Kronika being behind the constant infighting in the setting helps explain a good deal of the Idiot Ball moments for the Elder Gods, Raiden, the heroes, and even the villains at times. She's always been there pushing their buttons in order to stir things up.
Looking at Shinnok, we can see that a good number of his most defining characteristics actually line up with Kronika's own: complete condescending apathy towards everything and everyone around them, constant smug assurance of their victory, master manipulators, and a tendency to use the heroes own allies against them. Looking at Cetrion, she possesses next to none of these traits as the goddess of virtue to the point that she actually agrees that Kronika's plan is anything but virtuous in her Klassic Tower ending. An endless war between the forces of good and evil is clearly not a good thing to have considering all the casualties that would transpire in the wake of such a conflict, and with the power the kombatants displayed (and with them only getting stronger) it would end up inevitably destroying all the realms just as Argus and Delia had foreseen back in the original timeline. Also, given Geras's comments about Kronika having gone mad from several failed attempts to make her perfect timeline in his ending, chances are really good that Kronika has become just as warped as Shinnok, and knowing how he turned out there's honestly no way she could achieve any sort of lasting balance.
The existence of the Titans and the Omnigod in both Scorpion as well as Sonya's Ladder endings reveal that the Mortal Kombat multiverse is a much larger place than we ever suspected. Assuming they're even semi-canon, it gives a lot more context to the Elder Gods' actions as well as why everyone hesitates disrupting the balance.
Kronika is lying to every one of her pawns as none of them will exist except her when she succeeds in re-winding time. Therefore, she can promise anything. Erron Black and Noob Saibot (in his Arcade ending) are the only two characters to pick this up, and they have their reasons why: Erron, who wants nothing more than to be paid for his services, is not as easily blinded by promises of wealth, power, comfort or whatever Kronika wants to sell him, while Noob is jaded enough from his lifetime as Sub-Zero to see through Kronika's empty words, since the last time he trusted a powerful being he almost caused the destruction of Earthrealm.
Alternatively, Kronika may not have lied to any of her minions, but was using Exact Words; Liu Kang, the revenants, and Shao Kahn were promised that Raiden would not interfere with them; she never guaranteed that Liu Kang would not be killed and brought back under different circumstances nor that Shao Kahn would keep his title as emperor of Outworld just because Raiden didn't mess with it. Jax was only promised "to be a general" and that Jacqui would never be a soldier; both turned out to be true had he not died by following Raiden (as seen in Jacqui's arcade ending) because he would never go through the trauma that he went through as a revenant and thus Jacqui would never be born to become a soldier. Even Frost technically got what was promised to her. The only ones who may have been lied to are Kano and Bi-Han, but since what they wanted were told to us by them (and thus they could have been intentionally misled into thinking that) it's unknown what they were actually promised, if anything at all.
Young Liu Kang keeps his faith in Raiden while Young Kung Lao is a good deal more iffy about it. This makes sense as while Young Liu Kang won the previous Mortal Kombat tournament, Young Kung Lao has always lived in the shadow of his ancestor/past incarnation's defeat. He's a good deal more cynical and realistic about things going South.
The Past Kung Lao's egotism is heavily ramped up here. However, the past cast were pulled through time shortly before Liu Kang's fight with Shao Kahn. Kung Lao was pulled through time minutes after beating Kintaro and the Deadly Alliance, so of course he's gonna be a bit smug, as far as he knows he was about to beat Shao Kahn and prove himself Liu Kang's superior.
Johnny's attitude to his younger self is a definite case of I Hate Past Me with the fact the latter is a sexist, patronizing, and arrogant blowhard. However, it's doubly understandable why he wants to kick his ass because Older Johnny's ex-wife (and quite frankly, the love of his life) just died. What might be mildly irritating under less dire circumstances is enough to make him bloody furious.
The present Jax's behaviour makes a lot more sense when you realize the last thing he must have heard before communications went down was the Netherrealm's impending hostility and Sonya's death.
According to Kotal Kahn, he had been imprisoned in Shang Tsung's lab prior to X. This would explain why he never appeared in the previous timeline; Tsung was never properly killed then, but he was seemingly Killed Off for Real when Shao Kahn sacrificed him to empower Sindel. This might have been enough to weaken whatever restraints that were holding Kotal down.
Erron Black's "Wanted Poster" intro has different values for every character. Most of them are worth $100.000, as for the rest:
Cetrion is worth $999,999,999, befitting her status as an Elder God.
The $5,000,000-worth cast is divided between lesser gods and powerful mythical beingsnote Raiden, Shang Tsung, Fujin, Rain and Geras, past and present Outworld royalty barring Kitananote Kotal Kahn (Misspelt Khan), Shao Kahn (Misspelt Khan), Sindel, Mileena and Sheeva, RoboCop and the Terminatornote two difficult to kill cyborgs from another universe with vast arsenals of weaponry, Spawnnote a demonically-empowered superhero with CIA training and a deadly living costume, John Rambonote a Green Beret with a deadly reputation following him and the remaining Mortal Kombat OGs not named Johnny Cage or Raiden, and which turned out to be very powerful beings in-story, one way or another: Kanonote Dangerous international criminal and leader of the Black Dragon, Liu Kangnote The Chosen One, Raiden's champion, and, by the end of the story mode, the keeper of the Hourglass as a Fire and Thunder God, Scorpionnote The Grandmaster of the Shirai Ryu with powerful wraith abilities even in life, Sub-Zeronote A skilled cryomancer and Grandmaster of the Lin Kuei and Sonya Bladenote General of the Special Forces, Earthrealm's most powerful army.
Johnny Cage is only worth $500, the price of his sunglasses. Considering Black's Amazon Chaser tendencies toward Sonya and Cassie, he's also willing to kill JohnnyCage for fewer than the others.
The Joker stands out as the only Guest Fighter worth $100,000. Considering intros paint him as a Hate Sink the entire roster is willing to kill, it would make sense that he would have a surprisingly low bounty value.
His canon power levels may play a part in this as well. Unlike the other guest fighters save Rambo, the Joker is a baseline human with no superpowers, just an exceptionally deranged mind and a variety of joke-themed gadgets. He's not a cyborg or a hellspawn or a soldier; he's just a very dangerous man.
It seems odd Jade and Kotal let D'Vorah live after Jade beats her, especially considering her actions in the last game, including pressing Kotal's Berserk Button. However, when you remember her ability to regenerate a new body From a Single Cell from the X comics, it's entirely possible they did, and she just regenerated a new body somewhere else.
Raiden being able to see the different visions regarding him and Liu Kang's conflicts can be explained simply by him being his past self during the events of 9. It's possible the Time Crash messed up these visions and he's now seeing visions from every timeline.
When the Tarkatans speak their native language, it's composed entirely of T's, K's, R's, N's, and so on. These are all consonants that don't require the use of lips, which Tarkatans lack. The most obvious exception is Baraka with the B in his name plus his ability to speak fluent English, but when the character was created in the early 90's, the developers likely weren't thinking that far ahead.
Cetrion giving up her life to empower Kronika may just seem like a dramatic setup for the final confrontation between the latter and Liu Kang, until you consider that, in Greek Mythology, Cronos (the inspiration for Kronika) was known for consuming his own children. Granted, the being responsible for that was actually Cronus, but people often mistook the two's names together and the former came to be associated with the child cannibalism anyways.
Think it's really weird that Kano just relieves himself every time he's about to fight (if you leave him with his default intro that is?) There is an explanation in the form of his second Fatality - this time around, he's packing a few beer bottles on him. If he's been killing opponents or just taking a swing between fights, the man's bladder is going to be constantly full.
The billboard advertising "Hsu Hao Watches" isn't just a callback to his Relic from Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, it could very well be a front for the Red Dragon clan's criminal activities.
The arcade games seen in the Tournament level would seem really odd to some, as, not only are they Mortal Kombat games in a Mortal Kombat game, but they depict events that were either retconned out of the current timeline (Deadly Alliance and Deception), couldn't have happened in either canon (Shaolin Monks) or depict the events of the last game (Mortal Kombat X). So what gives? It is highly likely that, in this timeline, Johnny Cage created scripts for these concepts, filmed them as movies, and had video games made based on them, just like he did in the previous timeline, except this time around, not necessarily based on real-life events!
Young Kuai Liang is absent from the Story mode unlike most of the other characters and thus never encounters his present self. It seems rather jarring until one remembers that the other kombatants were taken from the moment just before Shao Kahn snaps Kung Lao's neck and Kuai Liang was taken to undergo a cyberization by the Lin Kuei before that, so at that moment he would be just a pile of organs extracted from his body before being put into a cyborg chassis.
Jacqui's response to Dark Raiden when he tries to "console" Cassie by telling her Sonya was "lucky" to have died a warrior's death. Jacqui's own mother had died prior to the events of the game and while the exact causes aren't stated, it was clearly an illness from the way Jacqui and Jax talk about it. Jacqui wasn't just angry at Raiden's tactless comment to her friend, she was also offended by his insinuation that only those who died of a Heroic Sacrifice deserved to be honored.
Take a look at who in the story mode beats their future self vs. who loses: Jax, Jade, Liu Kang, Kung Lao, and Nightwolf defeat their future selves while Johnny Cage and Scorpion defeat their past selves. The former are all in a better place as characters than their future selves, while the latter are both in a better place as characters than their past selves.
Considering which version of a character is used in a Versus match can make certain lines stand out more, such as Sub Zero's exchange with (past) Sonya; he's not giving her an out of character death threat, but rather referencing her future self's death.
The "I will not mock your pain" exchange stands out as Versus Scorpion is the Past/Revenant version who has his lost family far stronger in his mind.
Puzzled by the Continuity Snarl of Erron having Hsu Hao's severed head in a bag despite the comics showing that Scorpion killed the latter years ago, destroying his head, to boot? It's highly possible that Kronika's shenanigans brought Hsu Hao back, but Erron managed to get to him first.
Kung Jin's absence makes a bit more sense when you consider that, when we got to know him in Mortal Kombat X, he was abrasive, rude and full of resentment, things that can cause (and have caused) him to make potentially fatal mistakes. It is likely that he returned to the White Lotus to temper these feelings and make himself a better warrior.
Why are the classic costume promotional images modeled after the characters appearance in Mortal Kombat II and not the original Mortal Kombat like in Mortal Kombat 9 or Mortal Kombat 3 like in Mortal Kombat X? Because upon their arrival in the present, Raiden mentions that Kung Lao had just defeated Shang Tsung and Quan Chi, putting the time from when the past characters were retrieved as the second tournament, which also serves as the rebooted timelines interpretation of Mortal Kombat II.
A lot of players were disappointed that Kabal has fallen back in with the Black Dragon instead of being a SWAT police officer like in Mortal Kombat 9. It is possible that he was, but Kano manipulating him into thinking that Sonya tortures him had Kabal pull a FaceHeel Turn back to his former crime family. This is supported with one dialogue exchange with Jade, where he mentions that he "tried a face turn, didn't take".
In a game all about time travel, of course one of the guest characters would be a Terminator.
In The Terminator's ladder ending, he willingly throws himself into the Sea of Blood to prevent anyone from gaining access to his knowledge about the hourglass. At first this seems to violate the rule that a Terminator cannot self-terminate, except that since Terminators are machines, they can't drown, and thus such an action would not register as self-termination.
It would make sense that Joker would bring back Hsu Hao and have him be a member of his Misguided Maniacs. Considering that he is fully knowledgeable of the 4th wall and threatens the player, he probably brought back one of the most hated MK characters just to troll everyone.
In the normal/good ending, Kronika gets turned to glass by Liu Kang's fire. This is explainable: sand, when burned at high temperatures, produces glass- and given how the sands of time is a theme for both Kronika and Geras, it's likely that Liu Kang battering her with his fire led to Kronika suffering a case of Power Incontinence (or Kronika trying to deflect/avoid it with her sand powers) that backfired and turned her into glass.
Alternatively, Liu Kang's fire reduced Kronika to ashes, but her remains were flash-crystalized by the intense heat before they had a chance to disperse, thus maintaining her shape and giving the illusion that she was turned into glass.* This isn't as improbable as it sound, as Liu Kang's fire was also infused with his newly-acquired lightning powers. Lightning is capable of reaching temperatures several times higher than the surface of the sun, and a concentrated stream of this magnitude of heat would be more than enough to produce this reaction.
Additionally, after Kronika is turned to glass, Liu Kang proceeds to break her arms off one at a time before finally tipping her over and shattering her completely. At first this may look like plain Rule of Cool, but note that Liu Kang maintains a degree of caution up until the end. Given that Kronika is exactly the kind of character to pull a Wounded Gazelle Gambit, its understandable that Liu Kang was not entirely convinced she was dead until she failed to react to grievous injuries.
Yes its a joke move but that aside, Scorpion's new Friendship having him hug a giant teddy bear is odd at first - after all, two games ago he made it very clear he hated teddies. Then again, its only odd for his revenant self, who runs on rage and hatred. Ol' human Hanzo on the other hand (whether before dying or after his resurrection) might be far more mellow than before (especially with Quan Chi out of the way) and thus rediscovered his love for them.
Kronika having reset the timeline so much until now gives a reason for why the original game has two different storylines. The original storylinenote Liu Kang entering to eliminate the corrupt Shang Tsung as tournament grandmaster and Raiden being a condescending god who wanted to prove how much more superior he was was one of her earlier attempts to separate Raiden and Liu Kang by influencing Raiden's personality to see humans as inferior and hoping he would be pushed to kill Liu Kang in battle. Liu Kang succeeding changed Raiden's outlook and he came to respect Liu Kang's abilities as a human, which did not agree with her plan and she initiated a reset to the more well-known story.
The re-implementation of Friendships in the Aftermath DLC after their absence in the games for several years can be interpreted in-universe as a sign of things getting better after Kronika's meddling that brought anguish to everyone else involved. People now just fight to have fun, now that the worst is over.
It also makes sense considering the Enemy Mine situation in the story expansion. Even mortal rivals are now friends, or at least pretending to be.
How was Fire God Liu Kang unaffected by the injuries suffered by his human or undead self such as being crippled. Considering how Raiden stated that he exists outside the normal laws of time and now Fire God Liu Kang has essentially become the new Raiden, these laws no longer affect him. Hence, if either of his past selves were to die he would still live, as his existence no longer follows the rules of time that affect other characters.
In the main story mode, it's explained that two version of the same god cannot exist in the same timeline: if someone tries to do that, the past version will replace the older one. When Fire God Liu Kang arrives in the present to stop Shang Tsung, why doesn't he disappear? A few possible explanations:
Fire God Liu Kang is, well, a god, while past!Liu Kang and Revenant!Liu Kang are mortals. The rule is that two gods cannot coexist in the same timeline; but a god can coexist with its mortal past selves.
He has traveled through time by using the Hourglass. Being the Hourglass's master, he might have obtained some extra immunity from time-related issues.
When Fire God arrives, past!Liu Kang and Revenant!Liu Kang are already dead - meaning that Fire God is the only Liu Kang left at that point.
In DLC Character Trial Towers, the final opponent is Fire God Liu Kang, who always has four random assists and is easily an SNK Boss. So what is he titled? "King of Fighters".
What exactly did Liu Kang do to ensure his victory in the Aftermath story? The exact strategy that his previous master, Raiden, was given by his future self that led to untold sacrifices, the same strategy that led him to forever lose faith in him and dooming him to a revenant fate. He Must Win.
In regards to his conversation with Fujin in regards to his plan, which he instructs him not to tell Nightwolf. Even when Shang Tsung was absorbing the soul of Nightwolf's revenant, Fujin prevented Nightwolf from stopping him, stating that Shang Tsung must live. Fujin knew Liu Kang's plan relied on Shang Tsung succeeding.
Furthermore, not telling Nightwolf about Liu Kang's true plans matters greatly. And not because Nightwolf would have been against it. Assuming that Shang Tsung does devour his soul off screen after gaining the crown, he would have instantly gained Nightwolf's memories, and therefore knowledge of Liu Kang's plan. On the other hand, Fujin is aware of the plan, but his soul is not taken, as Shang Tsung said he could feed off his and Raiden's power for eternity. He leaves no hint that he knows of Liu Kang's goal, only concluding his intent when Liu Kang appears at the end. This can only mean that a soul must be fully devoured to gain the victim's memories. By not fully draining Fujin of his soul, he was unprepared for Liu Kang's endgame and this mistake would potentially cost him everything. This could only have been possible with Liu Kang looking at the hourglass and seeing the outcome.
The plan itself is already in motion when Liu Kang brought the starting trio to the middle of Kahn's Arena instead of someplace remote, which seems weird and idiotic of him at first. Now, what were the consequences of that action? The trio is spotted, which in turn gave Shang Tsung the chance to come up with the idea of resurrecting Sindel, leading to the destruction of the heroes.
You can spot several clues to Liu Kang's plan during the opening - he insists Raiden not accompany Shang Tsung, Fujin and Nightwolf because he needs someone to operate the hourglass to send himself back to steal the crown from Shang Tsung. He similarly downplays his understanding or ability to use the hourglass, calling himself a novice, to assuage Shang Tsung that he cannot threaten his plans. Fujin himself remarks that plan is "dangerous", because there will be no one left to stop Shang Tsung if Liu Kang fails.
Takeda and Kenshi's absences in this game could be explained by them seeking out the murderer of Suchin as seen in their endings in Mortal Kombat X.
Out of all the revenants with a still living self, Scorpion is the only one from the past and is not a Shadow Archetype of his living self. Instead, his future self is the inverse of a Shadow Archetype. Hanzo is what Scorpion would be if he let his vengeful crusade go.
Some have questioned the Gameplay and Story Segregation of the Joker's Combat Sadomasochist tendencies and why he doesn't laugh maniacally as he's being disemboweled. But when you think about it, one of Joker's main goals is to bring Batman down to his level by making him break his one rule. In that case, being killed by anyone else other than the Dark Knight means he won't be able to accomplish that goal, something he wouldn't find very funny, especially since none of the MK characters have the same concerns over taking a life that Bats does. He's disappointed that he hasn't actually corrupted anyone!
Shang Tsung deciding to spare Raiden and Fujin instead of killing them makes sense when you remember that in Deception, Raiden sacrificed himself in a futile attempt to kill Onaga only to be revived as Dark Raiden. Having to take on two gods is bad enough but taking on two ruthless gods is worse.
Many have noticed that there is a LOT of Continuity Snarl in this game, especially compared to previous entries, to the point where several characters' origins have changed, characters disappear from the story altogether, events that led to this game don't make sense, and so on. Who's to say that Kronika's meddling with the current timeline is causing the present one and others alongside it to get completely messed up? For example, Sindel's stark change from being brainwashed to Evil All Along could have been a result of time shenanigans altering aspects of the past so that Sindel would be compelled towards evil in her altered past, as opposed to her original incarnation who maintains her nobility.
Shinnok fully planned to reunite the One Being and destroy all of the Realms in order to get his revenge on the Elder Gods. Now which is more horrifying, that Kronika was fully supporting this ambition believing she could stop it or her son was completely off the rails but she didn't support stopping him? Either answer shows she wasn't nearly in control of events as she claimed.
Or an even worse possibility: as a Titan she predates and possibly exceeds the One Being...
What if the One Being is actually goading Kronika from behind the scenes, and she's unaware of it?
The rewinding of time effectively means that all of the heroes and villains of the setting are dead and Liu Kang will just be reincarnating them at best. It's a Bittersweet Ending at best. At its worse, he'll just be copying them.
The Krypt stage shows the death of numerous fan favorites like Kano and Goro. Subverted in that they are very likely to live in the next world.
Inverted by Shao Kahn's reaction to Mileena's death. He apparently held some sort of affection for Mileena even if it was that she was a valuable and appreciated tool. That's as close as you can get to love from Shao Kahn.
The two bikini-fighting women in Kano's Ladder ending are Cassie Cage and Sonya Blade. Which means he's forcing mother and daughter to fight. Also, potentially, Squick given the way he's sexualized them for his amusement.
Jacqui's Ladder ending has her Retgone herself in order to give her father a better life. This action not only removes Jax from the love of his life but also kills his daughter. It is the two things that haunted him the most, the loss of the women he loved, that caused him to make a FaceHeel Turn. In short, it's a terrible thing she's done to her father even though he'll never know it.
One regarding Kronika. One of the only fatalities to lack an Overcrank ending shot is Kronika's, as it involves her mercilessly torturing the losing opponent by killing them over and over. However, the first time she uses each kill method, you get the slow-motion as if it's about to end. With that in mind, it's likely that the slow-motion is related to her magic. Who knows just how deep her influence on the events of the game can run?
What if the Films, all theshows and cartoon weren't alternate universes but actually other timelines Kronika has created but erased them when they are no longer of use to her?
Even worse, considering an overlap with Dead By Daylight That would bring a new power player to the universe who may even be beyond Kronika... The Entity. What would happen if The Entity got its hands on someone like Shao Kahn or Kano... or even worse, met with the One Being? What might happen if Shang Tsung learned of the Entity and started making plans to overthrow it? Could he use the trials as a means to steal souls? The idea of Shang Tsung using psychopaths like Michael Myers or beasts like the Demogorgon to take souls paints a terrifying picture.
While recruiting Kano and the Black Dragon to repair Sektor, Geras reveals Kronika's wish to build her own Mecha-Mooks based on Sektor, asking them if they can find a way to replicate Sektor's body "hundreds of times; thousands". By the last act of the game, the custom cyber-ninjas are at least as numerous as the Netherrealm's demon army. The question is, where did they got the brains for that many cyborg bodies?
Kollector's default outro has him kidnap the defeated enemy. Considering that he has some very dark plans for them he says upfront, saying that Cassie would make a good Breeding Slave for one, they would probably want a quick death.
Shang Tsung may appear amicable to the Wanderer in the Krypt, seeming uncharacteristically generous with the loads of treasure on his island, especially towards what can be described at best as a common thief invading it. However, take note of where Shang Tsung's Throne Room appears when you unlock it: right at the starting point, the only way in and out of the island. This, combined with the numerous death traps that can kill the Wanderer, actually implies that Tsung is actually punishing the intruder by trapping him on an inescapable island with loads of treasure that he can't ever leave with. And because you actually respawn every time you die, it becomes a hell that not even death can release you from.
D'Vorah's dialogue to the Kollector indicates that she found Ferra/Torr dead. There is a possible explanation for this: Remember their ending from Mortal Kombat X where Ferra has to abandon Torr to undergo her species' version of puberty by wandering the Outworld Wastelands for three years? Either she didn't survive her metamorphosis, or, with the Tarkatans returning due to Kronika's meddling and Torr not being there to protect her, she was killed by them, presumably out of revenge for killing and eating Tarkatans as shown in the MKX comic.
There is a third option, though it's no happier: it's possible that Ferra's maturity went just fine but she was ultimately unable to find a rider and withered away. As a symbiotic lifeform, Ferra wouldn't be able to live on her own, and her species is so rare, even Kitana didn't recognise them.
You know how Kronika has control over time? Imagine if you will, that in every Mortal Kombat game, you start as your favorite character(s), defeated every opponent, and become champion by defeating the boss. Then you play as someone else, you do the same thing until you get every ending possible. Kronika has the ability to press that Reset Button, meaning all of those previous fights and Fatalities are an equivalent to Kronika trying to find that perfect timeline, without caring who wins or loses. She's essentially an MK player trying to unlock everything by playing everyone's fates.
Reptile and Ermac are notably absent from story mode. This is disturbing for a few reasons...
Ermacs MKX ending could potentially be canon, considering how Shang Tsung is back. It would also explain his corpse in the Krypt.
Reptile, outside of his cameo in the Krypt, is no where to be found. However, remember that other time he disappeared from the roster? If Liu Kang decides to restore the timeline the way it was, the heroes could soon be in very big trouble...
Kronika is Shinnok's mother, so it can be assumed that she has the same Complete Immortality that he has. That would mean she's still alive even after Liu Kang turns her to glass and shatters her.
Likewise, it might also be possible that Cetrion may whenever she falls victim to a fatality.
In a mirror match between herself, one Cetrion states that the balancing of the realms should fall to Taven and Daegon while the other says that they had their chance. However, we later learn that Kronika was responsible for Armageddon in the first place, and that Cetrion was ultimately complicit in her schemes, and we know that Blaze was corrupted by serving as the incubator for the Dragon King's egg to revive Onaga. Given that, because of this, in the canon ending of Armageddon, Taven's quest failed because of him empowering the other fighters, instead of killing or neutralizing them all. With either originally intended outcome, the eternal conflict between light and dark, as Kronika intended for her "balance", would come grinding to a screeching halt. Also, Kronika was shown to have planned far ahead enough to drive the elder gods to "punish" Shang Tsung's theft of a soul with, well, you get the idea by this point, so snuffing out the one chance for anyone else to derail her plans by tampering with Blaze's fate isn't so out of place for Kronika. Cetrion saying Taven and Daegon failed comes off as hypocritical to a degree, since it was her mother who messed it all up in the first place, and she was completely subservient to her will.
Mixed with Fridge Tearjerker. After Sonya died, command presumably fell to Cassie. Who do you think filled out the report that Past Sonya read?
In one pre-fight dialogue, Cetrion states that the reason Shinnok was not allowed to be permanently defeated is because killing him will allow some even worse evil to appear. This implies that the entire scheme of Kronika's Balance Between Good and Evil was perpetrated to make sure that the forces of good and evil weren't constantly ever-growing to a point that they grew beyond even the Elder Gods' control. Has Kronika ever seen this happen? Who was this evil that supposedly made even Shinnok look like a cuddly teddy bear?
Shang Tsung's moveset includes moves from other "Ninja" characters, including Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Noob, Ermac, Smoke, Reptile, and Rain. How could he have the moves, and bear the likenesses, of the latter four if they aren't in the game?note Until Rain was added in KP2, that is. Simple: Shang Tsung killed them. Not only that, but thanks to Kronika screwing with time, Shang Tsung likely took the opportunity to kill alternate versions of the former three as well!
Wanna feel extra cruel? When playing against Rambo as Terminator, use its Target Terminated fatality to finish him off. Rambo, the man who has survived war after war and has been through hell and back with no rest... is unceremonously and violently shot down, while desperately crawling away for his life, as a faceless victim of a war that humanity has already lost. Feeling terrible yet?
Doubles as Fridge Logic, but when you think about it, Liu Kang's plan in Aftermath was kind of pointless, even if he does win against Shang Tsung. He could've just stole the crown away from Shang Tsung's isle himself and beaten Kronika with it, as she'd be powerless, and he'd be free to make a better timeline, but instead, he sat by and let Shang Tsung's faction kill, torture, and suck the souls out of numerous people, including his friends! Then he not only walks in to stop Shang Tsung after all that, but has the nerve to smirk when Shang realizes he let him win! So basically, Liu Kang let his lover, best friend, mentor, and everyone else he cared about suffer for no reason other than to make his job a bit easier!
It gets worse if you consider the fact that his new timeline may be like the original one...which wasn't exactly a pleasant one to begin with. While even a Fire God may not be able to deal with every threat before it can rise, it may look pretty bad if the next game rolls around, and it turns out Liu Kang did nothing to stop all the horrible things people like Shao Kahn, Quan Chi, Shinnok (If he's even born in this new timeline without Kronika), and many others have done...
Since the Hourglass needs the crown to actually work properly as reveal in Aftermath, most if not all of the arcade endings, pre-Aftermath would have just ended with the Hourglass being destroyed as most characters have no idea that they are effectively missing its control panel.
How exactly did Goro die? While it does seem like there was a huge siege on Shang Tsung's Island involving tons of Oni (as shown in the Krypt), it doesn't seem like any of them killed him - his decomposing corpse looks more like he starved to death while sitting on his throne.
Its possible he was mortally wounded by either the Oni or Kenshi and chose to die sitting on his throne.
Assuming the prequel comics made for MKX are still canon, he had his arms ripped off by Kotal Kahn, robbing him of his strength and denying him the right to ever lead his people again. With nothing left to live for, maybe he just...gave up.
Goro is shown to have all four of his arms while deceased atop his throne which he clearly wouldn't be able to regrow while dead, so something else must have happened to the Shokan prince.
The Krypt likely isn't actually canon so nothing shown in it should be taken too seriously.
The state of the Krypt makes no sense in general; it seems undisturbed for decades (like in the Story campaign), but there are fresh bodies and fresh prisoners alongside all of the decayed ones that apparently died in whatever holocaust befell the island. Like Goro, the praying monks that occupy the island somehow died in the exact spot, and exact poses they typically occupied before. Whatever happened on the island could only have happened in an instant, but in a way that left a few survivors...that now probably wish they were dead.
We could probably just chalk it up to fuckery caused by Kronika.
Why did "revenant" Kung Lao survive drowning of "past" Kung Lao in the Sea of Blood? Wasn't established earier that killing living Liu Kang would also kill his revenant and that's why Kronika refused to just snuff him in MK11? It looks like a huge plot hole.
Kung Lao can teleport. He may have just teleported out of the Sea of Blood before he could drown to death.
It's never actually said that you can't swim in the Sea of Blood. Kung Lao may have done so himself.