I think I may have outdone myself on that headline. Puns aside, Splatoon’s release is upon us and while Josh’s review will be coming soon, me and fellow writer Demelza Ward have both taken longer to come around to the colourful side of life. In this editorial, we will both be explaining how we have been won over by Nintendo’s third-person shooter – starting with me…
Now, it’s fair to say I had mixed feelings back when Splatoon was announced at E3 2014. On the plus side, it was a very different, new IP from Nintendo – and we had been asking for that for a while. However, it was hard to grasp how the game would feel, and what exactly would be in the game. Would there be a single-player campaign? How many online options would there be?
It was only when I got to play the game back at EGX 2014 that I was hooked for the first time. Playing with 7 other people at the event put across the fun, competitive aspect of Splatoon (even with the, er, over-excited announcers). At this point, I knew that the game was enjoyable to play, but the hook slipped slightly when I realised we still didn’t know much about the content.
As time passed, the tide of Splatoon ebbed and flowed for me. A trailer showing the campaign would reinvigorate me, but then something like the lack of voice chat would cast doubt on my purchasing decision. Personally, the character and level designs weren’t appealing to me, so the amiibo pack did nothing for me. With other titles on the horizon – Yoshi’s Woolly World to name but one – Splatoon was edging back in personal importance.
It wasn’t until the recent Global Test Fires that that all started to turn around. Seeing trailers is all well and good, but for a game like Splatoon you need to get into it and just play. It feels much more like a game than it did at EGX 2014, when it felt like a demo (which it was, to an extent) rather than a full-fledged concept. The range of weapons and options fleshes out the tactical element of the game, from the Splattershot – a sniper-like weapon more focused on taking out enemies – to the Splat Roller, which is based on covering the largest area possible.
Furthermore, the weirdest things can draw you in, and the soundtrack of Splatoon is that for me. While waiting in lobbies, the crazy rock music kept me very entertained. It almost outlines how much of a tangent the game is for Nintendo, as a new IP and Nintendo’s take on the competitive online shooter.
While my interest in Splatoon has fluctuated over the last year-ish, the one thing that always drew me back was the element of fun. At EGX 2014 I properly experienced that, and the Global Test Fires served to remind me of it. It is a competitive shooter that everyone can enjoy, as everyone contributes to covering the ground with ink. Trust Nintendo to make a competitive shooter that can even be fun for those who don’t want to be competitive. Oh, and, yeah, I’m getting the game. See you all in Inkopolis!
Now, for Demelza Ward’s thoughts:
It’s fair to say that here at WiiUAndMii we’ve been quite looking forward to the release of Splatoon as the game likely marks good things for Nintendo. However, with that said I sadly was beginning to lose interest in the game extremely quickly. I’m not the type of gamer who enjoys playing shooters and in general guns just aren’t my thing, give me Link with a sword any day, so the draw Splatoon was having on a lot of players after its reveal was not something that interested me.
I played the game at EGX last year with fellow WiiUandMii writers William and Josh and quite enjoyed what I played but realised that playing the game with friends was probably the most fun and only use I’d get out of it. With this in mind my excitement for the game began to fall and fell all the more when I realised a lot of my friends weren’t going to bother with the game and even when my partner pre-ordered a copy of the game with one of the amiibo I felt certain I wouldn’t be playing the game.
As the weeks rolled by I began ignoring the game and looking forward to other Nintendo titles that are on the horizon, but then Nintendo announced their Global Test Fire for Splatoon. Acting both as a demo of the game as well as a stress test for servers, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to change people’s minds about the game. Sure enough after an hour with the game my opinion of Splatoon has changed quite drastically from what I originally thought.
Splatoon is downright fun. It’s a shooter that doesn’t feel like a shooter and the variety of weapons, even the four used in the demo, made a big difference to me. Want to roll over enemies with the paint roller, or sneak around and get them with a sniper weapon? All possible and the massive difference in ways to play is one of the things that won me over most.
I liked the overall feel of working in a team as well which is something I wasn’t sure Splatoon would offer. It has been widely slammed for not having voice chat in online play, but having played the demo I’m not sure this is even a problem. Everyone on a team begins at the same point and then splits up, it’s easy to see what each team member is doing and frankly I always got the feeling that we all knew what the other intended on doing. It’s a nice feeling and something I regard the Turf Wars mode quite highly for. Splatoon already heavily feels like it has a strong community around it, something you want to be part, and for me that’s quite important with my gaming habits. Splatoon is more of a team game than everyone out for themselves and for a game like this that’s probably what I wanted to see most.
I’ve gone from someone who didn’t even think they’d play the copy of the game in the house to eagerly awaiting its arrival and having pre-ordered an extra amiibo for it. Something tells me I’m going to be extremely fond of Splatoon in the end…
So, there is the thoughts of two WiiUandMii writers. Are you going to be getting Splatoon? What convin(k)ced (yes I will use that questionable pun as much as I can) you to get Splatoon? Tell us in the comments!