Kintaro is a character from the Mortal Kombat fighting game series. He made his debut in Mortal Kombat II as the game's sub-boss and became playable in Mortal Kombat Trilogy. In Mortal Kombat (2011) Kintaro returns as a sub-boss for the game and carries a more important role in the game's storyline, presenting himself as the one that burnt Kabal.
Kintaro replaced Goro after Goro was defeated by Liu Kang in Mortal Kombat. He is the only member of his race seen thus far to have unique features. Unlike Goro and Sheeva, Kintaro has tiger striped markings all over his body as well as sharp fangs, claws and feline-like feet. According to his Mortal Kombat (2011) bio, this is indicative of the lower-class Tigrar clan of Shokan, differing from the more elite-class Draco clan that Goro and Sheeva belong to, so there are likely more of his kind out there. It should be noted that in each new game, his feline features stand out more than the last.
Kintaro has a very violent nature and is very short tempered. Unlike his brethren, Kintaro hails from a subspecies specializing in savagery. He rarely speaks throughout the series and normally displays his anger and power through loud roars.
Kintaro was originally going to be a playable character (a tall anthropomorphic tiger with two arms). While his size would not be a problem (all the playable characters were digitally resized to be the same height), the impending difficulty of creating an extensively detailed fur-lined costume, however, led to Midway's revamping of the character into the game's four-armed boss in the same way as Goro.
Kintaro's appearance since Mortal Kombat II has shifted, with Kintaro growing closer to the initial tiger appearance drawn by Midway; he is distinguished from other Shokan by having true feline features (actual fur, digitigrade feet, fangs and a distinctly feline nose). His unique features, which differentiate him from other Shokan, are explained by the fact that he descends from a rare and ancient family lineage, known for its brutality.
For Armageddon, Kintaro's tiger appearance was played to the hilt, including his weapons: his Saber Teeth resemble (in both looks and name) the oversized fangs of the smilodon, or "sabertoothed tiger", and both it and his other concept weapon design (a set of circular gauntlet-mounted blades known as the "Tiger Claws") have a distinct tiger's eye jewel embedded in their center. In fact, one of the concept renders of his weapon actually makes a reference to the Survivor song Eye of the Tiger when noting the jewel, encouraging players to "blast it loud and hard" while playing.
For a long time after his introduction, he was seen as one of the hardest bosses in all of the Mortal Kombat series. This was because he was able to grab someone in mid-attack and throw him or her to the ground, usually followed by a teleport-stomp. He also shot up to three fireballs at a time. The extreme difficulty in defeating him was enough to provoke a comment from Video Games magazine, in their 1993 review of the home versions of MKII, that Kintaro was "the hardest fighting game boss ever...He doesn't just beat you; he kicks your ass."
Shang Tsung had a Fatality in Mortal Kombat II where he morphed into Kintaro and punched the opponent's upper-body clean across the screen. This has been noted as the hardest Fatality to pull off in Mortal Kombat as it requires you to win your final round while holding low punch through the entire fight, then releasing it two seconds after the end of the round. This is the only time Kintaro was featured in a finisher in the Mortal Kombat series prior to Shaolin Monks. This exact same Fatality can be seen if the player is defeated enough times while battling against Kintaro.
When a player is defeated by Kintaro in Kahn's Arena, after Shao Kahn says "Kintaro Wins", the crowd cheers.
Powers and abilities
Like any other Shokan, Kintaro boasts brute strength, stamina and prowess. Unlike his brethren, Kintaro hails from a subspecies specializing in savagery. Combined with savage style of kombat and mercilessness makes him one of the most lethal kombatants on the battleground. Other than that, he shares similar powers to Goro, but is considerably more nimble.
- Fireball / Fiery Hands: Kintaro shoots a flaming fireball out of his mouth. (MKII, MKT, MK:SM, MK:A, MK 2011)
- Ground Fireball: Kintaro shoots a fireball directly to the ground. (MK 2011)
- Flame Breath: Kintaro breathes a short stream of fire from his mouth. (MK 2011)
- Rapid Fireball: Kintaro shoots multiple red fireballs from his mouth in succession. (MKII, MKT, MK:SM)
- Teleport Stomp: Kintaro jumps off screen and comes crashing down with all his weight. (MKII, MKT, MK:SM, MK 2011)
- Grab and Pound: Grabbing his opponent with his lower arms, Kintaro pounds them with his upper arms, shaving off a good portion of his opponent's life. (MK:SM, MK:A)
- Shokan Roar: Kintaro roars, making him vulnerable (or healing in Armageddon). In Shaolin Monks, he does this move before a teleport stomp, and he is vulnerable to attacks when he roars. In MK 2011, he roars if his teleport stomp misses and even after his X-Ray.(MKII, MKT, MK:SM, MK:A, MK 2011)
- Four-Armed Grab: Kintaro grabs his opponent with all four arms and smashes him overhead. He can also grab his opponent while in mid-air. (MKII, MKT, MK:A, MK 2011)
- Breath: Kintaro inhales deeply, dragging the opponent in and, if they are caught, he will do Four-Armed Grab and smash their overhead. (MK:A)
- Anti-Air Grab: Kintaro grabs the opponent while airborne, flips them over and breaks their back over his knee. (MK 2011)
- X-Ray Move - Shokan Smash: Kintaro punches the opponent in the chest with his lower arms, breaking their ribs. He then punches the opponent on both sides of their head, crushing their skull. He picks them up by their face and punches them in the side of the head, shattering their jaw and further damaging the skull. (MK 2011)
- Quad Rip: Kintaro grabs his opponent with each of his arms. He then begins to pull outwards, eventually ripping the opponent into four pieces. (MK 2011)
- Reverse Rip: Kintaro turns the enemy around, grabs their arms and head. He rips off the arms and head, and breaks the head into two pieces. (MK 2011)
- Babality: Kintaro becomes a baby kitty with a bowl of milk in front of him, he crawls on all six to it and begins to meow and drink the milk, while purring away. (MK 2011)
Kintaro's fate after MKII
There has been much debate over what happened to Kintaro after the events of Mortal Kombat II. It was mentioned in The Ultimate Guide to Mortal Kombat CD-ROM that Kintaro was vaporized to dust by Raiden, but that was never confirmed to be canon. In Mortal Kombat: Deception's Konquest mode, Kintaro is mentioned to still be alive and leading Shao Kahn's armies in an assault on Edenia (and can be found in Earthrealm in a grove of trees, though his reasons for being there are unclear, and it is likely just a cameo), while in Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, Kung Lao and Liu Kang rip Kintaro to pieces after defeating him, though this may indicate that either Liu Kang or Kung Lao defeated him in one on one combat. In Mortal Kombat: Armageddon it is later revealed that he and the other characters that the player fights in Shinnok's spire were merely phantasms created by the fallen Elder God to test Taven, thus further confusing fans as to what Kintaro's true fate is.
Appearances in other media
Kintaro is portrayed as a minor character in the Malibu Comics Battlewave series. Unlike the games, in which he attempted to avenge Goro's death, the comics shows he's bitter towards the Prince of Pain (Goro's nickname in the comics) since he's always at his shadow, and longs for a confrontation with him. His only noteworthy participation in the comics is when he kidnaps Sonya Blade while she leads an investigation team into Shang Tsung's crumpled island. In the comics, Kintaro refers to himself as the Scourge of Outworld.
Due to the anticipation for both he and Goro to face one on one (since both are impressive and legendary sub-bosses), Malibu Comics wrote as a response a special When Titans Klash mini-story at the end of issue four of the Battlewave series, in which Kintaro has his dream match against Goro. The short struggle (about two to three pages) ended with Goro victorious, and served to reconcile both Shokans in the comics' continuity.
- At the time of MKII's release, Kintaro was considered one of the hardest bosses to beat due to his ability to Teleport Stomp and at the same time throws the player even when they are in mid-air.
- Kintaro has been absent from MK3 to MK Deception, giving him the longest absent streak throughout the series of Mortal Kombat games.
- The best way to easily beat Kintaro in MKII is to trap him in a corner with low punches. This trick works more easily in the home versions and will work best using characters like Scorpion or Sub-Zero.
- Unlike most characters who have appeared in the first three Mortal Kombat games, Kintaro has barely made appearances in other media. He is portrayed as a minor character in the short-lived Malibu Comics "Battlewave" series. Due to that being his only appearance outside of the game series, he is the only character from the first three MK games to not appear in any movie or television adaptations of the series.
- He is one of the few characters in Deception's Konquest mode who does not interact with Shujinko at all.
- Like Motaro, Kintaro's name seems to have a connection to Japanese myth. It is a slight resemblance to Kintaro, a hero in Japanese folktale. However, also like Motaro, everything else about Kintaro has nothing to do with the tale.
Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks
- Kintaro's head can be used as a thrown weapon against Shao Kahn.
Mortal Kombat Trilogy
- His portrait in the character select screen is different from the one in MKII.
Mortal Kombat: Deception
- He is one of the characters seen trapped in a cage in the Dark Prison stage.
- He can be found once in Earthrealm in a small forest looking around. It is impossible for Shujinko to speak with him, as tryimg to do so will make him disappear.
Mortal Kombat: Armageddon
- He appears to be taller as he was in MKII and has a build more similar to Goro's.
- He is the first main character seen in the opening cinematic, at the head of the Forces of Darkness.
- His Teleport Stomp move is not available here.
- Unlike Goro his fighting style attacks are more powerful causing the enemy to be knocked down with a single hit.
- He shares the same throw move with Goro - Grab and Pound, but he has his own Four Arm Grab move which is unblockable.
- Kintaro is one of the only seven characters that, after Mortal Kombat Trilogy, only became playable again in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon. The others being Stryker, Sheeva, Motaro, Chameleon, Khameleon and Rain.
Mortal Kombat (2011)
- His first Fatalities debuted in this game.
- In the March 2011 issue of Game Informer, it was featured an article on three expected DLC characters. One of the three was Kintaro listed as DLC, hinting the possibility that Kintaro was going to be a playable character in MK 2011. However, although Kintaro did appear in the game, he was an unplayable sub-boss and the DLC was never released for Kintaro. This feature may have been scrapped due to time constraints, or false information on Game Informer's part.
- ↑ http://tabmok99.mortalkombatonline.com/motaro-intro.jpg Motaro's Bio Card, Video Games Section, MK3. The Ultimate Guide To Mortal Kombat: CD-ROM Disc, Threshold Entertainment, 1995.
- ↑ http://www.fdmk.net/?mode=videos&id=28 Video proof of Kintaro's appearance in Deception.