, it appears she took several. You'd think she was an understudy for General Ross or Colonel Moore with her degree of jerkass-ness.
    Sonya: (upon finding out that Kano is hiding in the camp) Kenshi, continue with Li Mei. I'm going to the refugee camp. Gotta get to him before he finds a way out.
    Johnny: I'll come with.
    Sonya: Go get an update on camp security from Colonel Flagg.
    Johnny: Why?
    Sonya: Because then you won't be here.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Her older self loses all of her hostility towards Johnny and strictness towards Cassie after the events of X. 11 has her warmly congratulate her daughter while promoting her and smile proudly as Johnny throws in a congratulatory hug; and she's openly affectionate towards her husband.
  • Tsundere: In her interactions with Johnny, as part of the Ship Tease. Better seen in the movie, where she mostly acts annoyed at him, but Everyone Can See It.
  • Tuckerization: Sonya is named after one of Ed Boon's sisters, as he confirms in a video interview in the special edition of Deception.
  • Underwear of Power: In the first game, she visibly has a thong over her pants (the actress added that it was inspired by what her aerobics students would wear).
  • Unlimited Wardrobe: She's had some quite different outfits from time to time.
  • Vapor Wear: In 9, it's clear she doesn't wear a bra under her vest or tank top. Her nipples are even visible in the latter. She also has no issues being brutally murdered without panties on either.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: When Johnny gets stabbed and is on the brink of death, her reaction and subsequent beatdown of Quan Chi speaks volumes.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Sonya can morph into a hawk to finish her opponents as her Animality in MK3.
  • Will They or Won't They?: In regards to her hooking up with Johnny, she does. And they get divorced down the line.
  • Whole Costume Reference: A DLC costume released alongside the Terminator in 11 gives her the outfit worn by Sarah Connor in the second half of Terminator 2: Judgment Day.
  • Working with the Ex: She divorced from Johnny at some point. As much as he pisses her off (A LOT), it doesn't stop her from stepping up with him in Earthrealm's defense.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: During her rooftop battle with Kano in 3, Sonya feigned defeat in order to lure him to the edge of the building and throw him off of it.


Reptile (Syzoth)
"You will have my teeth at your throat!"

Debut game: Mortal Kombat (Daniel Pesina)
Other appearances: Mortal Kombat II (Daniel Pesina), Mortal Kombat 3 (John Turk), Mortal Kombat 4 (John Turk/Dan Forden), Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, Mortal Kombat: Deception (cameo), Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon (Tom Taylorson), Mortal Kombat 9, Mortal Kombat X (Steve Blum, English; Eduardo Garza, Latin American Spanish), Mortal Kombat 11 (non-playable cameo in the Krypt)
Non-game appearances: Mortal Kombat: The Movie (Keith Cooke), Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (Mark Caso/Sultan Uddin), Mortal Kombat: Conquest (Jon Valera), Mortal Kombat: Rebirth (Richard Dorton), Mortal Kombat (2021)

A green-garbed, human-like reptilian creature. Reptile is said to be physically hideous and repulsive, but he is renowned for his great stealth, impressive fighting skills and unquestioning loyalty. Reptile has an obsession about finding the last remaining member of his race, the Saurians, and freeing his homeworld Zaterra from Outworld's grasp; While well-meaning and sincere, this obsession is so important to him that it causes him temporary fits of insanity.

After acting as a stealthy bodyguard to Shang Tsung during the first Mortal Kombat, he returned to his master, Shao Kahn, in order to aid him in the Outworld tournament, under the promise that Kahn would release the remaining members of Reptile's race from slavery if he would unquestioningly do his bidding. Such an opportunity arose During the Earthrealm invasion: he and Jade were to recapture an escaped Kitana, killing her if necessary. He did not succeed, as Jade betrayed him to help Kitana. After the war, he was bought to Edenia as a prisoner, and subsequently exiled to the Netherealm. Reptile grasped the opportunity to join Shinnok's army, hoping for the rogue Elder God to revive his race. Alas, when he found himself on the losing side once more, he decided to resume his service to Shao Kahn.

Because of his state of separation from the other members of his race, especially his matriarch, Reptile had begun to show signs of devolution, becoming progressively more insane and saurian-like. When Reptile wasn't able to protect his master from the recently formed Deadly Alliance, he went into an even greater madness. Desperately looking for a new master, he eventually came across the vampire Nitara, who shared with him artifacts and knowledge of his lost people, the Zaterran. This was enough to gain Reptile's trust; she send him to fight Cyrax in order to advance her own agenda. Afterward, when Reptile realized that she was going to leave him behind, he tracked her down to an ancient incubating chamber, but she was already gone. All that remained was the almost fully incubated egg of Onaga the Dragon King. The egg hatched, a beam of light struck Reptile as the Saurian's body became the vessel for the reincarnated Onaga.

After the fall of the Dragon King at the hand of the Forces of Light, Reptile found himself free from the villain's possession. At the time of the Armageddon, he seems to be part of the Red Dragon clan's human-reptilian hybrids experimentations. It's not clear if he's willing, but this might have been another way, in his eyes, to get his Saurian race to be restored.

Reptile is pretty much the same he's ever been in Mortal Kombat 9: an assassin for Shang Tsung and a foot soldier for Outworld. As a minor modification to his role, he no longer hides in the shadows of the Mortal Kombat tournament but is instead an official participant, fighting on behalf of Outworld. He is quickly eliminated but continues to offer his services to Shang Tsung in other areas as the tournament progresses. In Mortal Kombat X, Reptile's real name of Syzoth is revealed and when Outworld plunges into a civil war, he's among the first to join up with the newly-appointed emperor, Kotal Kahn.

  • Acid Attack: Reptile can spit acid as a projectile attack. His fatality in UMK3 has him vomit a gallon of Hollywood Acid on his opponent, melting their flesh clear off their skeleton and he has acid fatalities in MK4 and Deadly Alliance.
  • Alien Blood: It's green. Averted in Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge, where his blood is clearly red, as you can tell when Sonya cuts off his head.
  • Adaptational Backstory Change: His backstory in the games, while inconsistent at times, has remained largely the same. A lone Zaterran serving his masters after his home-realm was mysteriously destroyed and his race was driven to extinction. However, in the film Scorpion's Revenge his race is alive and he participates in the Mortal Kombat tournament for unknown reasons.
  • Adaptational Job Change: In the first game and the reboot, he works for Shang Tsung as his bodyguard and protector during the first Mortal Kombat tournament. However, in the film adaptation Scorpion's Revenge he loses this role, and only participates in the first tournament to combat Sonya Blade.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Before being part of the Klassic Pack, buying MKX from Amazon or Amazon UK gave you Reptile's Klassic outfit.
  • Animal-Themed Fighting Style: In Deadly Alliance, his fighting styles are Hung Gar (which has roots in the Five Animal Kung Fu styles) and Crab (which may or may not be based on a real life martial art).
  • Anti-Villain: A combination of Types II (a Woobie Anti-Villain) and III (Well-Intentioned Anti-Villain).
    • Even though he sides with the likes of Shao Kahn and Shinnok, all he wants is to revive his extinct reptilian race. Later games suggest that over the centuries since his race's destruction, he's been ever so slowly going mad, and attaches himself to whatever authority figure he can. After Shao Kahn's apparent death, he almost immediately enters Nitara's servitude. One of his endings also show him going mad from his abuse into Omnicidal Maniac territory, and that none of his employers treats him with a hint of respect.
    • In MKX Outworld has a new leader in Kotal Kahn, and Reptile is under his command as well, though Kotal has earned Reptile's respect instead of pressing him into service.
  • The Artifact: He was originally conceived as a composite version of Sub-Zero and Scorpion and wore a green ninja garb to reflect this. From II and onward, he gained his own moveset and backstory, and was no longer tied to Scorpion and Sub-Zero (he wasn't even a member of the Shirai Ryu nor the Lin Kuei). Despite this, he was still depicted as a palette swap of Scorpion and Sub-Zero until the switch to 3D with 4, where he was given a more reptilian appearance better suited for his namesake.
  • Badass Boast: He gets some nasty ones in MKX.
    Reptile: Spawn of Briggs.
    Jacqui: "Spawn"? I'm not a fish.
    Reptile: I will gut you as one.

    Ermac: We are many.
    Reptile: You will die one by one.

    Reptile: I have found you.
    Kung Lao: I was not hiding.
    Reptile: You will wish you had.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: The basis of his loyalty to Kotal, the first real Benevolent Boss he has served under.
  • Bilingual Bonus: His Kirehashi blade from Deadly Alliance: "Kirehashi" translates to "scraps", "cut end", or "cut-off piece", all of which adequately describe the sword's shape.
  • Bodyguarding a Badass: At the beginning of the series, Reptile's job was to be Shang Tsung's personal bodyguard, which seems odd given Tsung isn't exactly a push-over himself. Reptile turned this to his advantage in MKX, where he revealed that spending years shadowing Shang Tsung meant he was the only one left who knew Mileena's true origins.
  • Butt-Monkey: With the exceptions of MKII (as it's his first time), Armageddon, 9 and MKX, pretty much every other ending of his can be boiled down to "His employers screwed him over":
    • In UMK3, he gets a promise from Shao Kahn to revive his race if he kills Kitana. He does it, but Shao Kahn breaks his part of the deal. Reptile kills him, but this denies him the chance to know what his true race is.
    • In 4, he gets a denial, again, but this time from Shinnok. He succeeded during his fight against Earthrealm's warriors, so he talks to Quan Chi so that he may convince Shinnok to send Reptile back in time to his homeworld before it was destroyed. After a useless plea, Shinnok appears, does a Neck Lift on him, and Reptile's head explodes.
    • And, in (surprisingly) the only canonical ending of Deadly Alliance, he finds Cyrax and Nitara's essence, but not any of them. Later, he's caught by an energy cascade around what was a dragon embryo, his body providing a host for Onaga, the Dragon King.
    • In MK9's story mode, even though he survives the events of the game, he seems to exist solely to get his ass repeatedly kicked by the heroes. In fact, he loses to Johnny Cage at the very beginning of the game. Which can be much more humiliating if the player beats him with a "Flawless Victory" or hits him with Cage's signature "Nut Punch" move, the latter of which happens in the MKX Prequel Comic. That being said, in the non-canon Arcade Mode, he DOES get what he wants when he forced Shang Tsung to recreate his race, and then (presumably) kills him before he gets screwed again. And the rest of the existing races in Outworld before they can screw him.
    • MKX, however, is better for Reptile. His boss and personal friend, Kotal Kahn, actually respects him, and in his ending he finds a hidden enclave of Raptors hidden beneath Earthrealm, along with a new queen to serve. While he still shows up in story mode mostly to have his ass handed to him by the heroes once again, he has finally been given the respect he deserves and seems a lot more stable as a result of this.
  • The Cameo: In MK11's Krypt. In fact, he's one of the few aversions of Death by Cameo in there.
  • Canon Name: X reveals his true name is Syzoth. Most everyone else still calls him Reptile.
  • Composite Character: In the 1992 original, where he was essentially Scorpion and Sub-Zero combined into one fighter, which is reflected by his color scheme (blue and yellow makes green).
  • Developers' Foresight:
    • The only time you're allowed to touch the block button to find Reptile in the first game is when inputting Sonya's Fatality, the only one in the game that requires block.
    • As part of MKX's homage MK1 Tower, Reptile is once again a hidden fighter for that one. What you have to do is achieve a flawless victory in the winning round of fight 6, and perform a Fatality or Brutality.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: From II onwards, he gained his own moveset and a unique backstory.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: From Deadly Alliance onwards, Reptile tends to appear either barefoot or with wrappings that expose his toes and heels.
  • Doesn't Like Guns: In an intro with Jax, Reptile tells him that "only cowards use firearms". Of course, Jax points out that spitting acid on people isn't exactly noble, either.
  • The Dog Bites Back:
    • In MKX, as he defects to Kotal Kahn's side, Reptile lets it slip that Mileena is not really Shao Kahn's daughter, but was a clone made by Shang Tsung, further weakening her image in the eyes of Outworld.
    • His 9 ending is this. After years of having Bad Bosses or otherwise getting screwed over in many of his endings, he finally lets that pent-up rage loose by slaughtering everything in sight with his race recreated. And it is horrifying.
  • Downloadable Content: In 9, his classic skin from MK1/2/3 and his classic "Tasty Meal" fatality.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": Besides, who, other than Raiden, even knows that Reptile's real name is Syzoth?
  • Flash Step: His Running Serpent. Also pronounced in his Nimble variation in X.
  • Green and Mean: He is a reptilian warrior clad in green clothing who fights for Outworld.
  • Green Is Gross: On top of being green and spitting acid, His "Noxious" variation in MKX has him covered in a green poisonous gas and surrounded by flies. In some of his intro dialogues in that game, Jax and Johnny Cage comment on his smell. Also, his "Force Ball" attack is green and slimey looking.
  • Guide Dang It!: MK1 required sheer perfection and luck on one specific fight in order to obtain him. Every so often, the game would have him pop out and drop a hint on this. You are required to be on The Pit stage ("Tip eht fo mottob") when something passes by the moon, which happens every sixth game ("Look to la luna"), win with a double Flawless Victory ("Perfection is the key") and finish the opponent with your character's fatality ("Fatality is the key") and NOT Block ("Blocking will get you nowhere").
  • Hollywood Acid: His vomit is strong enough to melt someone down into a skeleton in under a minute.
    • His fatality in UMK3 and 4 has him vomit a gallon of "acid" on his opponent, melting their flesh clear off their skeleton.
    • His fatality in Deadly Alliance has him reducing the enemy's head to a mere skull via acid. Immediately after, he eats it.
    • His fatalities in X employ his acid spit: one to melt the flesh off of his opponent's skull before splitting it like a watermelon, and another to reduce his opponent's body to a single hand (and making a snack of his victim's head before it can be melted away).
  • Imagine Spot: Due to his waning lucidity, Deadly Alliance's Konquest Mode notes that Reptile's imagination tends to get out of hand frequently, causing him to daydream about hypothetical battles (such as thwarting the Deadly Alliance's assassination attempt on Shao Kahn).
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain:
  • Invisibility: He can turn invisible in nearly every game where he's playable. The MKX comics show him capable of applying it to an area of effect]].
  • I Owe You My Life: After his failure in the Mortal Kombat tournament against Johnny Cage at the beginning of MK9, Reptile fell out of favor with Shao Kahn, and was ordered executed by Kotal's hand. The Osh-Tekk saw purpose in Reptile, however, and recruited him to his personal unit, figuring Reptile's skills would be of far more use there than as a foot soldier. For this, and the personal friendship between the two, Kotal has earned Reptile's Undying Loyalty.
  • It Was a Gift: The Kirehashi blade that he uses in Deadly Alliance and Armageddon is an ancient Raptor weapon offered to him as a sign of peace by Nitara. While this was mostly done to get Reptile's guard down and gain his trust so that Nitara could lure him over to her side, this also suggests that there is some sort of shared history between the people of Zaterra and Vaeternus (the Vampire race is said to be a record-keeper of the history of other races, but it's unknown how deep their connection with other species were).
  • Jobber: A side effect of not having a playable Story Mode Chapter in 9 and X is that he's turned into this. Almost everytime he shows up in the story is to get beaten up by whoever you're playing as at the moment. Hell, the first thing that we see of him in the New Timeline is being defeated by Johnny Cage in the very first round of the tournament. To add insult to injury, according to the Prequel Comics of MKX he was canonically punched in the dick by Cage in front of other participants and spectators. To be fair, that's very likely something the player would have done themselves if they knew the move's input.
  • Ki Manipulation: His Force Ball, a projectile sphere attack that is mainly used to set up the enemy for a juggle. However, later games make it a ball of poisonous slime instead.
  • Last of His Kind: Well, he and Khameleon. Other Saurians do appear in the MKX mobile game, but its canonicity is as debatable as Reptile finding his long-lost kin.
  • Luck-Based Mission: Even after knowing you need to win with a double Flawless Victory at the Pit, a shadow has to fly past the moon for it to work ("Look to la luna")]]. It only occurs once in every 6 consecutive games! (Unless you're cheating on a console version, in whose case you don't get the bonus points.)
  • Neck Snap: He has a non-lethal version of this.
  • No Respect Guy: Nobody ever gives him respect, until X, and even then the good guys still enjoy taking potshots at him.
  • Now Buy the Merchandise: His Friendship in 2, in which he invites the player to "Buy a Reptile doll!"
  • Overly Long Tongue: His Tasty Meal Fatality, and a few moves in MKX, like his grabs and Heart Attack Brutality.
  • Optional Boss: The very first.
  • Painfully Slow Projectile: His Force Ball has a slow version which takes its time as it floats across the screen. This means the opponent has to keep track of it for longer, and he can also mix things up with a faster variation or his very quick Acid Spit attack.
  • Rolling Attack: In some games, Reptile could curl himself up into a ball and roll forward, knocking the enemy down.
  • Sanity Slippage:
    • Starting with Deadly Alliance, it has been shown that Reptile is mentally unstable due to his separation from his race, and his mental state has continued to deteriorate. In Konquest he's having full-blown battles with hallucinatory opponents, even once mistaking his then-master, Nitara, as one of the sorcerors. At the end, he "fights" the enemy he thinks has been the source of all his failures to the death. It was himself.
    • 9 also brings up his insanity. In his arcade ending, he finally snaps and becomes an Omnicidal Maniac.
  • Secret Character: The first secret character in the series and in fighting games in general. Later became a regular character.
  • Shapeshifter Default Form: Inverted. Reptile prefers to take on a more human form, with his resemblance to a human or humanoid lizard varying from game to game. Yet, members of his race can lose their humanoid appearance when separated for long periods of time from their monarchal leader, with hints that Reptile's temporary insanity is what caused his more bestial appearance in Deadly Alliance.
  • Skeletons in the Coat Closet: His alt in Deadly Alliance is a caveman-inspired look, with an animal skull as a chestpiece. In X, he is wearing what looks to be splint mail made from bone and teeth.
  • Slide Attack: He's had this move since the first game. In Shaolin Monks, 9 and X, he secretes a trail of slime when he slides similar to the ice trail the one Sub-Zero leaves when he does his Slide.
  • The Speechless: In 9, he has no spoken dialogue during the story mode, though he "converses" with Shang Tsung using growls at one point. He does have a few text-based lines in the Challenge Tower.
  • Sssssnaketalk: He had it in the comics, and it was carried over to 4 and X. For some reason, however, he does not have it in Armageddon.
  • Stance System:
    • In Deadly Alliance, he has Hung Gar and Crab as unarmed styles and Kirehashi as weapon style.
    • In Armageddon, he has Pao Chui as unarmed style, while keeping his weapon style from DA.
    • In X, his variations are Noxious, Deceptive and Nimble.
      • Noxious, at first, doesn't look like anything special, as Reptile simply emits a Damage Over Time cloud of poisonous gas that affects opponents too close to Reptile. However, considering the game is about getting up close and personal, and that the damage is unblockable and constant, it will eventually add up nicely. The poisonous gas can also be augmented via a special move.
      • Deceptive removes his mask and brings back his invisibility, though simply for this variation. He gains two stages of it, and suffers no damage whatsoever if he's knocked out of it, even if such hit isn't blocked.
      • Nimble grants him the Basilisk ability, which slows down the opponent significantly for some time. This allows for significantly longer combo opportunities. It can be denoted by his snake-shaped belt.
  • Suddenly Voiced: In X, he starts exchanging "pleasantries" with other kombatants.
  • To Serve Man: He can swallow an entire human head in one bite, and some of his fatalities have him ripping and eating the opponent's head, chameleon-style.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: MKX throws two to Reptile. Unlike Shao Kahn, Shang Tsung, Quan Chi and Shinnok, Kotal Kahn seems to genuinely care for Reptile, sharing the bond of being the Last of Their Kinds, and sparing and recruiting him during the events of MK9 as a valued member of his honor guard rather than a lackey. In turn, Reptile serves him with undying loyalty and much stabler than normal. Additionally, in his arcade ending, he discovers the Zaterran still exist in Earthrealm, and he pledges his alliance to his race.
  • Troll: He can actually do this to himself in MKX by proclaiming "It is I, Shang Tsung!"
  • Undying Loyalty: This is Reptile's Fatal Flaw. Mostly due to his status as an Extreme Doormat and his misguided hopes that he'll eventually be rewarded with the revival of his race, but once Reptile enters the service of most his masters, he is violently determined to protect and serve them. Even more pitiable is the fact that what Reptile perceives as failure starts weighing heavily on his conscience. When he's unable to defeat Cyrax at Nitara's command and flees, Reptile (in an odd villainous variation of Heroic Self-Deprecation) starts beating himself up for being unable to carry out the wishes of another master.
    • Reptile is extremely loyal to Kotal Kahn as well, probably more than he was to any of his previous masters, but as mentioned under Throw the Dog a Bone, this is much healthier and more justified case since Kotal treats him far better and values him more than any of them ever did.
  • Useless Useful Spell: Invisibility sounds cool, but it's a fairly difficult move, and the the AI is unaffected, since all it does is turn off the model display. Not so much when you want to ambush some Red Dragon mooks alongside D'Vorah, Ferra and Torr.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: In 4, Deadly Alliance, and Armageddon.


"I will grant you a warrior's death!"

Debut game: Mortal Kombat
Other appearances: Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Mortal Kombat Gold, Mortal Kombat: Deception (Nintendo GameCube version only), Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon (Nigel Casey), Mortal Kombat 9 (Ken Lally), Mortal Kombat X (DLC; Vic Chao, English; Carlos Hernández, Latin American Spanish)

Proud member of the half-dragon race, the Shokans, son of the Shokan King Gorbak and the Shokan Queen Mai, Prince Goro was the undefeated Champion of Mortal Kombat, being able to win nine consecutive tournaments over a span of 500 years. He helped Shang Tsung grow ever closer to achieving Shao Kahn's goal of domination over Earthrealm.

In his tenth title defense, however, he faced and lost to Liu Kang. In the tournament's aftermath, he went missing after a battle where he fought Kano, Johnny Cage and Sonya Blade, and was believed to be dead. He would later resurface after Shao Kahn's defeat to lead his fellow Shokans in a war against the Centaurians. Kitana intervened and negotiated both races an uneasy truce and peace accord. When Shinnok and his legion were defeated and Edenia was once again free, Goro and the Shokan race decided to ally with the Edenians.

Years later, during the time of the Deadly Alliance, the united Edenians and Shokans marched on Shao Kahn's weakened army. Goro was exhausted from battle and was struck from behind by Noob Saibot. He was mortally wounded, apparently dying from the injury. So, Princess Kitana held a royal funeral for her former ally. However, Goro was able to survive, being saved from death by Shao Kahn himself, with the promise to return the Shokans to their former glory and the banishment of the Centaurians in exchange for his allegiance. Agreeing to these terms, Goro resumed his place at Shao Kahn's side and helped him to become once again the Emperor of the Outworld during the time of the Armageddon.

Goro has a similar role in Mortal Kombat 9, although he is much less important in the story and sticks around after his initial defeat to get beaten again and again, culminating in him losing his four arms by Kotal Kahn's hand in the Outworld civil war, where the Shokan fought for Mileena in exchange for returning his race to its past glory. After losing his father and his claim to the throne due to his wounds, he went into exile, seeking Daegon after hearing of Onaga's supposed healing factor.

  • Adaptational Wimp:
    • In the movie, he is beaten rather easily by Johnny Cage. He gives him a groin shot almost immediately as the bell rings and lures him outside to a cliff and ambushes him, knocking him off to his death.
    • In Scorpion's Revenge, Goro gets killed in one shot by titular character's kunai spear.
  • The Ageless: Before the games, since being the Mortal Kombat champion meant that his already-slow Shokan aging came to an outright halt.
  • An Arm and a Leg:
    • One of his fatalities has him using his four arms to rip off his opponent's limbs.
    • In the comics, he was on the receiving end of it, as he lost ALL FOUR ARMS when fighting Kotal Kahn. And to rub salt on the wound? Kintaro told him that the loss of his arms now disqualify any claim he has to the Shokan throne after his father, Gorbak, fell against Kotal Kahn.
  • Ambiguous Situation: Due to the comics never receiving a continuation, it is unclear what exactly Goro's fate by 11 is. Sheeva makes it clear his alliance with Daegon was a success and he returned to Outworld with Onaga's powers, launching a campaign of terror before being somehow stopped. Kotal suggests he killed Goro for good, but Sheeva implies Goro is suffering some Fate Worse than Death out of being on the wrong end of Onaga's wrath.
  • Anti-Villain: Type I (a Noble/Punch Clock Anti-Villain). Goro is the Champion of Outworld and once held a 9-time tournament win streak. However, unlike most of the bloodthirsty or sinister warriors in Kahn's army, Goro is honorable, and he is ultimately trying to protect his people.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Prince of the Shokan race and also their strongest warrior.
  • Badass Arm-Fold: Due to having four arms, he can even pull off this pose and Dynamic Akimbo at the same time.
  • Big Eater: As seen in the comic, he tends to indulge. Although given his build, this is only natural.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: The Dragon Fangs, which he's used in Deception, Armageddon, and X as a variation.
  • Breath Weapon: Able to shoot fireballs from his mouth or breathe a stream of fire from his mouth like a dragon.
  • The Cameo: Appears in Ready Player One as an avatar disguise used briefly by co-protagonist Art3mis. As an extra little Mythology Gag, she breaks out of him using a Chestburster hand puppet, which was of course possible to do to Goro as a Xenomorph Brutality in Mortal Kombat X.
  • The Champion: Of Outworld. Was champion of the Mortal Kombat tournament 9 times in a row.
  • Co-Dragons: Goro and Shang Tsung served as Co-Dragons under Shao Kahn.
  • Dead Guy on Display: Curiously, a long-deceased Goro can be seen resting on the chair he always sat in his lair in Mortal Kombat 11.
  • Defeating the Undefeatable: Was Champion of Mortal Kombat for 500 years prior to the first game.
  • The Dragon: To Shao Kahn, Goro is one of Shao Kahn’s strongest and most loyal servants. He's also literally a dragon-human hybrid, somehow...
  • Dynamic Akimbo: He does a four-armed version of this, with the upper two arms usually making a bicep flex.
  • Enemy Civil War: The prequel comics have revealed he's involved in Outworld's civil war and is allied with Mileena; in return for seeing the Shokan race restored to glory, he has vowed to kill Kotal Kahn, a desire that became Freudian when Kotal kills his father, King Gorbak, which sends Goro into exile.
  • Evil Is Bigger: When allied with Shao Kahn and the like.
  • Flung Clothing: Goro arrives to battle in X wearing a cape, which he discards before the fight begins during his intro sequence.
  • Goomba Stomp: His Leaping Stomp, an attack which is shared with the other four-armed characters of the series.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: The other half being dragon.
  • Half the Man He Used to Be: His intro in MKX has him rip a random person in half. While conversing with someone.
  • Handicapped Badass: Even when armless, he still beats Red Dragon mooks into submission and managed to somehow beat up Kenshi.
  • Hates Small Talk: His intro dialog in MKX is very curt and to the point, without any of the clever quips or flowery threats the other Kombatants trade with each other. It's pretty clear he would prefer not to trade words. Even his Badass Boast lines are as brief as possible.
    Goro: Prepare yourself.
    Erron Black: That's it? No stirring speech?
    Goro: I fight. That is all.
  • The Hedonist: Discussed. In a conversation with Sheeva and Fujin about Goro, Sheeva says Goro was the kind of person that chased every impulse that ran down his spine. Fujin compliments Sheeva being a very restrained ruler by comparison.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: The only constant in his motive is his desire to do right by the Shokan race, and he will ally himself with whoever can provide them with the best status. To wit: started out as Evil in the first Mortal Kombat, then was more Neutral in MK4, then turned Good at the end of MK4 and Deadly Alliance (to the point of even making peace with Kung Lao over Goro's rivalry with Lao's ancestor; he's then killed by Noob Saibot) then back to Evil in Deception by teaming up with Shao Kahn.
  • Hulk Speak: Averted, though when he refers to the humans he says "puny humans."
  • The Juggernaut: He plows through all of the main heroes in the MKSM opening and the only people who aren't defeated with ease are those who dodge out of his path.
  • Large and in Charge: He's huge (official data has Goro at an imposing 8'2" and 550 pounds), but he still answers to Shao Kahn and his father the Shokan King Gorbak.
  • Large Ham: Especially in the first movie. Also this in the Malibu comics. Mortal Kombat X as well.
  • Left for Dead: His appearance in Deception is explained in that Goro was defeated in battle, to the point a funeral was held for him, but was saved from dying by a still alive Shao Kahn.
  • Lightning Bruiser: His original appearance. The original comic states that his speed was incredible and his strength unmatched.
  • Loincloth: Usually the only thing he wears. Occasionally, he'll put on something like chest armor or a helmet, but that's about it.
  • Mighty Glacier: In the later games. This was done in order to make him a balanced playable character.
  • Monster Modesty: Subverted with his alt. in Deception and Armageddon, which decks Goro out in armor and a shirt that covers most of his chest.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: A four-armed Shokan warrior prince and reigning Mortal Kombat champion for many centuries.
  • Neutral No Longer: Goro's ending in the Arcade mode of X (apparently ignoring the comic storyline) explains his absence from the game as just him avoiding being involved with the Outworld Civil War entirely. But after the conflict with Shinnok he decides to conquer Outworld himself and crushes both sides of the war with a Shokan army.
  • Noble Top Enforcer: Goro only serves under Shao Kahn for the good of the Shokan race. Unlike most of the bloodthirsty or sinister warriors in Kahn's army, Goro is an honorable warrior despite his monstrous appearance. When Kung Lao wanted to avenge his ancestor the Great Kung Lao's death at the hands of Goro, he made peace with Kung Lao noting that his ancestor was a great man and a noble warrior. He also joined the side of good after MK4 and waged war on Shao Kahn alongside Kitana.
    • Even a few of his mid-combat lines in X showcase this, somewhat.
      "You will die with honor!"
  • Odd Friendship: With Kitana. If Deadly Alliance is indication, the two are old friends, to the point that she attended his funeral at Kuatan Palace after he was slain by Noob Saibot sometime between 4 and DA.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: There are others who embody this as well (such as his fellow Shokan, Moloch, and Onaga), but Goro is probably the most well-known example within MK.
  • Playing with Fire: He can throw fireballs either from his hands, up to four in a row in some games, or from his mouth. MKX gives him the "Tigrar Fury" Variation which especially focuses on this.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: A member of the Shokan race.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Really doesn't have that much interest in Outworld politics beyond how it pertains to the Shokan race. He's only as involved with the conquest of Earth as he is because Shao Kahn needed a ringer to win the tournament. Changes his tune regarding politics when Kotal Khan rises to power; when Goro's attempt to dethrone him leads to the loss of his arms and then his father. His ending in this game sees him defeat Kotal and take over Outworld as Emperor.
  • Really Gets Around: In his profile on the official comic and instruction manual for the first game, he is stated to be a polygamist, having seven wives.
  • Really 700 Years Old: At the time of the first Mortal Kombat, he has already lived something like 2000 years.
  • Red Herring: The line that Goro could "eat you alive" from the Sega Genesis instruction manual had many believing the Goro could perform a fatality in the first game. However, he gets fatalities of his own in the GameCube version of Deception and Mortal Kombat 9.
  • The Rival: To Kung Lao and Liu Kang, since he was the one who killed their ancestor. He manages to make peace with Kung Lao in the end though.
    • To Johnny Cage, mainly in the movie.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: He is the son of the Shokan King Gorbak and was commander of Outworld's armies and also won 9 Mortal Kombat Tournaments for Outworld.
  • Sore Loser: Moderate example. His pre-fight dialogue with Liu Kang in X shows he really doesn't like being reminded of their first fight.
    Goro: I nearly bested you.
    Liu Kang: With the aid of Shang Tsung's magic.
    Goro: That is a lie!
  • SNK Boss: In the early games, Goro was far from balanced. All of his moves did way more damage than all of the other characters and certain special moves like Johnny Cage's Shadow Kick or Kano's Cannonball would only stumble him a little rather than knock him down, and because of that, he was notoriously difficult to defeat in the first game.
  • Spin Attack: Goro's Spinning Slaps.
  • Stance System:
    • In Deception, he has Shokan and Kuatan as unarmed styles, and Dragon Fangs as weapon style.
    • In Armageddon, he has drops Kuatan.
    • In X, his variations are Dragon Fangs, Kuatan Warrior and Tigrar Fury.
      • Dragon Fangs, as its name implies, grants him his Dragon Fangs to utilize in his attacks. His Shokan Grab is upgraded to stab the opponent rather than punch them, dealing slightly more damage. He also gains a low stab that knocks opponents off their feet, and a Spin Attack that sets up opponents for a juggle when amplified.
      • Kuatan Warrior gives him a helm and more brutish attacks. His Tremor Pound is only available in this variation and coming back with a vengeance. On the other hand, he also gains the Chest Lunge, a Dash Attack that, when amplified, is stronger and is executed faster.
      • Tigrar Fury is as close as one will get to playing as Kintaro: Goro gains the Tigrar Shokan's fire-breathing moves, namely shooting fireballs from his mouth —either towards the opponent (repeteadly if amplified) or at the floor to knock them off their feet—, or breathing fire, which is very safe on block.
  • The Starscream: Well, maybe. In the comic books for X, he originally served Kotal Kahn, betrayed him for Mileena, and Reiko speculates that he intends to backstab her to bring Outworld under Shokan rule. He may be the biggest Wild Card right now.
  • Stop Motion: In his very first incarnation he was animated this way. This set the precedent for Kintaro, Sheeva, and Motaro.
  • Super Strength: Able to effortlessly rip a person in half and swing a giant stone pillar like a baseball bat.
  • Third-Person Person: In the Malibu Comics, Goro refers to himself by name. Like every other main character, by the way.
    Goro: (as he prepares to "discipline" the staff) You do not deserve to be guards for Shang Tsung. All you deserve is death. Death at the hands of Goro.
  • Warrior Prince: His official title is Prince Goro. You know what he's the prince of? Kicking your ass.
    • In the Malibu Comics, Goro is known as the "Prince of Pain". How appropriate.
  • The Worf Effect: Goro was originally a big deal in the early games and presented as a huge threat. In more recent games, he's typically beaten more often and with less effort.
  • Worthy Opponent: According to pre-fight dialogue, he views Ferra/Torr as this.

Alternative Title(s): Mortal Kombat 1 Part 1, Mortal Kombat 1 Part 2