ByAna Valens, writer at
Writer and games critic. As seen at the Daily Dot, Waypoint, Kill Screen, Bitch Media, and ZEAL.
Ana Valens

Splatoon 2 is headed to Nintendo Switch later this month, and the game looks to be one of the best releases on the console yet for 2017. But fans are nervous about the way Nintendo is handling the game's online disconnects.

During Splatoon 2's Splatfest World Premiere, a couple users were disconnected from their games while playing online matches. As a result, a login message popped up warning the user that they might be banned from playing future games if they keep up disconnecting from Splatoon 2's servers.

Check out the message below:

That's pretty nasty. In other words, players with spotty Wi-Fi connections may be temporarily blocked from the game if they experience frequent disconnects, even if they don't mean to jump out of the game.

For a console with a Wi-Fi-only connection system, that's a little harsh. Not everyone can maintain their Internet connection perfectly at all times. Wireless connections can be spotty. And public Wi-Fi connections, like hotspots, can be notoriously difficult to maintain a consistent connection. For a mobile system built on playing games anytime, anywhere, that's a huge issue for one of the Nintendo Switch's biggest multiplayer titles yet.

Splatoon Fans Are Torn

[Source: Nintendo]
[Source: Nintendo]

Let's be frank. Most players have experienced ragequitters in team-based games before. And when disconnects happen, they're terrible. Going five vs. six in Overwatch, for example, puts the five-person team in a pretty serious disadvantage.

But Blizzard deals with this problem in a pretty fair way. Players who frequently disconnect from their Overwatch matches run the risk of having their XP gain slowed down. This essentially prevents most disconnecting players from repeatedly ragequitting, while also providing room for players with unstable internet connections to still play the game. Everyone wins.

However, Splatoon 2 isn't nearly as lenient. Temporarily banning players due to random disconnects means that players will have to adjust their play sessions so they never drop out. And if Nintendo is punishing players who have to disconnect in order to enjoy the game (for example, if other players already jumped out), then the whole entire disconnection system is just making Splatoon 2 more stressful than it needs to be.

Even in the warning message, Nintendo is already assuming bad faith, suggesting that any unnatural online disconnects are "PREEEEETTY suspicious" on the player's behalf. For a mobile gaming platform, that's pretty strict.

And so the Splatoon community is torn on the measure. Some hate it:

NintendoToday sums up the problem pretty well. John Kinsley calls the initiative "unfair," because the Switch "uses Wi-Fi-only" and a block unfairly punishes "players with unstable connections."

Of course, not everyone agrees. Many are happy with the system, pointing to the frequent ragequits that happened in the original Splatoon. For those fans, this is an opportunity for Nintendo to put a better system in place to deal with early leavers:

Still, others feel like this is a quick fix on Nintendo's part. Instead of banning early disconnections, they want the company to improve the game's servers so they're much more stable. The Splatfest Premiere dealt with this issue, for instance — some players simply couldn't stay online because of server issues.

As far as mid-2017 Switch releases go, Splatoon 2 remains one of the mobile console's most appealing titles. Fans of the original game are eager to play Splatoon 2, especially after the July Splatfest. But it seems like Nintendo may have some tricky server connection issues to overcome during the months ahead.

Hopefully, Nintendo refines their disconnect system sooner rather than later. The last thing Splatoon 2 needs is its playerbase banned from playing the game.

How do you feel about Splatoon 2's anti-ragequit system? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


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