Splatoon came at a time when people were crying out for new IP for Nintendo, and any games at all for the Wii U. For a lot of those people, Splatoon was able to help justify their purchase of what we can now call a failed console. It’s unique take on multiplayer shooters with a worthwhile single-player campaign gave Nintendo fans something to pass the time.
Now that the Nintendo Switch has hit the shelves, Fans are anticipating the sequel, the aptly-named Splatoon 2! This Nintendo Direct looked exclusively at Splatoon 2, giving the basics to newcomers of the franchise as well as some details that will interest returning players.
The Squid Research Lab have returned to present all the information. The basic premise of the game: Shooting ink in humanoid form, and swimming in ink in squid form in an attempt to cover the most turf by the end of the team battles.
Inkopolis Square, the community hub of Splatoon, is back, where customisable gear can be on show. Splatoon 2’s gear shop, run by the shakespearean Jelfonzo among others, is located in Inkopolis Square, and gear can give you boosted abilities alongside their cosmetic worth.
Weapons come in sets of three: A main weapon, sub-weapon and all-new special weapons.
Main weapons are a mix between unique takes on classic weapons, such as dual pistols and sniper rifles, and arms only seen in the Splatoon universe; a giant paint roller, for example. Sub-weapons, such as hand grenades and exploding curling stones make a return, with more to be announced. The special weapons shown are a new addition to Splatoon 2, and includes a jetpack and a gun that can fire through walls. The highlight of these Special weapons is a baller, a hamster ball which can be used to climb walls and will explode when you’re finished with it.
They showed off eight maps, most of which showing a good deal’s worth of variety, boasting locations such as racetracks and harbours. In ranked battles, you can play Tower Control, Splat Zones and Rainmaker on these maps. The most interesting of these is Tower Control, which is a spin on Overwatch’s Payload mode.
There are also several gear abilities which can be installed or removed from your gear with ability ‘chunks’.
Salmon Run, Splatoon 2’s horde mode, now features a lot of idiosyncratic creatures to destroy as wave upon wave of these salmon-like cretins rain upon you.
You can keep in touch with the community, events and announcements with the SplatNet 2 app. More interestingly though, this was one of the first glimpses we’ve had into the Nintendo Switch Online app. One jarring statement that came out of the direct was that you will be automatically placed into in-game chat , even when talking to friends. Without any clarification it would appear that you cannot stay in any form of ‘Party chat’ while playing Splatoon 2.
Drawing in-game pictures is back and, using the Nintendo Switch touch screen, you can draw and then submit your artwork to be used in battles and Inkopolis Square. You can also save your settings to an Amiibo which you can take with you to use on any Nintendo Switch. Amiibo functionality also includes exclusive gear and being able to ‘strike a pose’ with them. Splatoon 2 will have its own series of Amiibo, to join the current selection. All of these will be compatible with Splatoon 2.
LAN play is also available for Splatoon 2, as long as you’ve shelled out for a Nintendo LAN adapter. There is also the return of the rhythm mini-game and the surprisingly entertaining Hero Mode.
They’ve promised content updates for a year after Splatoon 2 is released and Splatfest battles for two years, finishing just in time for Splatoon 3 I would imagine.
Finally, we saw Pearl and Marina sing in a bizarro concert before announcing a pre-release Splatfest coming on July 15th. Do you like ice cream or cake? Now’s your chance to decide.
That’s everything of import there is to report from this Nintendo Direct, which just leaves me to say: Don’t get cooked… Stay off the Hook!