Dance Dance Mortal Kombat (MKDDR)

Dance Dance Mortal Kombat Flyer

Dance Dance Mortal Kombat or MKDDR is a game mashup based on the odd mashup of Mortal Kombat II by Acclaim and Midway and Konami’s Dance Dance Revolution. The Mortal Kombat franchise gained notoriety in the early 90s for its graphical depictions of violence against realistic images of people. That said, looking back at this arcade game from the 16-bit era, not only seems mild by today’s standards, but carries with it a campy charm of humor and nostalgia. Dance Dance Revolution is anything but dark and gritty. It is a pop game, brightly colored with highly animated cartoonish characters that never leave their dance club made of neon and sugar.

What both games have in common is that they act as two player head to head tournaments. They also both rely on sequences and timing as fundamental mechanics. MKDDR is a fighting game played on a dance pad. Naysayers would say that’s impossible. However, because the game is played head to head you only have to be better than your opponent. Furthermore, because the special moves in MK are primarily sequential rather than combinational they translate quite well to rhythm game style dance.

Mortal Kombat Dance Dance to the Death tournaments have been held amongst students of the Cadre Laboratory for New Media as well as the Game Development Club at San Jose State. During these events one can witness the progression of novice to master. What initially is intended as a subversive interface quickly becomes almost second nature. The dance moves required to pull off special attacks in Mortal Kombat have manifest themselves quite poetically. Raiden’s torpedo move requires quickly hopping from one side of the pad to the other. Johnny Cage’s nut cracker actually requires doing the splits. I still have yet to see someone pull off a fatality.

Special thanks to: James Morgan, the Destructoid community, SJSU Game Dev, and CADRE


button config - tri:A sqr:B X:X O:Y slct:L

Currently MKDDR is touring the bay area. If you would like to host your own competition you can either contact me or build your own. Its easy!

  • a mid-range mac or pc, doesn't have to be to fancy
  • SNES emulator software. I use snes9x.
  • a Mortal Kombat II rom
  • 2 DDR dance pads
  • a usb to playstation adapter (or just get USB dance pads)
  • for big crowds, a projector is recommended
  • for noobs, print out a moves list

I found this to be the optimal button mapping configuration.


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John Bruneau 2023