Splatoon 2 has finally arrived for the Nintendo Switch. After months of waiting, the sequel to the Wii U's hit multiplayer title #Splatoon is out. And reviews are piling in. Splatoon 2 is one of the most highly anticipated games for the Nintendo Switch, to the point that many gamers planned to pick up a Switch just to play the game.
But scoring a Nintendo Switch is pretty difficult these days, in part because of its high demand. Ordering one online can cost an extra $100 or more, with some bundles reaching as high as $500 for a Nintendo Switch and three games. As it stands, grabbing a Nintendo Switch with Splatoon 2 is still pretty expensive.
So if you're thinking about getting a copy of Splatoon 2, or wondering if you should go out and buy a Switch just to play the game, here's what reviewers have to say:
It's More Of The Same, And That's Good
Splatoon 2 isn't an extensive reboot for the Splatoon series. Splatoon 2 is more of the same. And if you liked the original Splatoon, then there's a whole lot to love.
"Splatoon 2 is, at its core, a beautifully made game," Reid McCarter writes for Paste Games. "If a description of what makes it so great sounds familiar, though, it’s because it’s a retread of pretty much the exact same formula that made its 2015 predecessor a great game, too."
Splatoon 2 plays a lot like the original Splatoon. It feels like it, looks like it, and controls like it. Many of the original maps are back, too. But Nintendo spices up the game to make things feel distinct. Polygon points out that the Splat Dualies add some killer akimbo pistol action into play. Reviewer Chelsea Stark also praises the Inkling's dodge-roll, which gives extra mobility and skill to Inklings on the battlefield. Combat has changed in Splatoon 2, and the gameplay additions feel right at home.
Not to mention, there's also the four player co-op Salmon Run mode, which lets players fight side-by-side against a wave of monsters while collecting golden eggs. The mode brings on a mixture of multiplayer and survival play, with bosses to take on as well, making it a pretty solid addition to a primarily multiplayer-driven game.
"Salmon Run, Nintendo's take on a horde gametype, is just what the series needed. A manageable four-player romp that has an actual goal is a perfect alternative to the hardcore endless angle that most big shooters take," Destructoid writes.
Nintendo Switch Online Has ... Problems
Splatoon 2 is a game that works well with voice chat. But the smartphone app service centered around Splatoon 2 isn't all that great.
The Washington Post harshly criticizes Nintendo Switch Online. As it turns out, voice chat isn't that stable, and the app is primarily designed as if you'll never switch out of it. That means voice chat cuts off once the Switch is out of a game or if a user switches to another app. Players can't even turn off their phone screen.
"For Splatoon 2, which is the only game that works with the app at the moment, you have to open the app, use the Switch and the game to create an online room, then have the voice chat start on your phone," the Post says. "It's a blot on an otherwise delightful game."
Forbes isn't any kinder on the app, either. As it turns out, Nintendo Switch Online doesn't have that many features, keeping the app's screen on is a "substantial battery drain" for phones, and most of all, the idea just doesn't make sense. Built-in voice chat works so well when it runs natively, Paul Tassi writes. If it works well on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, then there's no reason not to bring in-game voice chat to the Switch.
"Nintendo has never exactly been at the forefront of online gaming, but in 2017, it’s still stunning that this is genuinely their plan for an online service, and that it's designed this poorly," Tassi says.
Grab 'Splatoon 2' If You Liked 'Splatoon'
Splatoon 2 isn't perfect. It has its problems, in part because Nintendo is mishandling their smartphone app. But issues aside, the latest installment in the Splatoon series is simply a lot of fun to play if you liked the original game. It's bigger, better and more expansive. Plus, it's mobile.
Of course, because Splatoon 2 feels a lot like the original Splatoon, the game won't convince non-believers that they should pick up a Switch and start jumping into Turf War with their opponents. But fans of the original will find a lot to enjoy in Splatoon 2, which makes it a pretty solid sequel in the end.
"Splatoon 2 is a much stronger game at launch than its original ever was through its whole lifespan, and for that, is easily one of the best games one can own on the Switch," Caty McCarthy writes for USGamer.
We're inclined to agree. So if you were holding out for a Switch until Splatoon 2, go ahead and order one. It's worth the price tag.
Are you interested in grabbing Splatoon 2? Share your thoughts in the comments below.