Shinnok's Unmet Potential?
I just remembered back then that Shinnok was described as a "mysterious fallen Elder God" and the ruler of the Netherrealm implying that he's indeed the lord of all evil in the Mortal Kombat Universe. But the way things look like, it seems that maybe Ed Boon hates this guy so much and loves Shao Kahn more as a villain. Shao Kahn happens to be the villain of the Mortal Kombat Universe that has all the love and attention of the producers giving him a badass death, allowing him to win Armageddon and even making him the most recognizable bad guy. But what about Shinnok? I really expected him to be dark, malevolent and more threatening than Shao Kahn but instead, he turns out to be a character that really feels like none of the producers ever liked him at all.
Shinnok was first introduced in Mortal Kombat: Mythologies as a mysterious fallen Elder God who can turn into some kind of demon. Long ago, he was responsible for a war that lasted for thousands of years and he's Raiden's personal archenemy. During that time, he also managed to tame the denizens of Hell itself into following him as their new ruler. But overtime, I really got disappointed with how he got carried out which made me think Mortal Kombat 4/Gold really isn't all that good and Trilogy is better.
During Mortal Kombat 4/Gold's events and gameplay, it's something he's already playable at the start instead of the standard "you can't play as them" bosses in Mortal Kombat. He ends up as a "lazy Shang Tsung" considering he can impersonate others minus the shapeshifting plus as a final boss he's very "WTF" stupid. So he's easily defeated by Liu Kang all because Quan Chi gave him a fake amulet and funny how he can't even discern it. I mean, he's the ruler of the Netherrealm. So after the events of MK 4/Gold, he pretty stepped aside. Quan Chi showed more power and treachery while Shinnok was laid aside. MK Deadly Alliance had Quan Chi as a final boss for some characters (and Shang Tsung for the others) while MK Deception/Unchained presented Onaga, the previous ruler of Outworld who was pretty much a badass boss.
During Armageddon, he did show some signs of being actually a threat but I felt like he was still a joke for most of his run. Why couldn't they make him the sub-boss before Blaze (the one who held the trophy) like they did to Shao Kahn and the other boss characters? It was explained that the Shinnok who led the Forces of Darkness was just a "clone" but still looking at the Konquest Mode, he was really still manipulating events. I felt like that again there's extreme favoritism for Shao Kahn in Armageddon to the point he won the final outcome after Blaze's death empowered just everyone. As for Shinnok, either his whereabouts are unknown or he just really isn't given so much attention either.
The reboot revealed he was planning all the events all along that led to Shao Kahn's demise. So he did plan it to near perfection but I felt like after Mortal Kombat X, he falls apart from a dark and sinister character to a more of a darker version of Loki. Granted that I never liked Loki that much as a villain compared to Thanos, Mephisto or Pluto in Marvel Comics, I didn't like the way he landed as a Loki-type character with Palpatine's appearance rather than a Palpatine-like menace. I wanted him to be dark and intriguing but instead spent 90% of Story Mode being stuck in his own Amulet rather than actively manipulating everyone. Worse, I really thought that Johnny Cage and Cassie Cage beating him was just as anti-climatic as Liu Kang defeating him. Raiden should've beat him or the Elder Gods... sigh.
I guess Netherrealm Studios really hates him to the point they really made Liu Kang and Kitana rules of the Netherrealm with him no longer having a body.