Producer Lo talks Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe

Thu, August 21st, 2008 at 2:12pm PDT | Updated: August 21st, 2008 at 2:14pm

Video Games
Brian LeTendre, Contributing Writer

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"Mortal Kombat vs. DC Ununiverse" on sale in November for Xbox 360 and Playstation 3

Back in April, Midway threw the gaming community for a loop when they announced that the next installment of the Mortal Kombat franchise would be a crossover with the heroes and villains of the DC Universe. The game feature fan-favorite characters like Scorpion and Sub-Zero facing off against the biggest names in the DCU including Superman and Batman. And at today's Leipzig Games Convention press conference, Midway unveiled four more characters for the eagerly anticipated game. Additions to the roster include Mortal Kombat favorites Raiden and Kano, along with DC super villain Deathstoke and the legendary Wonder Woman.

CBR was there when Midway Creative Director Ed Boon presented the game at this year’s E3 Media and Business Summit and again at Comic-Con International in San Diego, so with “Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe” (or “MK vs. DC” as it is known) set to be released for the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 in November, CBR News caught up with the Hans Lo, the game's Senior Producer, to learn more about the experience players can expect.


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CBR: When you announced “MK vs. DC,” the first reaction for a lot of people was surprise. How did you decide on bringing DC characters into the Mortal Kombat universe, and why are they a good fit?

Hans Lo: For awhile now, Ed Boon and the team have thought about doing an “MK vs.” game. Then our Marketing group approached us asking if we had any real interest in pursuing an MK vs. DC game. Timing-wise, it all came at an opportune time. As for why they are a good fit, DC's catalog of characters and their rich history allowed us to go through and see which of them could be paired well with characters on the MK side and make interesting match ups.

Screenshots from "Mortal Kombat vs. DC Ununiverse"

You brought in superhero scribes Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti to pen the story of “MK vs. DC.” Did the developers have a rough outline for what they wanted, or did Gray and Palmiotti come up with the entire story?

We had a general idea of what the story arc was going to be like, but Jimmy and Justin also had input as well. What they really brought to the project is a sense of authenticity for the DC Universe. They made sure that what the DC characters said and did was true for each character.
So far we’ve seen the Flash, Superman Batman, Catwoman, Joker, Captain Marvel and Green Lantern. Any word on the final two from the DCU can we expect as playable characters?

There’s actually more than eight DC characters for this game. We’ll be announcing a few more characters in the near future at Leipzig. As to who, you’re going to have to be patient, but it’ll be worth the wait.
Will there be any console-exclusive characters?

At this time, there are no plans for exclusive characters tied to any particular console.
Some of the DC characters have had multiple costume changes over the years. Any chance we’ll be able to unlock some of those costumes?

Possibly, we’re still looking into this with DC.

Screenshots from "Mortal Kombat vs. DC Ununiverse"

One of the signature elements of the Mortal Kombat franchise is the Fatality. We know that Fatalities for this game will not be as graphic as in previous installments of the franchise. How are you tailoring the finishing move system so that it will satisfy hardcore MK fans as well as DC fans?

We knew going into this that the MK fans would have a certain level of expectation or concerns about this. First was that they were concerned that there would be no Fatalities, but as you have seen recently, this isn’t the case. With that being said, our goal is really to push as far as possible on what we can do from a ratings standpoint. In fact, we would rather go too far and then pull back as needed than playing safe.
Will each of the DC characters have their own unique fighting styles, or will they mirror the styles of current MK characters?

Each character will have unique moves. For example, you’ll see that Batman’s moves are more based on martial arts, while Superman will be tailored more to his sets of skills. Of all the DC characters listed so far, I’d say Joker’s moves stand out the most from his fighting stance and just the way he moves.
How have the controls been streamlined to make the game accessible to new players, yet still satisfy fans of the franchise?

Screenshots from "Mortal Kombat vs. DC Ununiverse"

Ed and the team have put a lot of thought into the fighting system this time around. We wanted to definitely to make the game easy to pick-up for the novice player, but at the same time we wanted to have the game deep enough that the seasoned player would get something out of this. One of the things we’re introducing this time around are what could be called enhanced special moves. These are moves that can be accomplished through proper timing when executing a special move. If the player pulls this off correctly, they’ll notice that they can pull off an additional or more powerful attack. Also, we’ve gone back and changed up the combo system to be more dynamic, similar to what was done in “Mortal Kombat 2.”
Will the game include boss battles? If so, what DC villains may we be seeing?

That’s a question that comes up often, and the answer is yes, there will be a boss battle. Also, there are other more DC characters announcement to come for both heroes and villains. More details will be announced at this year’s Game Convention in Leipzig, Germany. Until then, you’ll have to just wait and see.
Is there a possibility for downloadable content in the future, perhaps some new characters, locations, modes, etc?

This is something we’re looking into right now. Stay tuned for more developments in this area.

"Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe" promotional artwork

Will the game have online multiplayer? If so, what modes can we expect?

Yes, there will be online multiplayer. You really can’t have a game like “MK vs. DC” not have an online element such as this. I think players have come expect that this is a must these days. Players will be able to challenge friends and rivals in online matches. There will also be stat tracking to see wins and losses and as well as other player data.
What can you tell us about the tie-in comic that was announced last month at Comic-Con International in San Diego?

We’re actually pretty excited by this. The comic is something we’re working on with DC. It’s intended to be used as a complement to the in game story mode. It’ll give the reader a bit more insight of what’s going on in the game. Also, as mentioned at Comic-Con, we’ll have John Tobias coming on board to provide the art in the game and will be included in the collector’s edition.

Click the player below to view the "Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe" trailer....

TAGS:  mortal kombat, mortal kombat vs. dc universe, dc comics, midway

 
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