Nightwolf is a fictional character in the Mortal Kombat fighting game series. He debuted in Mortal Kombat 3 as a Native American shaman and historian who is chosen as a warrior of Earthrealm during Shao Kahn's invasion. As one of the main characters, he was also featured in the game's companion media, such as the live action film Mortal Kombat Annihilationand the animated series Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm.

He is also playable in the updates Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and Mortal Kombat Trilogy. After being absent from Mortal Kombat 4and Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, he reemerged as a player character in 2004's Mortal Kombat: Deception and also appeared in the follow-ups Mortal Kombat: Armageddon and the 2011 Mortal Kombat reboot. Response to the character has been mixed, with some citing Nightwolf as an example of a Native American stereotype.

Mortal Kombat Karnage Edit

Origin Edit

Although introduced as a historian and a shaman, Nightwolf does not live in the past. He is a proud and fierce warrior dedicated to the cause of good, and is in contact with Raiden through visions. As such, he draws both on internal and external spiritual energy to enhance his strength. Although his patch of tribal land provided a vital shelter territory for the Earthrealm warriors at the time of Shao Kahn's invasion, it seems Nightwolf prefers solitary work to companionship. Nightwolf had been warned of the coming invasion of Earthrealm by a vision from Raiden. As such, he was fully aware and prepared for the events as they occurred, including the attacks of Kahn's extermination squads. His own homeland protected through shamanic magic, he would soon be joined by the other chosen warriors. Together, they then travelled back to the East Coast, prepared for battle against the Emperor and his minions, and won.

Nightwolf made his return during the events of Mortal Kombat: Deception. In the events leading to Deception, Nightwolf viewed images of the Dragon King and his resurrection in his dreams. These nightmares recurred constantly, and Nightwolf came to recognize them as a warning. He knew that a new evil threat was about to arise from the ashes, and in view of Reptile's transformation into Onaga, his predictions most assuredly came true. The method that Nightwolf would use to destroy Onaga was one passed down to him by his forefathers. This method was that of the "Sin Eater", which involved absorbing the sins of his tribe. However, there was a terrible consequence to be considered in taking on such a role. If he were to do this, he would be a danger to all that surrounded him, including his allies. Hence, he made the decision to destroy Onaga on his own, keeping his allies out of harm's way. His role as a Sin Eater would involve entering the Netherealm, drawing Onaga's soul to him, and releasing the absorbed sins of his ancestors, which would bind Onaga to the spot. His method was successful and he managed to separate Reptile from Onaga, and bind the Dragon King to the Netherealm.[1]

After completing his quest, he was guided back to Earthrealm by his spirit guides - a pack of wolves. Nightwolf began to receive visions of a battle, where an unknown power was forcing the participating warriors to fight each other. His visions started to become reality, when he spoke with Johnny Cage and their allies, and agreed to assist them in battle against Shinnok and his forces. Eventually, Nightwolf was met by Kitana and the spirit of Liu Kang. The bond that the two of them shared was enough for Kitana to keep Kang's spirit whole, until a way was found for him to rejoin with his body. Still drained after using his shamanic powers on Onaga, Nightwolf used what magic he could to relieve Kitana of her burden, and took on the responsibility of looking after Kang's spirit.[2] In his Armageddon ending, he defeats Blaze, allowing him to absorb his power. Nightwolf is catapulted into the spirit world, where he becomes the ultimate shaman, a living ghost. He finds Liu Kang's spirit and guides it back to the physical world. There, Liu Kang is able to reunite with his body, becoming human once more.[3]