Splatfests were one of the many highlights from the first Splatoon and I was really happy to hear that they’d be making their return for the sequel. This past weekend Splatoon 2’s first [thing] vs. [another thing0] competition took place – asking players to chose sides based upon their favorite condiment, either Ketchup or Mayo.
Upon logging into the game your lobby is instantly transformed into neon infused night variant complete with a performance by brand new Squid idols – Marina and Pearl. The aesthetics aren’t the only thing that changes in the lobby as the background music gets bumped up a notch to celebrate the coming condiment combat.
My first couple of matches pitted me against Team Mayo (I chose Ketchup, naturally, as it goes on everything from fries to burgers) but then the matchmaker started to get a little wonky. Suddenly I found myself getting matched against a lot more Ketchup players than Mayo ones and for the majority of the remainder of the Splatfest this is how things stayed. I’m not sure if this is because of a population disparity – with more Inklings choosing to side for the internet favorite, Maria – or things simply being broken on Nintendo’s end.
The actual combat of the two days I spent playing Splatfest were pretty solid. Matchmaking issues and matchmaking disconnections aside I spent most of the time dying or covering enemy space in Turf War. Combat in Splatoon 2 is fast paced and since the rounds are only three minutes each time has to cover as much space with ink as possible. My weapons of choice? Ink Roller if I’m going for coverage or the brand new Splat Dualies if I want to play Splatoon 2 more like a modern shooter – complete with dodge. My absolute favorite part of combat during the Splatfest had to have been using the new Jetpack power-up. I don’t know what it is but there is something deeply satisfying about hovering in the air and dropping ink bombs on the opposing team.
Each side in the condiment conflict tried to win over undecided kids & skids with some really excellent drawings. Some featured Pearl and Marina representing their respective sides while others used characters from other games, like Sans from Undertale, to push their topping choice to victory. Perhaps the strangest batch of player made art are the occasional Fury rooting for either side – although that while thing is another story.
At the end of it all Mayo came out on top, even if during my several hours of play I saw more Ketchup players (and Ketchup vs. Ketchup match-ups) than members of Team Mayo. Here’s hoping Nintendo works on the backend stability and is able to reduce the same side match-ups and disconnections that can occur while the matchmaker is looking for available players.
The last Splatfest was two weeks ago on July 15th and the original game had a tendency to hold at least two Splatfests a month for the first year and a half of that title’s life. We’ve got a lot more team base rivalries to settle on the streets of Inkopolis – Perhaps Nintendo could rekindled the friendly rivalries between themselves and SEGA before Splatfests in the sequel go dry?