It's the real Johnny Cage! Original Mortal Kombat mo-cap videos emerge

[Edit: After this story was posted, current Mortal Kombat rights holder Warner Bros. apparently demanded the video be taken down from YouTube. So why did we leave the story up? So more people would read this: Dear WB - You DO realize you just tore down a historically valuable video that is actually helping revive interest in the MK franchise, that has absolutely no ability to harm your new MK, and which was posted by a man who could have been a tremendous PR asset if you hired him to help you promote the series revival instead of behaving like a selfish, obnoxious nine year-old, right? Honestly - even Activision, which pulled the plug on Brutal Legend and then sued EA for plugging it back in, thinks that's a dick move.]

Wow - here's a blast from the past. Daniel Pesina, the martial artist who played Johnny Cage in the original Mortal Kombat, has posted videos on YouTube showing the original game's mo-cap sessions. Of course, it isn't real motion capture - the idea was to pose realistically for individual frames of the game, so some of these are rather staged. It's fascinating to see glimpses of the game you recognise as he goes through the motions of various attacks. Check it out right here.

The first Mortal Kombat was famous for two reasons. The first was obviously the level of gore. But secondly, it was the first fighting game to use digitised images of real actors for its sprites, unlike Street Fighter II which used hand-drawn imagery. Nowadays, the original game looks like some horrible Xbox Live Indie abomination (c'mon, even hardcore MK fans have got to admit that), but it's one of gaming's most treasured institutions, so plenty of people are going to enjoy this vid.

Above: Placing Dan toe to toe with his digitised sprite, you can see where the art team made small tweaks

There are more videos from the session here, although one has reportedly been pulled after an alleged complaint by Warner Bros who currently hold the rights to the franchise. So watch 'em before they all disappear. We hope they do stay up - the guy even promises he'll be posting videos of the girl who played Sonia real soon. Yup, thought you'd be interested in that.

20 Aug, 2010

Source: GameSetWatch

Justin Towell

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.