Video Game Review

Splatoon 2

Every year, some new game claims to have revolutionized the art of shooting people in the face. Most of the time, it doesn’t feel true. With Splatoon 2 however, it does. Splatoon 2 is the follow up its 2015 predecessor that ironically became an instant cult classic upon its release to the highly unpopular Wii U. This latest installment for the Nintendo Switch is a definite improvement on the last, but much in the way that a new Madden game is improved upon. Splatoon 2 is essentially a 4 on 4 multiplayer shooter where two teams comp

ete for map control. Your guns fire ink instead of bullets, and while you can shoot players on the other team, it’s just as important to paint the walls and floors of the map with colorful splashes of neon paint. It’s as much about making a big mess as it is about shooting the other team. Most importantly, you can shift into a squid and zip through areas of the stage that bear your team’s hue. This is the fastest way to get around, plus going for a swim also reloads your weapon’s ink. You’ll probably spend most of your time in “Turf Wars,” a mode where you have to cover as much of the map as possible with your team’s ink color. At the end of the round, thegame calculates what percentage of the map you actually claimed— the team with the most surface covered wins. It’s a mechanic that adds a delightful element of tension to the end of matches, particularly close matches, as you always have to wait for the game to crunch the numbers on your paint coverage. Splatoon offers something very valuable: it challenges our notion of what shooters have to look like, and how shooters have to work in order to be fun. In this way, Splatoon isn’t in competition with the reigning titans of competitive video game shoot-outs. It’s on an entirely different playing field.

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