For me and many others in their twenties and thirties, Midway’s Arcade Treasures 2 is a very special title. It harkens back to the times when arcades were the place to hang out and meet up with friends and make new ones while playing some of the best video games of the time. The arcades is where the Mortal Kombat franchise started and has built such a strong following that is evident by the perennial financial success of each iteration of the series. At E3, the first Mortal Kombat was fully playable along with N.A.R.C. and Total Carnage. Personally I spent a long time playing Mortal Kombat and quite honestly it brought back many fond memories of the arcade I used to frequent on what seemed to be back then an almost daily occurrence. Because the games in Midway’s Arcade Treasures 2 are emulated from their arcade counterparts, everything is faithfully represented, including the bugs that remained in the final revisions. I found myself recalling old tactics learned back when the game was in the arcades, along with foolishly trying to reverse flip-kick over ‘turtling’ opponents, which didn’t exist until Mortal Kombat II.
For arcade quality renditions of previous Mortal Kombat games, fans have had to resort to either emulating illegal copies of the game’s ROM, or go the legit route and buy it from an online auction (spending upwards of $50 on an original game board and countless other parts needed to make a workable controller and display device). Now, with Arcade Treasures 2, all of the hassles have been eliminated with one disc. It is amazing how many great arcade games are included on the disc. Midway alone could have released 3 or 4 collections based on the library but have elected to include many of the most popular and highest money earners all on one collection. At $20, there is absolutely no reason why anyone who had ever set foot in an arcade during the late-eighties and early to mid-nineties should not buy this game. This is an automatic buy for anyone that has a Xbox or PlayStation 2.