For those that have been paying attention, I repeatedly made mention of the game Splatoon. It was a break out hit of the Nintendo Wii U and now the inklings are back onto the console success of the year – the Switch (complete with a bunch of Splatoon themed accessories). So let’s us put on weird 90s esc gear and look at the second installment of Nintendo’s brightly coloured post apocalyptic shooter.
Now first up, and of supreme importance to anyone reading, this is primarily a Multiplayer game, so you won’t get your monies worth if you don’t have access to the internet. There is a single player, and it’s a big improvement over the original, not that the original was bad but the new one is vastly improved with one big reason: in this single player mode you now use different weapons for the levels rather than be stuck with just a blaster except for amiibo challenges (EAT SPLATLING OCTOLINGS MWHA HA HA HA!)
For those that never heard of the first version, Splatoon takes place in the future after all land animals were wiped out by rising sea levels leaving sea creatures to evolve into sentient humanoid beings (mainly squids and octopi but there are a few others in the hub area). Now gangs of squid people fight in guerilla warfare for territory over the shattered remains of humanity all the while unaware of our species former existence. Well ok, not quite the Mad Max image you’re probably thinking of. You dress in a bunch of 90s esc gear, get a selection of weird weapons (I’ll describe next paragraph) and you win not by killing your opponents (though that helps) but by the ground in your colourful ink and which ever team covers more at the end wins. However an inkling (squid people) can transform into kid or squid form and as a squid you can swim through the ink and at a noteworthy speed AND climb walls so covering your ground with ink has multiple uses.
The Ink is spread with a variety of weapons, from paint guns, sniper rifles, my favourite mini guns called splatlings, plus new to the game duel wielding pistols. But also the more insane: like shielding yourself with an umbrella that can work also as a shot-gun, splashing people with a bucket full of ink or mowing them down with a roller. Each weapon also comes with a different sub weapon and super weapon so you should be able to find the weapon combination you like most.
Nintendo has filled each character with, well character. We have the ever popular squid sisters (who now take center stage in single player Callie for the win) as well as the new duo of Pearl and Marina, plus all the shop owners and your character aswell. All of it comes together to give the world its own feel (something absent from all those brown shooters from the last decade) which probably helped it grow in popularity.
Single player is similar to the original version but has one big improvement, you now get to use other weapon types through it rather than just amiibo challenges. You travel each level taking down enemies and solving challenges that each are inventive and show the craziness of this world. And then face a boss at the end of each world, plus find hidden items that reveal lore. Yes other than the use of different weapons single player hasn’t changed much but that is actually a big change.
A new mode for this game is Salmon run, you and 3 others face waves of enemies and need to take them out. In these waves are boss salmonids that have to be taken out in specific manners so by the end of each wave you may just decide to run for your life to stay alive for those precious seconds. Also all the boss enemies are nuts, such as the giant lazer firing one that is made of old saucepans.
Splatoon 2 is a great game. An improvement over the original which if you didn’t have a Wii U you didn’t play, but with the Switch’s success this franchise is now more accessible than ever.