Settling on one fighting game in this day and age is no easy feat. With so many great titles, deciding which will be your next big investment is hard. Mortal Kombat 1 provides a wide array of content reminiscent of old series ventures like Mortal Kombat Deception and Deadly Alliance. You can jump into the series staple modes like versus, training and tutorials, classic Towers, or Kampaign, where you’ll witness a dimension-shattering new story.
But if you want something new, you’ll be happy to learn more about Invasion mode, which expands on the universe-defense plotlines of the story with a roleplaying game twist.
Mortal Kombat 1 is all about protecting your timeline, and in Invasion, you’re tasked with doing just that. Using your favorite characters and Kameos, you’re tasked with warding off invaders ranging from an evil variant of Scorpion to a wacky Ninja Mime.
All this occurs on board game-like world maps set in various locations, beginning in Johnny Cage’s proclaimed “haunted” mansion. Traversing maps like this, you’ll be confronted with various battles where you gain experience points, equipable items, in-game currency, and key objects to help you progress.
Incentives that make Invasion mode a must-play include unlockable customizable cosmetics for your characters, behind-the-scenes content, and more Kameo fighters. Be sure to spend a little time exploring here.
If you’re a Mortal Kombat fan, this may sound similar to something like Towers or the Krypt, and that’s because it’s like an evolution of those classic modes combined into one. As with Towers, your encounters with enemies are broken up by minigames like Test Your Might. In fact, some areas will surprise you with their own Towers to conquer, earning you tons of experience points and in-game currency. Invasion mode also delivers satisfying fanservice in the form of encounters against the Deadly Alliance of Shang Tsung and Quan Chi, an invading Scorpion that looks like the classic version of the character, elemental amulets similar to Raiden’s, and even a lurking Kollector who you can buy items from. Inclusions such as this make Invasion feel like a comprehensive celebration of the series.
Anyone can enjoy Invasion, but longtime fighting game fans, especially of the Mortal Kombat variety, will probably find a second home here. While the main incentive is scoring unlockables to personalize your favorite fighters, there’s much to enjoy here.
Equipping the cast with customizable attack items and experimenting with their stats is a fun side project. Having to conquer a path of enemies with random elements like raining fireballs and booby-trapped stages adds an element of comedy and surprise to the experience. One example that had me chuckling was being caught off guard mid-fight by a random sawblade.
Beginners will find Invasion mode to be a great teacher as well. Tutorial matches teach you to block correctly, punish specific moves, and other combat basics. There’s even a feature where enemies will do punishable moves slower, so you’ll learn to interrupt them and take advantage in battle consistently.
If you plan on taking the fight to other timelines with Invasion mode, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind. Make sure you take every path possible. You will want to find keys to keep progressing through certain areas. You’ll also want to take down any Towers you come across. Towers are an easy way to take on multiple enemies to stack even more currency and experience points. And finally, use Invasion as a chance to try more than your main fighter and Kameo. If you just stick to one, you’ll miss out on learning a new character with these new features. There’s a lot to experiment with in this mode.
Invasion is a mode that takes the greatest hits from Mortal Kombat’s single-player history, feeling like a museum of content for longtime fans of the series. And even for newcomers, it’s a great single-player mode to sink your time into and learn more about Mortal Kombat lore and competitive gameplay. Join the fight against invaders when Mortal Kombat 1 releases on September 19 for PlayStation 5.