Mortal Kombat 11: Introduction, Gameplay & Mechanics


Mortal Kombat 11 is NetherRealm Studios’ latest addition to the popular blood-soaking franchise. We see the return of fan-favorites, such as Scorpion and Sub-Zero, as well as the debut of some never-before-seen characters. With a new game comes an entirely new system and mechanics. Here’s a general breakdown on how the game works and all of its new mechanics.


Like all NetherRealm Studios titles, the game is played on a 2-D playing field. Each character has 1000 health points and must deplete their opponent’s health to win the round. You win the match by winning 2 rounds. Characters must use a variety of attacks and perform combos in order to achieve this.

There are also 2 meter gauges displayed at the bottom of the screen, the Offensive Meter and Defensive Meter, each with 2 bars that automatically charge over time. These meters can be used to perform enhanced versions of attacks and allow for certain mechanics to be used.


1. Amplify

Special Moves can be “Amplified” to perform an enhanced version of the move. Amplifying a move generally costs at least 1 bar of Offensive Meter, but can cost 2 bars or use the Defensive Meter as well. To Amplify a move you must press the Interact button after inputting the Special Move.

2. Krushing Blow

Krushing Blows are additional damaging attacks that can only be done after meeting certain requirements. These requirements differ per Krushing Blow. Each Krushing Blow can only be used once per match. To perform a Krushing Blow you must hold the button you used for the move. For example, to do a D2 Krushing Blow you must hold 2 after inputting the D2.

IMPORTANT: By default, Krushing Blows will happen automatically whenever the requirements are met. It is strongly advised to change this setting to HOLD, so that by holding the button down you’ll be able to decide whether you want to use the Krushing Blow or not.

3. Fatal Blow

Fatal Blows are high-damaging attacks that can only be done once your health reaches 30% or lower. Fatal Blows have armor and a large hurtbox which makes them difficult to interrupt or avoid. You can only use one Fatal Blow per match if it hits. To perform a Fatal Blow you must press Stance Switch+Block.

4. Flawless Block

Flawless Block is done by perfectly blocking an attack within 3 frames upon contact. You take reduced chip damage for Flawless Blocking an attack. This also applies to any subsequential follow-up attacks within a string.

After successfully performing a Flawless Block, you can counterattack by either pressing U2 or U3 at the cost of 1 bar of Offensive Meter and 1 bar of Defensive Meter. U2 will launch the opponent for a full combo but does not have armor. On the other hand, U3 will not launch the opponent but does have armor.

5. Getup

A Getup is a move that can be done after being knocked down. There are a few different types of Getups.

Getup Attack — This is a counterattack that can be done by either pressing U2 or U3 at the cost of 1 bar of Offensive Meter and 1 bar of Defensive Meter. U2 will launch the opponent for a full combo but does not have armor. On the other hand, U3 will not launch the opponent but does have armor. Typically, U2 is useful against aerial attacks and U3 is useful against grounded attacks.

Roll Escape — This is a defensive maneuver that allows you to roll forward or away from the opponent at the cost of 1 bar of Defensive Meter. Roll Escapes are armored and can only be beaten with a throw. Roll Escapes can be great against attacks with a lot of recovery as you can roll then whiff punish your opponent. To do a Roll Escape you must press Stance Switch+Left or Right.

Delayed Getup — This lets you stay knocked down for a longer period of time in order to avoid your opponent’s attacks. There are 2 types of Delayed Getups: Short and Long. To do a Delayed Getup you must hold the Stance Switch Button.

6. Quick Jump

A Quick Jump is done by lightly tapping the Up button. Your character will do a short hop and can perform 2 different attacks from it. Quick Jumps are generally good to avoid pokes or moves with a small hitbox. Attacks done from a Quick Jump hit as overheads which can used for mixups when coupled with low attacks.

7. Air Escape

An Air Escape, or Breakaway, is a way to escape a combo at the cost of 2 bars of Defensive Meter. Air Escapes are armored which prevents you from being hit out of them. To perform an Air Escape you must press Down+Block while in a combo.

Understanding the game and learning how to utilize all of the mechanics are essential when playing Mortal Kombat 11. Thanks for reading and I hope this guide proves to be useful for anyone trying to learn the game.

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DalizJeremiahSam FisherinflamesVSM REDRUM Recent comment authors
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Great guide! I appreciate the effort you do to make our initial journey into MK and fighting games more easy 🙂


Love the guides and the effort you put in. Thanks alot.

Nice website.

Sam Fisher
Sam Fisher

Great guides. I’m a beginner at fighting games but planning to get good at MK11


Raptor saving the NRS community


Great stuff


I completely suck at fighting games… butni love mk 11 and want to be good. where should I start.