The first Splatoon was showing gray hair and Nintendo has come to give him the dye he needed. It contains news, variety and important changes that both users and critics had requested. The result is Splatoon 2, a game for Switch with which to feel squid again is the ink of fun. We tell you in our analysis.
The approach to making a sequel to Splatoon is reflected in a great objective: try to improve the first video game. And let’s be clear: they have achieved it widely. Several goals have been set, related to some of the aspects that were most criticized, from the individual campaign to the lack of initial content. We are not facing something perfect, and the novelty effect is not so intense, but as a continuation, it is a good job.
Hihashi Nogami (Producer) is pronounced in that sense, justifying the “2” they have put to this delivery. The bases are preserved, but everything that surrounds this group (weapons, scenarios, skills …) has been transformed. Even many of the things we already had have been reformed so that there is a new balance that proposes veterans the challenge of adapting to new circumstances. It is always interesting to find things that change your schemes.
All without belittling new users, which will be numerous. In Nintendo they want Splatoon 2 to leave no one behind, and on that premise, their mechanics are built. It does not overwhelm, but it does not fall short in depth. The campaign is not a mere training ground, and multiplayer games can become apotheosis, both in fun and in strategic possibilities. In short, this is what many expected, now on Nintendo Switch, with all the hybrid gaming opportunities that this entails.
Ink in the veins
Two years have passed since the previous title, and also in the game world itself. The individual campaign ( hero mode ) of Splatoon 2 is not the highlight of the set, but it is important to assess how it has improved. There are several worlds that give for about thirty phases ( 6-8 hours minimum ), progressive in the challenge, to the point that before the equator you can already be losing lives. The variety is intense, and not only in terms of locations but of situations.
There are more types of enemies, new mechanics and you are forced to make use of different types of weapons, so you can learn everything before entering online arenas. If in the first Splatoon we talked about this modality as a kind of tutorial, here we have to talk about something else. The hero mode is raised as a way to dominate the game. Here you not only learn to aim, shoot and move, but to make virguerías with the controls.
The adventure and the way the phases are constructed force you to strive. There are complicated situations, which require a combination of aim and speed of reflexes. Also wit, a lot, and then there are of course the final, funny and innovative bosses. It even costs to enter the phases themselves, so to find the access point within the small open scenarios that are thrown at us. There is even a possibility to unlock improvements. Definitely, Nintendo has put a good review of the individual side. The result has surprised us.
It is noted that in Nintendo they want Splatoon 2 to leave no one behind.
In hero mode, as well as the other playable facets of the title, it is accessed from the Cromópolis square, very similar to that of the previous video game. We have the opportunity to browse the avatar of other players, enter stores, take a multi, register amiibos and discover the occasional surprise (as a kind of mini-game Dance Dance Revolution). They could have taken the opportunity to further expand the concept of this central area, but the truth is that it continues to fulfill its function, and also with a lot of styles.
The highlight, as was the case in the first Splatoon, is the possibility of acquiring new equipment. The biggest novelty is the dual diffuser, very manageable and fast when shooting, in addition to allowing dodge attacks. The developers wanted weapons that were attractive to use, and that is why artifacts already known as the dramatic or the machine gun have undergone slight modifications.
Those that are fully premiered are the special weapons, capable of deciding the sign of the battle in multiplayer confrontations. We have an explosive jump that, when falling, fills everything with paint. The missile launcher, which well targeted can wreak havoc among our rivals. Also the possibility of propelling ourselves in the air for a while and filling our surroundings with ink. Of course, we have the typical accessories (caps, t-shirts, slippers …), coinciding with the new fashion that opens this video game.
Improving equipment is essential, and it means one of the most satisfying things about Splatoon 2: to try different combinations until we feel comfortable. For that you need money, and to win it you need to compete against other players. This small scheme is born the playable addiction, very powerful, supported by the additional factor of leveling up and gain access to new modalities.
There are several options, all 4vs4. There are the friendly battles, with the territorial modality by the flag, a struggle to see who paints more within the time limit. Once we reach level 10, we have access to competitive tests such as pintxos (paint and defend an objective area of the map) or tower (get a central platform and push it successfully to the rival territory). Goldfish is another of the ways that are back, nurturing a cast of somewhat conservative, but still attractive options.
What is new is Salmon Run, a local and online cooperative mode for up to four players, who fight together to defeat waves of salmonids while collecting red caviar. The difficulty is increasing, something that encourages communication between users to achieve success. The approach has potential and fun, but it can only be played in the established time slots, and then we have missed the split-screen (nonexistent in any of the modes).
Removing this, Splatoon 2 is a fairly complete video game, more than its predecessor at the time of launch. Missing things? Without a doubt, and that’s why Nintendo promises at least a year with free updates and new content. At the moment, what comes is quality, including the scenarios, with new additions that come to cool the environment a bit.
The monitoring is another key aspect, and in this case almost faultless. In portable mode, it has cost us more to do the controls, but playing with support or the Switch Pro Controller, the results are spectacular. The handling of our character and the shooting grid come into harmony, combining the handling of sticks with the pressure of buttons and the use of gyroscopic technology. It is very intuitive
Launching is a much more complete game than the first Splatoon
In audiovisuals, Splatoon 2 is still as charming as its predecessor. The paint impregnation system has been refurbished and now offers a more plastic and bright feeling, something that relies on elaborate lighting. The modeling gains in detail and shows the “plus” in hardware that Switch has to handle objects in higher resolution. What does not change so much is fluidity, because it is still exquisite.
However, it is not convenient to focus on the technical, because the art was the most important thing in Splatoon, and also remains so here. The wonderful color and the great inventiveness in designs are the aspects that make this second installment shine too. Everything is put in unison of the soundtrack and the effects, which overflow charisma, with rhythms that change as we complete sections in the campaign, or when the last seconds of departure in the multiplayer arrive.
For all this, the only thing that can be said is that we are facing a prominent video game within the Switch catalog for this year. The updates will be necessary to make it more round, but what we are based on is enough from now to enjoy for many hours … and this is something that could not be said so lightly a couple of years ago with the Wii game U. Come on, you can order a squid in its ink without fear of choking you.
Splatoon 2 successfully achieves what we all expected: a sequel that greatly improves its predecessor. It does so without great risks, but still with merit, correctly reading the most improvable aspects: individual campaign and variety of content. Considering that it will be a medium-long-haul video game (at least one year of free updates), this continuation can give ink for a while.
- Same playable bases as Splatoon, but with successful changes
- Individual campaign long, challenging and varied
- Fun multiplayer, with fast and fluid games
- It definitely has more content than the first video game
- There is still some conservatism, the news is not very numerous
- It would have been nice to integrate the split-screen in some mode