Goro's Lair is a stage that made its debut in Mortal Kombat. This lair is home to the Grand Champion Goro, where he battles the player in the first Mortal Kombat game. Shang Tsung also watches Goro's battles, for should he fail, Shang Tsung will intervene and battle as soon as Goro is defeated. In Mortal Kombat II, Goro's Lair appears in an abandoned state, since neither Goro or Shang Tsung can be found there any longer. Fights with hidden characters take place here, as a non-unlockable secret stage. It also returns in Mortal Kombat 4 and Mortal Kombat Gold, with the addition of rocks scattered around the arena and spikes on the roof of the stage, which players can uppercut their opponents into for a Stage Fatality. In Mortal Kombat 9, fights with Goro and Kintaro take place on this stage.
A stage with stone walls and several dark passageways; human bones are scattered on the floor and a skeleton hangs from a few shackles at the center of the arena. Many pairs of glowing yellow eyes appear and occasionally blink in the dark portions of the back area. Normally, Goro's Lair appears in the stage cycle between the Throne Room and Courtyard stages, but sometimes, seemingly at random, it is skipped. In 1-player mode, the last three battles in the arcade ladder (all fights after the third and final "Test Your Might" bonus round) take place here. This includes the third Endurance match and the boss battles against Goro and Shang Tsung.
Mortal Kombat II
In MKII, it appears only when players fight against the secret characters Jade, Smoke and Noob Saibot. When a task is completed as in the case of Noob Saibot completing 50 consecutive wins, there is a legend that says the character returns from Outworld to Earthrealm to fight against him. However, in the version of the game for Sega Genesis, this stage was replaced with a blue version of the stage Portal, where you can find several Shadow Priests in scarlet clothes levitating.
Mortal Kombat Trilogy
In Mortal Kombat Trilogy, this stage was used for the opening of the history of the game.
In the Nintendo 64 version of Mortal Kombat Trilogy, the Armory is located above Goro's Lair, and players can uppercut opponents there and from there to the Kombat Tomb. Curiously, Goro's Lair is canonically known to be located in Earthrealm, whereas both The Tomb and Armory are in Outworld. The possibility exists that the Lair is linked to the Armory in Outworld via a portal, similar to how Scorpion's Lair in Netherrealm leads to Kahn's Kave.
Mortal Kombat 4
Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks
In Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Goro's Lair is actually made up of several rooms and dungeons, and it houses vicious Onis. The lair is even shown with a statue of Goro and a caged door leading directly into his lair.
Goro's Lair is the first stage of the game and it is here where the story of Liu Kang and Kung Lao begins, as they must get off of Shang Tsung's island. At the beginning, players must navigate the entire lair to the portal where they leave the island. The main enemies, which in this stage are the Oni, the player has to finish to move forward in the game. In this part of the game you will also find other enemies such as Reptile; you will not be able to fight him yet, as he will manage to escape. This is also where players perform their first Fatality. In addition to the Oni you will also face off against a huge Oni Warlord, which will appear near the end of the stage at the bottom of the pit. The player will need to defeat the Oni Warlord in order to obtain the ability to Super jump. The last defense of the portal are two Masked Guards.
Mortal Kombat: Armageddon
In Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, Goro's Lair is a multi-tiered arena. Players can knock their opponent either upwards into another chamber, or through the various surrounding gates. The chamber the player ends up in is nearly identical to the primary chamber, but with less wall decoration (while maintaining an infinite number of cells a player can be knocked through).
Mortal Kombat (2011)
In Mortal Kombat (2011), Goro's Lair is grittier and more detailed than before, though it strongly resembles its appearance in Shaolin Monks. This time around, the Shokan prince can be seen sitting in his own throne, watching in amusement. Goro will also roar if an uppercut is landed successfully. A very dim light enters his lair above him, and dead or near dead chained bodies hang on the wall (possibly there to watch, if alive). This is where players will fight either Goro or Kintaro in the Arcade Ladder.
Mortal Kombat 11
In Mortal Kombat 11, Goro's Lair returns as a stage. Though visually appearing more or less unaffected by the ravages of time compared to the rest of the locations in Shang Tsung's Island, the badly decayed body of Goro rests upon his throne, with various dead oni littering the arena as well, though the eyes of creatures hidden in the shadows can still be seen. Dozens of lit candles line the floor along with lit torches mounted on the support pillars, while hundreds of bones and skulls litter the ground, the remains of countless unfortunate victims.
The arena features four stage interactions, which from the farthest left to right are as follows:
- The wall along the end of the left section of the stage can be run up off of to escape the corner.
- Two pillars lining the far right side past Goro's throne can be jumped off of.
- The large skull of a long dead beast can be thrown at the opponent.
- This arena is based on the cave from Big Trouble in Little China (1986).
- This is one of the 6 stages connected with other stages in Mortal Kombat: Trilogy.
- In the original Mortal Kombat (arcade version), fights staged in Goro's Lair are set to the music from the Warrior Shrine, except the final three battles in 1-player mode: the last Endurance battle and the fight with Goro feature Goro's theme, while the final battle against Shang Tsung is set to the Throne Room's music. In the attract mode, Goro's theme is used exclusively for Goro's bio.
- In MKII, this stage is where players fight the secret characters: Jade, Smoke and Noob Saibot.
- In MK9, the Goro on the throne is physically very different from the Goro whom you fight against.
- The Goro of the first film is seen in conceptual art.
- Appearing in Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat II, Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Mortal Kombat 4, Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, and Mortal Kombat (2011) and Mortal Kombat 11, Goro's Lair is the most recurring arena in the series, for having appeared in more Mortal Kombat games than any other arena.
- Goro's Lair arena theme from MK (arcade version) was also used for MK4's Goro's Lair.
- In Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, you can go back through the portals as often as you want, although Raiden claimed the island was sinking into the sea.
- In Mortal Kombat (2011), if the player can manage to reach Shang Tsung without having lost a single round, win the fight with a Double Flawless Victory, and perform a Fatality on Shang Tsung in his elder form, the player will fight Classic Jade.
- In Mortal Kombat II and Mortal Kombat Trilogy, the evil yellow eyes in the background were removed.
- Mortal Kombat 4/Gold is the only game where Goro's Lair has a Stage Fatality.
- The arcade area in NetherRealm Studios is nicknamed Goro's Lair.
- Goro's Lair appears in the cartoon movie Mortal Kombat Legends: Scorpion's Revenge, where Motaro, TaiGore, Tarkatan, Saurian and other demons fight Sonya Blade and Johnny Cage.