Five key abilities that make characters top tier in Mortal Kombat 11

Which tools matter most?

Posted by John 'Velociraptor' Guerrero • May 16, 2019 at 7:40 a.m. PDT

We're trying our hardest to wrap our minds around NetherRealm Studios' latest entry into the Mortal Kombat franchise, and while we've certainly gotten some opinions on MK11's tier orderings, it's arguably more beneficial to know what kinds of tools make a character top tier in this particular atmosphere.

Offense, defense, movement speed, health... there are many universal traits that benefit characters across most all fighting games. That said, it very much varies from game to game as to which particular tools and categories are most efficient. Mortal Kombat 11's emphasis on rushdown offense and neutral game spacing are key factors here.

True Under Dawg Gaming has put together a video showcasing the top five strengths for kombatants to have when throwing down, which works to give us a better idea as to why fighters like Geras and Sub-Zero are thriving while Kotal Kahn and D'Vorah trail the pack.

Developers made a direct effort to ensure this Kombat entry be more about neutral game spacing and movement than ever before, and to help achieve this they did away with the run mechanic and nixed almost all armored attacks. The result is still a very offense-heavy experience, but certainly less so than any other MK in recent times.

Players are still innately encouraged to go for the throat as the rewards of attacking often outweigh the risks, but thoughtful neutral practices quickly emerge as a beneficial as keeping your foes out of their "sweet spot" positions (where they can freely go on the attack) becomes key.

This takes us to the first of True Under Dawg's five strengths: being a threat from any distance. Some characters absolutely must be up close and personal or very far away to get their go-to game plans started; fighters such as Geras do not.

Kronika's lackey has a worth while threat in his Sand Trap attack as it can be done from most any distance and then leads into very advantageous situations on hit. Geras is happy to be up close, at sweep range, or very far; it makes no difference to him.

While other characters will be spending time and mental effort navigating the arena trying to find the sweet spot, Geras (and other top tiers) often get to skip this step entirely. True Under Dawg has even more to say on this particular strength as well as four others in the full video here. Check it out and let us know what you think in the comments after.

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