Following the successs of the animated direct-to-video film Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion’s Revenge, Warner Bros. has immediately pitched a sequel. Titled Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms, the movie's story will move the plot forward and focus more on the monk Liu Kang as the main protagonist, while exploring the realm of Outworld. But don't count everyone's favorite hellspawned ninja out yet, as Scorpion also plays a vital role.
Read on for the plot breakdown of the upcoming animated movie based on the hit Mortal Kombat fighting game franchise!
The Mortal Kombat Legends animated series of films follows an alternate timeline than the original game’s events, similar to how its rival Street Fighter has different events between the games and the animated features.
The Scorpion’s Revenge film had set up how the main Kombatants that fight for the Earthrealm are recruited by Raiden, following a different path than any previous Mortal Kombat before it. It does, however, take nods from other prior Mortal Kombat stories, including the first live-action film, such as how the trio of Liu Kang, Sonya, and Johnny Cage travel by boat and taken to the island ruled by Shang Tsung to participate in the tournament.
Nonetheless, it does follow different paths for certain characters. Jax loses his arms this time to Goro, who rips both before the tournament officially starts. It also culminates in Scorpion killing Sub-Zero, Goro, and Quan Chi, as a consequence and fulfillment of his oath of vengeance.
At the end of the Scorpion’s Revenge film, Shang Tsung returned to Outworld in defeat. Facing his master, Shao Khan, the emperor of Outworld, the sorcerer is ordered to gather their forces to end the tournament on his terms.
Test your might
Ed Boon, co-creator of the Mortal Kombat game and head of NetherRealm Studios, shared the debut of the trailer on his official Twitter account:
— Ed Boon (@noobde) July 1, 2021
The previous film centered more on Scorpion’s origins, motivations, fall from grace, and redemption while the Mortal Kombat tournament was taking place almost as a background story. In the Battle of the Realms sequel, the central figure will be Liu Kang and the rest of the Kombatants who must now face another tournament, this time in the Outworld arena. As the synopsis of the film goes:
The Earthrealm heroes must journey to Outworld and fight for the survival of their homeland, invaded by the forces of evil warlord Shao Kahn, in the tournament to end all tournaments: the final Mortal Kombat.
Based on the action depicted in the trailer, there will be a lot more martial arts action and gore. Most of the main characters from the prior film return, including Johnny Cage, Sonya Blade, Shang Tsung, and Kitana. Even the thunder god Raiden will be joining the fray in actual combat this time around. Characters who died in Scorpion’s Revenge such as Quan Chi, Bi-Han/Sub-Zero, Kano, and Goro do not appear to be returning. However, the Kuai Liang version of Sub-Zero appears to be in the film.
Aside from the returning cast, more characters from the franchise’s long history will be involved as well, with appearances from the Outworld warlord Kintaro, the security guard-turned-fighter Stryker, the cyborg ninjas Cyrax and Sektor, and many more.
While the film will center on Liu Kang and the Mortal Kombat tournament in the Outworld realm, Scorpion will also be making a return. Although the Shaolin monk has traditionally been the main protagonist of the game series, Scorpion is arguably the most popular of the franchise. Even the recent live-action film paid more attention to the yellow-clad ninja.
At the conclusion of the previous film, the undead ninja of the Shirai Ryu seemed to have found peace and joined his family in the afterlife. However, fate (or in this case, the Elder gods) intervene, sending Scorpion on a mission to retrieve the Kamidogu, an ancient and powerful artifact that can bring back an evil called the One Being, who is an even greater threat than Shao Khan.
Longtime fans of the game will recognize this as a variation to the plot of Mortal Kombat Deception. In that game, the task was given to Shujinko to collect all the Kamidogu by a being that called himself Damashi. However, this was a ruse (the “deception” in the title) as Damashi was really an avatar of Onaga, the Dragon King, the ruler of Outworld that was deposed by Shao Khan.
Based on the details for Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms, it seems Scorpion will instead be taking the role that Shinjuko played. This set of events will likely lead to Onaga being freed and set up the stage for the next sequel of this animated film series.
Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms stars Jennifer Carpenter (Sonya Blade), Grey Griffin (Kitana/Mileena), Matthew Mercer (Stryker/Smoke), Joel McHale (Johnny Cage), Matthew Yang King (Kung Lao), Patrick Seitz (Scorpion), Ike Amadi (Jax Briggs), Dave B. Mitchell (Raiden/Kintaro/Sektor), Artt Butler (Shang Tsung/Cyrax), Fred Tatasciore (Shao Khan), Emily O’Brien (Jade), and Jordan Rodrigues (Liu Kang). Produced by Warner Bros. Entertainment and Midway Games, written by Jeremy Adams (from the concepts of Ed Boon and John Tobias, and directed by Ethan Spaulding. The animated film is set for a digital, DVD, and Blu-ray release on August 31, 2021.