Splatoon 2 Is The Most Unique And Fun Multiplayer Experience I’ve Had In Years

Throughout my middle school days up until today, I have always been a big fan of multiplayer shooters. I’ve put plenty of hours into all the major franchises, from Halo to Battlefield and Call of Duty. Here’s the problem with playing these games for the past 10 years or so: they’re all different games, but they all have very obvious similarities. From identical game modes to similar movement abilities, to carbon copies of guns from one game to another, everything starts to feel a bit samey after a while.

For the past couple of years, I’ve been waiting for a new shooter to grab my attention and bring a breath of fresh air into the multiplayer shooter realm, and Splatoon 2 has been the answer to my prayers.

Having never owned a Wii U, I never got the opportunity to play the original Splatoon. In fact, with the advertising and all the bright colours, and ‘kid-ish’ looking characters I assumed that Nintendo was just making a multiplayer shooter for the young crowd. So, I immediately wrote the game off and never really thought about it again.

That lasted up until the Switch’s announcement press conference, where I was immediately sold on the console. I’m not going to lie though, I was worried about the lack of titles that were announced.

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‘It’s just for kids?’ Ignorance!

Even after owning my Switch for months, I was still very sceptical of Splatoon 2. To be honest with you, I was not planning on buying it at all. That was up until one of the Splatfest demos for Splatoon 2. I said “why not”, and gave it a download. After a few matches of figuring out the game’s mechanics, I was hooked. I believe that Splatfest was live for about three hours, and I played it for almost the whole allotted time. No joke, right after the Splatfest ended, I immediately put in my pre-order.

You’re probably asking: what is it about Splatoon that separates it from other shooters, Trevor? Well, I’ve been thinking about that myself, and the answer is that Splatoon is such a unique experience that almost everything it does is different from any other mainstream shooter. Let’s first start off with the fact that everything you do in a match helps your team.

Let’s use my girlfriend as an example, she averages only about 1-3 splats (kills) a game, and she is almost always at the top or near the top of the team. How is that possible? It’s because in Splatoon getting splats (kills) is nowhere near as important as marking your territory by spreading your ink (paint) all over the map. In the most popular game mode “Turf War” that is the objective, not getting as many splats as you can, but covering the map as much as possible in your coloured ink.

In fact, Splatoon doesn’t even have a “team deathmatch” game mode, it’s all objective based. As long as you’re spraying your ink everywhere, you’re helping your team in one way or another. Basically, you’re doing something productive all the time, and that’s saying a lot in comparison to other shooters out there.

Secondly, the replay value is unreal. In Splatoon the map rotation changes every two hours of real time for each mode. This means you can be playing the same couple of maps for two hours straight and then the rotation changes, which makes the game feel like a fresh new experience all over again. The next thing you know it’s 4 hours later; your whole day is gone. Trust me I’ve done it.

In addition to this, the game has multiple different ranking systems. It has its standard 1-50 levelling system that all other shooters have, where you rank up over time through gaining experience points. It also has a competitive mode, which has its own ranking system altogether. This system is very reminiscent of the classic Halo 2 ranking system that got people hooked back in the original Xbox days. In Splatoon, the rankings start at C- and can go all the way up to the highest of S+. You go up in rank by winning and can go down in rank by losing.

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As expected, there is very little grey here.

Thirdly, is the customization. Your inkling “character” is unique and you can customize how they look and what they wear. In fact, I have yet to see an inkling that is identical to mine. This adds a level of personality to the game that most other shooters don’t have because in those games you’re either generic soldier A or B. In Splatoon’s main hub world there are many shops that hold new clothes/weapons for your character. Each piece of clothing is different, because each one has its own stat boosters attached to it.

So, you can spend hours trying to find the best outfit to fit your play style. Just like the maps, the clothing items update every couple of hours, so you’re always on the hunt for that new piece of gear. Then comes the weapons – in Splatoon every weapon feels different from the other. From the guns, to paint brushes and paint rollers, every weapon has its own play style and pro and cons. It’s up to you to find out what you like best, and what works with your play style. Personally, for me, I’m all about the Slosher, the unstoppable paint bucket, and the Splat Dualies, which are essentially akimbo submachine guns.

Last but not least are the game’s mechanics: how it feels. Running at a smooth 60fps, going around inking your territory, sliding in and out of squid-form and blasting your way through your enemies just feels amazing and responsive. This is one of the fastest-paced and smoothest feeling shooters out there, in my opinion. If you have a Switch, you should probably go out and get the game. It’s one of those special Nintendo experiences that won’t ever get the same amount of attention that Mario, Zelda, Pokémon or a Smash Bros. game does. Most importantly of all, it feels fresh, unique, and pretty courageous too. For me, those qualities are what I look for nowadays.

What do you guys think of Splatoon 2 so far? Have you picked it up yet?

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Crash Trilogy is number one in UK charts again, takes it back from Final Fantasy 12 and beats Splatoon 2

It truly seems that there’s nothing that can stop the Bandicoot in the UK. He’s now secured the number one spot for three weeks and has even beaten Splatoon 2 to get there.

Takeaways:

  • The Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy has taken back the number one spot from Final Fantasy 12, which held it for a week.
  • Newcomer Splatoon 2 came in at number two, an impressive entry but not enough to stop Crash.
  • Splatoon 2 outperformed the first title, becoming the 3rd biggest Switch game launch behind giants Zelda and Mario.
  • Crash now matches The Last of Us: Remastered with the most weeks held at number one for a PS4-only title with 3 weeks. (Next week’s results could see it beat The Last of Us!).

The chance of us getting Crash Team Racing Remastered? I’d say it’s very high at this point with the success of the trilogy. Fans may finally get what they’ve been asking for.

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‘Nintendo Switch Online’ smartphone app launches for Android and iOS

Nintendo has released its mobile app for Switch owners on both iOS and Android devices. It’s part of their new online service called… wait for it… ‘Nintendo Switch Online’. Straight to the point.

Takeaways:

  • The app provides specific information about the game you’re playing. SplatNet 2 is the first of these, created specifically for Splatoon 2. It allows you to see gear, battle stats and more.
  • You can also send online play invitations with the app to people on your Switch’s friend list. From there you can voice chat with them.
  • The app allows you to send invites via social networks too.
  • The app is available for download but you can’t yet sign in. Nintendo is most likely still getting it ready for Splatoon 2 this Friday.
  • Online play for the Switch will be available for free until 2018.

It’ll be interesting to see if the service holds up with the rush of new Splatoon 2 players. Also, will gamers appreciate using their phone for voice chat instead? Time will tell!

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Fancy a Splatoon anime? Well it’s coming this year

Another day, another video game being turned into an anime… This time it’s Splatoon. The game is getting a web anime based on the manga serialisation.

Takeaways:

  • Announced by Japanese magazine CoroCoro, the series will be shown on their YouTube page.
  • CoroCoro already has a manga serialisation of Splatoon in its magazine, so we assume it’ll follow that.
  • It’s coming on the 12th August. That’s probably sooner than you expected, no?

Splatoon has gone from success to success since the first game released on the Wii U back in 2015. It just so happens that the second game in the series is out this Friday on the Nintendo Switch. We’ll be letting you know our thoughts on that too.

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Splatoon 2 Direct announced for July 6th

Listen up squids, Nintendo has just announced a new Splatoon 2 Direct that’s taking place this Thursday, July 6th. As if we needed more hype for the game, honestly.

Takeaways:

  • The new Splatoon 2 Direct is live from July 6th at 7am PT/10am ET.
  • This will be the final Direct before Splatoon 2 launches on July 21st worldwide.
  • The new Switch exclusive is the sequel to the hugely popular shooter on the Wii U.

You can watch some happy millennials playing the game below. By the way, are you a kid or squid? Let us know in the comments below, if you please.

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Splatoon 2 Coming 21st July, Arms on June 16th to Nintendo Switch

Nintendo has announced release dates for its two key Nintendo Switch titles: Arms and Splatoon 2.

Arms punches its way to gamers on June 16th while Splatoon 2 is coming on July 21st.

The latest Nintendo Direct presentation had lots of other juicy details including a new Pikmin game for the 3DS literally called ‘Hey Pikmin’. Hey Pikmin hits the 3DS on the 28th July.

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New amiibo for Splatoon 2, The Legend of Zelda and Super Smash Bros. were also shown off.

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June 23rd is the day when you can buy the three new Zelda figures, while July 21st will see the Splatoon and Smash Bros. ones launch.

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Did the Nintendo Direct live up to your expectations?