Killer Instinct to be Developed by NetherRealm Studios? MK12 Rumors

Granted, it’s possible that it could be MK12, “Injustice 3”, a horror/kaiju fighting game or something else entirely, but it’s still an interesting possibility.

I ehard these rumors myself. But given everything that is happened it make sense.

But for all we know they might just find a game series that they had laying dorment might dig it up.

Primal Rage perhaps? That’s just me being wishful.

If we are getting an MK12, I hope they do a good job with it.

Also I want an MK vs KI crossover for sure. Reptile and Riptor will be my mains in that.

I do welcome the idea as well. But somehow can’t help but feel abit cautious.

There’s definitely no shortage of possibilities. I think it might be a bit too soon for an MK12 imo since MK11 had only just finished wrapping up. Now, a “Shaolin Monks 2”, PR remake/reboot, a Marvel game, KI, MK vs KI or a new IP? That would be pretty dope.

I don’t think a marvel one is on the table right now. But that’s just me. I’m willing to accept the outcome if I’m wrong though.

But I think we all feel it might be early sense we were used to them doing something after an MK Game. But by this point its all a rumor. We don’t have any proof if its real.

True. It’ll be interesting to see where NetherRealm goes from here, especially with MK. For all of 11’s faults, I have to give credit where credit is due in that they’ve opened up the storyline for all sorts of interesting possibilities. Granted, I would have wanted the games to have gone the route of “Deception” and improve on that, if not if revisit characters like Onaga, but with Kronika added, it’s opened up the field quite a fair bit in its ideas of multiple timelines, multiverses and the like.

If this happens, I imagine it’s just that MS wants to acquire another IP to add to its growing collection of exclusives, and it would be a big one at that…

However, I do very much doubt NetherRealm would take on the task of developing another Killer Instinct game. While NetherRealm over the years has created quite the pedigree of fighting games, I don’t see them being the best fit for development of a game like Killer Instinct, and I’m willing to bet there are more than a few within MS who would agree. NRS would likely make a good game, but it wouldn’t feel very much like the KI we know and love now. Their art style, design choices and direction, technology profile, sound design, I just don’t see them making a KI styled game.

Further, I’ll be honest and just say I don’t want them to work on KI either. Namely, I feel like they would try to introduce the same kind of gore factor in KI as exists in Mortal Kombat if this happened, and while the game is supposed to be bombastic, over the top action, gore has never stood out as the defining identity of KI as it has been NRS major franchise. I don’t see them building a game that could play anything like traditional KI, and would instead try to slowly convert it to the MK style combat system and phase out the things making KI unique like combo breakers.

I think there’s too wide an identity shift between the two franchises, and that said I don’t feel like NRS could deliver a new Killer Instinct they way it needs to be done, and would instead hand off a product less than on par, and would likely lose a lot of what the original base enjoyed most, having them to only run back to the 2013 game we have now. It’s not just about having a fighting game company to develop a KI game, it’s about having the right set of people, who understand what it is at its core and continuing the experience, not redefining it into something it isn’t.

I could see that happening.

Hypothetical at best.

Again, purely speculative.

While KI has never been as gore-driven like the MK series, it is wrong to say that gore has no place in it whatsoever. While MK largely uses gore in an over-the-top fashion like an ultra-violent cartoon fever dream, KI did have some gore and violence in the originals. If you look at some of the FMVs, for example, there are shots of characters holding scalped heads, Riptor tearing meat off some exposed bloody ribs, Sabrewulf shaking his head with a piece of meat in his bloodied jaws. In KI2, certain finishing moves can incinerate characters, resulting in their becoming greyed/blacked out figures (what seems to be a reskin of Cinder repurposed as an death animation/asset). When you knock a character off Kim Wu’s stage, in “Gold”, you just bounce several times off a cliff and die off-screen, but in 2, while you don’t see any sort of impalement, there is a very implicit suggestion that after falling off a cliff your character gets impaled by branches of a tree. There are some images of stabbing, broken necks, etc. Even to a certain extent in 2013 there are horrific images of people being tortured in Cinder’s stage, with guys being stabbed with huge needles, experimental figures floating in containers missing limbs as they undergo cybernetic enhancement(?). Plus Sabrewulf’s dismembered arms and Eyedol with the split head and exposed brain (I’m actually surprised that Microsoft was able to get away with that).
Whereas the violence in MK was so over the top and gruesome that it became a splatter cartoon, the violence in KI was more about impact, as a way highlighting the brutality of the settings, the characters. After all, KI is about a televised fighting tournament where corporations literally go to war with one another and where bio-weapons are tested against fighters, sort of like a psychotic UFC meets the Make-A-Wish Foundation but with participants being forced to fight against monsters and things that are essentially living weapons.

Again, speculative. There are definitely concerns to be had, though. There is always the possibility of their screwing up, that they could become too arrogant and as a result become reckless. A lot of their games have recycled animations, which kind of makes sense to a degree, so there is a concern that, in their creating KI characters they would be recycling stuff they used from “Injustice” and MK, if not rush the product out the door. There’s also the possibility Microsoft will try to do the same thing like it had with KI2013 with the seasons approach, only with them giving NetherRealm an even smaller budget to work with, which seems incredibly likely imo, but I hope that’s not the case.
On the other hand, though, they do have a good pedigree and have for the large part made good titles with good quality and production value when they are given the backing and resources that they require. They have produced some really well done story modes, and it would be great to see characters like Jago or Konrad be given a voice, if not see some of the stuff in KI being given to a good writer like Tom Taylor, Scott Snyder or even Marguerite Bennett and seeing some cool stuff done with those elements. In terms of identity shifts, that’s definitely a possibility, but, that said, however, it has already happened with KI2013. While in a lot of ways it does pay tribute to the KIs of old, KI2013 is in some ways a pretty different beast from those previous games. It improved on some areas like the combat with the Combo/Counter Breaker system, but in other ways it is pretty half-baked, especially with regards to story. Change is to be expected - it’s not a question of whether or not there’s going to be change, but rather whether the core of the thing is preserved and if the changes are such that it compliments/benefits the title, if not enhances the experience. As it is, KI is on life support and doesn’t have much of a legacy or a foundation to stand on in terms of its lore, and while NRS does have faults, they also have the pedigree and the capability of making a good, if not a great KI game. Ideally, I would LOVE to see NRS make a new KI, complete with a AAA budget and production design as well as it having awesome writing that does interesting things with KI’s characters. Of course, with COVID being a thing, it’s hard to say how this will impact its development. The worst Microsoft could do, aside from the seasons thing on a smaller budget that I mentioned previously, is if they force fans to wait another 20 years for another instalment, be it a sequel, reboot, remake or whatever, or, potentially them just abandoning the title altogether, with them doing nothing else and just holding onto the license.

I don’t deny this, but again, it was never to the same extreme Mortal Kombat takes it, and I think this may be misused as a context to make the logical leap the only place to go next may be to match or top MK’s level of gore, and I feel like that would be a grave misstep in the development of any sequel, something that would likely be inevitable in the hands of a developer most well known for games of that particular style.

And KI 2013 implies all sorts of things too without definitively showing them, such as Kan-Ra stealing his opponent’s soul, Riptor cooking his opponent or eating them, Glacius creating a bed of ice spikes for his opponent to fall on. This isn’t a big problem in my eyes, but there’s a clear line to cross between implying something versus showing something. NeatherRealm often leaps that line between implication and goes for outright spectacle, and I feel like this would honestly damage KI’s image, and a company most well known for that is likely to fall into that if given free reign to develop a sequel.

While obviously not a 100% certainty, given their track record, it’s not just speculation this is the path a company like NRS would choose. The only reason we don’t see this in the Injustice series is namely DC doesn’t appreciate the spectacle and wants the T rating as a marketing tactic to acquire the largest audience possible.

True, but while this game is more or less the equivalent of a Marvel or DC style universe “reboot”, it’s not a complete re-imagining of the IP as a whole, or discards the elements of the original game that made it stand out from others in an era where these games had far greater market saturation. I’m not a big fan of the 2013 story, or really the expanded story IG started creating as it seemed a little…odd. But it doesn’t rewrite Jago completely like Dragonball Evolution did to Goku.

Change isn’t unwelcome, but I don’t feel confident NRS would keep the core identity intact at all. I honestly feel they would try to reinvent the wheel rather than iterating on what works and discarding what doesn’t. I’m fairly confident there are some who would say this is what probably happened in the shift from MK10 to 11. So again, not entirely speculation, though not even close to a 100% certainty either.

100% disagree, this community is as strong as it has ever been. A game isn’t kept alive by a casual crowd, it’s kept alive by those who play it and love for as long as several of us here have since launch. I never have an issue getting into a ranked match at any hour of the day I can get on, and it still has a good streaming presence as well.

Unfortunately, the game suffered as it never got the proper promotion many of the bigger titles on the console ever had, and is more often glossed over as a weekend try, where I think there would be somewhat a larger audience had proper promotion of the title been of bigger interest. Also, the Xbox One’s reputation on launch was pretty bad too, which didn’t do the game any favors.

Even Maximilian would disagree with this, as he’s stated in past videos that a game isn’t great by the numbers of people who play it at launch, but by the numbers that continue to play the game even after the last DLC has been launched and official support and updates have wrapped up. We still have players in the thousands range playing this game regularly, every month, as can be told by at the very least the leaderboards in the game. Games like MK10, and now 11, Injustice, GG Xrd, etc. are now in a state where the true fans of the games keep them going.

If you want to see a game on life support, look to a game like Avengers, where you see so few people online, it’s near impossible to get an online match going, and people only come back after a new DLC campaign or character or event is launched. A game that is only alive when new content comes out is a real game on life support. Steams numbers usually show that game only tends to have any real activity at the launch of a DLC or something, and usually after the players go through all the content, they split and the game looks like it has no pulse.

Just being honest, and probably a hot take, I would rather see KI sit on the shelf than have NRS take the reigns of developing a sequel. They do not have my full confidence on the matter.

Lastly, and I’m not trying to make fun of or insult you for this, please try and break up your stuff a little bit into paragraphs or something. I’m guilty of walls of text myself, but I understand breaking things up with spaces into separate paragraphs really helps to digest the information and gives the reader breaking points to organize their thoughts out, as well as reduces the mental taxing of trying to read a large amount of information without getting lost.

Touché.

Possibly.

I don’t think it would be a “grave misstep”, though. The KIs of old were pretty dark and at times gruesome, so having gore, be it MK’s level or not, wouldn’t really be much of a factor, but rather how they’re executed, the question of quality. While I like one or two of the Ultimates in the 2013 game, I’d be reluctant to say that they’re as effective or as memorable, if not superior to the Ultimates in KI1. I think my biggest complaint is that, aside from them being kind of derivative, they lack the wow factor, the impact of the originals, like, say, Fulgore’s head turning into a turret, Riptor eating his/her opponent whole, etc. While the image of Riptor with a distended belly belching and farting was a humorous moment, to be sure, it was dark, if not black humor; I mean, the idea of being eaten whole by a snake creature is terrifying. In contrast, I couldn’t help feeling her Ultimate in the 2013 game sort of defanged the character and made her too “cutesy”.

But the thing is, KI by its very design is about spectacle, from its bombastic announcer, effects, etc, so, it wouldn’t really be all that damaging to KI’s image.

But you also have to take into account the IPs they’re working with. “Mortal Kombat” - a series that from its inception introduced gruesome fatalities and which is basically a video game equivalent to a lot of those 80s gore flicks like “Dead Alive”, “Bad Taste”, “Evil Dead”, etc, where they go for broke on the bloody carnage and go so over the top with the gore that it becomes ludicrously cartoonish. “Injustice” has spectacle as well, albeit a different kind, which makes sense given the subject matter that they’re working with; in this case, superheroes from DC Comics, who are largely all about dynamism, heroic poses, grandeur and action.

Yeah, I’m not a big fan of it either. I think it has nuggets of brilliance with some potentially fascinating story directions like Jago’s crisis of faith, Thunder’s story of grief and loss and trying to overcome that, Orchid and Sabrewulf’s ever-spiraling descent into madness, but man what wasted opportunities for compelling stories.

God, I’ve been trying to forget that movie. By the same token, though, it does defang some of the characters like Riptor, Fulgore (to a certain extent) and Orchid, the latter especially; Orchid in the first KI was probably the first female fighter in any fighting game to actually win a tournament and defeat a boss like Eyedol. In the 2013 game, it kind of feels like a LOT more emphasis was placed onto Kim Wu, Jago and Tusk while Orchid is just sort of dumped to the side. I’m also not crazy how the tournament itself had been entirely ignored as well. The latter point is a complaint I kind of have with SF and MK as well, but the thing with the MK series is that there is more of a foundation for it work with, with tons of characters, settings, pieces of lore, etc as a result of years’ worth of content provided by other entries. KI doesn’t have that in comparison, with only three entries, including the 2013 game.

Possibly.

I don’t deny there is a dedicated following that is pretty strong in certain places, but in its current state, KI being left in a coma with no other entries to its title is not a healthy way of growing a franchise. It’s one thing if KI had more titles to its name, but as a series that went into a 20 year coma and brought back again through a somewhat dubious development cycle, it is concerning. You can only rely on a dedicated following for so long. KI had a dedicated following going as far back as 1994, but that didn’t stop Rare and Microsoft from burying it.

Granted, there were certain factors that made it necessary to do so such as the oversaturation of fighters in the market/fighters slowly dying, key staff leaving, etc, but by the same token, one would have expected more, especially from a series as promising as KI. While MK had some bad games to its name, it also had comic books, albums, novels, action figures, statues, costumes, movies, cartoon series, TV shows, etc. Combined with the fact that Midway had been steadily releasing sequels and merchandise to expand its story, characters and brand, it’s no wonder why MK is as successful as it is. In contrast, KI had trading cards, some comics, a couple of leather jackets and T-shirts along with a kick-a## soundtrack “Killer Cuts”, but aside from that? Not much else, unfortunately. 2013 finally gave us some additional t-shirts, comics, action figures (I’m so happy there’s a Fulgore figure! I snatched that baby the moment I saw it!), etc, but by the same token, it ended pretty abruptly.

I agree with this.

True, but again, having three titles in the span of twenty years and periodically keeping a title in a coma and awakening it every so often through a kind of dubious means of intravenous injection-style of development - what else would one call such a method of development but as life support? The fact Microsoft didn’t give KI AAA backing and relied on this develop-as-you-go-style of gaming is sort of akin to having a coma patient in a hospital being given periodic intravenous injections and/or transfusions - it is not a healthy nor sustainable way of growing a franchise. Like, I get the reasoning behind it, but by the same token, though, it is kind of frustrating that KI has to be treated like this rather than Microsoft having faith in their own product. As a method of payment, KI2013’s has been enormously generous as far as free to play fighters are concerned. However, as a style of development, I do find it potentially dangerous, even potentially parasitic, especially for vulnerable franchises such as KI.

You haven’t insulted me. I appreciate your candor and courteousness. My apologies.

Indeed so, MK11’s story didn’t intrest me much. Though the Sub-zero scorpion chapter was the best part. Especially when that same quote is still heartbreaking even after it was said in 2011,

“We share blood, but we are not brothers!”
-Bi Han MK9
-Kuai Liang MK11

Yeah, I was really crushed by that (in a good way). I like to think that it wasn’t really Bi Han himself that said that (like, the person he used to be), but rather the shadowy ba#tardization that he had become due to Shinnok and Quan Chi’s influences. I can’t really accept the idea that Bi Han had willingly aligned himself with those two, but rather that they just scooped up his soul after his death and just twisted and perverted him like they had with the other revenant characters.

Honestly at this point I don’t think we have any idea what NRS is working on next and I kind of want everyone to just settle down and wait till they announce it and chill it with the “leaks”, “rumors”, and “speculation”.

Fair enough.

Regardless, Bi Han was still a cold a-hole.

It also hit hard sense I have siblings.

You know what would also be awesome? is if they did trailer reveals with two characters each.

For example, the first trailer announces Fulgore and Scorpion.
Another would reveal Riptor and Reptile as an example.

Oh definitely!

That would definitely be cool.

If they did that I would get so hyped.

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