Splatoon splats its way back into the gaming industry

Regina Payne, Staff Writer

On Sept. 9 “Splatoon” fans splatted their way to the third addition of the “Splatoon” franchise. After a five-year hiatus, the wait for a new “Splatoon” game came to an end. The gaming community was thrilled to be exposed to a new game environment and much more. In the end sixty dollars for “Splatoon 3” proves to be a good investment for this splat-tastic game.

The most noticeable change is the ability to express yourself more through customization. At the beginning of the game, you get the chance to start off as an octoling, different to “Splatoon 2” where you only had the choice to be an inkling. There are new, more aesthetically pleasing hairstyles and eye colors. 

A completely new addition to customization is your locker in the game lobby. You can earn stickers, statues and many more little trinkets to add into your locker through the campaign or through the catalog, which is similar to a battle pass that is given to you by one of the NPC characters. It’s viewable by all players and it’s entertaining to see what players can come up with when given free will customization. 

Concerning in-game customization, there are so many new things that you are able to do. You can earn emotes through the catalog which are equipable for a flashy move after winning a game. The most noticeable in-game customization is your gamer tag and the power to change it to however you’re feeling at the moment. You can completely change the name you’re being viewed as, and your title. For example, you can customize your title to be “Comfy-Cozy Torpedo User” or “Rookie Plumber.” These updates make your character more personal to you than in the last game. 

As soon as you finish customizing your character, you get launched into Splatsville, which in “Splatoon 2” was a simple town design but now is an extravagant city. The world building is incredible – it leaves out no details and walking around in it is delightful. You get to see other players you’ve played with standing or sitting around, as you used to in “Splatoon 2,” but now the idle stances are more pleasing to look at. 

It can get a little confusing to navigate when you first start the game, but it gets easy to maneuver. Although, if you don’t feel like walking around to get to an area, there’s a map you can access that will easily teleport you to your desired location. 

The actual gameplay is very similar to “Splatoon 2” with little additions. Queuing up for games is more enjoyable in comparison to the screen in the last game that just displayed “Waiting for players.” Now while you are waiting for a match to start, you can practice your shooting in the training area and even view the players you’re in the match with do the same. 

“Splatoon 3” brings you twelve maps, seven ones from the previous game, and five new ones. It keeps nostalgia while still keeping players engaged with the new environment. To go hand in hand with the new maps, a handful of new weapons and ultimates are added to spice things up. The most notable weapon is the tri-stinger, a crossbow/bow and arrow mash up which is a totally new concept to the game. 

An essential part of the game is Salmon Run that was brought over from “Splatoon 2”. It wouldn’t be a “Splatoon” game without it. Five new salmonoid bosses have been added to the game mode, the most significant and unique one being the Cohozuna. It comes up as a random extra wave at the end of completing the usual three waves of bosses, and has a special way of defeating it. Instead of using the gold eggs that you usually collect for points, you throw them at the Cohozuna to defeat him. This makes the repetitive game more interesting and unpredictable. 

 Lastly, and the most different incorporation to the game is a new mini game called Table Turf. The best way to explain it is if Tetris and Filler had a baby. You fill out a game board with certain shapes that come from cards you can earn in many ways. You can customize your own deck to fit how you play the game. It comes as an extra way to earn more equipable items. It’s similar to the Dance Dance Revolution mini game in Splatoon but with customization and rewards. 

“Splatoon 3” is perfect for old and new “Splatoon” players, as it still holds the familiarity of the old game while still keeping players engaged by fun additions.