Mortal Kombat 1 Developer Shoots Down Appearance of Cole Young (Exclusive)

It sounds like Cole Young, the central protagonist of the 2021 Mortal Kombat movie, won't be showing up in NetherRealm's Mortal Kombat 1. Since the announcement of MK1 just a few weeks back, fans have been wondering and theorizing about the roster of characters that will be seen in the latest Mortal Kombat installment. Young has been one character brought up by the Mortal Kombat community quite often as many have been wondering if NetherRealm would look to incorporate the original character seen in the MK movie within a mainline video game. As it turns out, though, it sounds like NetherRealm is very much content with keeping Young confined to the Mortal Kombat film universe. 

In a new discussion with at Summer Game Fest, we asked NetherRealm's Lead Systems Designer Derek Kirtzic about the possibility of seeing Cole Young join the roster in Mortal Kombat 1. After all, Young's inclusion in the expansive Mortal Kombat canon came about after the release of Mortal Kombat 11, which means MK1 is the first instance in which NetherRealm could choose to add him to a game. Despite this, it doesn't seem like NetherRealm is all that interested in seeing Young appear in its rebooted entry in the series. 

"We're leaving that world to that world," Kirtzic said simply when asked about Young showing up in Mortal Kombat 1. Kirtzic clearly didn't want to say much else on the topic other than this, but his statement still makes it quite clear that NetherRealm has no intention of bringing Young into the Mortal Kombat games for the time being. 

Even though Cole seemingly won't be on the roster in Mortal Kombat 1, that doesn't mean the character is done away with forever. Currently, a sequel to the 2021 Mortal Kombat movie is in production and will see Young's return to the big screen. Mortal Kombat 2 doesn't have a specific release date at this point in time, but given that filming is supposedly kicking off this month, it seems like we should learn more before 2023 comes to a close. 

And as for Mortal Kombat 1, the next video game installment in the series will drop later this year on September 19 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch, and PC. To see more of what we think about MK1, you can check out our hands-on preview of the game right here