Shang Tsung

Young Tsung

Old Tsung

Series Mortal Kombat
Age >1,000
Sex Male
Height 5'11" (180 cm)
Weight 210 lbs (95 kg)
Alignment Neutral Evil
Your soul is mine!
~ Shang Tsung

Shang Tsung is a powerful sorcerer and one of the main antagonists from Mortal Kombat. He is the series' first villain, appearing as the final boss in the original game.


Little is known about the earliest days in Shang Tsung's life, but at some point he was an Earthrealm human who was caught cheating in the Mortal Kombat tournament and sentenced to death. His life was saved by Shao Kahn, however, struck a deal with the young man to spare his life in exchange for eternal allegience. Shang agreed, and he was soon taught by the emperor in the ways of magic. Eventually Shang Tsung used his magic to steal a soul, in which the Elder Gods punished him by making him rapidly age to death unless he constantly sustained himself on the souls of his victims. Soon, Shang returned to the Mortal Kombat tournament under the banner of Outworld, where he easily took the title of Grand Champion. For 9 separate Mortal Kombat tournaments he would hold this title until he met the Great Kung Lao, who defeated Shang in combat and took the title as his own. Quickly, he would return as a master for the Shokan prince Goro, who soon took the Great Kung Lao's life and the title of Grand Champion 9 times in a row. Upon his 10th tournament, however, the young monk Liu Kang defeated Goro and Shang to fend off the Outworld invasion.

Upon defeat, an enraged Shao Kahn nearly killed Shang Tsung before he devised the idea to hold a new tournament in Outworld that would raise the stakes, where victory either meant the immediate conquer of Earthrealm or for Outworld to never attempt to take Earthrealm again. After Shao Kahn's defeat, Shang Tsung's soul was taken as a sacrifice to resurrect the deceased Sindel and begin an invasion of Outworld, ending the sorcerer's life.

Powers & AbilitiesEdit

  • Superhuman Physique
  • Magic: Due to his training in magic, Shang Tsung has learned a variety of abilities to use in combat.
    • Morphing: Shang Tsung's most famous ability, he can transform into the shape of anyone he has seen in battle.
    • Soul Steal: By grabbing onto an opponent, Shang Tsung can magically absorb a portion of their soul and gain access to some o their memories and skills. With every soul he steals, Shang can partially heal his wounds and revert his body back to its physical prime. He also gains the ability to morph into the user, being able to use their abilities and skills at will with the same efficiency as the original owner.
      • Increased Longevity: With every soul Shang Tsung takes, his overall lifespan increases.
      • Soultaker: Shang Tsung takes the entirety of his opponent's soul, leaving them a shriveled corpse.
    • Pyrokinesis: Using magic, Shang Tsung can manipulate fire in a variety of ways.
      • Flame Skulls: Shang Tsung can fire explosive, flaming skulls at his enemies as projectiles to attack from afar. He can fire these skulls from the ground, raining down from the sky, or just straight at his enemies in up to groups of 3 skulls at once.
      • Fireballs:
      • Fire Ring:
      • Hot Escape: To traverse the battlefield quickly, Shang Tsung creates fiery portals to teleport in an instant.
  • Master Manipulator:
  • Master Martial Artist: Shang Tsung is a master martial artist capable of mimicking the fighting styles of every victim he's absorbed, though he normally specializes in the Crane, Snake, and Mantis variants of Kung Fu.


  • Straight Sword: A one-handed jian that Shang Tsung keeps hidden for surprise attacks.






  • Has created various sentient lifeforms, like Ermac or Mileena.
  • Distracted Liu Kang long enough to kill him.
  • Held the title of Mortal Kombat Champion for 9 tournaments.


  • Rapid Aging: As punishment for stealing souls, Shang Tsung has been cursed by the Elder Gods to rapidly age until his premature demise unless he regularly steals souls.

Fun FactsEdit

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