Splatoon – What Nintendo Did Right, and What They Can Improve On

Splatoon is a game that takes many forms. In a traditional sense it’s a shooter, but there are a myriad of different aspects that fall into the experience, diversifying it and essentially creating a unique product in multiplayer gaming. According to sales reports, Nintendo obviously hit the nail on the head and got something right with their step into the multiplayer arena. Below, i’ll talk about a few things I enjoyed (and continue to enjoy) about Splatoon

The Aspects I Like: 

Splatoon doesn’t take itself too seriously. This one is pretty obvious. Splatoon is primarily aimed towards children, but adults (myself included) still feel connected to the experience. Why? Because at its core, Splatoon is a simple game that doesn’t ask too much of the player. Winning and losing is important, traditionally, but the overall idea is to just have fun. Splatoon is just that. Fun.

Shelling out free DLC is a smart move. While Splatoon isn’t praised for being chock full of content, Nintendo planned this perfectly by having plans to freely distribute DLC over the summer and presumably over the next year. The concept behind this move is that players tend to stray away from multiplayer games after a couple of months; This being due to a lack of content or a general disinterest in the game. It happened with games like Evolve, and it’s even beginning to happen with Mario Kart 8, though Nintendo is attempting to handle the disconnect with DLC. Overall, Nintendo played it smart keeping an ace (or a few aces) in the pocket when it comes to Splatoon content.

The game is downright colorful. Sure, dark games are hip, edgy, and the trend nowadays. But honestly? Color is what creates a game’s identity and beauty. I understand that some games (i.e. Bloodborne) aren’t meant to be colorful, but sometimes it seems a bit lazy. There is literally nothing wrong with adding vibrant colors to a game. It does more than one would think. For example, Wind Waker HD looks absolutely breathtaking, and is easily one of my favorite art styles in games.

It’s Fluid, real fluid. In terms of fluidity, the game runs at a solid 60fps, and the overall movement of the game is downright phenomenal. Traversing, and transforming between inkling and squid is quite the feat in my eyes. If there’s one thing I know for sure about Nintendo, it’s that they put their hearts into making games as solid as possible. (Most) of their games aren’t rushed, and surely this one was not either.

Now, here are some aspects I don’t particularly enjoy.

The Baspects (Bad Aspects):

Nintendo is a newbie at online, and it shows. No, i’m not referring to voice chat. Voice chat would be chaos in splat zone. Also, listen to Call of Duty voice chat for 2 and a half minutes. Voice chat will come if/when it’s needed. What I am talking about however, is the overall interface of online. One should be able to swap out their gear while waiting between games. It would make things a lot simpler than having to go all the way to the online home screen. Minor adjustments go a long way in terms of multiplayer experiences. Also, being able to access more stats would be pretty cool in my eyes.

More unranked modes would be nice. I understand and support the fact that more ranked modes are coming, but i’d also like to see some more unranked modes aside from turf war. Even if that means taking ranked modes and also letting them be unranked, i’d like some variety in both modes. I’m sure Nintendo will understand and accommodate these preferences, but the sooner the better.

Looking down ledges. This is a rather small nitpick, but when looking down a ledge, the camera jumps and jitters to the very edge of the ledge instead of beyond the ledge to the floor. It’s a minor error, but one that surfaces more than i’d like it to. While this really only happens with automatic weapons, it still needs a slight update.

Disconnections during ranked. Now this has only happened once to me, so i’m not here to complain on my behalf. The problem is that disconnecting during ranks automatically counts as a loss and deducts 10 points, whether or not you were two seconds from victory or not. Disconnections should remain neutral in terms of points. While I understand it, as some people might franticly turn off their consoles in the event of an oncoming loss, it’s not the case for the majority as connection issues are bound to happen in an online community.

Well there you have it. The good and the bad of Splatoon. Overall it is a great game despite some misnomers, and hopefully these will be fixed in the near future. I hear that aside from continuous DLC, there is a big update coming in August, so maybe that will contain some major updates in terms of interface and design.

Leave your questions and comments below!

Nick Putnam

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