Written by Jon Scarr
Choosing a main character in Mortal Kombat XL can be a daunting task. There are many things that you must take into consideration. This is the second article in the series, which breaks down strengths and weaknesses of some of Mortal Kombat XL’s most popular fighters. Read more in our Mortal Kombat XL Charter overview strengths and weaknesses part 2.
Strengths – Sloid mix-up, rushdown, and zoning, excellent enhanced specials
Reptile was hidden in the original Mortal Kombat and thus holds the distinction of being the very first secret character to appear in a versus fighting game. Reptile’s Noxious variation makes him exhale a green poisonous gas from his body, which damages his opponent if they stand close to him.
Simply put, Reptile is a tricky character, and you should play Reptile with the intent to outwit your opponents. He has several interesting attacks in his repertoire, which are really quick. My favourite are his Acid orbs, which you can leave all around the arena and foil your opponent’s plans a little.
Weaknesses – Slow normal, clunky dash, lacks an answer to teleporting, mostly slow specials
Strengths – Fast normals and movement, solid anti-zoning tactics and mix-ups, total control of airspace
Kung Lao possesses very similar abilities to Liu Kang when it comes to agility, strength and martial arts. However, those are not his most deadly weapon. Kung Lao’s preferred weapon of choice is his razor-edged hat that he wears all the time.
Lao’s a very high mobility character and capable of keeping his opponents at bay. Thanks to his unique combos, his opponents will find him a hard nut to crack—especially when it comes to blocking the onslaught of attacks.
Weaknesses – Specials are highly punishable on block, lacks overhead combo starter
Strengths – Amazing teleport, great mix-up off of Teleport, high damage and massive corner combo damage
Raiden is the eternal God of Thunder, protector of Earthrealm, and arguably one of the most powerful characters in all of Mortal Kombat. Raiden is the god of thunder and lightning, and as such, he is immensely powerful and has complete control over electricity.
A cult character, a Mortal Kombat game without Raiden is unimaginable.
Weaknesses – Mediocre footsies, strings are slow and interruptible
Strengths – Excellent metre building, standing reset, one of the fastest uppercuts in the game, solid mix-up
Quan Chi is the most powerful sorcerer and necromancer in the Netherrealm. He combines both cunning and brute force in his never-ending plots to overtake not only Earthrealm, but all of reality.
Quan Chi has an excellent capture state, and a good damage. Also, Quan Chi can hold his opponent at a distance.
Weaknesses – Slow normal, weak footsies, highly punishable specials that are slow
Strengths – Great footsies, total control of airspace, great zoning, high damage combos, great chip damage strings
Kitana is 10,000 years old, but is considered young in her realm of Edenia. Throughout the years, she rose to great importance; first as the loyal stepdaughter of Shao Kahn, then as his enemy, tearing herself away from his grasp and freeing her home realm.
Kitana is focused on controlling the course of a fight and on keeping her opponent at bay. She has a unique set of moves that can hold her opponent down and win her quite a lot of time to start her attack. However, she is not that easy to master.
Weaknesses – Struggles against other zoners, weak mix-up options, slow combo starters
Strengths – Very fast normal, fastest uppercut in the game, metre builds quickly, excellent frame trap capability
Johnny Cage, despite his air-headed and superficial demeanor, is a strong and agile warrior. After long periods of training with various masters of martial arts, Cage himself has acquired mastery of several fighting styles.
Johnny’s brand move, Shadow Kick, made its way into this installment of the game. Apart from that, Johnny is a very good character with interesting combos that can annoy his opponents.
Weaknesses – Weak against zoning, poor zoning, lack of low combo starter
Strengths – Highest damage X-Ray, great enhanced specials, builds metre quickly, excellent mix-up game
Due to his membership in the army, Jax is quite a hardened soldier on the battlefield. He is known to show incredible ferocity while staying focused at the same time. Jax’s most prominent attribute is his massive upper body strength.
Jax perfectly combines low and high strikes, which makes it difficult to block him. In the heavy weapons version, he can keep his opponents at a distance.
Weaknesses – Damage to opponents is average, easily zoned without metre
Strengths – Great pressure game, can combo off of almost anything, above average zoning, standing reset
Mileena, half Edenian, half Tarkatan, has proven that she is a deadly combination of beauty and beast. She has been shown to be able to fight with brute strength rivaling that of a Shokan, and has shown an incredible amount of agility and acrobatic prowess.
Mileena represents the style of an assassin and in combat is very agile, and uses the traditional Sai. Thanks to the weapon, she can perform very fast moves.
Weaknesses – No armoured specials, most specials are punishable on block, extremely slow normals
Strengths – Excellent footsies, very fast movement, great pressure game, quick and safe projectile
Sonya’s abilities are vast, mostly based on agility, as well as deadly and impressive due to her Special Forces training. She is very fast in combat, using quick and effective kicks and strikes.
After her training in special forces, she is excellent in melee and, additionally, she can use several gadgets that even James Bond would not be ashamed of. Sonya is as lethal as she is beautiful.
Weaknesses – Struggles against zoning, steep learning curve who is technically challenging
Strengths – Footsies are hard to contend with, great mid-range zoning, good long range zoning with mix-up
D’Vorah’s insect affinity gives her control over several different types of large bugs and winged insects. She can use these bugs for a variety of purposes, from offensive attacks to even sealing wounds.
She has long ranged attacks, due to her additional limbs springing out of her body, while landing strikes. D’Vorah is very versatile, when it comes to keeping her opponents in the air, with juggling.
Weaknesses – High dependency on Swarm Queen for damage, very few defensive options, normals leave her open to attack
Try to practice with as many characters as possible and figure out your fighting style. Having a deeper understanding of a fighter’s strengths and weaknesses will pay off during tough matches.
Based in Toronto, Jon is a proud Canadian who loves all things gaming. He is a veteran of the video game and tech industry who has been in love with technology and gaming for over 20 years. Come say hi and join the conversation with Jon on Twitter.