Mortal Kombat fans know Shao Kahn as the big bad hammer-wielding brute behind all that is evil across the various realms. But what Mortal Kombat fans did not know up until quite recently was what he looked like under his iconic armour.
With the release of Mortal Kombat 11 story expansion Aftermath, now we know the scaly truth.
THERE MAY BE SPOILERS AHEAD.
While Shao Kahn played a part of the main Mortal Kombat 11 story, the menacing warlord plays a larger role in Aftermath, and early on we see him depowered and without his helmet as his freshly-resurrected wife Sindel saves him from torture.
We’d seen Shao Kahn’s face without his helmet many times before, of course. When Shao Kahn is getting nailed by a Krushing Blow or a Fatal Blow, for example, we sometimes see his noggin.
Now, we see Shao Kahn stripped down to his pants – literally, via an ArtStation post by NetherRealm senior character artist Solomon Caitan.
What’s interesting here is Shao Kahn as he appears in Mortal Kombat 11 is a somewhat reptilian creature, whereas in previous games in the series he has looked human.
We don’t really know what race Shao Kahn belongs to. Is he some sort of half-man, half-dragon? It looks like it, based on this image. If that’s true, players suspect Shao Kahn has somehow absorbed Onaga, the Dragon King and final boss of Mortal Kombat: Deception. This would make sense given during one of Kitana and Raiden’s intros, the Thunder God states Shao Kahn “wields Onaga’s power”. Dragons are a mysterious race in Mortal Kombat lore, although Mortal Kombat Goody Two-Shoes Liu Kang has been able to transform into a dragon for one of his Fatalities for yonks.
Whatever the case, Shao Kahn looks ready to rock in his undies. No wonder Sindel waited all those years for him.