The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

The Voice of the Wildcats

The Paw Print

Review: “Splatoon 3” was well worth the wait

The long-awaited “Splatoon 3” was finally made available on September 8th, 2022.

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to glide through colorful puddles of ink as a shape shifting squid person? Or perhaps you prefer solving spatial puzzles with the help of your faithful paint gun, and your even more faithful pet salmon monster? Well, even if you don’t live every day like your absurdly dressed inkling avatar, “Splatoon 3” offers something charming to every player. 

A trip into the world of “Splatoon 3” can include anything from action-packed turf wars to careful and methodical campaign levels. Whatever your playing style, there is certainly something to love in this long-awaited Nintendo Switch release for everyone. In the primary online mode of the game, “turf wars,” players compete in groups of four in three-minute competitions. Players navigate a variety of maps while simultaneously using their weapon of choice to cover every surface in ink. Players shift fluidly between their human and squid forms as they play, freely swimming through their team’s ink and leaping off the ground to “splat” their opponents. Simply put, the team with the most ground painted in three minutes wins. 

Along with the many thrills of online mode, the game still has much more to offer. Much like the previous installment, “Splatoon 2,” the game also includes a well improved single-player campaign mode, as well as a newer option, “the salmon run.” Some chose to play simply for the charm and creativity of the Splatoon universe, which has truly taken on its own culture. Players can show off their “fresh” (common inkling slang) outfits in the lobby, share artwork with other players, and compete in world-wide events known as “Splatfests.” The world of “Splatoon 3” is really quite entertaining. 

Ever since the first teaser trailer dropped in early 2021, Nintendo fans have been awaiting the next legendary installment of the Splatoon franchise with bated breath. Displaying new ways to customize characters, vivid new graphics, and some new-and-improved world design, the game had us drawn in for over a year, becoming available on September 8th. 

In addition to the intriguing trailers, faithful Nintendo gamers have had high expectations during their wait. The Splatoon franchise is often viewed alongside Nintendo’s array of incredibly successful releases from the past five years, including “The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild” and “Super Mario Odyssey.” Both aforementioned games earned a whopping 97% on Metacritic, often viewed as masterpieces in the video game industry. While “Splatoon 3” and its predecessors have never quite met this level of hype – the newest release earned an 82% –  the game is still certainly worth a play-through or two. 

The unique charm of the Splatoon world was enough to draw me in. As I played, I kept on discovering new tweaks and features that greatly enhanced the gaming experience. Players no longer have to wait in an idle lobby to get in an online game, but now have the opportunity to practice their skills in an open arena as users join. The single-player mode has also greatly improved, offering an entirely new storyline and set of characters, all of whom are equally mysterious and intriguing. A perfect pairing for the universe of Splatoon. Throughout the first week of owning the game, I could hardly put my controller down.

The only issue, however, is that after that week of playing, it became a bit too easy to put down. As a returning fan of the Splatoon universe, I didn’t come across any groundbreaking changes that weren’t already featured in “Splatoon 2.” I got my taste of every option in the game, ranked up to buy my favorite gear, and played online until I could develop a solid streak. After I collected the items I wanted, and played through the first few worlds in campaign mode, there wasn’t much to bring me back the next time I had a free moment. Due to the fast-paced nature of the gameplay, it inevitably becomes repetitive after a while. I would still eagerly play a round with family or friends, but there simply isn’t enough new content to leave me playing for hours on end. 

“Splatoon 3” may not quite live up to the masterful quality of its neighboring Nintendo franchises, but the new game still guarantees a fun time. Improving upon the already beloved franchise, the game offers everything that a Splatoon fan could hope for, and perhaps even more for a first-time player. Whether you play for the pursuit of great costumes, the strategy of campaign stages, or the thrill of online battles, “Splatoon 3” brings forth the very best of the Nintendo’s creativity. 

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