Way back in 1992, a mere four developers would create one of the most famous fighting game franchises of all time. What was initially conceived as a game starring actor Jean-Claude Van Damme turned into a horror-fantasy fighting game known as Mortal Kombat.
One thing that would set Mortal Kombat apart from other fighting games of the time is they would use live-action characters instead of hand-drawn characters - a carry over from the games initial concept of featuring Jean-Claude Van Damme. To keep costs down and conserve disk space, some of these live-action characters would be palette swapped to use as other characters. One of these simple palette swaps would become on of the most famous characters in the entire franchise - the ninja known as Scorpion.
A veritable plethora of ninja characters have come out of Mortal Kombat - but only three would truly stand the test of time and appear in the most games. Outside of Sub-Zero and Reptile, one of those ninja characters would be Scorpion.
Not only is Scorpion one of the most popular of Mortal Kombat's ninja characters, he's one of the most popular and oldest characters in Mortal Kombat period. He's been used in almost every game released in the franchise over the course of 25 years. When a fictional character has been around for 25 years, they build up quite a bit of history and many details of the character might fly under the radar. In Scorpion's case, there's quite a bit out there that you probably don't know. Keep reading to find out some of the most interesting tidbits of one of Mortal Kombat's most deadly combatants!
15 He's Voiced By The Co-Creator Of Mortal Kombat
It is highly unlikely that there is any phrase in video games more well known than Scorpion's "Getta over here!" when using his kunai to pull his opponent towards him for an uppercut. That famous catchphrase was provided by none over than one of Mortal Kombat's own creators, Ed Boon. Not only was Ed the voice for Scorpion in many of the video games, but he also voiced Scorpion in both the Mortal Kombat movie and its sequel Mortal Kombat: Annihilation - though the physical role in both the games and films would go to other actors.
In addition to lending his voice to Scorpion, Boon lent his name to another character, Noob Saibot. The name of Noob Saibot was created by taking the last names of two of the creators (Ed Boon and John Tobias), spelling them backwards, and putting them together.
14 He's Responsible For Delaying the First Mortal Kombat Film
Mortal Kombat was a highly anticipated film in its day. Back in 1995, video games hadn't quite built up their reputation for being turned into notoriously bad movies. Heck, Mortal Kombat would spawn a sequel, a television series, and an animated series. To this day it's the fifth highest grossing video game movie of all time - beating even the Resident Evil films.
The film was originally supposed to be released in the first quarter of 1995, but there was a hold up that pushed the film to August of 1995. The hold up involved putting more work into the fight scene between Johnny Cage and Scorpion.
13 He Visits DC's Injustice Universe
Many readers might remember the game Mortal Kombat Vs. DC Universe. The game pitted characters from the Mortal Kombat franchise against some of the more popular characters (at the time) from the world of Detective Comics. The DC characters would eventually get their very own fighting game known as Injustice: Gods Among Us.
Injustice had a good deal of DLC, allowing users to add several characters to the already satisfactory roster. While most of these characters were from the DC comic books, we also got one familiar face from outside the world of DC: Mortal Kombat's Scorpion.
Granted, Scorpion wasn't shoe-horned into continuity, his backstory reveals that he had to teleport to the Injustice dimension from the Netherrealm.
12 He Hated Mortal Kombat: Annihilation
Okay. Scorpion himself didn't hate Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. He hasn't seen the film and he has a couple of really good reasons:
The first reason - He's a character in the films. He lives the films.
The second reason - He isn't a real person.
All that being said, someone who practically is Scorpion admitted to hating the second film though. That someone is Scorpion's voice actor and creator, Ed Boon. In an interview with Complex, Ed Boon was asked what his best and worst Mortal Kombat moments were. Boon would cite Mortal Kombat Annihilation as the lowest moment for the famous franchise.
A "3% Rotten" rating on Rotten Tomatoes seems to agree with Boon's sentiment.
11 His Spear Is "Alive?"
Some of you reading this might take issue with this claim. In the games, the spear is most definitely a normal weapon and does not appear to be alive, have sentience, nor does it appear to move in ways that isn't done specifically by Scorpion himself. Fortunately, there are other iterations of the character and the Scorpion of the films most definitely wields a spear that appears to be alive.
In the films, the spear emerges from Scorpion's body as if it's a supernatural power. When the spear comes from Scorpion's wrist, it has definite biological features. It seems to make some kind of animal-like noise, it snaps its jaws, and seems to be able to move in directions that it chooses, as if it's seeking out its prey.
10 He And His Mortal Enemy Are One And The Same
Scorpion and Sub-Zero are most definitely not the same character in terms of Mortal Kombat's story. In that regard they are different people. While they may not be the same person wearing a different costume in the fictional world, in the real world they have been portrayed by the same person on a number of occasions.
In the first two games, both Sub-Zero and Scorpion were played by actor Daniel Pesina. In Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and Mortal Kombat 4, the role for Sub-Zero and Scorpion would go to John Turk.
As time went on, the characters would be created by designers and live actors and actresses would no longer be used.
9 He's Deeply Concerned With Conserving Disk Space
There's actually a good reason Scorpion and the ninja characters from the Mortal Kombat series were all played by one actor: they were really just palette changes of the same character. This allowed the creators to conserve disk space and avoid making completely new designs for all the characters.
A number of fighting games used this method of palette swapping at the time. Street Fighter's Ryu and Ken were palette swaps, but they were given different heads to look more distinguishable. Ken and Ryu had all the same moves as each other. Even the execution of their moves were the same. Mortal Kombat, on the other hand, made sure to give each character their own moves, making them seem more unique to players.
8 He And Reptile (Used To Be) Twins
As we've said before, the ninja characters in the early days of Mortal Kombat were all played by the same individual and their different colors were just the developers using palette swaps to get more out of what they had. In the first game, the green palette swap known as Reptile could be unlocked as a hidden bonus character, but could not be played by the player. This early version of Reptile was not the reptilian creature we know today. That look became increasingly reptilian as time went on.
In the first game, Reptile had a combination of moves borrowed from both Sub-Zero and Scorpion. This means that the first version of Reptile would take off his mask and reveal the same exact skull head as Scorpion.
7 He's Secretly Johnny Cage
In addition to the same actor playing the ninja characters throughout the early installments of Mortal Kombat, sometimes actors would play multiple characters. This wasn't just relegated to the games. To save money, the film Mortal Kombat Annihilation would cast one actor in two or more roles.
In the first two Mortal Kombat games, a similar tactic was used. Daniel Pesina didn't just play Scorpion and Sub-Zero because they were a palette swap, he also played Johnny Cage. If you ever wondered what Scorpion would look like if he didn't have a skull for a head, just think of Johnny Cage.
6 He's Already Dead
Scorpion has a major advantage over all the opponents he faces in the deadly tournament known as Mortal Kombat - he can't be killed. He's already dead and relegated to Hell. Well, not quite Hell. Later it would be referred to as the Netherrealm. Despite specifying that Scorpion isn't actually from Hell, his supernatural fire is still known as hellfire. Regardless of what you want to call it, Scorpion is most definitely dead and living in some sort of other plane.
Theoretically, there is only one way an opponent could permanently kill Scorpion in a Mortal Kombat tournament and that would be to use an ability that would destroy his actual soul.
5 His Own Abilities Can Destroy Him
Outside of an opponent using a soul destroying ability, there is one other way that Scorpion could be permanently killed. This additional way of vanquishing Scorpion's soul has to be done by Scorpion himself.
The supernatural fire that Scorpion wields is extremely deadly and can increase in power the longer Scorpion remains in the Netherrealm. This power is unleashed by reliving his greatest shame or witnessing the suffering of his allies. The power can rise within him to such an extent that he can go toe to toe with deities like Raiden. The only problem here is the more Scorpion uses the hellfire, it becomes increasingly more able to consume his soul and burn out his very existence.
4 He's A Basketball Player
Many years ago, one of the greatest sports games around was known as NBA Jam. One of the coolest things players could do in NBA Jam was enter in specific initials to unlock all sorts of different characters that weren't in the game. These characters were sometimes other NBA players that hadn't made it into the game (as it was two-on-two as opposed to full teams), faces from politics like Bill Clinton and Al Gore, athletes from other sports, mascots complete with big foam heads, and the game developers.
A second version was released called NBA Jam Tournament Edition and this version had even more characters. Early versions of the game allowed the player to shoot hoops as Raiden, Reptile, Scorpion, and Sub-Zero. These players were eventually removed by the request of the NBA. This is probably because they didn't want their brand associated with characters from such a violent franchise.
3 He Has Beef With The Power Rangers
The YouTube channel Bat in the Sun features a relatively popular series known as Super Power Beat Down. In this series, two characters from two different franchises would come together to clash, fully realizing old schoolyard debates of "which superhero would win in a fight?" Bat in the Sun takes these arguments to the next level by making incredibly accurate costumes for the characters, sometimes even getting the original actors to take on the roles. Two endings are shot, one with each combatant winning and the ending that gets used on the channel is decided on by fan vote.
In one of the more hyped episodes, Scorpion battles it out with the White Ranger (played by original Ranger Jason David Frank) from Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. At the beginning of the video, Scorpion is intimidating a woman into telling him where he can find the White Ranger, insinuating the two titans developed beef outside of their franchises.
2 He's A Workaholic
Out of all the characters in Mortal Kombat, with the sole exception of Sub-Zero, Scorpion has made the most appearances in the franchise. In the entire history of the series, Scorpion didn't show up to work only a single time - and even then it was eventually rectified.
The only Mortal Kombat game that didn't include Scorpion in some capacity was Mortal Kombat 3. Developers thought it might be a good idea to leave a few characters out so they could introduce some new characters. This turned out to be a bad idea as players loved some of the original characters that were left out - and they down right hated new characters like Stryker.
Eventually an updated version of Mortal Kombat 3 would be released called Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3. This version would have Scorpion coming back to work at Midway.
1 He Hates Spammers
Players aren't the only one's who can get annoyed by another player who spams the same move over and over again. Scorpion gets a little peeved by the practice as well. In the versus mode of Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Scorpion will change his tune if you keep using his famous spear move enough consecutive times.
As we all know, Scorpion yells, "Get over here!" or "Come here!" when he uses his spear to pull an opponent towards him. In Shaolin Monks, Scorpion will eventually start swearing if the move is used enough times. Instead of his classic catchphrases, he'll begin to show his frustration with the move and change it up to "Get the f***over here!" or "Get over here, b****!"
On the other hand...this could entice players to spam even more.