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Every Mode in Mortal Kombat 1 Explained

All Mortal Kombat 1 Game Modes Explained - Kampaign, Versus, & Learn

Sebastian Quintanilla
9 min

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From the Kampaign, to Invasions, towers, online and tournament mode, here is every mode in Mortal Kombat 1 explained

Mortal Kombat 1 currently features three main game modes, each with its own sub-sections. Allowing you to either play the game on your own as a single-player experience, against other online or locally, or practice each character, their combos, and fatalities. In this article, you will find an explanation of each mode and the rewards you can expect from them.

All these Mortal Kombat 1 game modes are accessible the moment you start the game, so you can freely jump into each one.


First is the Kampaign, Mortal Kombat 1's single-player content. Remember that although you can play the Story and Tower modes offline, you will need an internet connection to play through Invasions, as it needs to connect to NRS servers to verify your progression.

It's worth noting that, across all game modes, you will earn experience for your Account, Fighter, and Kameo Fighter, including in single-player. Every five Account levels, you will unlock a new Kameo Fighter until level 25. You will also receive new cosmetic drop for every level of your Fighter and Kameo. So playing through a fight-intense gauntlet like the Towers can help you speed up the unlocking process. Just keep in mind that XP also scales with the selected difficulty.


The Story mode is divided into 15 chapters across 4 acts. In each you will play as one character from the roster and participate in at least four fights as that character, and up to six, except for the final chapter in the story. We won't spoil any of the story here, as we highly recommend you spend the time playing through it, perhaps more than once even. Invasions does contain soft spoilers for the main story, so you will want to complete the story first before diving deep into it.

Know that depending on the difficulty selected and your own abilities as a fighter, you might be looking at anywhere from 4 to 12 hours to play through the whole game. The nature of the chapters makes it easier to play through them like mini-series episodes, with each chapter taking up roughly 20 to 30 minutes to play through if you take your time and watch all the cutscenes.


Mortal Kombat 1's seasonal free content. All players can play through the mode, earning seasonal rewards, some of which will be unique and will not be available again until and only if that Invasion returns in a later season. All Invasions have at least two areas, called mesas. Each has its own tabletop-like overworld, where you can travel between nodes. Some nodes contain fights, other treasure, minigames, etc. Virtually all of them contain secrets too.

Invasions can be more challenging than either of the other single-player modes, as it does not have a difficulty level to start. But because of its more RPG-like systems, you can level up over time, grind out fights, and discover new Relics and Amulets that make your traversal through them easier. The maximum level is 30 and all your fighters level alongside you, so you can freely change anytime. It's also worth noting that your level will be reset when a new Invasion comes out.

During your travels in Invasions, you will collect Krowns, a currency that can be used to buy things from the Kollector. As well as komponents, used in crafting Amulets and Relics. Through leveling up, you will have the opportunity to assign Stat Points; these improve your character. You can choose to assign these points manually or let the game assign them for you. Each character has their own stat points.

After Unlocking the Shop and Forge in the mesa you are currently on, you will be able to visit them from the pause menu, no need to backtrack for those. However, you will need to trace your step for some of the chests in each mesa, as most of the time they will be locked behind some other node.

Finally, fights in Invasions can be quite a challenge since many include modifiers that will increase their difficulty and which you can cleanse via kosumables. There is also a counter system, with each character in the roster having one or more elements, which means they are both resistant and vulnerable to other elements. This will push you to switch between different fighters to maximize your potential.


We highly recommend you complete the main story before heading into the Towers. Though they do not contain too many spoilers, each character has a different ending for theirs. Many reference events from the story or soon after its ending, and thus, it is best if you are caught up to speed with Mortal Kombat 1's ending.

Like the Story Kampaign, you can select your difficulty level, allowing you to complete them much more easily. You only need to complete one of the towers to unlock the cinematic for the character you used to do it.


Versus is the main mode you will use to play against other players. Be it the offline Local mode, against opponents all over the world in online, or through ingame tournament matches in Tournament mode. Like in the Single-player modes, by playing in matches you will earn experience towards your chosen fighter and Kameo, as well as your account overall.


Local mode is very straightforward, allowing you and another player to play a match on the same console or PC. You will need at least two inputs, but you can use multiple different controllers, such as an Xbox controller and a keyboard on PC.


Unlike other MK1 game modes, Online is further divided into three separate modes. Ranked matches will pair you with opponents of equal skill across your rank. As you play, and hopefully win, you will rank up and add points to your Kombat League progression, eventually unlocking the full rewards for that League. As it happens, the League will run as long as the Invasion for that season does, so you can earn unique rewards for both.

Kasual mode allows you to take the pressure of ranking up away, as it will simply match you with other players, although still taking into account your actual skill. Within it you will also find King of The Hill, which puts you in a list of players, with each taking turns trying to defeat the current leader. Finally, you have Private mode, here you can create a closed lobby for you and your friends to play either 1v1, or King of the Hill mode matches.


The third mode within Versus is Tournament mode, this is especially useful for those looking to play or even host a tournament for Mortal Kombat, as it allows you to have a unified ruleset for the game, which can be edited from the settings menu, and it also turns off the start and selects button ingame, meaning no chance to pause the action accidentally. 


Finally, there is Learn, and inside it there are three Mortal Kombat 1 modes to help you understand the game, learn basic kombos, and finally, try out what you've been learning in practice mode. Unlike the other modes, you won't be earning rewards from fights. However, some of these do have rewards for completing them.


Practice is the simplest of the three. This mode allows you to select your and your opponent's character, which you can hand over to the CPU as well, and play a match. From inside practice mode you can also change a number of settings to create specific scenarios. Including the ability to record inputs for the CPU to repeat, change the health levels, Kameos charge, add frame data indicators, and much more. You can also let the game know it should remember those settings via a toggle on the pause menu, allowing you to return to your practice in the future.


This is a series of scenarios made by NRS to help you learn the ropes of how Mortal Kombat 1 is played, from the very basics all the way up to challenges. Completing these tutorials will also give you some extra Koins, which you can use to obtain randomized rewards at the Shrine.


This last mode simply gives you the opportunity to practice Fatalities repeatedly. The mode with the option to be timed or not, as well as highlighting the correct distance and inputs you need to do to trigger them. You can also check your finisher anytime from the move list screen in Practice mode.

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