is Nintendo sick of it?

Splatoon is back and is about to put some color in our eyes, but what is this new iteration worth? Test.

Grab your liquidators and other rolls, refill your ink and prepare for the onslaught because Splatoon 3 lands on Switch for frenzied turf wars. This long-awaited sequel will be available from September 9, the start of two new years rich in festivals and other online celebrations. Regulars of the franchise are attached to this community aspect that Nintendo always pushes further with the third iteration of its team shooter, to say the least original.

Credits: Nintendo

The square of Chromapolis gives way to the Cité-Clabousse, a new central hub full of life contributing to the charm of the licence. Cephalopods from all over the world have already had the opportunity to visit this city during the world’s first Rock, Paper, Scissors themed Splatfest. After Team Pierre’s victory, the octopuses and other squid had to take time off to prepare for the start of hostilities. But at the invitation of the Tridenfers, we were able to continue the confrontations in order to test the waters for the rest of our comrades Inklings and Octolings. This third episode marks a new stage for the franchise but is this development convincing after the already very similar previous titles ? Answer in this test which will not hesitate to make ink flow…

Discover Splatoon 3

The ultimate version of Splatoon

From the first moments of taking control of the title, this one exudes modernity and the main defects of Splatoon 2 evaporate. Interfaces and gameplay are transformed to the delight of regulars. Say goodbye to cumbersome menus that make game searching more than laborious. In Splatoon 3all areas have been designed to provide the most fluid user experience.

The Hall, the Calamarcade and Ours SA each have their own explorable lobby, allowing you to train and wait while finding teams for the battle. Once the game has started, it very often takes place without a hitch (we will come back to this) and starting a new game is more natural. No question of getting stuck in a lobby without being able to change weapons, the game gives us the choice to leave the queue or to continue in the same group with or without changing equipment.

On the side of the solo mode, it is also the most advanced iteration so far. The world of Alterna is vast (on the scale of Splatoon) and offers a whole string of missions allowing you to (re) get your hands on the particular gameplay of the title. The positive ofOcto-Expansion of Splatoon 2 finds himself injected into this adventure to take an even better shape. Less off-putting than in previous games, this mode will satisfy newcomers and regulars alike. These advances are satisfying, but their simplicity nevertheless raises the question of the legitimacy of a sequel.

Real sequel or simple update?

The structure of a game such as Splatoon makes the sequel concept more complex than usual. Indeed, an online game of its kind focusing on multiplayer matches can continue to evolve, but the line between new episode and update quickly becomes blurred. Because even if Splatoon 3 brings its share of novelties both in its structure and in its universe, what justifies their publication in a title in its own right rather than in a considerable update or even an extension? The return of octopus and squid is a pleasure to see, but one could almost say that the ideas are dry.

Credits: Nintendo

For the moment, the new content is limited to new weapons, new maps, some gameplay adjustments and the continuation of the solo adventures. These are sufficient novelties without being substantial. Aside from the new hub design and all the tweaks that come with it, there’s none of this that couldn’t have been implemented directly into Splatoon 2. Only five years after this episode, you could almost blame Nintendo for not continuing to update it in favor of a new episode at full price.

Credits: Nintendo

After all, Overwatch 2 was blamed for this same flaw long before announcing its free-to-play format, reducing this sequel to major update status. However, the charm of Splatoon is also found in the renewal of its experience and the return to square one with each new episode. Placed on an equal footing, players find themselves growing together as the game evolves over the months and years. This characteristic format of the franchise could not have really worked thanks to updates. But since the title is trying to make it a strength, it will have to hold the road without annoying its community in the months to come.

The future of licensing

As for the passage of Splatoon at Splatoon 2, the release of this third episode continues to modernize the license. Online games and their format are changing rapidly, pushing developers to adapt to market standards. The first opuses had difficulty following the trend, but Splatoon 3 finally manages to keep up the pace. The new matchmaking discussed earlier is a big part of the modernization effort. But even with these adjustments, some recurring licensing issues remain in this version.. We think in particular of connection problems, resulting in players missing in certain parts.

Credits: Nintendo

But at least this time, this hiccup is partially avoided by canceling the game from the start, thus avoiding an unfair defeat and a waste of time. The only major flaw remains the latencies making certain clashes difficult with incomprehensible eliminations. Unfortunately there is concern about correcting these issues in the future. Indeed, they have never been fixed during the lifetime of the previous episodes, and since the major changes take place when a new opus is released, it is very likely that nothing will change.

It will therefore be necessary to be satisfied with the few notable improvements already implemented, as well as new maps and weapons to add value to the title. The new structure of festival matches also comes to spice up the recipe, despite Nintendo’s Mea Poulpa after many unfair games during the first world test. The regular content of Splatoon and Splatoon 2 has never disappointed the players and it is therefore to be hoped that it will be the same for this third episode. The title is already satisfactory in its current state, but it will have to prove itself over time to really establish itself as a success. A major paid DLC is already in preparation, confirming Nintendo’s ambitions for its game.

Discover Splatoon 3

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