While I've never been sold on Mortal Kombat's theatrical violence and roster design, I've gotta say that Mortal Kombat 1 is rather beautiful. Well, on PC at least. It looks pretty damn good on PlayStation and Xbox, too. Nintendo Switch, however? It, uh, looks like a game alright. If games were total and utter nightmare fuel.
The game's been out in early access for Premium Edition buyers over the last few days, and tons of clips from the slightly underbaked Switch version have been making the rounds across Twitter. It's a bit of a double-edged sword, really—fantastic that a game like Mortal Kombat 1 can exist and run on a relatively underpowered bit of hardware, but means sacrifices must be made that veer into the realm of truly cursed behaviour.
The character models have seemingly taken the biggest hit. Folks like Johnny Cage have become nigh unrecognisable, looking like the victim of some gruesome Final Destination-esque shenanigan. The facial expressions are stiff, skin is uncomfortably plastic looking and the eyes. Oh god, the eyes. So full of horror and mystery. So difficult to look at, yet so hard to look away from. I have maintained eye contact for far too long.
There's a particularly gnarly image of Mileena also doing the rounds, with the eyes once again depicting horrors of unimaginable levels. The mouth is still looking pretty decent to me, her teeth still looking rather terrifying in an intentional way rather than a low-poly horror way.
It doesn't seem to be all fun and games though, with some players encountering some bizarre performance issues. One video shows the game unintentionally returning to its 3D era, while another sees Cyrax's fatality targeting both Sub-Zero and the poor Switch's GPU, turning the screen totally black. A bit more frustrating than some sixth-gen graphics for sure.
PC players have been facing a handful of performance issues too, though nothing on the scale of its portable version. Stuttering across story mode seems to be particularly common right now, something that NetherRealm has acknowledged as a problem and is currently working on a permanent solution for. It's an annoying quirk for sure, but at least we don't have to stare at an unsettlingly plastic Johnny Cage. For that I'm thankful.