Digital Foundry examines Mortal Kombat 11 - Switch version "disgusting"

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#1 Edited by uninspiredcup (34252 posts) -

Middling fighting series gets the Digital Foundry treatment. As expected the Swtich version is horrific.

Unfortunately if you just care about gameplay, you're not in luck. At least Samurai Spirits will be ported. Or you can just go play Street Fighter II (which is overpriced).

Developer NetherRealms has a history of pushing the envelope for cinematic visuals in fighting games - and Mortal Kombat 11 is no exception, delivering a spectacular experience on all consoles. The physically-based lighting and facial capture tech of Injustice 2 returns, this time put to work with some gruesome fatalities and bone-crunching close-ups. PS4 and Xbox One machines of all flavours deliver an accomplished presentation, but with this latest franchise entry, a new handheld contender enters the fray - and MK11 on Switch delivers a surprisingly strong conversion.

As you may expect, NetherRealms' latest achieves good image quality on base consoles with the expected resolution boosts in place for their enhanced equivalents - but it's the nature of the Switch port that's perhaps most interesting. Conversions such as Warframe, Wolfenstein: The New Colossus and Doom 2016 have relied on cutting frame-rate as well as visual fidelity to get the job done - 60fps experiences pared back to 30fps on Switch. Mortal Kombat 11 is impressive because although the foundation Unreal Engine tech is enabled for Nintendo's hybrid, the game wouldn't be the same if it didn't run at the required 60fps. Somehow, this port manages to get the job done.

There are some obvious concessions: the PS4 and Xbox One versions all weigh in with a 40GB footprint, wheres the Switch download is 22.6GB. Most of that can be owed to the cut in texture map resolution and the quality of pre-rendered videos. Still, it's a remarkable feat of engineering to see this version at all. As with Unreal Engine games in the vein of Rocket League or Fortnite, this is mechanically the same experience, but arguably, it's the closest port of a PS4 or Xbox One-level game to Nintendo's hybrid console to date - Cuphead apart.

In bringing MK11 to Switch, the scalability of the original code is obviously essential and satellite developer Shiver Entertainment has no doubt benefited from the inclusion of dynamic resolution scaling to give the console's GPU wiggle room. DRS is indeed used on Switch, but it's a key part of the other console versions too. PS4 sticks doggedly to 1080p, but Xbox One scales from sub-900p resolutions to 1728x972 in gameplay, rising to 1080p in the 30fps cutscenes.

Meanwhile, dynamic res is also in play on the enhanced machines. Similar to Injustice 2, Pro spends much of its time at 2240x1260 in the thick of the action, rising to 1440p. Meanwhile, the 30fps cutscenes hit a pixel count in the region 1800p. Not surprisingly, Xbox One X gets a further boost over this - the cinematics hit native 4K, while gameplay dynamically adjusts between values in the region of 2880x1620 to 1800p.

The screenshot gallery below shows the visual differences between base and enhanced hardware, but they're of little consequence, amounting to slightly higher quality textures in some areas, and a minor adjustment in ambient occlusion - though motion blur features noticeably fewer samples on the vanilla machines. Suffice to say that the best console experience this time around is delivered by Xbox One X - but all versions deliver smooth 60fps action, and properly frame-paced 30fps cinematics, x-rays and fatalities.

But it's the Switch port that is the main event. Shiver Entertainment needs to retain as much of the core experience as possible, while also handing in decent visuals. The dynamic resolution of the other console builds is used far more aggressively here. Running docked, I logged pixel counts between 960x540 and 1280x720, while resolution takes a more profound hit in handheld mode, with a range of resolutions between 854x480 and 682x384. For reference, Mortal Kombat 9 on PS Vita rendered at 630x384, but obviously with a much older, less complex iteration of the engine.

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#2 Edited by nintendoboy16 (36454 posts) -

EDIT: HOLD! Hold the phone... as much as I HATE Digital Foundry, something is NOT right...

Title thread reads: "Switch version 'disgusting'"

What it really says...

Developer NetherRealms has a history of pushing the envelope for cinematic visuals in fighting games - and Mortal Kombat 11 is no exception, delivering a spectacular experience on all consoles. The physically-based lighting and facial capture tech of Injustice 2 returns, this time put to work with some gruesome fatalities and bone-crunching close-ups. PS4 and Xbox One machines of all flavours deliver an accomplished presentation, but with this latest franchise entry, a new handheld contender enters the fray - and MK11 on Switch delivers a surprisingly strong conversion.

As you may expect, NetherRealms' latest achieves good image quality on base consoles with the expected resolution boosts in place for their enhanced equivalents - but it's the nature of the Switch port that's perhaps most interesting. Conversions such as Warframe, Wolfenstein: The New Colossus and Doom 2016 have relied on cutting frame-rate as well as visual fidelity to get the job done - 60fps experiences pared back to 30fps on Switch. Mortal Kombat 11 is impressive because although the foundation Unreal Engine tech is enabled for Nintendo's hybrid, the game wouldn't be the same if it didn't run at the required 60fps. Somehow, this port manages to get the job done.

Holy crap! Bait.

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#3 Posted by Fedor (5260 posts) -

@nintendoboy16: Nobody sees them as God's... Why are you mad they're pointing out a shit port to help consumers?

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#4 Edited by uninspiredcup (34252 posts) -

@nintendoboy16 said:

Title thread reads: "Switch version 'disgusting'"

I was quoting myself.

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#5 Posted by nintendoboy16 (36454 posts) -
@fedor said:

@nintendoboy16: Nobody sees them as God's... Why are you mad they're pointing out a shit port to help consumers?

See edit. But otherwise, that's not what I see. They "protect consumers" as much as a journalist or an angry YT reviewer/ranter does.

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#6 Posted by Fedor (5260 posts) -

@nintendoboy16: Gotcha, reviews/rants and tech analysis are worthless and people should just blindly purchase whatever.

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#7 Posted by Oemenia (10381 posts) -

Absolutely perfect on Switch.

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#8 Posted by nintendoboy16 (36454 posts) -
@fedor said:

@nintendoboy16: Gotcha, reviews/rants and tech analysis are worthless and people should just blindly purchase whatever.

Given the years of how journalism is seen these days, between consumers and political topics, yeah, to many, it kind of has. And again, as even I made the mistake of doing, DF didn't exactly bash the Switch port at all. You do not call a port "surprisingly strong" if it's REALLY a disaster. You just don't.

And rant videos aren't that much better. Because most of it amounts to is a lot of bogus movements as if it's the most important.

EX: "Don't see Last Jedi, Black Panther and Captain Marvel because Disney is promoting feminism and political correctness. If you like them, you're a Kennedy/Feige stooge."

Yeah...

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#9 Posted by PrincessGomez92 (5747 posts) -

The Switch version is really good, pretty impressed with it and happy.

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#10 Posted by DaVillain- (37409 posts) -

I will admit, the Switch version MK11 isn't bad at all and the portability is a huge bonus so yeah, I would only buy Switch version just to play it on the go.

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#11 Posted by Random_Matt (4287 posts) -

Only Nintendo fans would accept 384P, what a joke.

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#12 Posted by drummerdave9099 (4130 posts) -

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

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#13 Posted by enzyme36 (4255 posts) -

Game looks like crap on all platforms... in that sense, who cares how you play it.

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#14 Edited by uninspiredcup (34252 posts) -

@enzyme36 said:

Game looks like crap on all platforms... in that sense, who cares how you play it.

Oh? I thought it looked very good. Some of the designs, namely Sonya Blade, Jacqui Briggs and Casie Cage (good porn star face though), look like generic shit. Others like Frost looks pretty fucking great.

The backgrounds leave a lot to be desired, very bland. Nothing stands out. Compare it to prime SNK, shite.

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#15 Edited by Fedor (5260 posts) -

@nintendoboy16: I'm referencing gaming only, I don't care about rants on mediocre movies.

Last Jedi was an ideological mess. No one can debate that.

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#16 Edited by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

blah blah blah blah blah

graphic whores find something better to do please.

Avatar image for Bread_or_Decide
#17 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@drummerdave9099 said:

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

Who cares what other people think?

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#18 Posted by Zuon (347 posts) -

Am I missing something here? I didn't watch the video yet (at work) but the word "disgusting" is nowhere to be found in the praiseworthy excerpt pasted into the original post.

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#19 Posted by Fedor (5260 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:
@drummerdave9099 said:

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

Who cares what other people think?

The large majority of the human race, regardless of if they want to admit it or not.

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#20 Posted by M8ingSeezun (2236 posts) -

Far too many insecure manginas on this thread.

It's MK11 on a Switch, what's the big deal? The game runs on a tiny hardware, the way it should be.

Avatar image for Bread_or_Decide
#21 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@Random_Matt said:

Only Nintendo fans would accept 384P, what a joke.

Only sony fans jerk off to resolutions and graphics.

Don't you have a medicore exclusive to be playing? (Gone Days)

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#22 Edited by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@fedor said:
@Bread_or_Decide said:
@drummerdave9099 said:

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

Who cares what other people think?

The large majority of the human race, regardless of if they want to admit it or not.

Yeah and the lesson is often the same: stop caring what other people think.

Avatar image for M8ingSeezun
#23 Posted by M8ingSeezun (2236 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:
@Random_Matt said:

Only Nintendo fans would accept 384P, what a joke.

Only sony fans jerk off to resolutions and graphics, SALES, EXCLUSIVES and PAST SALES FROM LAST GEN!

Don't you have a medicore exclusive to be playing? (Gone Days)

There fixed that for ya!

Avatar image for Bread_or_Decide
#24 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@M8ingSeezun said:
@Bread_or_Decide said:
@Random_Matt said:

Only Nintendo fans would accept 384P, what a joke.

Only sony fans jerk off to resolutions and graphics, SALES, EXCLUSIVES and PAST SALES FROM LAST GEN!

Don't you have a medicore exclusive to be playing? (Gone Days)

There fixed that for ya!

Wait, aren't these the same sony fans that now own the console without the best graphics? Shouldn't they all own xbox one x since that's so important to them?

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#25 Edited by M8ingSeezun (2236 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:
@M8ingSeezun said:
@Bread_or_Decide said:
@Random_Matt said:

Only Nintendo fans would accept 384P, what a joke.

Only sony fans jerk off to resolutions and graphics, SALES, EXCLUSIVES and PAST SALES FROM LAST GEN!

Don't you have a medicore exclusive to be playing? (Gone Days)

There fixed that for ya!

Wait, aren't these the same sony fans that now own the console without the best graphics? Shouldn't they all own xbox one x since that's so important to them?

Ironic isn't it?

Also don't forget, they hide behind their "PCs" for "better graphics"

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#26 Edited by uninspiredcup (34252 posts) -

Can't stress how bad the visual feedback of this game is.

It's built on low, med, high and overhead attacks right? You want clear visual information on that.

Good luck following that shit.

Actually doing a (literally flipping) overhead animation = mid

A kick animation literally hitting the stomach = high

An almost indistinguishable animation (that hits the head but goes into a recovery of mid) = mid

Just, bad. Very very bad. Some people will argue it's more "skill" because it's much harder to read.

No. No. That's just bad design.

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#27 Edited by Fedor (5260 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide: Only person I've ever known that legitimately didn't care what people think was a meth addict. That is because he was far more concerned with his drugs than society, friends, and family. I'd imagine most people who don't care about others thoughts and feelings are in general PoS. But I'll reiterate, the large majority of people very much care what others think, even the ones that like to put up a front like they don't.

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#28 Posted by enzyme36 (4255 posts) -

@uninspiredcup said:
@enzyme36 said:

Game looks like crap on all platforms... in that sense, who cares how you play it.

Oh? I thought it looked very good. Some of the designs, namely Sonya Blade, Jacqui Briggs and Casie Cage (good porn star face though), look like generic shit. Others like Frost looks pretty fucking great.

The backgrounds leave a lot to be desired, very bland. Nothing stands out. Compare it to prime SNK, shite.

Stills look pretty good to me... but when I brought it home everything looks washed out. Like a haze over the whole game. Maybe its a the PC version that looks like this and all the stills Ive been seeing are from 4k HDR.

Im playing in 2K at max settings. Also think the Finishing Blows, Fatalities, menus all look like a lower quality than the rest of the game.

That picture of frost looks great, but seeing it on my screen it doesnt look as crisp.

Avatar image for Bread_or_Decide
#29 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@uninspiredcup said:

Can't stress how bad the visual feedback of this game is.

It's built on low, med, high and overhead attacks right? You want clear visual information on that.

Good luck following that shit.

Actually doing a (literally flipping) overhead animation = mid

A kick animation literally hitting the stomach = High

An almost indistinguishable animation (that hits the head but goes into a recovery of mid) = mid

Just, bad. Very very bad.

Do you even really care about this? Come on now.

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#30 Posted by mandzilla (4144 posts) -

Uninspiredthread

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#31 Posted by enzyme36 (4255 posts) -

@drummerdave9099 said:

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

Playing in portable mode does not mean I have to be on public transportation or on a vacation or a business trip. Believe it or not, I play in portable mode all the time from the comfort of my own home.

Avatar image for uninspiredcup
#32 Posted by uninspiredcup (34252 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:
@uninspiredcup said:

Can't stress how bad the visual feedback of this game is.

It's built on low, med, high and overhead attacks right? You want clear visual information on that.

Good luck following that shit.

Actually doing a (literally flipping) overhead animation = mid

A kick animation literally hitting the stomach = High

An almost indistinguishable animation (that hits the head but goes into a recovery of mid) = mid

Just, bad. Very very bad.

Do you even really care about this? Come on now.

Well yea, it directly effects the gameplay.

Avatar image for enzyme36
#33 Posted by enzyme36 (4255 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:
@uninspiredcup said:

Can't stress how bad the visual feedback of this game is.

It's built on low, med, high and overhead attacks right? You want clear visual information on that.

Good luck following that shit.

Actually doing a (literally flipping) overhead animation = mid

A kick animation literally hitting the stomach = High

An almost indistinguishable animation (that hits the head but goes into a recovery of mid) = mid

Just, bad. Very very bad.

Do you even really care about this? Come on now.

This is pretty much all I care about. With the amount of mix-ups built into these combos, you pretty much have to eat everything your first go around before you learn to block. Overheads looking like high attacks or vice versa is a problem.

How many sparkles off of a fire effect on each platform... this is not of my concern.

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#34 Edited by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@fedor said:

@Bread_or_Decide: Only person I've ever known that legitimately didn't care what people think was a meth addict. That is because he was far more concerned with his drugs than society, friends, and family. I'd imagine most people who don't care about others thoughts and feelings are in general PoS. But I'll reiterate, the large majority of people very much care what others think, even the ones that like to put up a front like they don't.

Umm, extreme, I think we do value the opinions of those that matter to us. That's a basic human trait. And in some ways yes sometimes it can be good because it can help shape us as people. But there are other things in life where you shouldn't care as much what people think, normally things that define you as an individual. The way you dress, act, your style, these things are your own and if you let others shape them you'll be a miserable human being.

In general, its best not to care too much, but take it into consideration. Spend your life pleasing others and you'll be more miserable than that meth addict.

As for this example, if you care what a random stranger sitting next to you on the bus thinks, then perhaps your feeling are misplaced on the whole matter. That's like me refusing to play pokemon let's go pikachu because of what the person sitting next to me might think. Like really, who cares, I sure don't. The people who know me best and love me most don't care. So there ya go.

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#35 Edited by Fedor (5260 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide: The meth addict contracted a couple diseases and lost his teeth. He's now in jail after stealing a car and crashing it into a tree about 10 feet away. Dont think I'll be that miserable ever.

That said, I wouldn't have an issue switching over to Mario or Celeste or something if I'm seated by a elderly person or child. Pretty much common decency.

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#36 Posted by BenjaminBanklin (4849 posts) -

There's nothing to really argue here if you're a Switch buyer. You kind of made yourself a third-class citizen by default. There's a hell of disparity going on with the port outside of resolutions. This wouldn't have been a big issue if it weren't for the frame rate in portable mode. That's unacceptable for a fighting game.

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#37 Posted by ni6htmare01 (3789 posts) -

Well is not a powerful machine and is a half handheld so what do people expect? Should be happy just to get the port!

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#38 Posted by drummerdave9099 (4130 posts) -

@enzyme36 said:
@drummerdave9099 said:

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

Playing in portable mode does not mean I have to be on public transportation or on a vacation or a business trip. Believe it or not, I play in portable mode all the time from the comfort of my own home.

So do I! I just meant I hope Switch owners are sensitive about this stuff to people around them. It can be pretty gruesome.

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#39 Posted by drummerdave9099 (4130 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:
@drummerdave9099 said:

Imagine sitting on a plane playing Mortal Kombat on Switch and the old lady sitting next to you glances over at the screen as you're ripping someone's heart out.

Seriously, not every game was meant to played in public.

Who cares what other people think?

I do because I have common courtesy for the people around me?

This isn't about worrying what other people think about you, it's just being aware and sensitive to your surroundings.

If you go to a ball game and there are kids sitting in the row in front of you you don't swear.

You don't watch porn in public.

It's the same thought process.

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#40 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@fedor said:

@Bread_or_Decide: The meth addict contracted a couple diseases and lost his teeth. He's now in jail after stealing a car and crashing it into a tree about 10 feet away. Dont think I'll be that miserable ever.

That said, I wouldn't have an issue switching over to Mario or Celeste or something if I'm seated by a elderly person or child. Pretty much common decency.

Child, I'll give you that. Elderly person I'm sure has seen much worse.

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#41 Posted by Heil68 (58244 posts) -

What?? 3rd party games look like ass on Nintendo consoles?? Shocker..lolz

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#42 Posted by watercrack445 (1709 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:

blah blah blah blah blah

graphic whores find something better to do please.

blah blah blah blah blah

tell that to the PC master race

Avatar image for Bread_or_Decide
#43 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@watercrack445 said:
@Bread_or_Decide said:

blah blah blah blah blah

graphic whores find something better to do please.

blah blah blah blah blah

tell that to the PC master race

PC master complainers? They're too busy fighting a storefront.

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#44 Posted by Archangel3371 (28342 posts) -

I think that it’s pretty impressive that the game is even running on the Switch like it is now. From what I’ve seen and read about it it looks to be a pretty decently done port and Digital Foundry agrees here as well. Personally I’ll probably just be getting the Xbox One version but I won’t lie it would also be really cool to have the Switch version as well for that portability factor.

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#45 Edited by Techhog89 (3779 posts) -

That's not how you use quotation marks...

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#46 Posted by DocSanchez (5323 posts) -

The salt from a simple fact. Get used to it. You can't complain. Nintendo released another underpowered console, despite promising otherwise, and you will have to deal with it. Yes, graphics do matter, they make a lot of difference to the overall experience, and the only reason so many excuses are forthcoming is because once again, Nintendo is behind the curve.

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#47 Posted by Bread_or_Decide (29180 posts) -

@DocSanchez said:

The salt from a simple fact. Get used to it. You can't complain. Nintendo released another underpowered console, despite promising otherwise, and you will have to deal with it. Yes, graphics do matter, they make a lot of difference to the overall experience, and the only reason so many excuses are forthcoming is because once again, Nintendo is behind the curve.

And yet, selling like gangbusters and getting tremendous third party support.

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#48 Posted by Alucard_Prime (10107 posts) -

As a Switch owner I really don't care about this, I bought it mostly for 2D Indies on the go. For power, I've got the X.

Like others have said, I'm surprised MK even runs on it.

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#49 Edited by uninspiredcup (34252 posts) -
@enzyme36 said:
@uninspiredcup said:
@enzyme36 said:

Game looks like crap on all platforms... in that sense, who cares how you play it.

Oh? I thought it looked very good. Some of the designs, namely Sonya Blade, Jacqui Briggs and Casie Cage (good porn star face though), look like generic shit. Others like Frost looks pretty fucking great.

The backgrounds leave a lot to be desired, very bland. Nothing stands out. Compare it to prime SNK, shite.

Stills look pretty good to me... but when I brought it home everything looks washed out. Like a haze over the whole game. Maybe its a the PC version that looks like this and all the stills Ive been seeing are from 4k HDR.

Im playing in 2K at max settings. Also think the Finishing Blows, Fatalities, menus all look like a lower quality than the rest of the game.

That picture of frost looks great, but seeing it on my screen it doesnt look as crisp.

I think it depends on the settings. Using base FXAA blurs the shit out of it if. TAA looks way better. Turn dynamic resolution and stuff off. Fatalities and stuff run 30fps. Very disconcerting. I think those, along with Supers (or whatever they fucking call it in this game) are way too long. Cool the first couple of times, gets repetitive fast.

Tne amount of loading screens is fairly annoying as well. Like, you can't just go immediately into a rematch, gotta sit though your (bla) points adding up and sit through a loading screen each time.

Unlike SFV which has the wonderful feature if just using your main and pre-fav map, character select, stage select over and over.

Not really graphics related, annoying though.

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#50 Posted by mojito1988 (3670 posts) -

@uninspiredcup said:
@nintendoboy16 said:

Title thread reads: "Switch version 'disgusting'"

I was quoting myself.

Odd. Why would you quote yourself like this? I'm not used to you being this shady. You must be VERY bored.