Friday, May 8, 2015

Mortal Kombat X - "3 Weeks In"

Believe it, or not, but MKX has been improving since my last post. I've been paying very close attention to how the game functions in both the offline, and online scenarios, and I'm pretty darn happy about it. I'm glad to report that 99% of menu functionality is fixed, and that the online multiplayer continues to get smoother, and more enjoyable as time passes. If you've paid attention to my previous articles you'll know that I spoke of the faction war page menus being plagued by constant server errors that would keep you from accessing the current faction challenges, and faction standings. This has stopped for the most part, but did happen once again recently as Netherrealm was updating the game's provided content for the Invasion event. I suppose that is to be expected though since the game is being updated internally via hotfixes, and whatnot. Along with that upside I have spent more time playing online, and have found more smooth lag-free matches than the laggy ones that were more commonplace at the game's launch. It is obvious, as I said before that Ed Boon, and his team of developers are hard at work to make the game as Awesome as possible for those who trusted in them enough to pay extra for the DLC along with the game's $60 price tag.

As far as the game's worthiness is concerned I love it enough to play it daily which is saying a lot. I do my daily MKX faction grind each day, and complete all three challenges before taking on the living towers, and some online competition. My favorite character so far is Erron Black, and I'm able to handle him on an intermediate players skill level. I've got some decent combos, and combo mix-ups as well as viable tactics to deal with the zoning characters/players. I personally dig Erron's "Outlaw" variation as it allows him to play efficiently up close, and at a distance. I really like his Tarkatan arm blade, and the combo links that can be applied using it. The only downside to Erron Black is that his melee attacks are a bit slow to start, and a lot of the characters in the roster can beat him to the punch. That's why I play a more defensive game with him, and punish those who dare to get too close.

A secondary character I turn to on occasion is Liu Kang. Initially Shinnok was going to be my secondary guy, but he seems a bit too cheap, and I'm not fond of sharing cheesy youtube videos (if it can be helped). Liu Kang on the other hand is the type of character that keeps other players guessing. His high, and low combos come out quickly, and can often times catch an unsuspecting player off guard. He also has fireballs to deal with zoning characters, and can easily deal with characters who want to invade his personal space. As far as a favorite Liu Kang variation goes I definitely think "Dragon Fire" suits my play style more as it's closer to the original MK Liu kang than the other variations. It also includes the flying dragon kick which is good for getting in quickly when the opposing player isn't spamming projectiles.

When it comes down to the players being used online there is a decent selection which I'm grateful to see. The characters I've mostly encountered online include Ferra/Tor, Liu Kang, Sub-Zero, Scorpion, and the more recent Jason Vorhees. Occasionally you'll encounter an annoying Cassie Cage, or Johnny Cage player, but other than those several characters hardly any others from the "Kast" are used online. I've mentioned before that when you see a huge part of an available roster not being used online it's usually a good indication that the roster isn't balanced. To be fair though, MKX is the most balanced fighter I've seen in quite a while. At least there is a decent variety of characters used online instead of the highly spammable few favorites.

My hope is that Ed Boon, and his team at Netherrealm Studios stays on top of things, and keeps this game a viable part of the FGC (Fighting Game Community) until their next fighter is released. I don't want MKX to fall to the wayside in regards to it's importance. I've been looking for a fighter worth returning to regularly, and so far MKX is filling that gap quite nicely. With that being said though it still has not been perfected in some areas, and still needs some changes to become that perfect fighting game masterpiece that legit fighting game players will want to return to years after it's launch. Things like input delay in the offline, and online modes still need to be addressed, and fixed. The online itself could still use some netcode adjustments, and the Invasion Boss definitely needs some work to become a viable part of the Invasion event. I'll close in saying, "Keep up the Awesome work Ed Boon, and Netherrealm! you are doing good by your fans!".

2 comments:

  1. glad things are looking up for you and the game. if a fighter is laggy it is no longer worth a hoot.

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    1. When I first typed this article the game was actually enjoyable. Sadly, as time has passed it has gotten worse again for a few reasons, if not more. Some of the reasons are character based while others are about the gamers playing online, and others still about the AI/CPU problems which seem to be growing worse for some unknown reason. Some characters have highly exploitable moves that are spammed, and abused online. In regards to the AI/CPU some computer controlled characters are playing like bosses on the "Medium" difficulty setting. There is no reason for a spike in the CPU's artificial intelligence yet it is becoming a huge offline problem. It's as if every time MKX improves it takes a huge ten steps backward in quality. I don't know if it's being hacked from the outside since it is tethered to a constantly online server, or what? All I know is it still needs some major fixes, and fast.

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