Killer Instinct Has Arrived On PC, ‘Part Roguelike’ Solo Mode Coming Soon

Killer Instinct [official site], which originally appeared as an Xbox One launch title, has arrived on PC. It’s in the Windows Store and is free-to-play but will only work if your PC is running Windows 10. Any purchases you’ve made on the Xbox version will carry across if you download the game on PC – those purchases are mainly characters, only one of the roster being available for free each month – and you can play against people on both platforms.

The PC launch coincides with the beginning of the game’s third season, which will bring a total of eight new characters (4 now, 4 later) and a big singleplayer mode, with crafting and recruiting as well as punching.

I deliberately embedded the Xbox branded version of the trailer because it insists on referring to the game as an exclusive despite the PC launch happening alongside the release of the trailer, and the Windows 10 version being plugged in the final frames of the video. I know ‘exclusive’ tends to mean ‘not on the other console’ but it still seems odd that “NOW WITH CROSS-PLATFORM PLAY” isn’t a bigger deal than a meaningless “EXCLUSIVE”.

Whatever my quibbles about all of that nonsense, I’m genuinely interested in the solo mode. The two best fighting game singleplayer modes I’ve ever encountered were in the Soul Calibur series – entries II and III if memory and wiki research hasn’t failed me entirely – and Shadow Lords, Killer Instinct’s campaign, sounds like it might be along the same lines.

Shadow Lords is part ladder, part arcade mode, part story mode, and part roguelike, all rolled up into one unique experience.

· Your ultimate goal is to beat Gargos and his forces before he takes over the world. How fast that happens is completely up to how you play!
· Choose any character to “main” and assemble your team from across the entire roster of KI characters. Uneasy alliances abound!
· As characters are added to the game after launch, they’ll also come with new Shadow Lords content.
· There’s a lot of stuff to earn and craft in this mode, all of which can be obtained by playing. KI Gold will allow you to accelerate to get to some rarer stuff sooner to help in your fight against Gargos and his minions.
· The game features persistent items and elements that carry across multiple playthroughs.

I can’t provide any further insight because as soon as I get to the phrase “your ultimate goal is to beat Gargos” I fall off my chair laughing. If you want to try Killer Instinct and are a Windows 10 user, here’s the store page. It’s free, remember.


  1. iainl says:

    So, who can actually download it? Thought I’d take a look as it’s f2p and I was curious, but the Windows Store insists I can’t have anything without getting my Windows 10 machine patched up to date first, and Windows Update insists that it already is.

    Oh, Microsoft. Why must you always make such a ludicrous hash of every single thing?

    • ramirezfm says:

      Windows 10 and old Alienwares don’t mix. I upgraded my m15x to Win10 and it went haywire with NVIDIA driver restarting every 5mins. So glad I could go back to Win7. Win10 is working fine on my non-gaming PC, but well, no GFWL2.0 aka Windows Store for me…

    • iainl says:

      Great. Have now tried multiple reboots and anything else I can think of, but no. Game is blocked at the Windows Store (unlike many others I checked) until I download an update that I’m not being offered. Doesn’t bode well for when a game I really want (the new Forza) arrives.

      • solir says:

        hi sorry, just wanted to quickly say I had the same issue as you. and you won’t believe what the solution was.

        REINSTALL windows 10 on top of 10. apparently if your build is out of date, they won’t let you update. (I know, I was shocked as well) check how to look up your current build online, and if it isn’t 1.5 or similar, you will have to go through the upgrade system again! (insert all anger here!!)

        I eventually decided to do this, because missing those security updates, is pretty bad really, and finally the game works, but this is a joke.

    • TormDK says:

      Try doing Winkey+r and type “winver” without the quotation marks, and let us know which version you are running.

      For reference, mine is; version 1511 (build 10586.164)

  2. Nymera says:

    Is this only available on “Games For Window Live 2.0″….I mean the Windows App Store? That may be a dealbreaker for many of us.

    • hollowroom says:

      Yes. Unless I’m mistaken it also runs games in a borderless window, rendering a lot of graphics options null and void.

  3. Jerodar says:

    Ow boy, it appears that they tied the game logic to the refresh rate:

    • Baines says:

      To be fair, that is the only complaint that I’ve seen so far about the PC version, which would still put it head and shoulders above the quality of most competing fighters.

    • wu wei says:

      Oh Sabrewulf, what have they done to you? :(

  4. ashjxx says:

    Soul Calibur II’s single-player mode thing was so fun!!!!! I didn’t know III had a similar mode. Gonna have to go check that out.

    • Don Reba says:

      I have the fondest memories for that game. Wish it Soul Calibur was on PC.

      • ashjxx says:

        Yeah, I’m kinda bummed about that too. I was hoping III was at least a Gamecube game so I could emulate it, but no dice. I could always just replay II that way, I suppose. It’s been something like a decade since I’ve played it.

  5. Zelos says:

    I’m triggered by the usage of the term “app”.

    I don’t want to get any “apps”. It sounds like a STD. Microsoft pls stop.

    Also the entire app store is an embarrassment and needs to stop existing. I have a desktop computer, not a goddamn phone.

    • Evil Pancakes says:

      I’m glad to know I’m not the only one with that opinion on apps.
      I blame Apple for the fact that all of the sudden every bloody thing is an app now.
      And yes, the app store and UWA are awfull things that need to be burned, and the person who thought of it either needs to get fired or have a good long think about what (s)he did.

    • Minglefingler says:

      But surely our only option is to change how we refer to things because Apple and some other companies made some popular telephones. Actually we should go one further and refer to anything we read, watch, listen to or play as “content.” I’m currently consuming some of David Bowie’s content, later I will consume some of Iain M.Bank’s content and at some point today I will consume some of Xcom 2’s content. See? Language is better now that we use the words the companies want us to.

    • Don Reba says:

      Maybe it’s better to separate Mac, Linux, PC, and WinStore releases.

  6. Baines says:

    Part-roguelike? Why do I have the feeling that term is being completely misused?

    Particularly when DreamFactory actually put a mode based on Roguelikes into its games. (Particularly Tobal 2.)

  7. Zankman says:

    Be sure to notify us when it, you know, REALLY comes out on PC.

  8. Grums McGuff says:

    Was that a Battletoad? I feel like, after reading through the comments, that I’m the only one confused by this.

    • Baines says:

      Season 3 includes guest-star characters, an Arbiter from Halo and Rash from Battletoads.

      While not extremely common, this isn’t a new practice for fighting games. Even when the characters have no place in the game, like a Battletoad in Killer Instinct, a Halo Spartan in Dead or Alive, or Darth Vader in Soul Calibur.

    • Jalan says:

      I’m not confused by Rash’s inclusion in the game (because if you played most fighting games of days gone by, you no doubt remember those guest characters often for the sake of being guest characters/”they’re cool”) but I am saddened by how… amazingly not good he looks in 3D. Not that I was particularly geared up for a potential 3D Battletoads or anything to begin with but if that’s any sign of what such a thing would bring forth visually, I’m fine with my memories of wishing I was old enough to shout obscenities when I first encountered the horrors of Turbo Tunnel.