When you repeat something two games in a row (three if you count the tan line in vsDCU), I consider it a signature trait, and I like to keep the signature traits for continuity, not ignore them or throw them away. I kept several of his now-trademark design traits like the facewraps, the gem in the center of his forehead which serves as his psychic “third eye”, a shirt that buttons down the middle, more wraps on his hands, and the fact that he’s one of the only ninjas who ever wears sleeves. Black forearm guards on the flesh colored sleeves. The stitching on the black parts of his outfit, inspired by his MK9 alt, do run the risk of being too much like Ermac, but in this case I felt it worked because Ermac’s stitches are on the decorative part of his costume and just show off what he’s about, whereas Reptile’s are on the main section and give off the sense that he literally has to scrounge together his clothing from scraps because he’s a poorly treated slave.
I deliberately designed Reptile’s clothing to look both the most generic and devoid of logos or identifying marks of all the ninjas, and the most underprivileged and ragged, very much like Scorpion but even moreso. He’s not actually a competitor in the bracket, the only reason he’s on the island is as a spy for Shao Kahn, just to observe and report, or perhaps to try to assassinate humans who win too much. The default yellow, red and black colour scheme looks great on Hanzo, and the silver armour adds a sense of bulk and power without seeming like too much. The women from Bed Bath & Beyond “wow Mom that costume is absolutely amazing great job,” meant the most to me. SHANG TSUNG – I just stuck to his MK1/Shaolin Monks costume exactly. Defeat Shang Tsung while he is healing. It was at the Academy that he was murdered by the Deadly Alliance of Shang Tsung and Quan Chi.
I don’t believe Old Shang needs any updating, he looks great already. He gave him clothes sewn together out of patchwork and that’s such a great metaphor for Ermac’s own origin as a man sewn together out of a patchwork of many souls, I had to use it myself (with his permission, of course.) It really makes Ermac stand apart from Scorp and Sub without looking so different from them that he can’t be hiding his identity.
The pads that scorpion wears are pretty thick, so I cut them out twice as big as I needed and then folded them over to get that thickness I was looking for. Also, since MK9 added the cool looking special effect of soul-faces swirling around whenever he uses his telekinesis, I put the same effect around him as he levitates himself. One major thing I added to Sonya is the little wired device on her wristband with the pink sparks.