This year Mortal Kombat celebrates its 25th anniversary. In honor of the milestone, co-creator Ed Boon sat down with Geoff Keighley at E3 to discuss its history. Few game franchises have stood the test of time as well as MK has, which is likely due in part to the series constantly evolving. Mortal Kombat began in arcades, the original developed by a team of four in a mere eight months. The series becoming an integral part of popular culture probably wasn’t in the cards, but success wasn’t a mistake either. During the interview, Boon talks of marketing choices that brought the series out of the then gaming niche and into the mainstream. One choice, and perhaps the most significant, was the release of the 1995 film.
Following the success of Mortal Kombat in theaters, Boon indicates popularity rose beyond his team’s imagination. With it came publisher Midway’s desire to see the series continue on. One way the team kept things fresh was by experimenting with the core of the series — anyone else still patiently awaiting a Shaolin Monks sequel? At one point in time, prior to the production and release of Deadly Alliance (2002), said experimentation nearly resulted in Mortal Kombat x Street Fighter.
Ed Boon’s interview begins at the 2:56:30 mark. Talk of the crossover starts at 3:33:25 and concludes on 3:34:37.
Circa 2000, the team at Midway had gone so far as to mock up gameplay of Ken and Scorpion going head to head. Boon says they “came really close” to making it a reality, even having a discussion with Capcom. “The discussions were had, but, you know, Capcom and Midway… we hated each other,” he finishes in jest. He goes on to say that as a Street Fighter fan, he’d love to see a crossover between the two come to fruition. Of course, questions regarding the game engine and rating would be the most difficult to tackle. Not to mention Capcom probably wouldn’t be too keen on the violence, while MK fans, as seen with MK vs DC, aren’t willing to see a compromise on the franchise’s brutality.
As expected and long-rumored, holding back such a crossover are corporate logistics and smaller things that seem minor but would probably induce technological nightmares. Perhaps its best the two stay in their own universes. Unfortunately, some things just aren’t meant to be.
Do you think a Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter crossover could work? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.