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Mortal Kombat 11 characters - best AI fighters, all the tournament variations

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Mortal Kombat 11 has a pretty big roster as it is, if you don’t include the unlockable Frost and preorder bonus that is Shao Kahn. Each one has a massive array of moves that can be tinkered with for use in both online and offline modes. There’s also a bunch of AI fighters that you can create to help unlock stuff and this guide will go over all of that.

Whether you're a newcomer or a veteran kombatant, there's plenty of things to know about Mortal Kombat 11. Head on over to our hub for everything you need to know which you can find in our Mortal Kombat 11 guide.

I’d also recommend looking at our Mortal Kombat 11 farming guide for everything you need to know about farming resources to unlock stuff in the Krypt – which you can look at our Mortal Kombat 11 Krypt guide to learn more about. Finally, there’s also our Mortal Kombat 11 fatalities and Mortal Kombat 11 brutalities for all those nasty finishers.

Mortal Kombat 11 characters guide

In this guide, we will go over every character’s tournament legal variations in a list, as well as show you how to create some of the AI fighters in the game to unlock more stuff.

Noob Saibot's just thrown an AI into the abyss.

Mortal Kombat 11 best AI fighters

If you want to unlock stuff in Mortal Kombat 11, the best way to go will be to create a couple of AI fighters. These are made in the “Kustomize” menu in Characters. You’ll want to create a completely new build for each variation, so make sure you name it something appropriate for the AI fighter’s role.

Two characters stand out in this department. Noob Saibot is a pressure monster, meaning that you can load him out with attacks that augment his combo potential. He’ll regularly deal 10+ hit combos on opponents. That said, the AI isn’t perfect and that’s where Skarlet comes in. She excels at range, so you’ll want her keeping away from opponents as much as possible, while hurling all kinds of nonsense at them.

I’ve included two samples that have worked well for me in the past, but feel free to tinker with them to your heart’s content. They will also try to execute Fatalities and Brutalities, which is a nice little bonus to your fight rewards, but they will not actively go for Dragon Challenges.

Equipped moves onto Noob Saibot for custom variation.

Noob Saibot “AI Destroyer” build

Stats

  • Grappling – 5
  • Rushdown – 5
  • Kombos – 60
  • Reversal – 20

Moves

  • Sickle Snag
  • (Air) Tele-Slam
  • Shadow Slide

Stats breakdown for Skarlet's custom variation.

Skarlet “AI Sniper” build

Stats

  • Zoning – 30
  • Runaway – 30

Moves

  • Bloodport
  • Killer Clot
  • Red Rain

One of Scorpion's two presets that are tournament legal.

Mortal Kombat 11 tournament viable variations

All characters have access to presets, which is valuable because you can locate the tournament viable variations here. This is so that you can ensure you have the tournament legal variations to practice with and I highly recommend spending some time with each. The table below is searchable, so type in the character name to see both of their variations in one place.

CharacterTournament VariationSlot 1Slot 2Slot 3
BarakaMarauderGutted
(Back, Forward + 4)
Gutted
(Back, Forward + 4)
Baraka Barrage
(Down + Forward + 3)
BarakaBone PickerBlood Lunge
(Back, Forward + 2)
Blood Lunge
(Back, Forward + 2)
Spine Burst
(Down, Back + 3)
Cassie CageDigital Soldier(Air) Bullet Barrage
(Back, Forward + 1)
Kneecappin'
(Down, Back + 1)
Flippin' Out
(Down, Back + 3)
Cassie CageYaas QueenBLB-118 Energy Burst
(Down, Back + 4)
BLB-118 Energy Burst
(Down, Back + 4)
Shoulder Charge
(Back, Forward + 2)
CetrionForce of NatureEarthquake
(Down, Down + 3)
Delay Boulder Bash
(Hold 2 during Boulder Bash or Bouncing Boulder)
Shattering Boulder
(Down, Back + 1)
CetrionSpring CleaningGeyser
(Back, Forward + 4)
Geyser
(Back, Forward + 4)
H2 P0rt
(Down, Up)
D'vorahBuzzed(Air) Ticking Time Bug
(Back, Forward + 1)
Strepsiptera
(Down, Forward + 3)
Parasite
(1, 2, 1 + 3)
D'vorahArachnophobiaWidow's Kiss
(Down, Back + 3)
Widow's Kiss
(Down, Back + 3)
Deadly Swarm
(Down, Down + 1)
Erron Black52 Kard PickupEnhanced Locked and Loaded
(Back, Forward + 4)
Outworld Gunslinger
(3, 2)
Scud Shot
(Down, Down + 3)
Erron BlackBarking IronsCattle Toss
(Down, Back, Forward + 1)
TNT Toss
(Down, Back + 1)
Enhanced Rattle Snake Slide
(Back + 7 during Rattle Snake Slide and Boot Drop. Also gains cancel.)
FrostFrost-ByteCryogenic Crown
(Down, Back + 2)
Cryogenic Crown
(Down, Back + 2)
Arctic Barrage
(Back, Forward + 4)
FrostIce MachineAuger Lunge
(Back, Forward + 4)
Glacier Calving
(Down, Down + 1)
Microburst
(Down, Back + 4)
GerasNew EraStepping It Back
(Down, Down + 7)
Modifies basic attacks and can cancel out of basic attacks.
Stepping It Back
(Down, Down + 7)
Modifies basic attacks and can cancel out of basic attacks.
Sand Pillar
(Down, Forward + 3)
GerasInfinite WardenQuick Sand
(Down, Back + 3)
Gauntlet of the Ages
(Down, Back + 2)
Bed of Spikes
(Back, Forward + 2)
Jacqui Briggs1st Round KOLethal Clinch
(Down, Forward + 3)
Cybernetic Override
(1, 1, 2)
Robo Grappler
(7 during Throw Escape)
Jacqui BriggsNext GenGrenade Launcher
(Down, Back + 1)
(Air) Dive Bomb
(Down, Forward + 3)
Tech-Dome
(Down, Down + 3)
JadeEmerald Defender(Air) Razor-Rang
(Down, Back + 1)
Upward Razor-Rang
(Down, Back + 1)
Edenian Spark
(Down, Back + 3)
JadeJadedPole Vault
(Back, Forward + 3)
Pole Vault Cancel
(Back + 7)
During Pole Vault
Amplify Blazing Nitro Kick
(7 during Blazing Nitro Kick)
Jax BriggsGrinnin' BarrettDuck and Weave
(Back, Forward + 2)
Briggs Barricade
(Down, Back + 3)
Ripped
(Down, Back + 4)
Jax BriggsHunker DownQuad Grab
(Down, Forward, Back + 1)
Burning Hammer
(Back, Forward + 4)
Expert Grappler
(2, 2, 1 + 3)
Johnny CageShock JockMime Time
(Down, Back + 1)
Brass Knuckles
(Down, Down + 2)
Caged Rage
(Down, Back + 4)
Johnny CageShow StopperSay Cheese
(Back, Down + 3)
Say Cheese
(Back, Down + 3)
Throwing Shades
(Down, Down + 2)
KabalMean StreakRolling Buzzsaw
(Down, Back + 1)
(Air) Straight Buzzin'
(Back, Forward + 1)
Dash Cancel
(Back + 5 during Nomad Dash)
KabalClean CutLow Hook Grab
(Back, Forward + 2)
Nomad Spin
(Down, Back + 2)
Extended Hook
(Down, Back + 3)
KanoRipperLumbar Check
(Down, Back, Forward + 2)
Rack Off
(Down, Forward + 4)
Manhandled
(2, 2, 1 + 3)
KanoDirtbagVege-Mighty
(Down, Down + 3)
Molotov Cocktail
(Back, Forward + 4)
Chemical Burn
(Down, Back + 4)
KitanaFan-Fare(Air) Fan Flutter
(Down, Back + 2)
Ground War
(Back, Forward + 3)
Royal Protection
(Down, Forward + 4)
KitanaHighbornHalf-Blood Stance
(Down, Back + 4)
Half-Blood Stance
(Down, Back + 4)
Edenian Razors
(Down, Back + 2)
KollectorBack in the PackUp Demonic Mace
(Down, Back + 2)
Demonic Clutch
(Down, Back, Forward + 3)
Fade Out
(Down, Down + 3)
KollectorSpare ChangeBag Bomb
(Down, Forward + 1)
Vial of Sorrow
(Down, Back + 1)
Demonic Comet
(Modifies both Vial of Sorrow and Bag Bomb to give aerial variants)
Kotal KhanAscensionHuehhueyi
(Down, Back + 2)
God Ray
(Down, Forward + 4)
Kahn-Cut
(Down, Forward + 2)
Kotal KhanTotemicEztli Totem
(Down, Back + 8) or (Down, Forward + 8)
(Equip a maximum of two totems)
Tecuani Maul
(Back, Forward + 4)
Air (Tecuani Pounce)
(Back, Forward + 4)
Kung LaoLotus FistOrbiting Hat
(Down, Back + 1)
Orbiting Hat
(Down, Back + 1)
Omega Hat
(Down, Back + 1)
Augments Orbiting Hat.
Kung LaoHat TricksGuided Hat
(Back, Forward + 2)
Z Hat
(Down, Back + 2)
(Air) Teleport
(Down, Up)
Liu KangLuohan QuanShaolin Stance
(Down, Down + 1)
Low Fireball
(Down, Back + 1)
Dragon Parry
(Down, Back + 3)
Liu KangWu Shi LegendEnergy Parry
(Down, Back + 2)
Dragon Fire
(Down, Back + 4)
Dragon's Gifts
(Down, Back + 4)
Augments Dragon Fire.
Noob SaibotSeeing DoubleGhostball
(Back, Forward + 1)
(Air) Tele-Slam
(Down, Up)
Shadow Slide
(Back, Forward + 3)
Noob SaibotDark SabbathSpirit Ball
(Back, Forward + 1)
Shadow Portals
(Up, Down + 7)
(Air) Sickle Port
(Down, Back + 4)
RaidenThunder WaveSparkport
(Down, Up)
Sparkport
(Down, Up)
Storm Cell
(Down, Back + 2)
RaidenRaijinElectric Burst
(Down, Forward + 2)
Quick Charge
(Down, Back + 3)
Electric Current
(Down, Back + 4)
ScorpionRebornHell Port Cancel
(Hold Down or Toward while performing Hell Port)
Hell Port Cancel
(Hold Down or Toward while performing Hell Port)
Demon Slam
(Down + 6)
ScorpionSearing RageDeath Spin
(Down, Forward + 4)
Death Spear Combo
(2, 1, 2+ 4)
Burning Spear
(Down, Back + 4)
Shao KahnTrue KahnRidicule
(Down, Forward + 8)
Ground Shatter
(Back, Down + 4)
Wrath Hammer
(Back, Forward + 2)
Shao KahnRisen EmperorAnnihilation
(Down, Back + 3)
Up Wrath Hammer
(Down, Back + 2)
Dark Priest
(Down, Down + 1)
SkarletHeart PierceDagger Dance
(Down, Back + 1)
Bloodport
(Down, Up)
Blood Ritual
(Down, Back, Forward + 1)
SkarletBlood DriveBlood Flow
(Back or Forward during Amplify Blood Ball)
Blood Flow
(Back or Forward during Amplify Blood Ball)
Cell Siphon
(Back, Forward + 4)
Sonya BladeNo Holds Barred(Air) Ops Drop
(Down + 6)
Krushing Counters
(Down, Back + 3)
(Air) Marching Orders
(Down + 4)
Sonya BladeRing MasterEnergy Rings Charge
(Hold 7 during Amplified Energy Rings)
(Air) Downward Energy Rings
(Hold 7 during amplified (Air) Energy Rings)
K.A.T. Turret Drop
(Down, Back + 4)
Sub-ZeroDead of WinterDeep Freeze
(7 during Ice Ball)
Deep Freeze
(7 during Ice Ball)
Cold Shoulder
(Back, Forward + 3)
Sub-ZeroThin IceFrigid Storm
(Down, Forward + 2)
Death-Cicle Barrage
(Down, Back + 2)
(Air) Polar Axe
(Down, Back + 2)
Shang Tsung (Kombat Pass)Fire and BrimstoneGround Eruption
(Down, Back + 1)
Ground Eruption
(Down, Back + 1)
Infernal Skull
(Fire Skull can now be amplified twice)
Shang Tsung (Kombat Pass)SoultakerScreaming Soul
(Back, Forward + 1)
Soul Well
(Down, Back + 2)
Scatter Souls
(Down, Forward + 3)

This concludes our Characters guide, but you can also look at our Mortal Kombat 11 farming guide for everything you need to know about farming resources to unlock stuff in the Krypt – which you can look at our Mortal Kombat 11 Krypt guide to learn more about. Finally, there’s also our Mortal Kombat 11 fatalities and Mortal Kombat 11 brutalities for all those nasty finishers.

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As guides writer for Rock, Paper, Shotgun, it is my privilege to understand how to play certain games well, so that newer players can understand the more complex things about them.

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