Welcome to the first of our daily series of articles – looking back at the major (and sometimes just downright sad) games that saw release on this day in history. Today’s selection of titles includes the iconic (Mortal Kombat, Streets of Rage) as well as a version of Mortal Kombat 2 that was so bad, it didn’t get a release outside of Japan. So let’s dive into the August 2nd selection of On This Day in Gaming!
Streets of Rage
Year: 1991 Platform: Genesis Region: United States
Streets of Rage is synonymous with early 1990’s SEGA. While its sequel is more loved (rightly in my opinion), the series found its footing here. It also unleashed a torrent of clones and copycats that wanted to ape on Streets of Rage’s success.
Fun Fact: In a two player game, at the final boss, if one player answers yes and the other answers no when Mr X says “Well, you found your way here. Would you consider becoming my right-hand man?”, the two players will fight against each other. This is the only way to access the “bad” ending, in which the player takes over the syndicate.
Mortal Kombat I
Year: 1992 Platform: Arcades Region: United States
You can’t really talk about early 1990’s gaming culture without talking about Mortal Kombat. This was the granddaddy of violent fighting games. So violent was this game that it would eventually go on to spawn the videogames rating system in the United States.
The release of the arcade game was hugely important – as it was here that the game found its popularity. Eventually, it would get ported to the home consoles at the time, including SNES, Genesis and PC (You can check out our Revisiting article on those editions here!)
Fun Fact: Midway used actors to get the animations for each character (Except Gordo). They originally wanted Claude Van Damme in the game – but that agreement never came to pass.
Mortal Kombat II
Year: 1996 Platform: PS1 Region: Japan
Mortal Kombat 2 is generally considered a solid game – just not on PlayStation 1. In the rush to get a Mortal Kombat game out on Sony’s fledgeling PlayStation, Mortal Kombat 2 got heavily chopped up in the process. The result is the worst edition of the game, with staggeringly long load times and glitches aplenty. Even more bafflingly, Mortal Kombat 3 launched six months earlier – effectively nullifying the whole point of this game.
Fun Fact: This version of the game was never released outside of Japan, a blessing in disguise really.
Year: 2011 Platform: Steam Region: Worldwide
Limbo had already touched down on other platforms by this point, but its arrival on Steam helped push the game into the eyes of a much wider audience. For my money, I don’t consider this a good game – but I know many who do. It’s a very love it or hate it title.
Fun Fact: The game’s engine was modified to remove all ability to render colours – leaving the game with a unique aesthetic.
Batman: A Telltale Series
Year: 2016 Platform: PS4, Xbox One, PC Region: U.S./EU
The first episode of this popular Telltale Batman series landed on this day just last year. There was huge hype for the game upon release – some of which was ruined by the buggy state the game arrived in. Telltale eventually sorted it out though – and the series would go on to sell well enough that a sequel was very recently revealed.
Fun Fact: This has nothing to do with the DCEU, Arkham or Nolan Batman movies. As has become common for the character, this is set within its own version of continuity.