Mortal Kombat II is Released

Mortal Kombat II is a 1993 arcade game and the second title in the Mortal Kombat fighting game series.

To create the character animations for the game, actors were placed in front of a gray background and performed the motions, which was recorded by on a Hi-8 videotape, which had been upgraded since the development of the first title from standard to broadcast-quality. The footage was then processed into a computer, and the background was removed from selected frames to create 64 or 128 color sprites. Towards the end of Mortal Kombat II's development, they opted to instead use a chroma key technique and processed the footage directly into the computer for a similar, simpler process. The actors were sprayed lightly with water to give them a sweaty, glistening appearance, while post-editing was done on the sprites afterward to highlight flesh tones and improve the visibility of muscles, which John Tobias felt set the series apart from similar games using digitized graphics. Animations of characters morphing into something else were created by John Vogel using a computer, while hand-drawn animations were put into effect for other parts of the game, such as the finishing moves (fatalities).

Care was taken during the programming process to give the game a "good feel", with lead programmer Ed Boon writing mathematical equations to simulate elements such as gravity into the game's design. Tobias noted that the previous game's reliance on juggling the opponent in the air with successive hits was an accident, and had been tightened in Mortal Kombat II. Boon noted the reason to not completely remove it in favor of a different system of chaining attacks together was to set the game apart from titles such as Street Fighter, and allow for players to devise their own combinations of attacks. Many attacks were kept uniform between characters to prevent from over-complicating gameplay. Due to memory limitations for the title two characters from the original Mortal Kombat, Sonya Blade and Kano were excluded, reasoned by Boon as them being the least-picked characters in the original game, and the development team's desire to introduce more new characters into the game.

Mortal Kombat II wore its notoriety as a badge of honor, boasting about it in promotional materials, and even parodying it in-game. In addition to the usual gory Fatalities, there were new "Babality" moves that would turn your foes into infants, and "Friendship" moves that involved acts of kindness, for those less bitter toward their foes. Even the brutal Fatality moves were starting to veer into Itchy & Scratchy territory; Kitana could kiss her opponent and inflate him like a balloon, and Johnny Kage could punch his opponent's head off… three times in a row.