Are you ready to fight? Mortal Kombat 11, coming to Xbox One on April 23, pushes everything forward with new tech upgrades, a noticeably evolved fighting system, and detailed character customization. To get the lowdown on all the game’s advances, we spoke to Trevor Traub, Producer for the Core Technology Group at NetherRealm Studios, at the Mortal Kombat 11 reveal event in Los Angeles on Thursday, January 17.
Xbox Wire: Let’s begin with the new story, which picks up where the last two games left off. Where do things go from there?
Trevor Traub: The story arc we have planned for this mode is incredible. I wish I could share even more details than we’re revealing now, because it really fits well with the Mortal Kombat X storyline. It is a narrative that Ed has really been crafting for the past 26 years and we’re really excited to show you guys where this leads. So, at the end of Mortal Kombat X, Raiden decapitates Shinnok. Kronica had a plan that didn’t involve Shinnok being defeated. She’s a little upset with the way time went and is going to make some adjustments.
XW: And that’s where the new character, Geras, comes in, right?
TT: Yes. Geras is her enforcer, so he’s the guy who must go do her bidding. He uses the powers of the sands of time, and the power of time, to defeat his enemies. The main element is sand, combined with time, to form hammers and stone.
XW: MK 11 seems to feature significant visual upgrades — can you tell me about the new tech?
TT: Our character fidelity has been given a huge boost. Everything is smoother and all the character models use full tiling materials. That really ups the fidelity. It’s a smoother game in every respect. You can see it in the videos and even this first gameplay.
XW: There’s a lot of blood on screen, and it looks different from what we’ve seen before.
TT: That’s another thing we really spent a lot of time on. Getting our fluid simulations right was a big priority. What would it look like to see a massive burst of blood? And how we can approximate that to look as real as possible? We spent a lot of time on that and we’re proud of the way it came out.
XW: Did you boost the fire and other lighting?
TT: Absolutely! Our effects have really taken a leap since the previous games.
XW: There’s a new gear system, which superficially looks like it is imported from Injustice 2. Are there differences for MK 11?
TT: Definitely. One of the major differences for Mortal Kombat 11 is that the gear itself has no stats. It’s cosmetic-only. But there are other things that you can slot in, to modify either moves or gameplay or recovery windows. We’re calling those augments. Those are all different. So, the gear itself is the cosmetic component, and then the augments are all different types of loot you can get throughout the game. You can deeply customize your character. Like Skarlet has a bunch of different arguments. You can make her get even more life from blood, totally different things like that. You can make different versions of your character. And those customizations will be seen online, but it’s not quite like Injustice 2 — your stat changes won’t all be in play online, but the cosmetic choices will be seen by other players.
Can we expect friendships?
We’ve got no details to announce about that at this time.
No details to announce at this time!
What character have you been most into playing?
I’m really falling in love with Skarlet, really falling in love with her. And while I like Sub-Zero, I’m typically not a fan of the way he plays, but Sub-Zero plays amazing this game. Those are the two characters that I’m really kind of falling in love with right now.
Thanks to Trevor for taking the time to talk to us about Mortal Kombat 11. Keep it tuned here to Xbox Wire for future news about this exciting fighting game.