Saturday, 9 May 2015

Battlefield Report: Splatoon Impressions

And we're back after all the crazy shouting that was the UK general election which members of or team was involved in trying to poke people into voting or simply hiding from the Internet "poo-storm" that politics creates. Our return has coincided with Splatoon "test fire" day.

It's not common we get to do prerelease impressions here on GK-UK as we try to make sure we have the same access as you guys at the same cost. So here's our early impression of Spaltoon

For those who don't know Splatoon is Nintendo's new online multiplayer focused IP. Whilst it's third person camera and controls are similar to other third person shooters. Much like it's Mario Kart and Super Smash Brothers games, Nintendo has put its own on spin on the genre. Instead of being kills focused, players are tasked with spraying the environment with their weapons and the winner is the team with the most ink on the field.

At first things like squid transformations seem really bizarre additions until you realise that it acts the same way as sprinting in modern FPS games, You travel faster, harder to hit (your most;y invisible in your ink), jump further and also allows you to climb walls covered in your team ink and even reloads your ink tanks.

As you can see the battle quick coats the environments in bright colours. The change of focus and bright colours instantly make Splatoon feel distinct. It took a few matches for me to adjust to this games take on the genre (much like playing Smash and Kart for the first time) but soon I found myself really enjoying the battle, the last minute or so become an intense frenzy as both teams assault each others ink hoping to gain the edge (I lost one match by 0.2%).

There are some decisions that seems weird (and i'm sure will be used on forums as a complaint) on the surface that now I can see why. Splatoon features randomised teams, no voice chat and (in full release) maps rotating in pairs every hour. At first blush these seem crazy but after an hours worth of play I understand. With players spraying Ink on surfaces it's easy to see what you have to do with out needing to talk to your teammates, "is it your colour? No - spray/yes - move one" and the gamepad shows you in real time where is sprayed, whose sprayed it and what's uncovered. The D-pad allows you to signal for help which team mates can leap straight to you via tapping your icon on the gamepad. The time locked levels and randomised teams are an attempt to stop one team repeatedly stomping repeatedly and gives everyone the same chance to learn the levels.

This game oozes charm and is surprisingly intense, this stress test handled reasonably well with only occasional lag (I ran into one instance in a hour) and the server getting full (for this test there is only one server but full release will have a server for each territory - EU, US & JAP).

This beta experience along with Splatoon's lower price tag with additional maps, weapons, game modes, and costumes coming every few weeks after launch for FREE makes this a very easy preorder.

Splatoon can currently be Pre-ordered at Amazon for £29.00

1 comment:

  1. I had a superb time on the testfire, the motion chotrols are superb and the game had me laughing and excited when I was running around throwing paint balloons around and speeding across the stage as a squid, I had a superb time of it. And cannot wait to play the full game! Its going to be amazing!
    Despite Being alone vs a team of 4 I did quite well and had awesome fun!