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However, this may have been retconned in the alternate timeline, as Baraka tells D'Vorah in Mortal Kombat X that his realm was conquered by Shao Kahn. This could suggest that his race are from their own realm and not a fusion of Outworld and Netherrealm inhabitants as previously established by the lore.
They are often depicted as unintelligent, bloodthirsty brutes that serve the currently most powerful leader. Although Baraka is depicted as being intelligent, as he knew that the meeting Mileena (who is a half-Tarkatan clone of the Edenian princess Kitana) had scheduled with him in the ancient Beetle Lair was a trap and sent another Tarkatan in his place.
According to Mortal Kombat, all Tarkatan males joined Shao Kahn's army once they came of age and survived the brutal Ritual of Blood. Among the ranks present within their armies included that of an Enforcer.
In Jade's Deception ending, it's revealed that it is possible to gather concentrated Tarkatan essence and seal it within a container. When the container is shattered against a person, the nearby Tarkata enter into an uncontrollable frenzy as they believed the person with the essence as being a rival male so they instinctively attack.
Mortal Kombat X Story ModeEdit
They are also seen again in Mortal Kombat X during Chapter 2 in story mode, commanded by the rebel former empress of Outworld, Mileena and her allies (Tanya and Rain, who freed her from prison) ambushing Kotal Kahn's forces. Upon Mileena's signal, the Tarkatans storm the Outworld Marketplace, first targeting Kahn's allies (D'Vorah, Erron Black and Ermac) who ruthlessly kill them. Mileena paid for Kano to kill Kahn, hoping to not be forced to unleash her ultimate weapon: the Amulet of Shinnok, acquired by Kano in exchange for gold. After Kotal defeats Kano & Tanya, he is attacked by two more Tarkatans. Then, he spots Mileena, Rain and other Tarkata on the roof of a building. Having grown fed up, he transports there. Mileena is surprised but orders the Tarkatans to attack. Though, Kotal slays them effortlessly.
They are seen again during a flashback five years ago, when Mileena was Empress. Among those standing next to her are Baraka. The Tarkatans attack after Mileena orders them to kill those conspiring against her. In the end, they are defeated with their leader, Baraka being viciously executed by D'Vorah.
Their most distinctive physical traits are their long, sharp teeth, large mouths, and blades protruding from their bodies, especially their arms. Baraka is their leader, and it's revealed Mileena is a half-Tarkatan clone as well. The Tarkata are a nomadic species, mainly populating Outworld's wastelands, but it's discovered that they come from the Netherrealm and migrated to Outworld. This race possesses a love for battle and serves whoever is in command (Shao Kahn, the Deadly Alliance, etc.).
Only male tarkatans are met throughout the series. Without counting Mileena, the only true female Tarkatan is briefly seen in Baraka's MK 2011 ending. This female sports two rather than one blade on each arm, and wears a long ponytail which may come from the helmet she is wearing.
Kreate a FighterEdit
In the "Kreate a Fighter" feature of Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, players can create and customize their own Tarkatan characters, although the signature Tarkatan blades are not available, nor are any of their special moves. Note that it is also possible to create female tarkatans and one of them is present as a default female character.
In Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe, Shang Tsung's ending indicates that the sorcerer was both impressed and angered by Captain Marvel defeating him. Using his magic, he mixed the blood on a torn piece of Captain Marvel's cape with that of a Tarkatan warrior creating a horrific race of Super-Tarkata that would be loyal to Shang Tsung. These creatures appeared somewhat similar in appearance to Dark Kahn, the boss of Mortal Kombat vs. DC.
TV & Movie AppearanceEdit
The Tarkatans first appeared alongside Baraka in Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. They are seen wearing cloaks, with the exception of Baraka himself, who disposes it in favor of preparing a battle against Liu Kang.
They later appeared but without Baraka in the animated film Mortal Kombat: The Journey Begins and the MK cartoon series Mortal Kombat: Defenders of the Realm (here, they were called Nomads, because the term Tarkata was mentioned for the first time in Deception, a game that was released years after the premiere of Defenders of the Realm).
The Tarkatans are also featured in the webseries Mortal Kombat: Legacy, and while still retaining their bloodthirsty demeanor and trademark blades, their distinctive teeth seem to have been toned down. They are shown invading the realm of Edenia, led by their general, Baraka.
- In MK 2011's Challenge Tower, there are several challenges in which the opponent(s) are Tarkatans of various rankings: Soldier, Leader, and General.
- Originally, they were going to be the native inhabitants of Outworld.