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AgentMOO avatar 10:38 AM on 12.09.2007  (server time)
Prof. Moo's Gaming History Lesson: Why wasn't Johnny Cage in MK3?

Gather around little robots, because it's time for a video game history lesson. Back when Mortal Kombat 3 came out in the arcades, it was a stark contrast from the series past. The game shifted drastically from eastern martial arts themes to post-apocalyptic western ones. The most obvious difference pops out at the character select screen; there were no longer human pallete swapped ninjas, and Sub zero looked like a shirtless wall street tycoon.

Now you may ask, why were the human ninjas, Johnny Cage, and Raiden missing from the original MK3 lineup? What a good question, and I'll be glad to answer with a trip down arcade controversy lane.

For starters, Dan Pesina, the actor who plays Reptile, Scorpion, Classic Sub-Zero and Johnny cage was fired from Midway after appearing in this advertising gem:

(Wouldn't you fire him too?)

Raiden was played by Dan's brother Carlos, and at the time they were both working on the competing game, Data East's Tattoo Assassins. This game was surprisingly never released, despite having the "nudalities" that were rumored to be in the Mortal Kombat series. Among the characters was a period-humor tonya harding knock-off, classy.

Things stabalized a bit once Midway Released Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3. In the updated version, John Turk, the actor who played Stock Broker Sub-Zero and Young Shang Tsung filled the role of the pallete swap ninjas. When Mortal Kombat Trilogy was released, Carlos Pesina returned to fill Raiden's shooes and cool hat, while John Turk did a Crotch Punch-less Johnny Cage. The Crotch punch was missing because Midaway didn't want to record the animation for all of the MK3 characters.

Well I hope y'all enjoyed that, time for me to go do some cheap smoke teleport spear combos on XBOX Live in UMK3. Oh, I kid, or do I?

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