We had no idea it would be this intense – NetherRealm hit pause on Mileena in Mortal Kombat 11 to build appreciation says Ed Boon – EventHubs

But he was still surprised by the constant barrage of questions and online comments about her

The “when’s Mileena” crowd might have been the most vocal group of fans in the FGC the past few years after she was left out of Mortal Kombat 11’s main roster, but fans finally got their wish recently with the reveal of the MK11 Ultimate update featuring her, Rain and John Rambo as new playable characters in Kombat Pack 2.

Mortal Kombat co-creator Ed Boon appeared for an interview during New York Comic Con where he revealed NetherRealm Studios ‘hit pause’ on the classic fighter temporarily when he was asked about the push and constant comments about Kitana’s evil sister.

“We hit pause on Mileena just to create an appreciation, but we had no idea it would be this intense,” said Boon when asked about the fan response. “For years we were getting pounded by messages of ‘I want to see Mileena again,’ and we wanted to stretch that out.”

The veteran game maker admits that he leaned in on teasing non-hints and saying things like ‘you will never see Mileena in one of our games ever again,’ but he says he wouldn’t do things like that if she really wasn’t on her way into MK11 at some point.

“Most of the time I am just teasing the fanatics who demand she be added 100 times a day,” Boon said in a separate interview back in June.

It’d be difficult to argue at this point that they didn’t succeed in their mission to build that appreciation and anticipation considering Mileena was the number one Twitter trend in the United States following the reveal of Ultimate — even over the inclusion of Rambo.

“We hit pause on Mileena just to create an appreciation, but we had no idea it would be this intense. For years we were getting pounded by messages of ‘I want to see Mileena again,’ and we wanted to stretch that out”

Some diehard Mileena fans even cried tears of joy for her arrival after a year and a half of MK11 with the voice actor for Shao Kahn’s “daughters”, Kari Wahlgren, recording special messages for those who were waiting for her return.

“It was a big build up and we played with it a little bit,” said Boon in the NYCC interview. “Eventually we knew we’d be releasing a video like we did and just let the floodgates loose. That’s what we witnessed was this pent up anticipation for Mileena, and all of a sudden online we saw the results of it.”

Mileena first made her debut in Mortal Kombat 2 and became a regular cast member thereafter where she only missed MK4 and Deadly Alliance out of the mainline titles up to this point.

After briefly taking control of Outworld following the events of MK9, the tube princess met her fate at the hands of D’Vorah in MKX though time travel now pretty much erases the need to explain her presence.

There’s still just over a month until we can try out the new and improved Mileena — she has claws now! — along with Rain and Rambo when Mortal Kombat 11: Ultimate releases on November 17.

The game will also be one of the very few fighting games available on next generation consoles in the launch window, and current PlayStation and Xbox owners will be able to upgrade to the PS5 and Series X|S for free when the time comes.