Mortal Kombat D&D 5e: Johnny Cage

It’s time to dust off your gaming thumbs people! Street Fighter D&D 5E is done and what lay ahead is arguably its only true competitor among fighters in the golden age of video games: MORTAL KOMBAT D&D 5E (yes, all caps, every time). In this series I’ve put together RAW builds using Mists of Akuma (my eastern fantasy noir steampunk campaign setting) to supplement the core rules–with the litany of martial arts stances (playtest versions here) there’s a lot that can be done, and what can’t will get items to bridge the gap. 😀

We’re starting off with the original cast from the first game and finishing up with the second game (and if this proves extremely popular, maybe the third title or select characters from later titles). So let’s begin properly with the best character in the first movie: Johnny Cage! For anyone not in the know, in the worlds of MORTAL KOMBAT Johnny is a brash Hollywood (off-Hollywood?) martial arts action star. He makes it into the tournament (depending on which source you’re looking at) by way of his agent, a mysterious audition, or being sneaky. Johnny’s definitely got some talents but out of the first batch of fighters is not the most martial character. Since he’s in the same vein as Dan from Street Fighter, I opted to give him the Strongest Martial Arts Stance (admittedly only existing on the blog) and will let his competitors bring the ruckus with the proper core MoA feats. Fortunately the Shadow ____ moves all fit neatly into the RAW open hand monastic tradition (and I’ve nibbed the tumbler rogue archetype from material that will be appearing soon in Mists of Akuma: Trade War so we get a little Soburin in the mix).

Edit: On Discord JesseNeon suggested that Johnny’s Shadow Kick is better represented by the Lunging Attack battlemaster maneuver; I was figuring it was just an Open Hand Technique. We can have both of these things however (dropping his Constitution down and picking up the Martial Adept feat) and then he also has the option to just really blow a target away with a Shadow Uppercut (Pushing Attack + Open Hand Technique = as far as 30 feet away from him). Feedback and critique are always welcome here so if you spot something, say something! 😀

Johnny Cage DnD 5E Mortal Kombat.png

Johnny Cage

Medium humanoid (soburi human), neutral good monk (open hand) 8/rogue (tumbler) 8
Armor Class 18 (Charisma, martial arts stance)
Hit Points 88 (16d8+16)
Speed 45 ft.

11 (+0) 18 (+4) 12 (+1) 10 (+0) 8 (-1) 16 (+3) 16 (+3) 9 (-1)

Saving Throws Str +5, Dex +9
Skills Acrobatics +14, Athletics +10, Deception +8, Perception +4, Performance +13, Persuasion +8, Sleight of Hand +14
Senses passive Perception 14
Languages Chinese, English
Challenge 9 (5,000 XP)

Cunning Action (1/turn). Johnny can take a bonus action to take the Dash, Disengage, or Hide action. So long as Johnny moves at least 10 feet during his turn and he’s wearing light armor or no armor, he can use his Cunning Action to tumble. While tumbling he increases his AC by +5 until the beginning of his next turn. Opportunity attacks against Johnny while he is tumbling are made with disadvantage.

Evasion. When Johnny is subjected to an effect that allows him to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, he instead takes no damage if he succeeds on the saving throw, and only half damage if he fails.

Feat: Martial Adept (1d6). Johnny knows the following maneuvers. He can use only one maneuver per attack. A superiority die is expended when Johnny uses a maneuver. He regains all of his expended superiority dice when he finishes a short or long rest.

  • Lunging Attack. When Johnny makes a melee weapon attack on his turn, he can expend one superiority die to increase his reach for that attack by 5 feet. If he hits, add the superiority die to the attack’s damage roll.  
  • Pushing Attack. When Johnny hits a creature with a weapon attack, he can expend one superiority die to attempt to drive the target back. He adds the superiority die to the attack’s damage roll, and if the target is Large or smaller, it must make a DC 17 Strength saving throw. On a failed save, Johnny pushes the target up to 15 feet away from him.

Feat: Mobile. Johnny can Dash through difficult terrain without requiring additional movement. Whenever he makes an attack against a creature, he doesn’t provoke opportunity attacks from that creature until the end of his turn.

Feat: Strongest Stance. Johnny can throw improvised range weapons (1d4, range 20/40 ft., Charisma to calculate attack and damage), has AC equal to 10 + Dexterity modifier + Charisma modifier, and can use Charisma in place of Wisdom for monk features.

Ki (8 points/short rest). Johnny can spend ki to fuel the following features:

  • Flurry of Blows. Immediately after Johnny takes the Attack action on his turn, he can spend 1 ki point to make two unarmed strikes as a bonus action.
  • Patient Defense. Johnny can spend 1 ki point to take the Dodge action as a bonus action on his turn.
  • Step of the Wind. Johnny can spend 1 ki point to take the Disengage or Dash action as a bonus action on his turn, and his jump distance is doubled for the turn.
  • Stunning Strike. Johnny can spend 1 ki point to attempt to stun a creature he hits with a melee weapon attack. The target must succeed on a DC 16 Constitution saving throw or be stunned until the end of his next turn.

Open Hand Technique. Whenever Johnny hits a creature with one of the attacks granted by his Flurry of Blows, he can impose one of the following effects on that target:

  • It must succeed on a DC 16 Dexterity saving throw or be knocked prone.
  • It must make a DC 16 Strength saving throw. If it fails, Johnny can push it up to 15 feet away from him.
  • It can’t take reactions until the end of Johnny’s next turn.

Second-Story Work. Climbing does not cost Johnny extra movement. When he makes a running jump, the distance he covers increases by 4 feet.

Sneak Attack (1/turn). Johnny deals an extra 14 (4d6) damage when he hits a target with a weapon attack and has advantage on the attack roll, or when the target is within 5 feet of an ally of Johnny’s that isn’t incapacitated and he doesn’t have disadvantage on the attack roll.

Stillness of Mind. Johnny can use his action to end one effect on himself that is causing him to be charmed or frightened.

Tumbling. Other creature’s squares do not count as difficult terrain for Johnny and he has advantage on any ability check he makes that uses Acrobatics.

Unarmed Savant. Johnny’s unarmed strike damage increases by one step (to 1d8) due to his soburi heritage and he gains proficiency in the Athletics skill.


Extra Attack. Johnny attacks twice. In addition, when Johnny uses the Attack action with an unarmed strike or a monk weapon on his turn, he can make one unarmed strike as a bonus action.

Unarmed. Melee Weapon Attack: +9 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 11 (1d8+7) magical bludgeoning damage.

Forceball. As an action, Johnny throws a ball of energy at a creature within 60 feet. He has a +8 bonus to hit and deals 30 (5d10+3) force damage.


Deflect Missiles. Johnny can use his reaction to deflect or catch the missile when he is hit by a ranged weapon attack. When he does so, the damage he takes from the attack is reduced by 1d10+12. When the damage is reduced to 0, he can catch the missile if it is small enough for him to hold in one hand and he has at least one hand free. If he catches a missile in this way, Johnny can spend 1 ki point to make a ranged attack with the weapon or piece of ammunition he just caught, as part of the same reaction (+9 to hit, range 20/60 ft., 1d8+4 damage).

Slow Fall. Johnny can use his reaction when he falls to reduce any falling damage he takes by 40.

Uncanny Dodge. When an attacker Johnny can see hits him with an attack, he can use his reaction to halve the attack’s damage against him.



Wondrous item (belt), rare
While wearing this championship belt, you gain a +3 bonus to damage rolls with unarmed strikes. In addition, you gain the following feature:
Forceball. As an action, you throw a ball of energy at a creature within 60 feet, using your Charisma modifier and proficiency bonus for the attack roll. On a successful hit, you deal 1d10 force damage per point of proficiency bonus you possess + your Charisma modifier.


Also–the Midgardia RPG group is doing a streaming actual play of Scourge of Robai-Shita Temple! Check out their second session going out live tonight starting at 6 PM MST/8PM EST over on their Twitch channel.


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