The Netherrealm is a realm in the Mortal Kombat series. The Netherrealm is comparable to Hell in the Abrahamic faiths.

The Netherrealm

Map of Netherrealm from MK Deception.

About The NetherrealmEdit


Although the Netherrealm appears like Outworld, a realm compased of many different layers it is different. The deceased souls or entities of those who have committed major crimes descend to the Netherrealm to undergo endless torture. It is said that one cannot enter the Netherrealm with being evil or having their soul tainted in some way. Whether or not that is true is debateable. Most magic users and magical beings that do not derive their power from the Nether are weakened in this realm. One of its former rulers was Lucifer until he was usurped by the fallen Elder God Shinnok. It is often described as being the darkest region of reality and is inhabitted by demons, monsters, and beings of the purest evil.

There are very few exits and entrances to the Netherrealm and these limited means of escape are often fiercly guarded for ovbious reason. The Netherrealm has a had a very interesting history. Countless years ago after the war of the Gods in Earthrealm, the fallen Elder God Shinnok was banished. He eventually escaped imprisonment and deposed Lucifer and took control of it for himself. He gradually reconstructed the Netherrealm so it would bear some resemblance to Earthrealm the world he had desired to make his own. He would later use it in the invasion of Edenia until he was once again cast into its depths after his plan was foiled though his war efforts were put to good use by his former accolyte, Noob Saibot.


  • Two locations within this realm include the Bridge of Immortality and the Prison of Souls. These are almost like the Di Yu in Chinese Mythology. The Prison of Souls is the Chamber of Grinding and so is the Slaughterhouse. Shinnok's Spire resembles that of Yan Wang's spire in 'Journey to the West.'
  • In Mortal Kombat: Deception's Konquest mode, Shujinko arrives during the "Festival of Torture", in which dead bodies burn and inhabitants watch them.

Native SpeciesEdit

  • Oni - A specific subset of demons, the Oni, is thought to be native to the Netherrealm. They vary a lot in terms of appearance, stature and color, as is evidenced by Drahmin and Moloch, and appear to be unable to communicate with other lifeforms. (Although in Armageddon's conquest mode Drahmin does state "Welcome to Hell." to Taven.) Their prime state of being appears to be one of unquenchable rage.
  • Demons - Demons are considered to be more evolved than Oni due to their ability to use magic though they are still very similar to oni.

Notable ResidentsEdit


  • Quan Chi's origin is not known other than the fact that he used to be an Oni, but one of the Netherrealm's demons claims that Quan Chi is a demon from the Netherrealm and was a member of the Brotherhood of Shadows.
  • Ashrah's origins are unknown. Once an assassin in service of Quan Chi, she found a sword (Datusha) that slowly guided her to the light side.
  • Moloch is also an Oni, but unlike Drahmin, he is more ape-like than humanoid.
  • The Netherrealm is also home to the Brotherhood of Shadow, led by Noob Saibot and Quan Chi.
  • Sareena is a demon of the realm, although little is known about her past. She was once a personal assassin of Quan Chi and served the Brotherhood of Shadow, but turned against the clan.
  • Kia and Jataaka were also demon assassins who served Quan Chi alongside Sareena. While they remained loyal to Quan Chi, Sareena did not.
  • The cyromancer Naomi.


  • Drahmin was once a warlord who was presumably assassinated, and transformed into a caricature of his former self by unknown powers, until he became an Oni. He may have been at the seventeenth level of Hell, seeing that he is somewhat eaten by maggots or he might have been skinned in Hell as well.
  • Noob Saibot is the altered form of the elder Sub-Zero, after he was murdered by Scorpion in retribution for his own killing. The mass corruption in his soul caused him to transform into a humanoid Wraith based on his reincarnation in the next life as he is not in a very low level.
  • Reiko was originally introduced as a member of the Brotherhood of Shadow, presumably a demon as well. However, his exact origin is revealed as Outworld in his trading card video.
  • Scorpion became a vengeful specter in the Netherrealm after he was killed by Noob Saibot (as Sub-Zero). Unlike most creatures in the Netherrealm, Scorpion is neither evil nor good and can somewhat withstand the torturous realm better than others stating that he is not at a very low level in Hell. In fact, it has been stated that his powers increase there as of Deadly Alliance. His type of reincarnation is based on the Chinese belief that a dead person with unfinished business comes back to settle scores with opponents and can't be easily put to rest.
  • Shinnok was once an Elder God, descended into Netherrealm because he wanted to take over Earthrealm without relinquishing his status as Elder God. However, he did overthrow Lucifer with Quan Chi's assistance and became supreme ruler of the dark realm as stated in the MK Mythologies manual but then, his side-story in Armageddon may retcon it otherwise. He is loosely based on the Chinese god of Hell Yan Wang and the Christian Satan, being deceptive and evil.
  • Smoke was brought to the Netherrealm by Noob Saibot. It is suspected he has also become tainted with evil after his new master altered his nanotechnology.

Relationships with other RealmsEdit

As one could expect, the Netherrealm could be said to pose the biggest threat to the Heavens, being its polar opposite. Most inhabitants of other realms fear the Netherrealm and avoid contact with it if at all possible. Under Shao Kahn's rule in Outworld, however, alliances have been formed between certain of its denizens and those of the Netherrealm (an example being the interaction between Shang Tsung and Quan Chi). Aside from that, it has no other known allies and seems to be viewed as a threat by the citizens of every other realm, being the place of eternal damnation.