Mortal Kombat co-creator Ed Boon tweeted out a behind-the-scenes video today. It was taken during the original Mortal Kombat’s development showing how Scorpion’s iconic spear-throw came to be. “2021 marks 30 years since we actually BEGAN working on [Mortal Kombat]. To celebrate, it seemed like a fun idea to share some behind-the-scenes stuff,” said Boon on Twitter.
The video features martial artist Daniel Pesina, who performed motion capture for many Mortal Kombat characters in the series’ early days, in costume as Scorpion being directed by Ed Boon and John Tobias. After Pesina performs one of Scorpion’s animations, Boon throws out an idea for a “cool-ass move” involving a rope with a pointed end used to pull players across the stage. The actor’s first few attempts at Scorpion’s signature technique look slightly different from its final version, but by the end of the clip, he’s got it down pat.
In a Twitter thread accompanying the video, Boon elaborated on some of the spear throw’s complexities. “[The spear] had to be quick so [Scorpion] could catch opponents by surprise,” said Boon, who also stated that the chest-level path for the spear was chosen to allow ducking opponents to avoid it.
Boon also touched on the memory issues caused by this move’s inclusion and how Midway worked around them. “We were so tight on memory, that we didn’t even capture any motions for [Scorpion’s victims’] reactions. Instead, we borrowed from their existing animation frames,” said the Mortal Kombat co-creator.
Boon concluded his reflection with a small tease that he’s hoping to release more behind-the-scenes clips from Mortal Kombat’s history leading up to the series’ 30th anniversary in 2022.
Boon is currently creative director at NetherRealm Studios, which is known for the Mortal Kombat and Injustice series. NetherRealm announced earlier this year that it would be ceasing development on DLC for Mortal Kombat 11 to pursue a new project. At the time of writing, it’s unknown what this new project is.