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Namielle

The Mortal Kombat Ninjas

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Posted (edited)

Ok so I'm gonna talk about the ninja's of mortal kombat, We'll start with the guys as they came first, then the girls and finally the cyborgs.

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So as you can see, when MK started out they found a very good way to pad out the roaster with each game with minimal effort. Just recolour their ninja model and throw in some new moves. This is pretty much how all of these guys started out. Here we'll look at how they have changed over the years. I'll also only be touching or the core games for the most part.

So were to start? Well it can only be one of two characters Sub-Zero and Scorpion, being that they were in the original game. But who to pick first? While some will say Scorpion is the more popular of the two, I find Sub-Zero is a better starting point since while the two are rivals through the wholes series Scorpion's backstory is tied directly to Sub-Zero, while Sub-Zero's isn't tied to Scorpion.

Mortal Kombat

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It's pretty easy to forget how different the story of the original MK was to later entries, especially when pretty much everything else after it retconned the story. In MK1 the tournamant is not a battle to decide the fate of the world. Instead it was originally a tournamant  held by the Shaolin Monks to see who the grand champion was, then an evil sorcerer came who was cursed by the gods to steal the souls of other to maintain his life. Tsang Sung became champion and kept entering in order kill more people until he was beaten by Kung Lao. He returned some years later with an outworlder named Goro who acted as his champion and allowed him to take control of the tournamant totally. Since then he's been using it to feed on the combatants. All of the fighters in this MK are human's bare Raiden, who incidentally is a bored god who was invited by Shang Tsung, and Goro. Going by the promotional comic, Sub-Zero's real name is simply "Unknown" although he I stated to be an assassin from the Lin Kuei. He's been hired to assassinate Shang Tsung. In both Scorpion's ending and the comic it is shown that sub-Zero did kill Scorpion in the passed, although there are some differences such as Scorpion's family still being alive. Not much else is stated however as the least amount of time is spent with these two and Sub-Zero is the most enigmatic of the whole caste. The most emotion he show's is shock at Scorpion being on the boat to the tournament.

In the first game Sub-Zero's outfit is pretty much one of a stereotypical ninja, although shoulders are a bit more puffed out and of course it's bright blue. That's kind of counterintuitive to his role as an assassin since the whole point is to sneak up and kill someone befor they even know your there. It's not exactly helpful in the stealth department either. That said he's a Lin Kuei not an typical ninja, so maybe his clan had a different code of conduct to most in their line of work. Combat wise he's only got two special attacks although they are two that would remain a core part of his skill set for the rest of the series, Freeze (a blast of cold that freezes his foes solid) and the Lin Kuei Slide (A low sliding kick). His fatality is the Spin Rip, possible the most iconic fatality in the original game and pretty much put the series right in the cross hires of Censorship crowd. This eventually lead to the creation of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB).

In his ending Sub-Zero killed Shang Tsung, earned a pretty penny and retired from his life as an assassin.

Mortal Kombat 2

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In MK2 the backstory of the original game remains somewhat intact although it is revealed that Shang Tsung was actually serving the interests of a greater evil. Shao Kahn, Emperor of Outworld. It is here that the cannon ending of the first game is stated, Liu Kang was the victor and bested the sorcerer. Tsung went crawling back to his master and begged for a second chance, Kahn granted his request and restored Tsung to his youth. His plan is to now lure earths warriors into Outworld's tournamant to be killed by Shao Kahn himself. In MK2 it's stated that Sub-Zero was thought to have been killed in the last tournamant, yet he has apparently resurfaced to assassinate the outworld leader Shao Kahn. He's ending states that he is actually the younger brother of the original Sub-Zero, who learns of Scorpion's hatred of his elder yet cannot understand why his life was spared implying that Sub-Zero was bested by Scorpion during the story. 

Design wise Sub-Zero has had some minor changes. The most notable being that his hood is now more skin tight and his mask has been mad into a solid guard piece rather then simple being cloth. His move set know has Ground Ice and the fatalities Ice Shatter and Ice Grenade.

Mortal Kombat 3

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So after losing to Liu Kang, Shao Kahn decides to invade earth realm via another means. He has his Shadow Priests resurrect Queen Sindel on Earth, which allows him to cross over to reclama her since she is a citizen of his realm. By using this loop hole Outworld is able to invade Earth Realm and begin fusing the two. Sub-Zero appears to help fight against Outworld but a lot has happed since the last battle.  The Lin Quie had begun "enhancing" their warriors with cybernetics (Later referd to as the Cyber Initiative) and Sub-Zero along with four other members were selected to undergo the process first. Given no choice to refuse, Sub-Zero abandoned his clan along with his friend Smoke. this was viewed as an unforgivable act by the Lin Quie, who send out their two cyberized warrior Sektor and Cyrax to apprehend the traitors. Smoke was captured by the pair and also cyberized. Now Sub-Zero must try to fight of three deadly assassins why trying to aid the other Earth Realm warriors in pushing back the invastion. 

As you can see Sub-Zero's design is noticable changed from what it once was. In fact he's the first of all the MK ninja to begin to deviate from their simple pallet swap motif. His face is now completely unmasked, he's ditched his black undershirt, the blue piece on his upper body has been cut back to about half it's original width, his  ice blue colouring is now much dark blue (and it would remain that way for the rest of the series) and he know sports a scare across his right eye. How he came by this scar is never stated and a lot of theories exists about it. The over all change was likely done for multiple reasons.  First MK3 had no less then 6 ninja characters with a playable version of the original Sub-Zero, Rain and Chameleon being added in later versions. Something needed to be done to make him stand out from the horde. The other likely reason was due to his change in character, Sub-Zero has begun his path towards a more heroic way of life and given up his assassin ways. This change in attire better reflects this more heroic personality. MK3 also gave Sub-Zero, and most of the caste, a much bigger move pool to play with, with him now having Freeze, Ice Shower, Front Ice Shower, Behind Ice Shower, Ice Clone and Ground Slide.

Sub-Zero's ending him face all three of his cyborg assassins however he is able to reach his friend Smoke and the two team up to best their former Lin Quie breatharian.  Together they defeat Shao Kahn and his forces befor disappearing into the shadows.

Mortal Kombat: Movie

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This is the only part of the expanded series I'm gonna touch on but I have my reasons. The MK movie is were a lot of the elements found in MK3 would be retroactively fit into the story of the original MK. While only 2 characters from the later games would appear in person, Kitana and Shao Kahn, a lot of plot elements were used to better stream line the plot. Such as Outworld wanting to invade Earth Realm from the get go and the Mortal Kombat tournamant being in place to stop Shao Kahn from simply invading any realm he pleased. The elder gods made it so that only mortals from both realms may compete, preventing Shao Kahn from cheating to a digree, and Outworld must achieve victory 10 consecutive times befor they can invade. Also rather then all the earth warriors beating eachother bloody just to see who's best, Earth Realm's best face off against Outworld's. While not all the elements of the film's plot are treated as cannon down the road, a good chunk of it is.

I just want to point out that the how Mortal Kombat worked was very intreasting and seemingly a little nonsensical. While the tournamant has set matches, fighters could just meet up and fight on their own also. Normally it's one or the other. It reminds me of something from the Baki manga were it's stated a "champion must be ready to defend his title at all times" not just in a ring. I can only assume this is allowed so that the tournamant is intentionally somewhat chaotic, which makes it harder for any one side to try and manipulate events. That or the guy making the rules was either lazy or a dick. Also since you have at a god and a sorcerer watching over things, you can be shore at least both sides are keeping score when it counts.

Since were here Sub-Zero in the film is pretty much here to look cool, fight and little else. Here he's fighting for Outworld alongside his rival Scorpion, both of whom Shang Tsung has control of. As a result he has little to no personality. His over all design is somthing of a watered down fusion his MK 1 & 2 outfits but with a little les detail. The frosty face mask is pretty cool however. It's fair to say that the films CGI effects hand not aged well but Sub-Zero's cryomancy holds up a little better the most and the use of practical effects helps also.

Mortal Kombat 4

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MK 4 is were a lot of people think the MK series started to loose it's steam. While a lot of it's core elements were still intact, the series was trying to find way to keep going and the directions it took were not always for the better. It started following other fighting game trends, like movies from 2-D to 3-D style fighting, having arena hazards etc but something was just missing. It didn't help that while a lot of their new characters created between the 4th and 8th game were mostly bland. That all said the series still easily come up with cool knew ideas and tell an intreasting story.

By this time Sub-Zero has disbanded his old clan and now seems to be without purpose at this time. In the wake of Shao Kahn's defeat however the Elder God Shinnok has risen to power once more and seeks to conquered all. Sub-Zero once again sides with Raiden to face Shinnok brining with him information on how to combat the dark elder god passed down to him from his older brother Bi-Han, but finds himself in conflict with Scorpion once more, the yellow ninja convinced that it was Kuai Liang was responsible for the death of his family. 

Sub-zero's design is clearly an attempt to stay more faithful to his original design. Unfortunately I feel it doesn't overly works. While the basic premise is ok it feels to bland in places, also the cat-ear like pints on his hood and seemingly cloven feet just look weird. It's by far the character's weakest design for me. As the series went forward, it appears that the creators desperately tried to remove lazy symmetry of the ninja characters, with that in mind it's a little odd that Sub-Zero, who was the first to have his design altered would be changed back to his classic one in this game. MK4 did introduced alternate costumes for the characters and Sub-Zero's are a little better then his main, the first is a reworked version of his MK3 design combining it with his current one and the second had his arms and legs encased in ice, something that would become a reused in his future designs. It's in this game were we first learn both Sub-Zero's true names and alluded backstory between the brothers is hinting at events in the MK Mythologies: Sub-Zero game. The game had you play as the original Sub-Zero who was sent on a mission that tied to Shinnok and lead to the events of MK4. Power wise Sub-Zero is back to using only his core 3 moves once again however he can now us an Ice Staff in combat. 

In his ending Sub-Zero is bested by Scorpion, who is about to slay him until Sub-Zero states he has no idea what the yellow ninja is talking about. It is then that the necromancer Quan Chi appears and in his arrogance tells Scorpion he had no intention of honouring their agreement, which prompts Scorpion to kill the necromancer and make peace with sub-Zero.

Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance

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After the defeat of Shinnok, Sub-Zero would find himself in conflict with Sektor once again, this time is was for the soul of the newly reformed Lin Quie. Sub-Zero beat the cyborg, becoming Grand Master and took possession of the Dragon Medallion which increased his power. Sub-Zero vowed to reform his clan and moved them to a hidden temple in the arctic, where they could train and rebuild uninterrupted. During this time he gained a promising pupil, Frost, unfortunately her while skilled she was arrogant didn't agree with her masters ideals. Peace was not to last however as Quan Chi was able to escape the Scorpion, who had imprisoned and tortured him after Shinnok's defeat, and formed an alliance with Shang Tsung. This "Deadly Alliance" had slain Shao Kahn, then Liu Kang  and were now working to resurrect the immortal army of the ancient Dragon King. Raiden requested Sub-Zero's aid once again and the grand master agreed to help, in part to help set a good example to his clan. He also took Frost with him, hoping the experience would help her develop into a better warrior 

Sub-Zero's design in this game is a very radical departure from what came befor. He's older, his scare is blue and while his outfit is akin to his MK3 design, it's far more detailed and ornate. He's for-arms are permanently encased in ice. The over all look fits his new role as a Grand Master and while he looks older, he also looks wiser and more powerful. It's also a far cry from his days as a simple assassin. 

In his end Sub-Zero returns from defeating the Deadly Alliance returned to the Lin Quie a hero and ready to defend earth realm from any threat.

Mortal Kombat: Deception

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In the canonical events of Deadly Alliance, Frost betrayed Sub-Zero and attempted to claim the Dragon Medallion for herself. She was unable to control it's power however and her cryonic power went out of control, seemingly killing here. The grief stricken Sub-Zero, who placed all the blame on himself, took Frost and searched for a place to lay her to rest. He eventually found an Outworld ruin that belong to a clan of cryomancers, of which Sub-Zero become convinced he and Frost were related. He laid her to rest in the ruins crypt and dawned armour he found there, embracing his new heritage. He then tried to reconvene with Raiden and the others, only to learn the terrible truth. Raiden had been forced to face Quan Chi and Shang Tsung alone, worse in the middle of the battle Onaga the Dragon King (Former Ruler of Outworld and a being even Shoa Kahn had called master) had been resurrected. Despite their combined power and a last ditch suicide attack from Raiden, Onaga still lived and was regaining his power.

Sub-Zero's design here is a fusion of his classic design with his more ornate current one. A fusion of ninja and warrior. I feel this actually reflects his current state of mind very well, as he has had his faith in both himself and the future he dreamed of tested. He needs something to help keep him grounded in these dark times and finds it in this discovery of his heritage and possible slipping a little into his old ways also.

Sub-Zero doesn't play a part in the final battle against the Dragon King. Canonically he  spends his time traveling around Outworld and NetherRealm battling the forces of evil.

Mortal Kombat: Armaggedon

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Long ago the elder god Argus foresaw the destruction of all realms. As more and more powerful warriors appeared their ever intensifying combat would eventually destroy the realms. To try and prevent this he tried to create a fail safe. He created the Pyramid of Argus and tasked the elemental Blaze to watch over the realms. When the time was right Blaze would ascend to the top of the pyramid and draw all the warriors to him with the promise of power. Befor this he would send out a sign that Argus's son's Taven and Dagon, who were in hibernation, should be awakened and begin their quest to stop armagendon. Should either of them complete their trials and defeat Blaze, all the warriors would be stripped of their power or killed depending on the victor. Should they fail, then hopefully a warrior would arise to bring some form of balance in some way. Sub-Zero met and battled Taven, testing him to see if he were worthy of the relic in the Lin Quie temple. He would later be drawn into the final battle siding with the forces of light.

By the time this game out MK seemed like it was on it's last legs and this was truly the end. The game had a lot of problems but they really tried to give the series a good send off if this was it. Sub-Zero's design is a fusion of his classic design with elements that he would gain later. It doesn't appear to have any strong bearing on his character or maybe it reflects him turning to his old ways with armagendon on the horizon. More then likely this was done simple as fan service.

If Sub-Zero had been victor of the final battle, Sub-Zero would have become an ice deity... but one without the approval of the other gods, who would seek to destroy him. 

In the canonical end, while Armageddon was prevented the actual outcome was not much better. The resurrected Shao Khan proved to be the mightiest warrior and absorbed all of Blaze's power. 

Mortal Kombat 9

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With Shao Kahn's ultimate victory at hand, Raiden attempted to cheat fate by sending his memories of all that had transpired to his passed self during the original Mortal Kombat, with the cryptic last words "He must win". Thus the Raiden of this new timeline must try to make sense of these vision to put reality on a better path. Despite Raiden's best efforts most of his efforts change little. Bi-Han is still murdered by Scorpion and Qui-Liang takes up his brothers mantel and sides with earth realm to take down Shao Kahn. He and his friend Smoke are also fleeing the cyber initiative. However in this timeline Qui-Liang seeks out his brothers killer to avenge his death, however befor he can kill Scorpion he is captured by the Lin Kuei. Sector and Cyrax offer allegiance to Shao Kahn for the right to apprehend Sub-Zero without interference. 

MK9 was the first MK game to be made by NetherRealm studios after Midway had ended the series. Rather then just wipe everything away, they decided to reboot the timeline. In this game you play through the events of MK 1, 2 & 3. However here all of the changes to the series plot are made part of the games story mode, creating a more cohesive narrative with some new stuff thrown in to spice things up. Sub-Zero's design in this game is pretty similur to his Armageddon one. It's an updated version of his original designs, although here it makes more sense given that this is an updated retelling of the original story. Bi-Han's design is the more simplistic of the two, the over all design being a very plausible get up for an assassin. It's also noteworthy that the blue of his cloths is darker then his younger brother, better reflecting his darker soul. Kuai Liang's design is more ornate and brightly coloured, displaying his more heroic nature.

No unlike the original timeline it's Sub-Zero, not smoke, who is captured which leads to...

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Unit LK-520! At first he is but a slave to the Lin Kuei but Smoke is eventually able to free him. He then acts as a spy against the Outworld forces until his cover is blown by Sektor. After defeating him Sub-Zero works to free prisoners from Shao Kahn's forces, taking on and besting Goro and Kintaro 2 on 1. After everyone is safe his next mission is to stop Quan chi from summoning a soulnado but this brings him into direct conflict with the Black Ninja, Noob Saibot! Fortunately he is able to best his dark counterpart and return to the other heroes triumphant... just in time for Queen Sindel to walking in and murder curbstomp them all! With most of earthrealms warriors killed, Raiden tries to make a last ditch alliance with Quan Chi, if he helps earthrealm he can have the souls of every slain warrior. Unfortunately Shao Kahn already  made that deal and had made good on it, as Quan Chi summons the souls of the fallen heroes to attack the god. Raiden is eventually able to defeat Shao Kahn when we realises what "He must win" ment. While Shao Kahn is able to invade earthreal thanks to Sindel, he has no right to merge them and when he tries, the elder gods appear and destroy him. Victory is achieved but at a very heavy price. 

I'm not going to say anymore about Cyborg Sub-Zero as he goes in the Cyborg Ninja Category.

In Sub-Zero's tower ending he and Scorpion learn the truth behind their loses and together they destroy the Lin Kuie. The two disappear into legend, only appearing to defeat evil. The Forces of Darkness cannot defeat this Deadly Alliance!

Mortal Kombat X

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Sub-Zero become a warrior for the NetherRealm, fighting for Quan Chi and his master, the Elder God Shinnok. During this time he had been returned to his human form. Eventually Shinnok was beaten and Sub-Zero was one of the few warriors revived and freed from Quan Chi's control. In the years that followed he followed the path of his other self, rebuilding the Lin Kuei, becoming their Grand Master and even taking up Frost as his pupil. In time we would even finally make peace with Scorpion, showing him that yes the old Lin Kuei had a hand in his fate... but so did his old master Quan Chi. Five years later, Sub-Zero is met by Cassie Cage and her team under orders from Cassie's father Johnny. Not wanting to converse with them, he and his warriors engage them in battle. Defeating Cassie and her team, Sub-Zero reveals that the encounter is a test set up by him and Johnny, chastising Cassie's team's lack of unity while commenting that they have great potential.

Sub-Zero and the Lin Kuei are present for the resurrection of Shinnok, combining their might with the Special Forces and Shao Lin to fight off Outworld and NeatherRealm forces until Shinnok is defeated.

There's little I can say here about the designs. Sub-Zero is currently following the more heroic path he did in the alternate time-line and his designs reflect his character growth in the same way. The outstanding one is his revenant form which along with is more edgy design and plates of ice armour (hello MK Movie) but also a darker shade of blue... much like his brother!.

In his tower ending, Sub-Zero seeks greater power to help the Lin Kuei better defend earth realm, He travels to outworld and discovers a nest of Frost Dragon eggs, Using his power, he is able to hatch the young dragons and they accept him as their master. With the addition of dragon raiders to their forces, none dare threaten earthrealm!.

 

Edited by Prince Rain
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Posted (edited)

Scorpion

MK's other most iconic character, Scorpion has been a part of the franchise since it's beginning. Aside from the original release of MK3, he's been in every single MK game and was put back in ultimate MK3. Ed Boon, one of the two founders of MK, has gone on record saying Scorpion is his faviort character and no MK game is complete without the yellow ninja.

Mortal Kombat

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So this is were the joke starts. Scorpion's apperances in MK is basically the same as Sub-Zero, just yellow. That said his over all colour scheme dose put one in the mind of dangerous creepy crawlies such as wasps... but that name just doesn't sound as awesome now dose it? On first glance Scorpion comes of as more of a normal ninja then his blue counter part, what with his moves being his spear and a teleport punch from behind. However Scorpion's true nature is cleverly hidden and revealed within gameplay. Unless you beat the game or pull of his fatality, you'd never know that the yellow ninja is actually a hellspawn! It may seem a small detail now after we've spent years with the character but its a pretty cleaver idea that's, as far as I know, unique to MK. Scorpion also sets another lesser trend in the Mk franchise, the face reveal. In his fatality Scorpion rips off the skin of his face to reveal a fire breathing skull underneath, something almost akin to the unmasking of Jason Voorhees in his movies. This little gimmick would only be around used for the first three mk games and only for a select few characters.

Much like Sub-Zero, Scorpion's real name is listed as "Unknown" in this game although his pasted is somewhat revealed. He was murdered by Sub-Zero and is back from the dead to get revenge. How is not mentioned here. In his ending, some of which becomes part of the series cannon, he slays the blue ninja but  can never return to his family.

On a final note, Scorpion is the only character in the original game to get anything resembling proper dialog with his now iconic line "GET OVER HERE!"

Mortal Kombat 2

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Scorpion returns in MK2 for the sole reason of finding and killing the new Sub-Zero, believing him to be the original. Upon realising that this is not the same man who murdered him, Scorpion actually adopts a more sympathetic role, deciding to protect the blue ninja as a penance for killing his brother. It's here we begin to see the complexity of Scorpion's character. He was already breaking the mould somewhat in the first game by being hell spawned ninja seeking to avenge his murder, but here we see that Scorpion, despite his current nature, is not an evil being. While his desire for revenge is his primary motivation, it doesn't blind him to reality and cause him to punish someone who has done him no wrong and is actually a good person. Along with being freaking cool, this little bit of development helps make Scorpion endearing as a character. It's even ironic given that MK is very much a 90's game that got famous for it's edge blood and gore, but thats what's helped keep the series going for so long. The violence and gore may be the main draw, but there's a lot more to MK then that. Solid game play may also play into it.

Design wise MK2 Scorpion is pretty much just the same as befor, identical to Sub-Zero but yellow.

Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3

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As stated above Scorpion didn't make the cut for the original MK3 release, what with all the other ninjas and cyber ninjas showing up. He was however added to UMK3...which makes his design here the result of backward compatibility. See MK3 had Reptile, Ermac, Noob Saibot and Smoke, all of whom used a recolouring of  the same outfit while Sub-Zero got his "heroic" look. Scorpion, who had been around just as long, gets lumbered with just a recoloured design like everyone. This is a more streamlined version of the original ninja outfit. The whole thing looks more skin tight and sleek although the chest piece looks more padded. The patter in the suits yellow parts has been removed, with the chest piece gaining coloured squares with black borders. The mask now has an almost armour like look, were as befor it was only cloth. Interestingly Scorpion dose deviate from the other ninjas in one respect. While his character model is just a colour swap, is artwork on the character select screen and his ending have his mask appearing to have a grinning skull like design while upper face is just a skull, giving him a more demonic apperances. This change is likely due to the fact he's been in hell for some time now. Yes I said hell, not the NetherRealm.

When Shao Kahn invaded Earth he began to not only harvest the souls from the living world but also our hell. This allowed Scorpion to come back to our plane of existence once again. At first he sides with Shao Kahn, until he realises that Sub-Zero is fighting the other side and switch's teams. In his ending Scorpion is the one to kill Shao Kahn and then simple returns to hell. Story wise, and this may be due to him being added after the story was developed, Scorpion's role here is the same as befor but with less meaning.

Mortal Kombat 4

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Scorpion is back in the main series and thankfully is going to stay from now on. While MK4 may be the weakest of the MK games in general, it's at this point that Scorpion gets set on his new path. At the start of the game Scorpion meets the necromancer Quan Chi, in the now fully realised NetherRealm, who informs him that his family had been killed by the new Sub-Zero. Scorpion naturally doesn't take the news well and goes off to kill the blue ninja. In reality however Quan Chi was the one who murdered Scorpion's family, with the intention of eliminate Sub-Zero befor he can interfere with Shinnok's plans. In Scorpion's ending, he has Sub-Zero at his mercy only for Quan Chi to show up and, like a total moron, tell Scorpion everything BEFOR he'd finished his job. Scorpion reacts to this like a gunpowder to a flame, attacking the necromancer and dragging him to the NetherRealm. These event are pretty much cannon to the story going forward. 

Design wise Scorpion fares better then Sub-Zero in this game. While he has the cat ears and cloven feet, he now boasts pure white eyes (possible inspired by the MK movie), a skull like mask and a skull on his belt. It's not much but it helps him stand out from fellow ninja's. This further builds on Scorpion's demonic nature.

MK4's story was tied to the game MK Mythologies Sub-Zero. In that game a little more of his background is revealed. He and the original Sub-Zero were hired to undertake the same mission by Quan Chi. The two met and Scorpion was killed, as their employer didn't see fit to tell them he'd hired someone else to insure the job got done. He later showed up in the game, now undead, but was not strong enough to kill Bi-Han yet. It's also here were we first learn of the Shirai Ryu Ninja clan that Scorpion belonged and we find out that Quan Chi didn't just murder Scorpion's family but also his entire clan, as payment for the Lin Kuei's services. 

Scorpion was stuck in something of a rut until this game as, with his killing of Bi-Han and befriending of Qui-Liang, he has no real motivation of his own. MK4 almost makes this worse by having Scorpion just go back to being Sub-Zero's bitter rival but thankfully gives him a new enemy in the form of Quan Chi. Scorpion now has a new purpose and goal.

Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance

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In the years after Shinnok's defeat by Liu Kang, Scorpion has imprisoned Quan Chi and has been torturing him for the murder of his family and clan. However the necromancer is able to gain the aid of the Oni Drahmin and Moloch, who help him escape. These three would go on to join Shang Tsung and form the Deadly Alliance. Scorpion, despite the fact that he's after the same people as the heroes, doesn't join them. Instead he makes his own way to their temple base.

In Mythologies it's stated by Bi-Han that "Scorpion was the ninja" setting a clear difference in origin between the two groups in terms of how they function. Scorpion's design in this game reflects this new mind set. While he may have looked like a ninja stereotype originally, Scorpion is now truly looking the part with his design being based on true ninja attire. That said given his tendency towards more actual combat Scorpion sports a little more armour normal. He still sports skull designs on his armour and belt although despite his white eyes he looks far less demonic then befor. Maybe this reflects his new found and more righteous purpose in his unlife. He now also carries two katanas, which will remain a permanent part of his design from this point on. 

After MK4 the series seems to have adopted a less stereotypical story telling style as for the next few games, the heroes have a pretty rough time of it as any everything that could go wrong dose! Scorpion's ending is actually his canonical one, while all the heroes are out fighting the forces of Quan and Shang, Scorpion takes the smart approach and sneaks in through the back door (hidden passage wink wink). Unfortunately he finds himself facing not Quan Chi, but Drahmin and Moloch once again! Scorpion is overpower (a fact not hard to believe given how much of a bastard sub-boss Moloch is) and gets promptly thrown into the soulnado at the heart of the temple. This soulnado was created by Quan Chi so that Shang Tsung would have an endless amount of souls to use and feed on. Now being thrown into a soulnado is never a good thing, but there's only a few places that will grant you an "unlimited amount of souls" and the place the Deadly Alliance targeted with this one was the Heavenly Realm itself. So Scorpion, an undead hellspawn from the NetherRealm, finds himself hurtling towards a place that is the complete antithesis of his nature. A place that will destroy him if he goes there.

Mortal Kombat: Deception

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Scorpion is able to avoid being destroyed by the purity of the Heavily Realm by escaping from the Soulnado into the Void. The place between realms that souls use to ascend after death. Here he encounters the Elder Gods, with whom he watch's the final battle between Raiden and the Deadly Alliance and the return of Onaga. Not wanting the realms to fall under Onaga's tyranny, the Elder Gods chose Scorpion to become their champion with the promise to resurrect his clan once the deed is done. Naturally Scorpion accepts the deal and is remade as the weapon of the gods. He is then sent back to Outworld to begin his mission.

This game gives Scorpio his biggest change as a character so far. For years he's been little more then a revenge seeking hellspawn, constantly chasing those who've wronged him. Here however, while his task is to kill someone, he's doing so to resurrect his clan and save the realms from a tyrant, not out of desire revenge. He's actually fighting for life rather then death. While his design in the game is little different from his last, maybe a little more spiky armour and less skulls, there's a very important difference that only seems minor at first glance. Scorpion has the image of a dragon engraved on his armour. Easter Dragon's are symbols of power, strength and luck as well as being viewed as celestial beings. A far cry from a hellspawn like Scorpion. While the image marks him as the champion of the Elder Gods, it could also be view as a symbol representing Scorpion's more noble quest. That said however lets not forget that Scorpion is not doing this purely out of the kindness of his heart, he's getting something out of this and maybe wouldn't be as helpful without the carrot.

Scorpion tracks Onaga through the realms, Outworld, the Realms of Order & Chaos and finally the Nexus, the hub of all realms. In his arcade ending Scorpion engages Onaga and is able to kill him. In the canonical story however he meets another warrior seeking to defeat the Dragon King. Shujinko, an old man with a talent for absorbing the fighting styles of others and who in his youth paved the way for Onaga's return. Scorpion and Shujinko clash and Scorpion loses, after which he disappears. 

Mortal Kombat: Armageddon

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Exactly what happened to Scorpion after he lost to Shujinko is unknown.  What we do know is that his clan was resurrected despite his failure, resurrected as hellspawn like himself. Why the Elder Gods did this is cruel  think is unknown. Possible it was for his failure or maybe Scorpion himself did something to cause it. Whatever the case, Scorpion felt bitterly betrayed  by this act, turned his back on the gods and took up the path of wrath and vengeance once more. In fact it may very well have driven Scorpion right off the deep end. In the days leading up to Armageddon, Scorpion would learn of the gods plans to prevent the coming destruction and chose to try and kill Taven, so of the Edenian protector god Argus, out of spite. Something he never would have done befor. After his failure Scorpion would eventually be drawn toward the final battle at the Pyramid of Argus and in his hate sided with the forces of darkness.

Scorpion's design here perfectly reflects his regression as a character after the betrayal of the Elder Gods. A hellspawn consumed by hate. 

If Scorpion had defeated Blaze his clan would have been full restored and numbered in the thousands. This victory would have been stained with the tragedy of his son being kidnapped by Quan Chi, but this time Scorpion is not alone in his pursuit of the Necromancer.

In the canonical ending Scorpion, along with almost everyone else, is slain in battle. In his case likely by the hand of his former ally Sub-Zero.

Mortal Kombat 9

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Scorpion's story here takes place in an alternate timeline of the original 3 MK games. It is here that, as far as I'm aware, Scorpion is first referred to by his birth name. Hanzo Hasashi. Scorpion's origin is somewhat altered in this timeline. Here he is turned into a hellspawn after making a deal with Quan Chi to get revenge for his murder and the destruction of his clan.  Scorpion enters the Mortal Kombat tournamant as a fighter for Outworld under orders from Quan Chi. Things are not the same in this timeline, as he battles both Kung Lao and Nightwolf befor getting his chance at the man reasonable for his pain, Sub-Zero. However Raiden has a vision of Bi-Han's death and what will eventually become of the elder Sub-Zero, prompting him to try and make a deal with Scorpion. If he refrains from kill Sub-Zero, Raiden will personally request for the Elder Gods to resurrect his clan. At first Scorpion is swayed by Raiden's words but after Sub-Zero is defeated in the NetherRealm, Quan Chi appears and shows Scorpion visions of his loved ones' deaths. This drives Scorpion to murderous rage and he kills Bi-Han. An act Scorpion would regret for years to come. Scorpion appears only briefly after this. In the Outworld MK tournament he is summoned at the request if Kuai Liang, who seeks revenge for his brother's death and later fights Raiden when he seeks an alliance with NetherRealm against Shao Kahn.

The most striking thing about Scorpion's design in MK9 is how much it's been influence by his name sake. his armour almost looks like an exoskeleton, with scorpion stings on his shoulder guards & swords and his face guard looks like mandibles. It's easily the most scorpion Scorpion so far. It's a very good redesign for Scorpion's early, rage filled self.

In his arcade ending, Scorpion finds himself drawn to the home of his clan. As he stands amidst the destruction, their spirits call out to him, telling him the name of the one responsible for their deaths. Quan Chi.

Mortal Kombat X

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During the events of Shinnok's first invasion Scorpion was still in the serves of Quan Chi, assisting the fallen god and necromancer in assaulting Earth Realm. After Shinnok's defeat and the assault on Quan Chi's fortress in the NetherRealm, Scorpion, along with several revenants are freed from Quan Chi's control, becoming alive and fully human once more. Now free from anyone's control, Hanzo spends the next five years rebuilding the Shirai Ryu. During this time he is approached by the warrior Kenshi, who asks Hanzo train and protect his son while he peruses his conflict with the Red Dragon Clan. Hanzo accepts, taking Takeda as his student. As they trained they would develop a strong respect for eachother, Hanzo himself taking great pride in his students progress. Hanzo would also find himself invited to the home of the Lin Kuei by Sub-Zero, who sought to make peace between the two clans. While their was much tension between the two, eventually Kuai Liang was able to convince Hanzo that his intentions were pure. Kuai Liang informed Hanzo that the old Lin Kuei did have a hand in the destruction of his clan... but they had not been alone. Quan Chi had also played a part in their down fall also. This revelation rekindled Scorpion's wrath, for not only had he been a pawn of the man who had killed his family, that same man had cost him his one and only chance to have them resurrected. 

In the present day, Scorpion ambushes Sonya and the Earth Special Forces after they have apprehended Quan Chi. Scorpion has them tied up then forces a now elderly and weak Quan Chi to face him in Mortal Kombat. Scorpion bests the necromancer but as he deals the final blow, Quan Chi insures the return of Shinnok with his last breath. In the ensuing battle Scorpion and the Shirai Ryu fight alongside the forces of Earth Realm against Shinnok's demons and the forces of Outworld until Cassie Cage is able to beat the fallen Elder God.

Scorpion is MKX is probable the most human the characters ever been, and not just in how he looks. Believing he got his revenge and now no longer bound to Quan Chi, he strives to try and make a new life for himself. He proves himself to be an honourable warrior and wise teacher. Unfortunately he has  yet to truly free himself from the demons, as seen when he allows his hate for Quan Chi blind him to all else. In terms of his design, well his primary costume is clearly an updated version of his original MK1 look but by far his most intreasting is his normal human one. What makes it intreasting is how simple it is compared to his more ornate Scorpion design. We finally get to see Hanzo Hasashi for the man he is, not the monster he became.

In his arcade victory, Scorpion regrets giving into his anger when confronting Quan Chi and contemplates suicide as penance. However Raiden appears to him and convinces him to live and make amends. Scorpion absorbs a small amount of  the Jinsei's power, linking him to Earthrealm's essence. Scorpion and his Shirai Ryu clan would protect the Earthrealm forever.

Edited by Prince Rain
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