Sub-Zero and Scorpion have been in more Mortal Kombat games than almost any other character on the roster. It was no surprise when the first teaser trailer for Mortal Kombat X featured the two eternal rivals fighting to the death, though there were probably more than a few fans disappointed in the outcome. Still, Sub-Zero lives on in MKX and has three fighting styles to choose from, just like the other characters in the game.
The first fighting style is Cryomancer. If you select this fighting style, you have access to a variety of ice-based weaponry. Some of these weapons are restricted to use during combos, while others can be used at will. However, while most characters retain their trademark attacks in every fighting style, Sub-Zero loses his Ice Clone in all but one style. He still has his normal ice projectile attack, but the Ice Clone has been a mainstay for Sub-Zero throughout the series. The numerous ice weapons will benefit Sub-Zero, but it’s a bit too early to determine if the loss of the Ice Clone will make the other two fighting styles subpar.
Sub-Zero’s second fighting style is Unbreakable. In this style, Sub-Zero has a parry (Ice Parry) and armor (Ice Aura). The armor allows Sub-Zero to reduce damage inflicted by an opponent’s attacks. It’s unknown if this is only when an attack connects, or if this also includes chip (block) damage. Mortal Kombat is widely known as one of the few fighting games in which normal attacks cause minor damage (in most other games only special moves inflict damage when blocked). If the Ice Aura reduces all damage, this could be a huge advantage for Sub-Zero, especially against characters that attack with constant pressure.
The final fighting style for Sub-Zero is the Grand Master style. This is the only fighting style which gives Sub-Zero access to his Ice Clone. A new trick in Mortal Kombat X is that Sub-Zero can actually throw his Ice Clone at an opponent like a projectile attack. Given the sheer size of the Ice Clone, it’s much more difficult to evade compared to Sub-Zero’s normal ice projectile attack.
From what we’ve seen, the ability to dash and immediately block, which was a technique used in competitive play, is no longer in MKX. With that removed, it makes the Ice Clone considerably stronger than it was in past MK titles. It’s no longer possible to dash toward an Ice Clone and cancel the dash into a block to break the clone without being frozen. This gives a patient Sub-Zero player a hand up on the competition, as it will be harder to approach him. Of course, anything could change between now and the 2015 release date for Mortal Kombat X, so stay tuned to Prima Games!