Preview: Splatoon

Published May 19, 2015 by Amanda B. Greene


Nintendo’s upcoming new IP called Splatoon is going to be released May 29th, so I’ll catch you up to speed. It’s a third-person shooter with a unique twist of going after territory instead of kills. The main mode, Turf War, has eight players (four vs. four) trying to cover the most ground with their color paint in three minutes and the team who has more territory by the end wins.

There is another chance to try out its online multiplayer for an hour on Saturday, May 23rd, if you can’t wait six more days from then. From what I’ve heard, the demo was enough to convince most to be on board. 10 more days!

How It Works…

1. Modes

Splatoon has a few options to start, but later on more will be added. Once enough players get to Level 10, there will be Ranked Battles like Splat Zones to bring more variety.

There is a single-player campaign that looks fairly extensive for what is supposed to be mainly for online multiplayer. Squids go against Octopi in a battle to get back the Zapfish that were stolen. The latest Direct showed off a boss fight and other mechanics.

  • The single-player campaign only lets you use the Splattershot. You have to purchase Splatoon amiibos in order to use other weapons in various added challenges. Once you complete them, you unlock exclusive gear.


Then, you have the Dojo for two players locally to serve as target practice before making your debut online. You try to get more balloons than your opponent. Sadly there is no local 4-player.


Turf War is the meat of the game where you competitively join three people against another team in causing Mario’s worse nightmare. As I said in the intro, you have to paint the majority of the map in your group’s color in order to win. Certain maps have key points of control if you can hold them. It looks like a lot of fun, with more strategy than you’d think at first.

2. Controls

Splatoon mainly uses the Wii U Gamepad. When Nintendo did the Global Testfire, I was able to try out the tutorial, but it couldn’t connect to any games due to my poor internet connection. I can tell you right now you’ll want to turn off the motion controls and use the right analog stick for the camera.


The most notable feature is the Super Jump where you can launch anywhere that is covered in your color paint after being KO’ed to quickly get back to the action. The Wii U Gamepad acts as a map that keeps track of what’s going on.

3. Gear And Weapons

What you choose to wear will be more than just about looks (even though your swag or “cool factor” is important too). Most pieces of gear will have different bonuses or slots to fill in to help you out in battle. One powerup, for example, has your ink last longer than normal.

There are three types of main weapons: Shooters, Chargers, and Rollers. Shooters are short-ranged, but quick to shot. Chargers fire thin lines of ink that go farther the longer you charge your gun, best for sniping. Rollers have to shortest range, but are great for melee.


Depending on your main weapon, you’ll also get different Sub and Special Weapons. Sub Weapons use up more ink, but can be more effective and do different things; they range from grenades to mines to beacons. Once you fill your special gauge, you can use your powerful Special Weapons; they range from trackers and shields to rockets and transforming into a Kraken.

What To Expect

1. Expect A Lot Of Chaos

Judging from both the trailers and articles, it looks and sounds as though everything will be hectic, especially when the timer is almost up. I look forward to Splat Zones in the Ranked Battles where you have to control a certain area the longest.


2. Expect To Die A Lot

While Splatoon is not really focused on getting the most kills, I’ve heard many players are treating this game like Call Of Duty. This is fine of course, since stopping opponents from spraying more of their ink is smart.

3. Beware Of The Roller

This is partially a joke, but the roller has already become infamous online with people saying it’s too overpowered. It’s a comfortable weapon for beginners because you don’t really have to aim to cover a lot of ground and run others over. It’s heavy, so you can easily overcome it with the chargeshot at a distance due to being slower.

4. Continued Support From Nintendo

Last but not least, in their last Direct, Nintendo promises to add more to the game in the next few months. This includes more maps, gear, and so on. I’m glad they’re embracing free and paid DLC for more games like they did with Hyrule Warriors to give them more longevity.   

What’s Coming?

As I mentioned before, there will eventually be Ranked Battles. I’ve already told you about Splat Zones, but there will also be Tower Control and an unknown one called Rainmaker (August) added on later in the summer.

  • Tower Control is a mode where at least one player must stay on the moving tower to control it while your teammates try to protect you from the enemy. Your team has to hold it the longest in order to win.


Five new maps will come as well that promise to please more technical players. You’ll only be able to play two at a time within a four-hour rotation, so more battlegrounds are always welcome.

New gear, weapons, and other updates are coming too…

What Do You Think?

With the last Direct, it finally got me off the fence. Splatoon looks great and I can’t wait to play it. If you pre-order the game at Gamestop, you’ll get Inkling outfits for your Mii Fighters on Super Smash Bros. I hope this new IP will take off as Nintendo needs to diversify more beyond Mario, Pokemon, and Zelda – their three main franchises/pillars. I covered nearly everything, but I suggest that you still watch the Direct below to get a clearer picture and sense of Splatoon. Please tell me what you think below!


2 comments on “Preview: Splatoon

  • Nintendo understands the market. We’re saturated with overly serious grim’n’dark FPS, now this game comes with squids as children (It’s not the first Japanese thing with squid girls, by the way).

    Of all the game companies, why Nintendo has to have everything console-exclusive? Damn.

    • Nintendo did take a different approach with its shooter compared to the biggest ones out there, I think it’ll do well. Definitely gives off that spring/summer feel.

      If Nintendo wasn’t console-exclusive, they would be sinking their own ship with the Wii U, but I know what you mean.

  • Comments are closed.