Trailer Tuesdays: Splatoon 2

Despite this year being packed full of great games already (just look at games like NieR: Automata and Breath of the Wild!), the Spring/Summer season never fails to hype even more games coming in. No doubt E3 has an impact on this, but even before games are shown there, companies are making announcements and releasing information on their upcoming projects. Being the maverick that they are, Nintendo has already teased many of their big upcoming projects. The title that caught my attention the most was the follow up to 2015’s Splatoon, a game I had an immense fondness for.

Although Nintendo has been using much of the press surrounding the game to hint at multiplayer changes and cosmetic additions (which are amazing), this newest trailer focused more on the story/single-player experience. The trailer showed us that this game is planning to be everything a sequel should be: a continuation and escalation of what was good in the last one. Some Splatoon-specific sites revealed that the final Splatfest (in-game competitions pitting two subjects against each other) of Callie vs. Marie had actual bearing on the canon of the world. The trailer showed a bit more of this. Marie lures the player character to an Octo-World similar to the one from the first game. She mentions being concerned about the Octarians (the octopus-themed bad guys) before introducing herself to the player. We see some gameplay, and the video ends with a splash image of good guys and bad guys with a silhouette of what appears to be Callie behind everyone, inspiring more mystery. The story doesn’t seem to be anything grand, but it’ll be a treat for the players who enjoyed the first.

As far as gameplay goes, the trailer shows how they expanded the mechanics as well; these are where the single-player seems to really shine. In addition to new enemy types, old enemies return with improved skillsets, such as the Octolings now having use of the various brushes. New super moves from the multiplayer are also shown to be available to the player such as the ground punch and rocket launchers; all ink-fueled, of course. Various standard weapons seem to be open to the player this time too. In the first game, you had to complete the story with only the standard machine pistol weapon: the Splattershot. It could be upgraded, but it was still the same gun. If you wanted new weapons, you needed to use the Amiibo figures, which were often difficult to purchase. In Splatoon 2, it appears that you can use rifles, brushes, Gatling guns, blasters, and buckets for this outing, as well as the new dual pistols. Weapons aren’t the only place with variety either as a whole new set of stage gimmicks are on display. There are unfolding ribbon platforms, trampoline type platforms, dash pads, and grind rails. In this world, it’s totally feasible to grind on rails made of ink, and it looks amazing. These new gimmicks and weapon availability suggest that Splatoon 2 will have more variety in game speed: some levels will be slow and methodical; some will be fast-paced and frenetic. Variety definitely helps keep a franchise fresh.

The Nintendo Switch is looking better and better as more games are announced and explained. With a game like Splatoon getting a sequel, it shows that Nintendo is committed to its new IPs and giving them a lifespan that fans will appreciate. All in all, this second entry looks to be a lot of fun and I’m excited to try it when it is finally released. July 21st can’t come soon enough.

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