|Mortal Kombat character|
Stryker in Mortal Kombat (2011)
|First game||Mortal Kombat 3 (1995)|
|Created by||John Tobias|
|Voiced by||Ron Perlman (DotR)
Matthew Mercer (MK 2011)
|Portrayed by||Michael O'Brien (MK3, UMK3, MKT)
Tahmoh Penikett (Legacy s1)
Eric Jacobus (Legacy s2)
|Origin||Earthrealm (United States)|
|Fighting styles||Hua Chuan (MK:A)|
|Weapon||Nightstick (MK3, UMK3, MKT, MK:A, MK 2011)
Handgun (UMK3, MKT, MK 2011)
Taser (MK3, UMK3, MKT, MK:A, MK 2011)
Grenade (MK3, UMK3, MKT, MK:A, MK 2011)
Machine Gun (MK:A)
Kurtis Stryker (usually referred to as simply Stryker) is a fictional character in the Mortal Kombat fighting game series. Kurtis Stryker was introduced in Mortal Kombat 3 in 1995, where he is a leader of the Special Riot Control division in the NYPD and a somewhat stout-looking man sporting an often-criticized "urban" design. The character received much criticism regarding his original special moves, Fatalities and attire in Mortal Kombat 3. His appearance changed in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon into a more serious-looking and modernized police officer.
In video games
Kurtis Stryker is a former Marine who had served in the Gulf War. During the events of Mortal Kombat 3, he was the leader of the Riot Control Brigade when Outworld's portal opened over a large North American city (later revealed to be the New York City). Stryker attempted to keep order among the populace in the ensuing chaos, but soon all human souls were taken by Shao Kahn with the exception of those that belonged to the chosen warriors. Stryker did not understand why he had been spared until he received a vision from Raiden, instructing him to head west in order to meet with the other chosen warriors and learn about the importance of his survival. Although he did not wish to be one of the few souls that was spared, he entered the fray with the intention of avenging the lives of the innocent that he had vowed to serve and protect. Along with the other warriors, Stryker assisted in liberating Earthrealm from Shao Kahn's clutches. He later reappeared in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon with a complete redesign, including clothing resembling riot gear.
In Mortal Kombat (2011), Stryker is Kabal's SWAT team leader who joins Raiden and his followers in repelling the Outworld invasion. He is later killed after Sindel smashes his skull and subsequently resurrected by Quan Chi.
It took Stryker several tries to break into the Mortal Kombat series. A character named "Kurtis Stryker" was to appear in the first Mortal Kombat, but the idea was dropped in place of a female fighter (Sonya Blade). This previously unused character would later appear in Mortal Kombat II with a different name, Jax, whose initial name was then finally reused for this character in Mortal Kombat 3. Stryker was made to be a SWAT type of character but with a sleeker design. The developers originally planned for him to have several additional weapons, but problems and memory limitations prevented this. Armageddon's early concept art and cast render showed that Stryker was to have his Mortal Kombat 3 look as his primary costume; however, this was scrapped later on as this look was one of the sources of rejection over the character.
Although character designer and series co-creator John Tobias thought that he would become one of the most popular characters in the game, the opposite would turn true. Many reviled his "common man" appearance and special moves as being out of place in the fantasy world of Mortal Kombat. Ed Boon claimed him to be one of MK3's "hidden secrets" for precisely this reason. Stryker was purposely given a new appearance in Armageddon in order to make him look more appealing to critics of his original design. In 2012, Tobias admitted that he himself was not satisfied with the character and personally "hated" Stryker's design and backstory, and jokingly said that he could go back in time and redo any characters, he would do it with Stryker and Kabal.
Stryker employs modern weaponry such as explosives, firearms, tasers and nightsticks for his special moves and Fatalities. Unlike most other MK characters, he does not possess any significant magic powers. Stryker is considered one of the top-tier Mortal Kombat 3 characters, especially after he was given his gun as a special move in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3.
In other media
Stryker was one of the main characters in the animated series Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm, and was voiced by Ron Perlman. He was one of Raiden's chosen defenders of the Earthrealm alongside Liu Kang, Sub-Zero, Jax, Sonya, Nightwolf, and Kitana. In the show, his nightstick concealed an electronic device that closed dimensional rips that were caused by invading realms. His last name was misspelled as "Striker" in the closing credits.
In Mortal Kombat: Rebirth, a 2010 action short film directed by Kevin Tancharoen, a police officer resembling Stryker is briefly seen. In the subsequent spinoff web series Mortal Kombat: Legacy, Stryker (Tahmoh Penikett) is one of the SWAT squad leaders alongside Jax and Sonya. Eric Jacobus portrayed the character in the second season, in which Stryker was depicted as having formed an alliance with Johnny Cage.
The character has been met with a mainly negative reception since his debut in MK3. In 2008, GameDaily ranked Stryker as the ninth most bizarre character in fighting games, calling him "a joke" and comparing him to Steven Seagal. That same year, ScrewAttack ranked Stryker as third worst character in the series, while Game Informer included this "stun gun-wielding loser" among the characters they did not want to appear in the 2011 Mortal Kombat reboot. Topless Robot placed Stryker at first place on their 2011 list of Mortal Kombat characters "that are goofy even by Mortal Kombat standards," and that he was "utterly bizarre" because they felt his 'normal' appearance contrasted with the other characters. Also in 2011, Stryker placed first on 1UP.com's list of the franchise's most embarrassing moments, as they felt he did not "actually belong anywhere [in the series] at all."
In spite of all the criticism he has received, Stryker ranked 18th on UGO's list of top 50 Mortal Kombat characters in 2012, while commenting that his alternate costume in the new game looked "like Iceman from Top Gun in deep-sea diving gear." That same year, Complex listed him as the sixth most underrated Mortal Kombat character, stating that "he gets some unwarranted hate for being so normal, but that's exactly why we appreciate him."
- Stryker's Bio Card. Mortal Kombat: Armageddon Premium Edition Bonus Disc, Midway Games, 2006.
- Stryker's Bio. Mortal Kombat 3, Midway Games, 1995.
- The Official Mortal Kombat 3 Kollector's Book (1995). Sendai Licensing.
- Stryker's Ending. Mortal Kombat 3, Midway Games, 1995.
- "MK:A Stryker Koncept". Official Mortal Kombat: Armageddon website. 2006. Retrieved 2007-02-10.[dead link]
- "MK:A Full Cast Render". Official Mortal Kombat: Armageddon website. 2006. Retrieved 2007-02-10.[dead link]
- "Steve Beran Interview". Kamidogu. 2006-04-28. Retrieved 2007-02-10.[dead link]
- "The On Blast Show Ep19: John Tobias Part 1". YouTube. 2012-11-07. Retrieved 2013-11-16.
- "Top 25 Most Bizarre Fighting Characters". Web.archive.org. 2008-09-08. Retrieved 2013-11-16.
- "Top 10 Worst Mortal Kombat Kharacters". ScrewAttack.com. Retrieved 2012-01-07.
- Whiting, Brandon (2010-06-21). "Who We Want (And Don’t Want) In The New Mortal Kombat - Features". www.GameInformer.com. Retrieved 2012-01-07.
- "8 Mortal Kombat Characters That Are Goofy Even by Mortal Kombat Standards". Topless Robot. 2011-04-14. Retrieved 2012-01-07.
- "The Top Ten Times Mortal Kombat Went Wrong from". 1UP.com. arch 11, 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-07.
- UGO Team (2012-02-28). "Top 50 Mortal Kombat Characters - Mortal Kombat". UGO.com. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
- "6. Stryker — Your Favorite Fighter's Favorite Fighter: The 10 Most Underrated "Mortal Kombat" Kombatants". Complex. Retrieved 2012-07-20.