In May of 2015, Nintendo released a new game called Splatoon, an ink-based competitive shooting game. It was unique in that the game wasn’t focused on killing your opponents, but by painting the largest amount of the map using water guns, paint brushes, rollers, and buckets. It was a simple to play game, but one that took time to master. It featured strange character designs, really weird music, and fantastically constructed maps.
I can’t remember if I bought Splatoon on the day it came out or if it was a few days later, but I know I had it very early on. I almost feel like they did an early release to test the servers and I had so much fun I pre-ordered. Nonetheless, I bought this funky Nintendo shooting game and grew to love it rather quickly. In fact, if it wasn’t for Splatoon, I’m not sure the Wii U would have been worth buying in the first place. Sure, I had fun playing Wii U Sports, Super Mario U, and all that, but the system never truly grabbed me until Splatoon. Once that game came out, I logged hundreds of hours.
When the Switch was announced, I was excited, but I wasn’t sure if I could get rid of the Wii U without having a copy of Splatoon on the Switch. Luckily, Nintendo announced Splatoon 2 and it was released just two years after the first game, and just a few months after the launch of the Switch.
I’ve never been an overly competitive gamer, but I usually do my best and try to win matches. But there is something about Splatoon that is almost mesmerizing. It’s relaxing. I guess, since I don’t have to worry so much about other people trying to hunt me down every second of the game, I can just focus on doing what I need to (paint a bunch of stuff) and let the chips fall where they may. Most of the time I don’t even pay attention to who wins any given Splatoon match and the four minute match time is perfect to play even for just a few minutes here and there.
A couple of days ago, I pulled out Splatoon 2 and popped it in. I haven’t played since at all this year and I just felt an urge. Almost instantly I found myself pulled back into this weird world of paint. I had to start over fresh since I had moved my main account to the Nintendo Switch Lite and I was playing the regular Switch, but that didn’t matter. The levels, the outfits, the guns, none of that matters. It’s just me, sliding around, painting stuff. Life is good.