Codex Gamicus

Noob Saibot

Noob saibot.jpg
Noob Saibot as he appears in Mortal Kombat Armageddon

Game series Mortal Kombat
First appearance Mortal Kombat (as Sub-Zero)
Gender: Male
Birthplace: China, Earthrealm (reborn in Netherealm)

Noob Saibot is a video game character and a recurring antagonist from the Mortal Kombat fighting game series. He debuted as a hidden character in Mortal Kombat II (2003), although the later game Mortal Kombat: Deception (2004) established his true identity as that of the original Sub-Zero, who was killed by his nemesis Scorpion after the events in the first Mortal Kombat.


Noob Saibot originated as such when, between the events in the first Mortal Kombat tournament and Mortal Kombat II, the first Sub-Zero, the elder of two brothers, was murdered by Scorpion in his quest to avenge his own death at the hands of Sub-Zero.

Sub-Zero was thus deemed dead and he was replaced in the series by his younger brother.

However, in Mortal Kombat: Deception it is revealed that after his death, Sub-Zero became a wraith and was approached by Shinnok and Quan Chi, who took him as a member of the Brotherhood of the Shadow, something he had resisted while alive. Sub-Zero thus pledged his loyalty to Shinnok and was ordered to observe and report on the events taking place on Earthrealm and Outworld; to this end, he remained in the shadows during the Outworld tournament, faithfully monitoring the situation for the fallen Elder God. In this transition, he gained the powers of darkness, teleportation, invisibility, and his dark ninja stars.

In Mortal Kombat 3 Noob then aligned himself with Shao Kahn during Kahn's invasion of Earth. However, as the tables turned in favor of the Earthrealm warriors, Noob was ordered to switch allegiances and join them, unbeknownst to Kahn.

During Mortal Kombat 4, now serving Shinnok directly, and despite his master's careful planning, Noob was once again defeated by Raiden's forces and the Brotherhood of Shadow was disbanded. With Shinnok defeated utterly - Noob Saibot later referred to him as simply "gone" - Noob returned to the service of the still-weakened Shao Kahn.

Uninterested in the events that occurred with the Deadly Alliance, In Mortal Kombat: Deception Noob found Smoke in Shao Kahn's abandoned fortress and reactivated his nanotechnology. Noob Saibot reprogrammed Smoke to only serve him and formed plans to create an army of cyber-demons, using Smoke as a template.

It is in his Deception ending that his true identity as the older brother of the younger Sub-Zero was first revealed.

Between the events of Mortal Kombat: Deception and Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, Noob was seen leaving Shao Kahn's fortress with Smoke, disappearing into the Netherealm. Sub-Zero and Sareena were following the pair at the time, so Sub-Zero ordered Sareena to wait for him at the Lin Kuei Temple as he ventured after the two. However, Noob and Smoke knew they were being followed and attacked Sub-Zero in the Netherealm. It appeared the Grandmaster was overpowered and doomed until Sareena jumped in, fending off Sub-Zero’s would-be assassins but not before Sub-Zero was left unconscious, but upon waking, Sareena had reverted back to her demonic form. Dazed and still very confused, Sub-Zero attacked and Sareena fled to the depths of the Netherealm.

In Armageddon, Noob and Smoke maintained their alliance but fought separately. In Armageddon's Konquest mode, they attacked the Lin Kuei temple as the first step in forming his army of cyber-demons. Taven, who was in the temple at the time, fended off Noob and Smoke, and rescued Sub-Zero. It was then that Sub-Zero discovered Noob to be his older brother. Sub-Zero informed Taven of the Red Dragon as thanks, and decided to take the opportunity to try to bring his brother back into the light.

In Noob's Armageddon ending, with Blaze defeated, Noob stood alone, engulfed in darkness. From out of the shadows emerged his other identity, the original Sub-Zero. They fought each other for control of the warrior's body, but in the end they merged into one; the result is neither Noob Saibot nor Sub-Zero, but a completely different entity altogether.

Character development[]

The name "Noob Saibot" is made up of the last names of MK creators Ed Boon and John Tobias spelled backwards.

Speculation arose that after Tobias left Midway in 2000, the "Saibot" portion of the name had to be removed for legal reasons, but this was untrue as Tobias did not own the rights to the name. In MK: Deception's Konquest mode and in MK: Armageddon, the name Noob-Smoke was split up, with "Saibot" omitted for continuity purposes.

Noob is still referred to by his full name in his and Ashrah's endings in Deception. He is also clearly referred to as Noob Saibot by his brother in the 2005 release Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks, as well as during Armageddon's Konquest mode. An early Deception costume design for him became Havik, a different character altogether.

Noob's special abilities in Mortal Kombat II were simply copied from Scorpion. To fight him, the player must win 50 rounds in a row.

In Mortal Kombat 3, Noob Saibot is not a ninja, but actually a silhouette of Kano, since there were no human ninja in the game. He has no special moves, instead using some of Kano's combos. After Noob won a round, a programming glitch had the voiceover saying, "Kano shows mercy!" In the Game Gear version, he had Kano's special moves and the Eyebeam Fatality. However, in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, due to the return of the ninja characters, he was given a full black sprite in the arcade and home versions, save for the Sega Saturn.

Losing to Noob Saibot in the SNES version of Mortal Kombat II will cause shouts of "You will die, mortal!" and "Toasty!" from Shao Kahn and Dan Forden, respectively. However, in the Arcade version, Shao Kahn says, "Feel the power of -" and is abruptly cut off by Forden's "Toasty!". Losing to Noob Saibot in the arcade, Nintendo DS, and Sega Saturn versions of UMK3 will cause Shao Kahn to say "It's official, you suck!".

In Shaolin Monks, unlike MKII, Noob is found briefly in the Netherealm being chased by Sub-Zero. Kung Lao and Liu Kang witness Noob Saibot attempting to kill Sub-Zero, however he manages to fend him off. As the Shaolin monks prepare to kill the wraith Sub-Zero orders them to stop, saying he will kill them if they take another step. He then tells them that Noob Saibot is his brother and knows the location of Scorpion, whom the trio were seeking. Noob Saibot is playable in Shaolin Monks in the Versus mode if both players select Sub-Zero; the last player to select him will play as a variation of Noob Saibot. He is colored black, like the real Noob Saibot, but he has Sub-Zero's frozen forearms and retains all of his younger brother's moves and fatalities.

The only game in the main series he has not appeared in is Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance. However, his inclusion in Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance shows that he still factors into the main Deadly Alliance storyline.

Appearances in other media[]

Noob Saibot (played by Kimball Uddin) made one appearance in Mortal Kombat: Conquest as an imprisoned Outworld warrior mistakenly released by Siro and Taja and then recruited by a sorceress to assassinate Kung Lao, a task which he failed. He was completely covered in black oil and wielded an Escrima stick.

Noob Saibot also appeared in Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, as a warrior who emerged from Ermac. From watching the movie, it would not be clear that it actually was Noob Saibot (as his name did not appear in the credits), however he is specifically mentioned by name in the novelization based on the movie.

Reception[] ranked Noob Saibot at number three on their "Top 15 Mortal Kombat Characters" article, stating approval for his character evolution as the series progressed. In a humor article by GameSpy, the Mortal Kombat: Trilogy version of Noob Saibot was noted as being broken, citing a combo, where Noob Saibot fires one "Disabler" does a short combo then fires another "Disabler" in which the opponent can not escape. It jokingly noted that the only way to beat this combo was to eject the game. Noob Saibot, along with Sub-Zero, Scorpion, Reptile, Smoke, Ermac, and Rain, was ranked #3 in GamePro's list of the best palette-swapped video game characters. IGN noted that fighting Noob was one of the more difficult secrets to attain in Mortal Kombat II.