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Thursday, September 15, 2016

Splatoon: One Year Later

It amuses me when people say Nintendo has not had a new IP in years before the 2015 release of Splatoon . There was The Wonderful 101 in 2013 and some quick research will show that there have been numerous others, but I guess new IPs from The Big N only count if they garner critical acclaim and are released on consoles. Nevertheless, Splatoon is not only my favorite new IP to come out of Nintendo in recent years, it's become one of my favorite games in general.

Splatoon manages to stand out from so many other games in the shooter genre in a number of areas, For one, it, it's a lot more colorful. Most shooting games have dark, saturated, bleak colors. That's not necessarily a knock at shooters that are of a more serious nature, but there's a reason they are often refereed to as "brown shooters". By contrast, Splatoon has popping, vibrant colors that are a joy to behold. You may thinking I'm only feffering to the ink, which looks great in all its HD glory, but I'm also talking about the scenery. So much of it looks jaw dropping and it can be hard to appreciate it when you're so busy inking turn or trying desperately not to get splatted while staying on the tower. Go in recon mode sometime and just soak up the surroundings. 

Dressed to ink. And splat.

The concept of covering the ground with ink brings something to the shooter genre we haven't seen before. True, you still go around taking out foes in Splatoon, but the way you go about carrying that business out is drastically different from other titles. Inking the land ensures that you've always got a spot to retreat from danger when things get hairy. Swimming in you ink to evade the enemy and surprising them is also something new. It may not seem like it on paper, but the whole inking dynamic truly does make Splatoon in a world of its own. Plus, covering the ground with ink is a lot of freaking fun. 

So Splatoon is more than a year old and it continues to be a game that I play regularly. Splatfests are no more and I'm very saddened to see them go, but it hasn't taken the wind out of may sails. I haven't played a shooter this much since Perfect Dark. I'd forgotten what it was like to have a shooting game to just boot up and play whenever you feel like it.  It's fun to come up with new outfit combinations with the wide assortment of gear and I love seeing all the crazy posts my fellow squids come up with on Miiverse, which makes touring my plaza every time I turn on the game a riot. Sure, the experience can be marred when you have the disconnects and occasional hacker to deal with but even so, those hiccups aren't enough to stop me from making a mess. So until those servers go down, I'm going to continue painting the the town orange, pink, blue and all the other colors Splatoon provides. 

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