Splatoon 2 review

Two years ago Nintendo brought a new series from the studio behind the now regretted Wii U Nintendoland e Animal Crossing (EPD 2) which marked the entrance to the Tokyo house in third-person arena shooters. Initially, the Nintendo infant didn't offer a lot of content, but with a year-long free update plan, and with special events every month, it soon became one of the (few) cornerstones of Wii U, earning the title of the newest Nintendo ip. sold. It was unthinkable that a game that performed well on one ill-fated console would not be repurposed for the next but, instead of taking the simple route of porting, EPD 2 has collected all the experience of the past two years, we added more content, embellished everything with some small improvements, left some grit in any case and is ready to deliver next 21 July, to all owners of Nintendo Switch, Splatoon 2. We've spent the last few days in Inkopolis, and we're ready, as usual, to give you our opinion on the title.

To learn more:
Splatoon 2
Previously on Splatoon
All the qualities of the first chapter

As you have just read Splatoon 2 collects all the fruits sown over the two years just passed by its predecessor: starting from the arsenal of weapons, which we find in its entirety including splashers, rollers, buckets and airbrushes, passing through blasters, shotguns sniper and for the brand new duplo repolper, one of the new additions with which it is possible to perform up to two dodges during enemy assaults (ink permitting). It would be too talkative to go into detail for each weapon, analyzing some improvements (such as the possibility of holding the charge for a short time with the Splatter, the sniper rifle) while it is necessary to spend a few lines on the new special weapons.

For those who are fasting from the series, the main objective of the game is to color the largest horizontal area, so as to ensure victory, while splatting opponents and defending their teammates. Each weapon comes with a secondary (bombs, radar, and support tools) and a special attack, executable whenever you fill the associated color indicator: Splatoon 2 removes all the old special moves and proposes new ones, from the fearsome Paint Splash , capable of making a clean sweep of all the enemies around it, the Jetpack, which will allow you to fly for a short period firing cannon shots of color, up to a rain of ink that will move around the field, an armor capable of protect you from opponents, a huge explosive hamster ball and a barrage of bombs. A little fresh air that will force us to revise some strategy on the battlefield, although we have a feeling that the old special moves will return later in the form of a free update. As in the first chapter, each weapon is available in multiple versions, with different secondary and specials, it's up to you to find the one you like best and that best suits your style, and gear up accordingly using the right finishing move.

We must not underestimate the skills of the equipment, or the clothes with which you can bring your Inkling on the field. Again divided into three shops that will sell them to you in rotation, EPD 2 has also improved the handling of secondary skills: if those obtained with the experience in the field are not to your liking, you can sacrifice them in the square of Inkopolis (for twenty thousand coins), and turn them into fragments of skill. Once you have reached a certain number of these, you can assign them to the chosen item of clothing, making the hunt for the chosen equipment is much less cumbersome (but equally expensive). It is also possible to order the equipment used by companions and opponents, and the possibility of eating a snack has been added to increase the experience or the money received. For this last addition it will be necessary to find meal vouchers in the Hero Mode or in the brand new Salmon Run.

Team that wins ... Team that wins
There is no surprise, but it is still successful

New game, new single player mode, same goal: prepare to take the field in the shellfish melee by presenting all the weapons and mechanics of the game. The Hero Mode of Splatoon 2 is set two years after that of the first episode, and begins with a déjà-vu: the Great Fishbowl it was stolen again and only the special team can stop the terrible Octoling and find the culprit. While in Stella, Team Number 1 and an active member of the Sea Sirens, has vanished into thin air, and cousin Marina (Number 2) is worried that the two situations are somehow connected. A light plot, as indeed was that of the chapter on Wii U, which will take us for a walk in Valle Polpo, in about thirty levels, all with an inspired level design and which fully exploits the capabilities of the Inkling's weapons. Perhaps the surprise effect seen in the first episode is missing, but if you've enjoyed the boss battles and design ideas, you'll find plenty of zones to suit you. Splatoon 2 doesn't disappoint in this respect either, providing ideal entertainment for the portable mode, including rails, trampolines and extendable carpets, as well as the beautiful and hilarious boss battles.

Obviously there is no shortage of various collectibles, including pages that will explain what has happened in the past two years and will also reveal some background on the Try Cool, the new duo that replaced the Sea Sirens in the Coloropolis concerts, and sardine-shaped medals useful for upgrading the nine weapons supplied in Hero Mode. Because this is the biggest news of Splatoon 2's single player mode: each level can be tackled with all weapons, with variations in level design depending on which one you use. If in the first chapter they were levels relegated to amiibo, in Splatoon 2 you will no longer be able to escape the experience of the sniper rifle. This increases the variety of levels (and the replayability of the same) and above all strengthens the idea of ​​a gym for online modes.

In the square of Inkopolis, in addition to the entrance to the Hero Mode, the shops and the van di Gamberto, the amiibo box is also back, compatible with all the figurines of the series released in the past two years and with the three arriving on July 21st, which will allow you to directly save a set on each one, and use it at any time in the pre- match and take a selfie with the same character depicted. The amiibo will also reward you with equipment and with special tracks to be used in the musical game already present in a sketchy way in the first chapter and here the protagonist of a function of its own very similar to the series Taiko no tatsujin.

Legalized Mollusca Blends

But the heart of Splatoon 2 is once again the online mode. Once you have gained experience with Hero Mode (and if it is your first experience with the series we recommend that you throw yourself into history right away) or if you feel ready immediately after leaving the editor, you can take on the Mollusca blends, friendly matches four on four where the team that colors the most area by the time limit wins. The new arenas of Splatoon 2 manage to keep up with those of the first episode, although there are also some old glories like  City Towers e Porto Octopus. We were pleased to note that matchmaking only kicks off matches once the eight players have been reached (only to lose some on the way and leave the 4 vs 3 matches) and we were able to play many more Molluscs than expected. The death counter has been eliminated, leaving only the Splattate counter and adding the kills with the special move. As we have already written, leveling up in Splatoon 2 is vital to having access to all other content, be it the gear rather than the strongest weapons.

Once you reach level ten, you can jump into ranked matches. Here too some changes have been made that seem to be beneficial for now, unfortunately we weren't able to face enough matches to be completely sure. First of all, the three different ranked modes (rotating every few hours like the arenas) will each enjoy a degree bar that goes from C- to S, to accumulate points and allow you to improve, obviously you will need to win the matches by satisfying the conditions imposed (they return Bazookarp, Splat Zone and Mobile Tower). In the first Splatoon, when a match was lost, the score counter dropped depending on the opponent's skill, EPD 2 went less heavy on this round, giving players the chance to lose until the experience container shatters . If by then you have accumulated more than half the points of the rank, you will not demote, otherwise you will have to start over from the lower level.

This sweetening, however, has a bitter aftertaste: ranked matches can no longer be played as a team (at least not at the moment), to do so it will be necessary to go up to at least grade B- and then jump into the new League Matches section, where we can team up with the friends and face fearsome rival teams to climb further to the top. As the game will be available from next Friday, we obviously couldn't try this mode.
To play with friends, Mollusca Scrums are still available and, of course, private matches, in addition to the brand new Salmon Run mode.

At the moment it has not been possible to test the Nintendo Switch Online app, because it will be released simultaneously with the game on July 21st. We therefore do not know the actual quality of the voice chat nor if it will adapt well to what will happen on the screen. Below is an excerpt from the official Nintendo Press Release on the contents of the application.

SplatNet 2: When the Nintendo Switch Online smartphone app launches on July 21, players will also have access to SplatNet 2. This Splatoon 2-specific service helps players stay connected to Inkopolis even when they are away from their Nintendo Switch consoles. SplatNet2 displays information such as stage schedules, equipment and stats, and also allows users to see a lifetime's ink level, a feature that shows how much terrain a player has inked compared to real world places. The Nintendo Switch Online app allows players to invite other players to compete in private matches via voice chat. There is an intention to add more features to the app later, such as planning future game appointments.


Catch the eggs

Salmon Run is a new co-op mode introduced in Splatoon 2: it is accessible through a fixed-term open building (the Tenta Cool will report it to you during their classic Arena Recap video) and consists of three waves of enemies (the salmonoids) to which a A group of up to four players will have to hold their own, while recovering as many eggs as possible. With each wave, each Inkling's weapons will be replaced, and the tide will raise or lower the sea level, changing the survival strategy accordingly. The more eggs you collect, the more you increase your skill level, thus obtaining rewards such as equipment, money and above all food vouchers. Collaborating with your teammates in the defeat of the Salmonoids is vital and, in case you are splatted and reduced to a small life buoy, it is absolutely necessary that your allies hit you with color, because, once all four players are KO the game it will end despite the score being positive.

Salmon Run, however, has two major obvious flaws, the first less serious with the arrival of the game in stores is the start of the game even when there is no team of four, we happened to have to face the three hordes alone, die very badly and lose experience points; fortunately it will be an easily fixed problem as soon as the servers start to fill up. The second is related to the limited availability of the mode (similar to Splatfest), which reduces the amount of time to devote to it although it is guessed and fun as a cooperative mode. A choice that at the moment we find inexplicable and that we really don't know how to understand.

High definition ink

At first glance, the visual aspect of Splatoon 2 seems to resume by thread and by sign (or better pixel by pixel) what we saw two years ago on Wii U. Like its predecessor, however, Splatoon 2 pushes the new Nintendo machine, guaranteeing granite stability and bright colors. Not only that, if played in portable mode, the work will be even more superfine, including convincing lights, shadows and polygonal models. Even the soundtrack returns stronger than before, with unreleased songs and rearranged pieces, among which the Tenta Cool theme stands out. Splatoon 2 is also fully translated into Spanish in all its text.

Verdict 9/10 Two years and you still haven't learned that walls do not serve the final percentage Comment Splatoon 2 reap the rewards of two years of free content and improvements to that half-empty shell that was the first chapter (the day of release), to then add more material and provide an initial offer that, apart from external voice chat, is solid and fun. If you enjoyed the episode on Wii U you will undoubtedly also love Splatoon 2, but if you have never approached the series, this is all the more the right opportunity to get inked by squid and be bewitched by the obsessive care of the development team. . Find your favorite weapon, train and join the fray, you won't regret it. Pros and cons Fun and addicting
Lots of content to unlock
Improvements over the predecessor
Varied Hero Mode x No voice chat on console
x Fixed-term Salmon Run

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